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Ronan's report

Tuesday 18th May, 2010

Been a interesting week for me here , all be it l had to guide each day and have no time to take out and fish for myself, save for a few fish l caught while showing customers how to present drag free drifts with dries and emergers, and the techniques of fishing wet and soft hackles.

Truth of the matter be known, few anglers do get the opportunity in any one day to fish all manner of techniques, many tend to stay with what they know, all be it the comfort level if you like, when very likely another choice would have been way more productive.

As many of us know there is no scientific approach to catching fish, but there is very likely a logical approach, given we understand what is going on, and have the relative skills, even then the best of us will meet a day when the fish win. Always intrigued me has that one.

Why for example you fish a given stretch of water one day and have a ball, return the next under the exact same climatic conditions and have little or no success, regardless of whatever you do. We also know that no one else fished this section. There has to be a reason. So we try to analyze why. Could it be that the previous day we wised em up. Sure we caught a bunch and for sure during that process we would have spooked others.

Is it a species issue. I know for a fact that it is very possible to catch the same fish (Bow) on consecutive days, in fact it can be done at least twice if not more the same day. Now in he case of Browns that is a very different matter. I am not suggesting here guys that this may be the case for all Bows, as that is not so.

Day one we had great success say fishing a hares ear nymph, to day they will not look at it, so we try dries, soft hackles, all else still no interest, what the hell is going on in that watery world. Is it possible that the fish have no interest to feed, well that one is very possible, but there has to be a reason, trout by there very nature eat all they can get hold of, they may well gorge and rest for a while, but they also have a very fast digestive track, and as we all know they may well be stuffed to the gills and we still catch them, a Brownie with a half a fish stuck out if its mouth takes a small nymph, in fact l have seen them take dries, streamers and a great many other flies patterns, for what reason other than greed or instinct simply to eat ! who knows.

Well a while ago l was faced with this one. I knew for a fact that the river zone l was fishing would lean me toward fishing small chironomids and sowbugs, been there done that 100s of times a good few 1000 fish over that time. Today after a hour shit, nothing not even a take, what the hell, l was beginning to wonder if there were any fish here, sure there was as l was able to see some cruising around. They were not overly spooky either, l knew well enough how to fish this water and not spook em. Typical set ups with 12 to 14ft leader systems tapered to 6x and small flies.

Cut a long story short, bingo l nail one which was a fine Bow, now l had to find out what this fish was eating, if anything. Sure enough there was the answer daphnia, stuffed with these micro organisms. (see pic).

Never ceases to amaze me that fish will cruise around and take these organisms. No way can you imitate them, l know well enough fishing stillwater that often as not flashy lures will nail Bows stuck on daphnia, never found that successful fishing slow moving water systems, in fact my experience is it spooks the shit out of them.

Simply the best approach l have found is to set up a rig with a very small fly often suspended below a small dry, like a size 18 Adams or Black gnat, below that a size 18 to 24 chironomid, PTN or GRHE to 6x at times 7x.

Simply cast it out into the known zone of cruisers and leave it well alone, its then a waiting game, sooner or later a fish will swim by the fly and if it sees it right it will take it with great confidence and swim off with it.

Do not be tempted to move it save for a pick up for a new location. Which is often the reason why many fail to catch fish at times, the urge to move the fly, let the fish find it as they will in slow clear water, when such times as l have talked about here take place .Its not a situation here that we have any measurable drift, due to the way slower soft water back eddies and pools that teh fish were concentrated in.

If we were dealing with water that had at least some downstream drift then that would have been very likely a difference matter. Makes sense when you think about it that the daphnia were concentrated in this slow water back eddy, lesson learned. Blonds also catch good fish, Tbird again with a nice Brownie, pretty fish eh.

Have a great week all.


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