Wet and Dry 24th May Winlaton Mill

A rare Sunday outing for me , I do like a couple of beers when I get home from Fishing so normally a Saturday is the day of choice for that reason, however as it was a bank holiday weekend, Sunday it was.

Also the weather forecast … garden work was to be done this weekend, so Saturday in the sun in the garden. Sunday in the cloud on the river. Perfect.

And so it was I set off about 11.30, my intention to miss the whole Newcastle relegation fiasco and land home about 5 bells, it wasn’t to be though as Mrs Blood wanted me back for dinner at 4pm.

As planned the cooler cloudier weather meant the car park was fairly quiet when I landed, walking up past the two nice runs up past high dam to the nice deep stream run. despite a few fish showing here they weren’t interested in the old faithful red collar GRHE of Greenwell’s spider, I fished right through this pool without a touch, there were a few flies coming off now and a few fish rising too. I was at the slow pool that is normally like a dogs swimming pool, not today however and there was a fish showing on a semi regular basis on the far bank. What the hell I snipped off the Gold head on the point and stuck on one of my few dries. It’s a badger monstrosity, the hackle looks a bit too big to me like but anyways on he went. A licking of gink, he could take it or leave it!


Well after about 4 cast he was deciding to leave it , bloody dry fly! I am nothing if persistent though I think I bore the fish into submission rather than out skill them! two more casts and a splash.. right on my fly , get in , what a feeling. He was on , and wasn’t happy, pulling some line off my reel as he sped upstream, I stopped and turned him. I could see him cruising midstream and now splashing on the top…. before long my net was under him though a  nice fish around 12” or so beautifully marked and a surprising success on the dry fly for me.


There’s nothing like a fish to get your confidence up in a method you don’t use very often , so I stuck with these two flies, casting to likely looking spots and 10 minutes later or so I bored another fish to hand, he wasn’t rising but couldn’t resist my monstrosity a smaller fish at about 7” but welcome all the same …I am becoming expert !!  lol

another 20 yards or so and I spy a very likely looking spot, after running my dry through there about 3-4 time a fish rises in between casts confirming my suspicions that a fish would be there.

three , four casts turned into eight  , nine, nothing….so retrieve line add a bit of gink, very next cast and a severe slash at the fly, and I miss him!! damn, still all good fun.

into the stronger water now but no takes here so I climbed out and fished through the bridge, having changed up to wet fly now. I did take a Grayling of around 9” at the bottom of this run on the gold head GRHE. now at the nice split run on the bend , I took another fish, Brownie on the same  fly.

It was here I spied what looked like a nice fish rising just past the bend irregular but he was feeding always gives me hope he can be caught. So working my way down again four  turns into half a dozen casts and a gentle tightening of the line but he didn’t stick, bugger.

However not to be outdone, I persevere , and am rewarded with a strong hook-up. at first I thought he wasn’t that big .. then he woke up; what a scrap , he bent my rod hard and took line off, upstream … sulking midstream, I tried to bully him to the net but couldn’t, he tried to get around the back of me.. all very likely in three minutes or so but what a fight. another very nice fish again in the 12” or so region.

Eventually I got the net under him before releasing him back to the water , he didn’t take long to recover despite his scrap.

I had a quick dabble in the run above the tree pool and missed a strong take .. which I duly  missed!

Time was now marching on and I had time for a quick run through the tree pool.. for once unsuccessful

Just 3½ hours or so today but it has to be said they were very pleasant , some excellent dry fly action which I have to admit is very enjoyable the visual aspect of this is very pleasing indeed add to that a couple of fish on the wet fly and it was a good day all round

I was back in the car to hear the Toon’s fate… a couple of  bottles of Cobra settled the nerves as we ran out 2-0 somehow.

Happy  days


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