Heinz and Daniel joined us for a day’s fly fishing down here in Devon. They were over from Austria and the first thing I noticed was that Daniel, at 14, spoke perfect English. I was pleased as my Austrian is a little rusty!
Heinz is a very keen fly fisher who likes to fish small streams at home and after talking for just a short time over a coffee I could see we were in for a good day. Daniel had an aim, which he was hoping to make come true, that he would catch a trout on a fly. I was going to do my best to try and make this happen.
Daniel had not really cast a fly rod before but was a natural and was soon casting a nice loop. Clearly taking after his Dad he was keen to hit the river and that was just what we did. I showed him how to wade safely and a few of my favourite river casts and we started.
Sometimes putting a newcomer in front of moving water can be a little intimidating and I had given this some thought. A week previously my good friend Karl had been down for a couple of days where we had fished long and hard for trout and sea trout. Karl is an amazing fisherman and can tempt fish where you think they won’t be or shouldn’t be! He fishes the Welsh Dee a fair bit and likes to fish spider patterns a fair bit. I have played with them a bit and sat and watched him fish a few pools and picked up some great tips. He is also one of the best tyers around and kindly sent me way too many of his favourite patterns. I happened to have some with me so tied them on for Daniel and explained how we would fish the pool in front of us.
It didn’t take long for Daniel’s dream to come true and a small brownie was on the end of the line. We continued fishing this way with Heinz fishing a dry and nymph upstream. I happened to pop downstream to see him as he was playing a lively 11 incher. I offered to take a photo of the fish for him but he cares a lot for them and wanted to get it back quickly. I like that!
The pattern of picking up fish continued and although it wasn’t a fish a cast it was pretty consistent. As we had moved further up to a new pool I changed Heinz’ rig a little making the dropper a little longer and the flash back pheasant tail a little heavier. The reason for this was that the day before I had been guiding Nick over from NZ and we had picked up a small sea trout on a dry and moved a nicer fish on a nymph.
He expertly made a cast into the right spot and moved a fish straight away but sadly missed it. We waited a bit and made another cast and this time the dry dipped and Heinz was attached to an acrobatic sea trout of around 3lb. He had him on for a while but the fish managed to wrap him around a rock and was gone. It was fun though!
Daniel had been going great guns and picked up another few fish and was really liking this fly fishing thing. Looks like I’ll be using spiders a whole lot more!!
The rivers are shot today and I was due to be out with Dave from Portland, a regular at the school, but sadly it wasn’t to be. I was out guiding Mike for some guided sea trout fishing last night and we had to head back at midnight as the river started to rise and colour up. It means I have been able to see a little bit of the Ashes but I’d rather be on the river!
I’ve been playing with a few new parachute patterns now that we are getting blue winged olive and light olive hatches and even the odd sea trout seem to approve.
Lots happening and keep an eye on the Latest News page of the main website for an update.