Sunday, 27 October 2013

last fish of the trout season

wanted to get back on the water for one last fish. I decided to go closer to the city to see how big a trout I could catch. I set off at 6:30am hoping to get get going at 7:15 when dawn is close. I started on the stretch next to B&Q on Penistone Road in Hillsborough. The river was quite high and very murky. I opted to try the czech nymphing method using a size 14 Black PTN gold head. First cast, first fish. Took it well and gave a decent fight in the little area beneath the bridge. Must have been close to a pound but none the less a good start to the day. The morning carried on without success. There wasn't anything hatching and the rain dampened the air which made it hard to target anything on the top of on the bed. Called it a day at 10am as I was pretty cold. not bad trout though to start with and will definately be going back next year to target it again. I will be going to Wharncliffe Fly Fishery throughout the winter time, brush up on my skills and casting etc enjoy

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Second river adventure - Deepcar, Wortley Road

After my first successful outing on the river, I decided to stay a little closer to home and head to the river that runs beneath the stocksbridge bypass. Its a fairly well known stretch with a public footpath running along side it all the way down to station road approximately half a mile away.
This section is proving to be one of my favourites so far this year. It was several challenging pools and runs that require a certain level of standard. My first approach was a small pool that was fairly deep directly underneath the bypass bridge. Several rises from fish sipping off the flies from the top. A quick look at some of the flies hatching it off and decided to stick with the Klinkhammer but try a red body size 14. The trouble that i had was that i approached the river on the wrong side. As i am a left handed angler, i need to be on the right hand side as the river flows downwards. Anyway, with just some thigh wellies i waded in about 4ft from the bank. There was no room behind me to cast in the usual method so i had to side cast but doing it on the reverse. I saw this technique on a youtube channel that i would definitely recommend to new anglers, Totally Awesome Fishing, the main guy Graeme used the reverse cast to land his fly in a position that was not on his natural fishing side.   To do so he began to side cast down stream but on the back swing of his cast let the line out to land his fly where he wanted it. Its very difficult at first but a good technique as you can watch the fly as you navigate obstacles and release line upstream knowing you wont get snagged. This is perfect if you see rising fish that would naturally be on your wrong arm side. Adopting this method will mean you will always have a chance of getting a fish no matter what side of the bank you area.

After several failed attempts at the reverse cast, i had 2 or 3 decent chances to tempt the fish. No success. I must have scared them with my heavy fly line landings and constant shuffling on the river bed. Anyhow, not to be beaten, i gave it ten minutes for the fish to return and sat on the bank side hoping i could net one of these risers. On my second cast i was in, right on the money with the reverse method and it hooked me onto a little fighter. About half a pound little brown. What a good start to the evenings fish. image

It was time to move on from this section and move down stream. About 300yards or so through the woods was a redundant / broken bridge. Just underneath was a heavy running waterfall that dropped down into much faster flowing boulder runs. I opted to try my luck in the runs just off the waterfall. Unfamiliar territory for me as usually i would usually try a shallower run into a pool where i can visibly see the fish. Anyway, resilient as ever i added some more floatent to the fly and tried to see what i could tempt. Nothing much to be honest. One or two fish did emerge further up underneath the bridge but my wellies wouldnt have helped me enough to protect me from the fast flowing rivers.

On i went further down the stream, several pools later i found a lovely calm area just above a small cascade. It was showing good signs of risers, with a large boulder being the main source of cover for the fish. I opted to change fly to a Caddis size 12. It was a brown colour and worked a treat. After a few missed takes i got a little brown. No bigger than 7 inches but a wonderful specimen non the less. He was swiftly released and i called it a day. Happy that i had caught another two fish having spent only 2 months

This was going to be my last action for a month or so as me and the mrs were getting wed on september 6th and off on honeymoon couple of days after so no fishing until I return at the end of september. Im hoping to share with you my new autumn / winter fly box i am putting together!

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

First river adventure - Middlewood Road, Hillsborough

Ok, so heres the deal, ive been fly fishing for approximately 2 months come the first time i set foot on local rivers. I had been dabbling at Wharncliffe Fly Fishery where Ron (lake owner) showed me some pointers, techniques and recommended some flies. I had pulled out just 3 fish, all around the 1lb mark on a regularly stocked lake. It was costing £15 each time and i was frustrated as i didnt feel i was getting value for money as most days it was dead and nobody was catching, even out in the middle on the boats.

So, in mid August i set out on my first river adventure. The mighty Don. I had heard lost on forums, word of mouth and on other sites that it was still suffering from the industrial era. It didn't fill me with huge excitement but i thought why the hell not. If i can pull anything decent out of it, i will be a happy chappy.

After a 10minute google map searched followed by a quick scout on my lunch break i headed to the hillsborough area just off Middlewood Road. I actually parked the car on Winn Gardens as you can wander onto the river from there. I donned my wellies, my tackle and landing net and began to see what the river was like. Some of you know this section has the waterfall section just opposite claywheels lane and it meanders down eventually coming out near the football ground. Weather was clear, sun starting to go down at approximately 6:15pm. I got down into the river and looked at what i had learnt on the net and from my old man. I saw a flurry of rises in a few runs that went into a larger quieter pool. That was my aim to take stealth and load the line with my fly. I opted for a size 14 sedge, a favourite of mine over the past few months.

After a few false starts, including hooking a huge brance, i was into my rythym. Eventually landing the fly4 ft above the fish rising and letting it drift above their noses. I was using my handed down Daiwa 10ft rod. Not ideal for river fishing, but i like a challenge. 

After 20mins of several near misses i decided to change my fly. I put on an olive klinkhammer size 12. First cast, perfect. On the money and BOOM the fish took it with plenty of force and intent. I was so nervous and shocked i had hooked something. I remebered all what i had been taught and managed to land my first river brownie. Ah the ecstacy! 

It was about half a pound and was beautiful marked. After a quick snap i safely released the trout. 

I fished the same spot roughly moving 30yards or so either side of the spot and had plenty of sniffs but nothing else as dusk approached and time had ran out. I didn't care though, i had caught my first river brown! From then on in, i couldn't wait to get back out there and catch more!