First off there has been a lack of photos on my blog recently as my camera has suffered a major malfunction and it currently resides with nikon to get a quote. A local dealer suggested that it probably isn't worth mending as the value is less than a hundred quid! This on a camera that cost over £800 6 years ago. Anyway whine over and back to fishing!
Sunday 20th July
Again I went into Chatsworth Park above the 1 arch bridge. It had been a glorious day and some trippers were still enjoying the evening and still in the river by the weir. I started in my usual pool as there were already fish showing and I had on my grey-olive size 16 klink style fly. There was loads of different fly about from newly hatched duns to sedge, midge and spinners. I managed to trap a couple of sedge and they were amber bodied and grey bodied, the duns were similar to my fly with greyish olive bodies. After a couple of casts I struck into a fish but immediately got broke. This has happened a lot lately, I must be too keen to land them! I have started to use a different mono called Preston innovations which is a coated mono but I think it may be lacking the stretch of normal mono, I may go back to the trusted Bayer Perlon. Anyway after remaking my cast with another same fly as before I struck into a brown which had a long range release, was it going to be one of those evenings? Fortunately these mishaps had not put the fish down and they continued to rise and eventually I landed a cracking rainbow around 3lb. This was followed soon after by an even better one which managed to get below me which I had to chase to the bottom of the pool before attempting to net it several times before getting into my net tail first, this fish was well over 3 lb and probably pushing 4, a lovely specimen. Fish continued to come to the same fly before it became knackered so I changed to a sedge to see if that also worked and it did, this was a sedge tied with those plastic film wings from J Son and they do look convincing. At about 9 the spinners increased in number and the rises were amazing with the fish slurping and poking their noses vertically up, a lovely sight. I finished around 9.45 with a total of 4 rainbows and 6 browns. As I made my way back to the car a herd of roe deer appeared on the opposite bank to take a drink, they had probably been waiting for the crowds to go before thinking it was safe to come down, lovely!
Tuesday 22nd July
This evening I again went down to the willow pool, one of my favourites, I started at the top of the pool this time as a few fish were showing. I had on a brown sedge and after a couple of casts connected with a decent brown. The second missed take resulted in a snagged cast up a tree behind me so back to making up a new cast. A smaller grey sedge was attached as the previous fly was a bit too big on a 14 so a size 16 was used and first cast another lovely brown was landed. There were loads of sedge about as well as spinners and some yellow sallies which the fish seemed to be interested in but I did not have a suitable yellow pattern so will tie some up for next time.I continued to fish as far as I could down the pool covering fish with the sedge but something was wrong as the splashy rises had been replaced by the slow head and tail rise, what were they taking? A closer look in the surface revealed "spinners" so on went the rusty spinner and after losing 2 under the tress were the fish were rising I managed to get a couple of casts spot on and finished with another couple of browns.
Wednesday 23rd July
I had arranged to meet Derek down by the gulley and fish the pool together. This evening was totally different in this pool as there was not much fly about and consequently not much rising. Derek had already started when I got down and was by the deer boom but had not had so much as a touch. I worked up the pool and took a small wild brownie of about 9". Even in the fast water at the top of the pool where there is usually a fish or 2 showing nothing stirred so I went up to the willow pool. Derek soon joined me and he had fared worse not getting anything. I started at the bottom and soon got into a good rainbow which was duly landed on a brown sedge. This was quickly followed by a another brown to the same sedge. There were loads of sedge about skimming the surface and the trout seemed to be targeting them well. Also my other friend a water vole was busy on the opposite bank looking for his evening meal. Each time I fish this pool he is there scurrying about, lovely. I finished the evening after losing more flies to the bushes with 6 fish in total.
Tuesday 29th July
It was rather cloudy this evening and not as warm as it has been. Consequently down at the willow pool (again!!!) there wasn't much moving. I had on a sedge but there were very few about and after 15 minutes without so much as a sniff I switched to my grey olive parachute. A fish rose near the tress on the opposite bank and again I snagged the tree to lose my fly so had to make up another cast again with a similar fly. The fact I had fluffed my previous cast had not put the fish down and it rose sporadically, I covered it several times and eventually he came up and I struck into a good rainbow which led me a merry dance boring deep, at first I thought it was a brown as rainbows are usually more acrobatic! Fish were definitely awol tonight and only the odd one here and there rose needless to say as each one rose I covered them several times before the cast looked good and resulted in a solid take. A couple came adrift but I managed a further couple of browns. As the river was extremely low I decided to try and wade up the whole pool as usually it gets right over the plimsoll line and you have to retreat and get in at the top. Now however as I managed to just skirt past the alder without shipping water and continued to fish the pool right up to the top. By now the odd spinner was about and the fish that were rising were head and tailing so on went my rusty spinner and I took a few more browns to finish the evening with 6 fish. I finished by 9 as the sky looked threatening and the temperature had dropped so I took that as a sign to call it a day.
Tuesday 5th August
Another trip to the willow pool as it was a decent evening, lots of sedge, duns, spinners and caenis greeted me. The fish seemed interested too. I started with a sedge and covered numerous fish all for them to ignore my offering. Hmmm what were they taking, a closer look was needed. I managed to get below some of the fish and used my seine net to see what was in the film and hey presto very small pale duns, caenis! On went a size 22 caenis parachute and second cast a brown took. This was a lovely marked trout and was quickly returned. A second followed which was totally different in it's marking but a lovely trout too. I stayed at the bottom half of the pool and worked my way up slowly and connected with something larger which bored deep and broke me, I hate it when that happens, I just hope the fish gets rid of the barbless hook easily. Another cast was quickly made with the same caenis imitation and soon I was into a rainbow around 2lb which again could have been a wild one as it had the tell-tale white edges to its lower fins. Then something happened and the fish appeared to switch to the spent spinners as my fly was ignored numerous times so I switched to my rusty spinner and yes they were on them and I took another 3 browns to it. The other highlight of the evening was seeing a vibrant blue kingfisher come wizzing down the pool on his way home, stunning! I finished around 9.30 as the light was leaving the sky, the nights are beginning to draw in already, a horrible thought.
Camera Update - Nikon want £233 to fix it! Told them not bother I think I will go back to Canon and see what they have on the market maybe an EOS70D or EOS6D if I'm feeling flush (Ha). So if anyone needs a f****d up D80 body for spares then drop me a line, lol.