The weather has been fantastic today, certainly a lot warmer and drier than yesterday! But the evening rain took its toll on the river which looked a little murky as I drove over the bridge to work this morning. That said I only managed to glance at it as I was quite unaware that the clocks had gone forward last night until Neil rang to say that Tim, Tony and Alison had arrived at the shop rods in hand!
Before long I was wadered up and ready to go although I first had to sort out Tony who had succumbed to a Demon reel to add to his newly purchased rod. A lake session followed and I worked with Alison on gaining extra distance. For those of you reaching for that extra yard or two remember this; less is more! Alisons best casts always came when she applied a smooth stroke to good timing. Brute force does not get the line out further! In between Alison could do no wrong on the fish front landing 10 Trout very quickly using a long leader and ultra slow retrieve. The moment the line shimmered a lift met with solid resistance. Try this for yourself early season, it works!
After the lake we set up with some pretty extreme river kit consisting of 10ft rods, floating lines and short leaders incorporating two or three droppers. On the top dropper we placed a very heavy tungsten bead nymph, further weighed down by wraps of lead under body. The other two patterns would consist of copper johns or similar. The basic idea is to lob the whole lot upstream, raise the rod and allow the flies to pass just in front. Any unusual movement on the line is met with a firm strike and often a fish. However today the river is cold and carrying colour so I knew we would be in for a tough session. But the guys did not let me down concentrating hard and managing a fish each and some lost; in such hard conditions these are satisfying fish. If you are keen to try this technique out watch the video below as Tim Watson fishes a fast run using a fast sink polyeader to gain even more depth.
Tomorrow I have a beginner to entertain and then David Garth returns hopefully to christen his new Marksman outfit. It will be tough going on the river until it warms but for those willing to put in the effort there are rewards to be had. And Wimbleball has now opened so I can't wait to wet a line there through the week. Lots of anglers yearn for a floater and nymphs but early season I love deep sinking lines and that awesome feeling when the line locks up solid. With 30 odd Demon spools to load before then I had better go and do some winding!