Rowlands Gill 21st September

Sunday morning started at about 7.30 am and it was really bright and warm, so odd for the time of year, but the time mid morning came around however the cloud had rolled in and it was fair overcast but still something like 16°C or so , ideal conditions really.

I landed at the river around 1pm and again decided to fish the Rowland’s Gill stretch today.. unfinished business..

I was armed with my swanky new monofilament , with a GRHE and Greenwell’s spider on the dropper, seemingly a good combination this time of year.

I again started at the weir pool and had a couple of pulls almost immediately, eventually lifting into one of them which resulted in what would turn out to be the smallest fish of the day , a Grayling coming in at just over 3” another 5 minutes passed until a slightly bigger grayling of 5” came to hand both of these falling to the Greenwell spider.

Done with this run I moved down to the split again fishing the left hand bank which runs slightly deeper in low river conditions than the opposite side, I had a cracking 20 minute spell through this run getting 2 grayling and a nice 9” brownie, only the Brownie falling to the GRHE all the rest so far on the spider. I spotted the brownie rise as I worked downstream so it was nice to target him and get him to hand.

I did turn a very nice fish right under the over hanging trees just where the river joins back up , a solid take and looked a good fish but he was on and off in a blink and despite another ten minutes or so here, he was spooked and not interested in being fooled twice, I did take another grayling of 5” here though from this run , again on the Greenwell spider.

Now at the very nice deep run that runs down the right hand bank, I know for a fact there are some nice fish in here and as I worked my way down I had a few pulls and tweaks but nothing substantial until I was just about at the end of this run and about 20 yards above me, in the run I had just ran though a splash and what looked like a good fish. Turning to face him I cast upstream and first cast and a thumping take but again he didn’t stick but did jump clean out the water.. a nice looking fish of about 14” or so by the glance I got of him.

Things went pretty quiet for 45 minutes or so and it was about 2.45 by the time I got into the next fish…

I walked in down just past the little island and fished in the streamy water just opposite the caravan park when a modest grayling landed in my mitts of about 5” on the Greenwell spider again.. the go to fly today.
Now at the tree that only leaves about three foot clearance between it and the river …I have seen some very nice fish under here no doubt plenty of shelter…deep water and plenty of food…confident risers too , very tricky casting but well worth it if I can land the flies in the right spot.

To be honest I had gotten myself into more than a bit of a tangle and was contemplating calling it a day but you know what it’s like..the lure of a big fish rising was too much to resist. So off with the old leader, on went a rusty nymph. A couple of false casts to get some line out, nice side cast under the tree landed right where I wanted it.

An almost instant big swirl followed right where my flies had landed, he had taken my fly as soon as it had landed in the water , I tightened and he was on. The rod bent hard as I applied side strain to get him out of his hiding place and out he came fighting deep but maintaining a tight line I got him to mid stream. He made a dash for some tree roots on the far bank, I could see he was lightly hooked right in the tip of his top lip..but I managed to stop and turn him, he was about done and soon was in the net, a plump looking stockie of around 14” and maybe 1½lb.

Nice to target such a difficult spot and hook into such a nice fish , decent fishing .. for me!! More pleasing to get him to the net after the losses of the previous few trips.

I had a couple of more casts and did get another wild brownie of about 5” again on the rusty nymph but that was me for the day. A nice days fishing only about a three hour session but ended up with something like 10 fish 7 grayling and 3 brownies, a couple of decent ones pricked too.

I have really tried to slow down in my last couple of trips, fish through each pool more thoroughly and think this has paid off with better catch return the reward for my patience.

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