I have spent the last two days fishing the River Avon trying to get a few last days of the Trout season in before it closes and then its just Grayling that I can go for. Yesterday was a windless and very warm, too warm for the time of year. I thought that the fish just weren’t interested due to the heat and bright sun but thinking about it, I think they can tell that a change is coming. According to the weather forecast there is a change in the air pressure so I am sure that the fish can feel it. There are a few bugs still hatching namely small spurwings or palewateries but I noticed quite a few large sedge yesterday (sorry about the bad picture).
I tried the sedge/ stonefly pattern that I wrote about a few days ago and the Browns were certainly interested but just coming up and having a jolly look although I am sure they were taking it but not with confidence. I put this down to the fishing pressure and air pressure, etc, etc. I did get a few fish on various flies but nothing was consistent.
I spent most of the time fishing this short section because that was where the fish were and it just looked fishy. Has you may detect, there is a change in the vegetation colour.
Today I started fishing just round the corner from yesterday and upstream a couple hundred yards. Totally different, the water was much slower and more clear. I could see the fish feeding, appeared to be nymphs mostly ( a nymph box review is very overdue after the feeding observations over the past few months).
After lunch I moved a few miles upstream to another stretch of the Avon. This time it was a stretch that I haven’t fished for sometime (years to be honest due to it being wrecked by a so called fishery improvement programme. I knew I could wade some of it but as it turned out after making a few enquiries most of it and it is all wild fish with Browns up to 5-6lb. I alas, I only managed a tiny Grayling but the day wasn’t wasted as I had been able to get this stretch sussed.
So, my end of season bash as been fun and now its time to sort the fly boxes and get shot of the stuff that doesn’t work and restock the tiny fly winter box and the nymph box and the various dry fly boxes and all the others.
I was able to once again able get out to the river yesterday, this time by kind invitation. The river Avon was the target although there was originally mention of the Wylie. I was told by my host that the river keeper who looks after the Wylie for his club had told him that the weed had disappeared this year and that the fish were extremely spooky, after TuesdayI can say that he isn’t kidding. His club also has the last day of September has the last day of the trout season although mine has October 15th has the last day and this on the same river! Why is there no standard? So to days target was Grayling.
We fished two stretches. The first had sections of river that had the appearance of being fishless but the streamy stretches had fish rising. It was simply a matter of working out what they wanted. Has it turned out it was either really small flies size 18 or 20 Griffiths gnats or small spurwings/pale wateries. But the better fish took heavy nymphs, namely the Red Spot shrimp size 14 (always a great fall back) and a pale pink czech nymph. The best grayling came to the Pink fly which doesn’t really surprise me as the bigger Grayling rarely venture to the surface preferring to feed near the bottom unless there is a really heavy hatch such as the Mayflies in May/June. Unfortunately I was unable to interest the really big 2 Grayling that I saw in a section of river that was now more like a canal due to a bank breach during last winters floods which means most of the water is going else where.
The Grayling themselves appear to be taking the beautiful Autumn colours although at the moment this seems to be confined to the larger fish.
The second stretch was a little wider and streamer but the was a section below that was calmer and with visible Browns which my host had told me in the morning were out of season. I couldn’t help it when they took my size 16 hares ear version of the snowshoe rabbit emerger. Nice fish to, one being about 2lb and the other closer to 3lb. The fly also took a couple of grayling while the fish in the streamy section liked the size 20 palewatery version.