Friday 9th September
I had an afternoon of fly fishing on the river Dove at Eaton Dovedale planned for today . It is something ive never done on a river before and i was keen to give it a bash. My pal Rob, an experienced fly fisher, was on hand to show me the ropes and after some patient tuiton on his part i was soon able to roughly put a fly where i wanted it.
The weather didnt lend itself to fly fishing being quite windy and with it going overcast too, the fish werent rising much. Nevertheless i was enjoying myself even though i hadnt caught anything yet. One or two tiny fish got the heart racing a bit as they swirled at my fly but i couldnt connect with anything. Rob fared better and managed a small Trout and a Grayling after much searching.
The only real chance i got was when i miscast short due to the flyline getting stuck on some nettles at my feet and a decent Trout took the fly as i angrily untangled myself catching me completely off guard. I panicked, tightened down to the fish, completely forgetting to set the hook and unsurprisingly it managed to shake itself free!
After this i borrowed Robs float rod and some maggots to extract a couple of nice Grayling and save a blank! Fly fishing the rivers is definately something i will be doing more of when i get a chance ........
Saturday 10th September
A real grueller of a Barbel session ensued when i popped down to the Trent for a short evening trip. I arrived to find some sizeable rafts of weed coming down and after casting in it was soon obvious the dreaded green stuff was at all levels of the water column. I was getting wiped out by the stuff every few minutes. Despite this i managed to hook a large fish which had me backwinding from the off. It powered off downstream and although i managed to turn it and gain some line, i could suddenly feel the line grating on an unseen snag. Everything then went solid and despite trying to pull from both upstream and downstream of the snag the hooklink eventually parted.
After this i had to cower under my unhooking mat as i was subjected to some pretty fearsome rain showers during which i was still battling the weed every 10-20minutes. Not surprisingly, once the showers had subsided, id had enough and headed for home, very wet and very dejected.
Sunday 11th September
I was amazed to get another pass out for an evening session tonight and, after mobilising Keith, we headed for the Trent once again. After a walk along the stretch it became apparent that the river was carrying a little extra water but the weed still looked bad so we settled on swims where we could fish the margins and hopefully stay out of the weeds way a bit.
To cut a long story short the ploy didnt work very well although i did manage to hook a couple of Chub, losing one and landing another of about 4lb. Keith lost a very big fish after having his braid cutoff on yet another unseen snag .
The Trent is a proper tackle eater and is hard work at the minute with all that weed but he who dares and all that ........
Tuesday 13th September
I headed to the river again for some more punishment after work tonight and although there was a nasty upstream wind i was greeted by a rolling fish as soon as i arrived at my chosen swim which was encouraging. I got setup and after about half an hour of fishing i recieved a savage pull on my right hander before everything went slack. I quickly realised the fish was swimming towards me and i reconnected with it mid-river where it put up a great account of itself. Once banked i weighed the fish in at 8lb14oz, a tidy start and the night was still young!
Obviously it all went a bit quiet after that one for a while but soon enough i began to get a few twitches and bangs on the rod-tips again as small Chub pecked away at the baits. Suddenly i recieved another fast take which had the baitrunner hissing yet when i struck there was absolutely nothing there, how does that happen?
After recasting i continued to recieve plenty of enquiries and really had to sit on my hands to stop myself striking at some of the knocks. I was amazed at the amount of fish activity tonight and found myself having to recast more due to fish stealing my luncheon meat as opposed to the usual weed wrapups.
Just as it got dark i had another proper take which resulted in another Barbel . This one went 8lb8oz and seeing as id forgotten my head torch it rounded the evening off nicely!
Thats all the fishing ill be doing for the next week as i have a lot of other stuff on, typical, just when id found a few aswell!