28th March

Well second trip of the season and for this trip I had a potential  new member and part time fishing buddy Malcolm along for the trip.

I decided that we would fish both Rowlands Gil stretch and Winlaton Mill today to at least give him a good taste of what the river is all about.

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It was a really odd morning weather wise some periodic showers.. heavy at times and felt fairly cold. The showers had stopped and things had brightened up though as I loaded the car up just as Malcolm arrived.

Temperature wise it must have been something like 10°C and a good deal of cloud cover, almost ideal conditions.

Car loaded up with our stuff we set off, stopping at Winlaton to get Malcolm’s day ticket.. for the princely sum of £8 and off we went to Rowlands Gil.

Arriving at Rowlands Gil at something like  11.45

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It was much quieter there today; not the throngs of dog walkers and plodgers to be seen .. thankfully.

Off we set upstream to the weir pool, I started off with a Olive GRHE on the point and a super new orange spider on the dropper. I got first go at this pool whilst Malcolm kitted up. The water looked in good nick, clear and a good level maybe looked a little low in parts.

I fished through this pool quite thoroughly running my flies between the 2 main “streams” of the weir and working right down to the slower water but nothing doing.

Next for me was the far run of the split in the river leaving Malcolm to fish the  nearside, the water was really low here meaning I spent about as much time clearing weed off my flies as fishing, still there is one particularly nice run here but I drew another blank.

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And so this continued…… through  under the trees, the nice pool with the blue pipe.. nothing…no fish rising…no takes.. no flies on the water, I tried to reassure Malcolm that it  doesn’t always fish this poorly!!

Unperturbed however at around 2pm we decided to hit Winlaton Mill stretch, an accommodating space was left in the car park for us and off we set up to the Viaduct, with me pointing out some usual productive runs along the way. We did spot a regular riser on the conservation area (true to form) as we walked up towards the starting point something like 500 yards past the viaduct.

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Again this run looked super fishy, a fast run that deepens out to maybe 7-8ft at a guess looking at it  but still no fish!!

This was the tale of the tape as we wended our was back towards the viaduct through three or four  nice looking pools.

Now  back at the viaduct we climbed out…past the STILL persistent riser and down to the stone bridge. I started at the  far side of the bridge with Malcolm at the upstream side.

Working all the way down to the bend and a bite (WOW) surprisingly I was still awake (WOW) and managed to strike and hook him (treble WOW) The odds must be something  akin to a lottery win!! a decent scrap ensued midstream and after a minute or so I had a very nice grayling to hand, around 12” taken on a red collar GRHE

despite a run through the tree pool that was all that we saw between us today, I think we maybe spotted 2 fish rise all day and a very small hatch of Olives, disappointing really.

That was it for the day, we had a pretty solid five hours of fishing and only one bite between us a poor show really.

However lets have some excuses…it’s early season…still a bit chilly…will come on in a couple of weeks… I hope a few of them are true, it’s been a slow start to the season, I would have expected a bit more action on the river by now. Ho-hum I guess it’s all a learning experience.

I need to do a small repair on my waders as I managed to stab myself in the upper thigh with my scissors so a quick fix needed there….will do it all again (hopefully with added fish!!) but without the stabby badness on Easter Friday.

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