No sooner had we come out of lockdown when the rivers opened than it was the end of the season. September continued to offer pretty poor evenings to fish the last couple of hours with very little activity from both fish and insects. Temperatures were on the low side. I tended to fish more in the afternoons. One particular afternoon I went down to the bottom end, I was using my bamboo #5 weight. Usually as you progress up about half a mile fish can be picked off or raised with a neatly cast griffiths gnat or black gnat. I tried both these but could only muster a couple of browns. There just were not the insects about nor the usual rafts of weed. Afternoons spent by the works with Derek produced fish to terrestrials and small black gnats. Talking to the keeper about the issues he agreed that probably due to the biblical floods in February (highest in 50 years) this would have ripped out the weed and shifted many many tons of silt. One of the most amazing examples being down by the bottom hut were the bend just above which was very deep on the near side now has a dry silt area. Unfortunately the last days of the season was a washout with high levels.
So its on to the grayling, maybe a few hours on Thursday or Friday (16th). I will be able to christen (hopefully) my new Orvis Helios3 10'6" #3. I have been reading up on the Czech/French/high sticking practices, Paul Gaskell (discovertenkara.com) has just written a book which includes pieces on this method plus videos/tutorials about leader setup etc. I am in the midst of reading it and it is very informative. So onto the various "nymphing" methods with hopefully some dry fly on those clear days.