At the start of 2012 I set myself a series of targets that I wanted to achieve during the year. Today I annihilated the first of those.
It has been four weeks since my last outing due to family commitments, work and visitors. It has been great catching up with family and old friends but the downside was missing the last two weeks of the river season and reading everyone's blogs has not helped in the slightest. In fact they all made me pretty jealous.
One of my 2012 targets was a 3lb Trout, a new personal best on the fly. This branch of our sport is really exciting me at the moment, variety is the spice of life and I love trying new places and methods. I have been reading and absorbing all things fly for the last few weeks.
This morning I set out early for Lechlade fishery, a renowned big Trout mecca boasting double figure Rainbows and Brownies set in the Cotswold countryside. The lake itself is a lot smaller than I imagined but being fairly new to fly fishing it was plenty big enough for my amateurish casting efforts. I arrived about ten minutes before the gate opened and had a chat with some of the other anglers that were obviously as keen as me. They were really friendly and told me what flies had been working and what they had been catching. It was a bit of an eye opener that they were so willing to divulge information. Imagine if I had asked a carper what bait he was on. In response would be a grunt and a twitch and I would be none the wiser. The fly consensus was lures and flashy colours.
The gates opened and I got a two fish ticket, and some flies as recommended by the others plus the fishery owner.
My fly fishing is still in it's infancy so I headed to a quiet corner where I could thrash the water to a foam without too much embarrassment. To my amazement on the fifth cast the line tightened and it was fish on. I could not believe it! It was a good fish and just as I was getting control of the fight I reached for the net. Fatal mistake, the hook pinged out as I took my eye off the prize-gutted. It did my confidence good though just having hooked a fish.
I persevered with the same fly for a couple of hours but apart from a couple of tentative 'follows' nothing happened. At lunchtime I had a wander round the lake chatting to anglers on the way and one lad was having success with a yellow lure. I checked my fly box and had every other coloured lure bar yellow so I tied on an orange and green thing(no idea what any are called!) and chucked it out. It wasn't long before it got nailed. The only fly rod I own is a 5weight Orvis clearwater so is light and whippy and therefore leaves me a bit under-gunned for these big hard fighting Trout but with a bit of care I managed to land my first Lechlade Rainbow. I was elated. Easily a new pb and almost bigger than the net. I had to sit down and have a brew to stop my body shaking.
|6lb 9oz of battling 'Bow'|