Tiddler's Galore

Tiddler's Galore

Tracy&James | Sunday, 4 September 2022

Last weekend was a busy one for Tracy and myself; we fished the river Dee and the next day had a casting practice session with some friends who came over to North Wales, Nick, Callum and Chris. It’s clear that the character of the fishing is changing on the river due to the change in season, the fish are no longer evenly spread out and are starting to shoal up for the autumn. This was clear when I wandered up to find Tracy after a couple of hours fishing (actually I was wandering upstream to find Tracy’s fishing bag as this contains the drinks, sandwiches and snack bars). At this point I was struggling, having only managed one tiddler, and was expecting Tracy to report a similar experience. However, she was already into double figures of fish landed, including a number of good sized grayling.

We also had another day on the river yesterday, this time on a beat further upstream.  On this occasion neither of us managed to find the bigger fish and we ended with a haul of tiddlers and a number of missed takes from fish that weren’t big enough to get the fly in their mouths and just slashed at our offerings instead.   There’s not a lot of fly life present on the surface of the water at the moment, despite the warm weather, so our stubbornness of sticking with dry flies probably isn’t doing us any favours.  I did hook two substantial fish, both times when my fly sunk and swept across the current in the fast water at the end of a glide but unfortunately each time the hook pulled out.  However, if there’s a clear signal that it’s time to break out the nymphs, I think this is it.

A while back I was contacted by an instructor friend (the same instructor who first taught Tracy to fly cast) about a young lad who wanted to cast far.  As such, I’ve been coaching Callum for a couple of months now.   He’s making great progress, driven by a willingness to practice even if the methods seem a bit bizarre (apparently his mum thinks he’s mad when he’s wafting a spoon up and down next to a wall).  Anyway, last Saturday I witnessed his first 40 yard cast (122ft and 2 inches to be precise – at our first meeting I told him to buy a ‘tape of truth’).  It was interesting how this new PB came about; I felt he was concentrating too much on hitting the cast with too much power.  As such I placed out four cones to mark the corners of an elongated rectangle and asked him to bisect this with his line.  This changed his emphasis to perfecting the tracking on the forward cast and the big cast followed almost immediately.  I’m sure there’s a lot more to come to, especially when his body weight movement is sorted out.

Next weekend is the Welsh Game Fair.  There will be a casting competition running all weekend where the winners will get into the grand final.  The winners of the Welsh round will be joined by the Scottish winners and the two casters, Steve and Nick, who qualified at the English Game Fair run by the BFCC.  Steve and Nick are both BFCC members so we’re hoping that they both do well in the competition with whatever outfit and rules that are chucked at them.  Good luck to both.

Tracy and I can’t attend the Welsh GF as we’re off to Jersey with Mark to run the BFCC meeting there. We haven’t been over there for a few years, so we’re looking forward to catching up with everyone and perhaps doing a little bit of fishing. This time we’re flying rather than driving and taking a ferry, so it’ll be interesting to see what Tracy can pack in the cases to get all the rods, etc transported.

Have a great week,