Monday, 4 May 2009

Subsurface... but only just

I couldn't help myself: I had to get back to the river yesterday to tackle the challenge of the tricky fish. The tiniest fall of rain over night had made little difference, if any to the river. CYRSTAL clear again. I didn'tstart until about six o'clock and fished into the falling light - perhaps that would give them more confidence and make them a little less spooky.

Sure enough, fish were showing and were equally wary of any presence. The Kingfishers were darting down the stream's valley and didn't seem to mind my being there. The heron was another matter.

I took a hooked and landed a lovely little wild fish that confeidently took my PTN. With a good thorax of copper, it fished pretty deep - and this indicated were the fish were feeding in the absence of Saturday's rises. Things soon changed though and the fish started to feed. Gentle dimples in the surface, but although with the lower light they were happier with me being there, they ignored all my offerings, including the tiny Klinhamer I thought would be there undoing. Clearly they were feeding just below the surface. I worked hard for my few fish and really enjoyed switching between patterns - the sort of fishing that tests your fly boxes out.

Here's a little, light weight pattern that persuaded some takes - either fished singly or under a dry fly:

Hook: Grip 12003, #14
Thread: Powersilk 10/0
Tail: PT
Abdomen & thorax cover: PT
Rib: Fine silver wire
Thorax: Hare, dyed olive

Small spider pattern also work well - fished singly with a greased leader:

Hook: Grip 12003 #14
Thread: Powersilk 10/0
Abdomen: Porcupine Quill
Thorax: Amber Awesome Possum
Hackle: Starling

Finally, one extra soft hackle for when the caddis are up:

Hook: Grip 14273BL #16-#12
Thread: Sheer 14/0, tan
Abdomen: Hare, blend of natural & olive
Rib: Fine Silver Wire
Thorax: Orange Awesome Possum
Hackle: Coq de Leon hen, dyed light olive



Lucas Carroll said...

great story and flies. my kind of fishing... keeps you tying, researching, and coming back for more!

Dominic said...

Some beautiful flies there, a satisfying little blog too! Like you I am a SW based angler/ writer/blogger, (see "Fish Tales" or Yours is one of the better ones I've seen I must say- am enjoying your river patterns!

Dave Wiltshire said...

Thanks for the comments Luke & Dominic :)