When I got back into fishing, I was very lucky to have some knowledgeable people around me to give me a steer in the right direction. The great fishing community on social media has only helped me to improve.
Early on, I was keen to learn and what worked best for me was asking questions. Tactics; flies; rod setup; were all frequently asked to any and all fellow fishermen. In the main, I received positive and helpful responses. There was however a few who were not interested in helping, the very same people of shun any advice you offer up. One example was of a man who was catching at a local Stillwater when I nor nobody else was. He went as far a removing his fly from his cast when having a lunch break so nobody could see what was being used! But as I said, this was the minority.
I’m now at a stage where I’m confident enough in my abilities and knowledge that I can offer some advice when asked. It gives me a sense of satisfaction when I tell someone to try a tactic or use a certain fly and it pays off.
I recently took a trip to my favorite small water fishery, Garnffrwd. I managed to get there on a gorgeous day, which is unusual for me. No rain, temperatures up and the sun was out and warm (the warmth of the sun was not realized until I got home and my partner laughed at my ‘panda eyes’ – always use a hat and sun cream guys!!!)
The fishery looked gorgeous as ever and I was the only person there. It was early morning and the fish were already turning in the surface feeding on buzzers. Having already set up my one rod with my Airflo Super-Dri line, G3 fluorocarbon and an Olive Damsel, I gave it a swim. After a short time, and many follows I hooked up into a decent rainbow which quickly graced my Airflo Streamtec Trout net. Without much further action I took a walk around the lake and had a chat to a couple of other anglers who had arrived. Jamie, the fishery owner, also came by for a chat and he advised that black flies fished in or just below the surface film were working best. Lures were just not doing the business and a lighter setup with smaller flies was the way forward.
With Jamie’s advice fresh in my head (after all, its his fishery and will be Managing the Welsh bank team so surely only a fool wouldn’t take that advice?) I tied on a Black suspender buzzer and cast out. I quickly lifted into another good fish, which turned out to be the best of the day – just short of 4lbs. Another fished soon followed before I moved around to the Dam.
So why ‘If it’s broke……….fix it!’ Well, having caught a few fish I could see across from me that the two chaps I was talking with were furiously stripping lures without any luck at all. One was getting rather frustrated – “it worked the last time we were here” I heard in quip angrily to his mate. Having taken another couple fish on the dam, I moved round to the island on the pegs next to the man I’ll call ‘Angry’. This time after casting out an Olive suspender buzzer a few times, a good spirited Rainbow took my fly. It fought well and left the water a couple of times right by where ‘Angry’ was fishing – I think it did that on purpose. Soon after it succumbed and graced my Airflo Streamtec Trout net.
With lunch time upon me and my stomach making its feeling perfectly clear, I headed for a break. As I walked past Angry I asked ‘how you getting on’. ‘Rubbish’ he replied. I offered one of my flies to him and he appeared grateful, I offered the same gratitude to his friend. Watching as I sat for some food, ‘Angry’ was still pulling lures. His mate had taken my and Jamie’s advice and had stripped down his setup and was casting out my buzzer.
I finished the day with 9 Rainbows (all safely returned to grace another anglers’ net), mainly on the buzzer but a couple late in the day I took on a small Black Hawthorn fly. Back at my car tackling down, the two fellow anglers followed shortly after. One was chuffed he had taken 2 fish on my buzzer, something that gave me immense satisfaction. ‘Angry’ had nothing. I asked what tactics he used and he said he puled lures all day. I could have been wrong but I got the sense he wasn’t willing to take advice from someone much younger, that or he was just plain stubborn?
It’s a way of fishing where I have learnt the most, if I’m not catching, I try something different. Going as far as completely changing my rod setup. By doing this I have caught fish on days that looked lost and learnt how best to fish my local rivers. I was often surprised with what the fish are willing to take during them slow days we all have.
Take my advice, or don’t – but if it’s broke, fix it. You’ll often be surprised but the results.
Garnffrwd is a truly cracking fishery, I didn’t manage any Browns or Tigers on this trip but surely that’s just a reason to go back soon?? If you haven’t been, make the effort to go, you wont be disappointed – Garnffrwd Trout Fishery
Tight Lines and Wet Hands