Saturday, 26 June 2010


Today I took a short walk along the River Dove at Scropton. The stretch looked in great nick and I am very tempted to try and catch my first barbel for about 25 years. There were several anglers fishing and I must thank the one chap from Buxton who gave me some advice. Apologies, as I did not catch your name but thanks for the tips.
Now the question is do I enter the world of pellets and hair rigs or just stick a big lump of meat on................

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

The Longest Day

This year I found myself working away but as it is such a classic angling evening then the carp lake that I have fished a few times this year would be an ideal venue. The lake has changed significantly since my first sortie in March and is really quite a sight in full summer rainment. There is a band of lillies that stretch up the middle of the lake and the carp like to forage in these. I was warned that the level would drop during the summer months and it has proved to be the case. The lake is quite shallow and it has probably lost over a foot in depth leaving about 3' max.
My tactics yesterday evening will be no surprise to regular readers, good old float fished spam. I have also started trying some floating bread and this method is now really coming into it's own. I had several fish to both methods and also, as per usual, missed a whole shedfull of bites!
When fishing floating bread I am using about a thumbnail size of crust. Those canny carp know which bits have the hook in though and initially try to knock the bread off the hook. A free offering is gulped down in one. The trick is to wait until the float starts to move before striking. It is locked with the full complement of shot about 2' from the hook.
I had the lake to myself last night apart from a few other guests who were out for a walk. It was a great night to be out and I eventually called it a day at 10.20pm. I could still see my float (just) but unhooking the fish started to get a little tricky as I had forgotten my torch. This was probably my best fish of the night but plenty more in the same class. On my Avonmaster rod and 6lb line these are great sport.
It is all downhill now until Christmas!

Thursday, 17 June 2010

The Sixteenth Plus One

Today I had the day off work for not much more than relaxing and a picnic at lunch. My angler's mind though soon cooked up a plan to have a couple of hours to try for a tench this morning whilst Mrs Squire took the kids to school.
So by 8am in went my float to my favourite tench swim. A bite first cast but it was soon off though. This raised my spirits and I was now expecting a hatful. The sun was very bright though and the water at Triangle Pond was crystal clear, for the first time ever I could see right down to the bottom. Not the ideal conditions and so it turned out to be a slow session. There were a few bites mind but very finicky where these fish have been drawing away the float with confidence for the last six weeks or so.
I was astonished by the amount of fry and that is a good sign for the future health of the pond. I watched a pike for a while that was at least 2" long practice it's attack on them. There were also some perch I think striking through these vast shoals.
And so to the result, it was just one fish. Not the biggest I have had this year but it put up a great account of itself putting some of the bigger cousins to shame. It was a real goer. It was such a beautiful I could not resist a snap, I hope you like it. I would be grateful if any reader could please leave a comment to remind me how to tell the male from the female.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Ellastone Gold

What a difference a month makes! It had been a while since my last trip to what is the spiritual home to a small band of DRAC anglers. My previous comments about the stretch not waking up for 2010 can now be truly put to rest.
I arrived about 7.30pm and quickly scampered up to the bridge for a butchers; rising fish! This was the first time I had seen a decent rise at Ellastone this year and perhaps this was due to it being my first evening session. Signs of activity straight from the off so it was on with the dry and after a couple of changes of pattern a CDC loop wing emerger proved successful.

As the evening progressed there was a huge hatch of olives, the fish were taking the emerging fly though there were little signs of duns on the surface. This is when Ellastone can drive you potty but my emerger did the trick. I had the beat to myself and was casting to rising fish all evening apart from a slack period just after 9pm.
It was then that I switched to a sherry spinner after taking four on the emerger. Presentation needs to be spot on with this fly and anything but a dead drift normally gets refused. I did eventually get one fish by this method that was rising just above the bridge. My couple of hours soon passed but was really pleased with the fishing it was best session at Ellastone for a while.

Sunday, 13 June 2010


Our new puppy is getting Mrs Squire and I up quite early at the weekends so this morning I was parking the car at Hazlewood by 0800 for a couple of hours on the River Ecclesbourne. This is small stream fishing though and the Ecclesbourne barely qualifies for river status. It is one of the DRAC waters and a considerable amount of work has been done by both Phil Harrison & co., plus the EA. This has improved access to the water in parts but it is still very much Rambo style undergrowth that only the most hardy will tackle. Rods up to 7' are very much the order of the day.
The water was a little coloured this morning and I only saw one rising fish. I would imagine that at the moment an evening session may catch the best of the fishing. I caught the fish below on a PTN after seeing it take something off the top. My nymph landed just downstream and I thought that the cast was too short but the the end of my flyline darted distinctly upstream and I was rewarded with one of the Ecclesbourne's brownies. As you can see they are small but perfectly formed, just like Kylie really.
This is not the sort of water where you will catch a hatful of fish and any angler landing a brace can consider himself well rewarded. It was nearly an expensive morning for me as I realised I had dropped my nymph box whilst commando'ing along the bank. I retraced my steps and was amazed to find it lying in the undergrowth. Mental note in future to always zip up my waistcoat pockets.

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

A Satisfied Duffer

I has managed to put to the back of my mind how much rain we had had locally over the weekend so when I got the text from Phil yesterday morning saying the Derwent was coloured at Ambergate it was on with the blinkers. Was it going to be one of those days I asked my self upon arrival when the rain started and I realised I had left the tea bags on the bench in the garage.
The afternoon started pretty slow with the first few fish on small olive patterns rather than big mayfly duns. Sport started to pick up though as the evening came and as I left the fish were starting to really wallop big patterns like the OE Mohican Mayfly.
There are some fantastic streamy stretches at Darley and also some quite slow deep sections than have less features than a canal without the locks. I normally walk past these as presentation has to be spot on so was pleased to take the good fish below on an olive Klinkhammer.
This is a fine stretch of water and there were a few other anglers out as afternoon turned to evening. If was a question of finding the fish though as some stretches were far more productive than others. Wading is difficult in parts and you need to be aware of the depth and proceed with caution. Yesterday I tried a couple of spots that are difficult to get into (and out of!), both yielded good fish. In my book once the angler has reached double figures he has had his fair share of sport for the day so I took a leisurely walk back to the car with a fellow angler as we discussed this years sport. By the 8pm news I was pulling out of Red House and heading off back down the A6. Mayfly were still abundant but the fish were taking the emerger until the last hour or so that I fished. I am now wondering if I have seen the back of the mayfly sport for this year or will perhaps get one more chance.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

A Grand Christening

It has been a couple of weeks since I finally got round to buying a new landing net. My old one had served me well since the early 80's but even for me was starting to look a little past its sell by date. I was also slightly nervous about so presumptuous a purchase as a landing net, it implies you are taking the fish for granted and that sort of attitude can upset the fishing gods.
So this morning I set out onto one of my local club waters armed with the new net. For over an hour I sat wondering whether I had indeed created bad karma but fortunately it was not to be. This is my best Tench of the season but I did not weigh it, I have mislaid my balance. It was to be a one bite one fish morning though and I was clearly granted enough good luck to save my blushes but nothing to get too carried away with. This fish left me extremely pleased though.
One of the local residents took a shine to my favourite tench bait and then had the audacity to kip down at my peg. So the net is now duly christened with a marvellous tench, what cracking form. It is a change of tackle for me again tomorrow as I am going to have the afternoon on the Derwent to try and catch some more mayfly sport.

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Shadow Mayfly

I saw this pattern in FF&FT a while back and finally got round to tying a few today, buoyed by my afternoon on the Derwent earlier in the week. If is an unusual pattern but I fancy giving it a swim. I hope to get at least one more session in whilst the drake is on. The product placement is a bit vulgar I know but I was quite pleased with this manufacturers fly box I purchased from Walkers of Trowell yesterday. I have been looking for a compartment box for my mayfly patterns and went intending to buy a Wheatley but they had none in stock. I originally felt like I came away short changed but this one is starting to grow on me now.
Tight lines,

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Derwent Doggers

This afternoon I was fortunate enough to be able to get up to the River Derwent at Darley Dale. After seeing the weather forecast last night I was none too optimistic of some dry fly fishing, particularly when it started to rain as I left Derby. The rain started to clear though as I neared Matlock Bath and I although I only had a few hours fishing it was good sport.
I took several fish on mayfly patterns and by the time I left the fish were really starting to come onto the drake. It does not seem to be quite Duffers Fortnight yet but we must be within days now. Next week I have Monday afternoon off and expect it to be in full swing by then. Fishing was spot on here in the first week of June last season and it may be a little late this year due to the harsh winter. The river looked in great condition with the water being crystal clear, it did drizzle on and off for most of the afternoon but nevertheless a great time to be out on the river. There was also quite a large sedge hatch and although I did rise a fish on the LTD I did not connect.

The fish in the picture above was rising under a tree on the far bank and I eventually tempted him after many attempts and then resting the swim. He was a true dogger and dived straight back for the roots but my tippet held; I knew to give line would end in tears. There he is lying with my rod on top of a weedbed. Once I got him back in the current he soon recovered and swam off strongly.

Today I saw three canoeists who have no right of access on this stretch. I put them all straight but from the look on their face's I might as well have shown my backside in the market place which would be great fun of course unless Glen was passing with his latest floatant.