Cressbrook & Litton Flyfishers Fishing Report – 16 May 2017
After a meeting with Don and the Keepers at the Locked Bridge I popped down to the Roadside pool to see if there were any Olives on the wing. The cool NW wind was still making things hard work but there were one or two fish moving in the main run. I was about to step into the shallows when I noticed a nice fish ahead of a small rock in no more than a foot of water. I was sure he must have seen me but I dropped the Plume Tip ahead of him, just in case he hadn’t. Up he came, dropping down with it and just as I thought it had gone too far he nabbed it. A good start. As I worked myself into the pool I saw more fish on the move and I marked them down for attention. Feeling supremely confident, I proceeded to fluff the next three chances and it wasn’t until I reached the pool below the cow drink that I got my eye in. By this point I had on an Olive Klink and this caught me two really good rainbows in the deep hole and five more modest browns from the run-in. By now it was raining quite heavily so I called it a day.
A week or so later I resolved to check out Cheedale with the Tenkara rod. To do this properly you have to leave the fly rod behind. And you have to steel yourself to bypass Sandyford and Slitherford so that you have enough time in the Dale. Needless to say, I was soon diverted by rising fish and I’d had eleven by the time I’d got to Wormhill Springs. The fish were still looking for Olives and most came to a Parachute Adams. Nothing of great size but all perfect wild fish and great fun with the Tenkara set up. There wasn’t much water in Cheedale but this had the effect of concentrating the fish so that by the time I reached the steps up to the trail I had another ten to hand. I decided to leave Blackwell Dale for another day. My first double-figure bag of the season and my personal daily limit.
The cool conditions continued into May and my subsequent trips were nothing to get excited about. By the second week the weather had improved but the rain was still absent. The river was desperately low when I arrived at Duffers to meet up with my WTT colleagues for a brew and a natter before the Annual Get Together at Rowsley. I had an hour to kill before they arrived so I went down to the Angler’s with rod in hand. It was overcast and warm and I thought I spied an Olive Upright on the wing. This is always a promising sight so I put on a s16 Parachute Adams and started to cover rising fish. Surprisingly, I had no takers until I reached some faster water, where I had a few half hearted offers. It was whilst I was untangling my line from my wading stick that I noticed a small dark fly struggling in the surface. Crofty’s little sampling net, which is always hanging from my vest, soon scooped it up and revealed it to be an Iron Blue. A quick change to a smaller, darker version of the P Adams was all that was needed and immediately I started to connect with fish, culminating in a big brownie which I struggled to get in the net. I took a stomach sample for Stuart and I’m sure he’ll find Iron Blues in there.
We’re now two months into the season and I’m astonished to see that 50% of our members have yet to complete a catch return. Either we have a very high proportion of fair-weather fishermen or some of you are not bothering to make a return! May I make a plea for those who might be saving up returns to get them on as soon as possible, or we risk losing the benefit of real time statistics. To be fair, a similar number of the Derwent Flyfishers have still to wet a line, so it may just be the weather that has been putting you off. If you are having difficulties logging on for the first time, please contact Mike Smart on firstname.lastname@example.org and he’ll put you right.
As we approach the peak of the season, we are starting to see the odd Mayfly and Yellow Sally stonefly. Don’t overlook the Iron Blue, which can often be picked out in preference to larger fare. At the time of writing the medium olives and olive uprights are on the wing, as are the Black Gnats, which were swarming under the tree as I enjoyed a very convivial lunch with Don, Mike, Colin and Alan the other day. Also imminent are the Agapetus caddis, so keep alert for these unobtrusive little flies, which the trout love.