Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Airflo - a history and behind the scenes look

A guest blog post from Airflo and Fishtec:

Behind the scenes at Airflo! Richard Wothers delves in to the history and manufacturing process of the Airflo Fly Line, with an on the water and in the factory tour explaining Airflo's patented materials and manufacturing process gives you as an angler a much clearer insight to how fly lines are made and developed here at Airflo!

Airflo fly lines - Made in Britain!

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Hatches in the rain

The harsh Easterly winds have finally been beaten back and allowed for warmer air from the South to take control. However we have been dealt some tricky conditions. Saturday saw driving rain and squally winds. Sunday found a rising river and a similar battering with strong gusts of wind. Come on weather... give us a break!

At least the Large Dark Olives were hatching in text book form during the warmest part of Saturday and the fish obliged, lining up to feast on them The duns were finding it difficult to take to the wing as the hatch coincided with the heavist down-pours of the day. Similarly it made fishing a 'dry fly' quite challenging...

A dun's wings, drowned in the heavy rain

Sunday's efforts were rather more frustrating. After having to cancel a morning's casting due to the strong winds, with 6" on the gauge thanks to the overnight rain, the river looked in great condition. However, whilst the olives were putting in an appearance, the wind really prevented them from hanging about. Where they would usually be concentrated along foam lines and creases, they were blown all over the river. The fish just were not locked on to them. At least it was warm!

Fingers crossed for some stable and less windy weather over the coming weeks.


Friday, 5 April 2013

The North (Easterly) Wind Doth Blow

With that very cold wind blowing from the North East, the expected spring temperature have been stiffled. None more so over the last 24 hours thanks to the wind becoming increasingly brisk.

A reviving break with a hot cup of tea.
I spent the morning with Shaun who was learning to fly fish for the first time. Not the easiest conditions to learn in, but we found a more sheltered area and got to work on the basics. Despite the challenging conditions he was soon making some beautiful casts. So we headed to small stillwater to put some new skills into practice.

Shaun concentrates, waiting for the fish to switch on

Fully exposed to the elements, finding shelter proved challenging. However, with the sun shining (and most welcome it was too) the wind may have been in our favour - the surface being nicely disturbed.

Fishing a black tadpole pattern on a slow retrieve, it wasn't long before Shaun find himself attached to
2lb of angry, prime conditioned rainbow trout.

Shaun with a 2lb Rainbow Trout in excellent condition

Well done Shaun! A great effort today under challenging conditions.


Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Best laid plans

It's never quite as you plan is it?! This is the coldest season's start I can remember. Visiting the river on Monday (1st April) left me wondering how long it would be before I'd be casting to rising fish. Despite this, I had every intention to cast a dry fly! It just didn't happen though with a bitter wind, low air temperatures and even some snow falling. There was no fly life to speak of and I can hardly blame them!

Water temperature was just 4 deg. C.

It's always going to be challenging when the weather is so cold and when I ventured back out today, despite the sun shining, I made sure the French leader was ready for action. A short walk down the river, dry fly at the ready, to look for rising fish proved short lived. I switched to the nymphing set up and started to search some of the deeper pockets.

A first for me on the fly, a bull head came tumbling to hand. I have rarely heard of these ever grabbing a fly. More important is there presence - a key indication of water quality and a great food source for hungry, big brown trout!

A Bullhead

After carefully watching pools for signs of life, I eventually worked the nymphs through a narrow, deeper run, only to be met with a solid take and a real fight on my hands. After the winter's floods, I was aware of some Rainbow Trout finding their way into the river and I had firmly attached myself to one of them. After a lively battle, in and out of submerged roots, the net eventually secure a 2lb 11oz Rainbow. It certainly gets the heart racing when you're using a 10' 2 weight rod!

2lb 11oz escaped Rainbow Trout

Not quite the day I had expected. Now, if I could convert that into a Brown Trout next time...