The Taw has shut for the year now. I could get all teary eyed and reflect on a season that has passed but there is no need, I’d much rather do that in December. There are still bass, pike and grayling to catch. I am having a quick breather before I get going again and there are things like cutting the grass that has got a bit long and trimming the hedges which we knew needed doing. We did the hedges today and I am really pleased that that one has been ticked off.
The other thing is that I have got back is tying a few flies. I haven’t had the time to tie as many as I would have liked and I have relied on a few shop bought patterns and the last few of my “specials” that have lurked at the back of the fly box. I have never carried many patterns as I don’t feel the need and I much prefer to tie one on and make subtle changes rather than going for something completely different. The change up fly will be the same but might be a little smaller, or perhaps even bigger, or just a little darker. Often this will do the job as the river is telling me what is hatching, or not hatching. So the clues are all there.
I have been giving the flies I have been using some thought and in some cases I have tweaked them just a little. I really like this part of fly tying. Sometimes I’ll tie 1/2 dozen identical copies (or as near as I can get) and then sometimes they sort of mutate a bit and I start thinking what if I tie a trailing shuck instead of a normal tail? This can be really good fun to do and is great when I sit at the vice, look at the flies and think, yup, they look good. It is even nicer when the trout give them the thumbs up. The only downside of this is that when I am experimenting I only tie a few and we all know that the life expectancy of a fly decreases when you only have a few in the box and the trout are biting hard on them. Then there is always that tree that wants to grab them.
I’ll put in a few of the new ones as I am out fishing with a good friend of mine in a few days and I’ll give them a go. It sounds like the good weather we are having is on the turn now but it will be good to be out there. I spoke to Ray (the Dude) who was hot footing it back to Denmark after a trip to Miami and he reminded me that we were wetting a line in Montana this time last year. I think it is OK to get a bit sentimental about that but I tend to let go after a while. Still banging on about a trip like that after a few years means you need to go on a new one and we have one in the planning. That’s the great thing about fly fishing there are so many great adventures you can embark on. Some may be a long way away but some of the best ones can be right on your doorstep.
So is it the end? No way. As I said at the beginning there are still a lot of fish to catch if you know where to look and I can’t wait to go after them!