To say this season has gotten off to a stuttering start would maybe be something of an understatement to say the very least.
I had already got Friday 22nd March booked off for opening day on the river although by the Monday or Tuesday of this week it became fairly apparent that the river would be in flood and not fishable (sounds familiar to all last year lol)
So it was decided that a trip up to Langley Dam was to be in order on the Friday, surely that would be okay to fish wouldn’t it??
The weather forecast for the back end of the week was truly atrocious very strong easterly winds with heavy snow coming but a bit of snow wouldn’t put us hardy souls off now would it?
I don’t think I have ever had more clothes on!! normal socks, neoprene socks, Long-johns, thick trousers, two tee shirts, two fleeces and a jacket!!
Off I set at about 9.15 and as I got closer to Langley the whiter the landscape got.. upon arriving there was a good couple of inch in the car park and although not snowing, the wind was whipping up the lying snow so raging clouds of snow were tearing across the lake which was akin to the North Sea by this point.
We decided that discretion was the better part of valour and headed for home, not before pushing Daz’s car out of the car park.. at least the exercise was warming.
I thought that’s where the blog entry would end…….. until I had a text off Daz saying he was going down to see what the river was like on Sunday 24th as he thought it might be worth a go.
So I landed at the mill about 12 noon, it was freezing, I mean really freezing, so cold it wasn’t funny!! Not much sun to be seen fairly overcast with occasional snow flurries but the wind was seriously biting, it just cut through you.
Starting on the farm stretch the water was a little high but actually didn’t look too bad and certainly fishable although a little coloured, hopes raised somewhat, I set off to the run just below the fast water armed with a gold head GRHE and a red tag on the dropper and started working down towards the farm.
Twenty minutes gone and into the slower water under the tree letting the flies drift around and a very very gentle take just a gentle tightening of the line and into a fish .. he splashed and rolled mid stream then was off.. as quick as that, sending my flies pinging into the nearest tree to add insult to injury!
However hopes (falsely) raised that the fish were going to be feeding for the day I fished around the slow bend with the same flies before changing my point fly to a weighted nymph , with a touch of red and a Bibio on the dropper, thinking that they wanted a bit of colour and maybe they were sitting deeper in the cold water … without any success , there was no fish showing and nothing doing deeper.
I worked past the farm and still not a touch.. I did manage to hook a gnarly hawthorn bush that had some monster spikes on it though, causing a leader change and a black spider going on. I did manage to find a rather nice nymph up the tree so there is always a positive!
I decided to have one more run through the farm stretch but there wasn’t a thing to be had and it was now just after 3.15pm. My hands had actually turned blue by about 1pm enough was enough , chatting with Daz he had a couple of really gentle takes but not a lot else, I honestly put this down to it just being so cold, God only knows how low the water temperature was.
Off we went home at about 3.30, I had a super nice soak in the bath, nicest bath ever!!
Hopefully all being well I will give it another shot on Saturday when I hope it has warmed up somewhat.
It was really nice to be out on the river although my casting was a little rusty after a couple of months without fishing due to the close season and I managed more than a couple of vegetation hook up which was a little frustrating,
Still it was good to be back out! I think the severe cold put the fish off though so here’s hoping it all warms through for Easter weekend.
Reading back through this before posting it does seem more like a weather update !! hopefully more fishy writing to follow next weekend!!