Sunday, March 29, 2009

29th March - River Eamont and A.A.P.G.A.I. assessment

So much for my plans of a first outing of the season on Ullswater - as soon as I woke this morning I was at the window to see what the weather was like - a touch of frost, a cloudless sunny day and not a breath of wind, definitely no good for the lake.

I had to have my weekly outing somewhere but anywhere would be tough in these conditions, I opted for the River Eamont and I was right - it was tough going.

I was late to the river, an accident reduced the motorway to one lane and I got stuck in the tailback.
When I eventually got to Yanwath I set up with a pair of nymphs as I wasn't expecting much in the way of surface activity, there were a few Large darks coming off the water throughout the afternoon but I didn't see one fish move to any of them so I stuck with the nymphs.
Searching all the likely looking spots and areas that have produced for me in the past was proving fruitless, I'd virtually resigned myself to a blank on what I knew would be a tough outing when a change to a copper beaded nymph produced the goods - a rather slim but welcome fourteen inch brownie was quickly photographed and returned.

That was my only chance of the afternoon, I fished on for a while before calling it a day, happy that my hard work had been rewarded.

It was nice to get out today as I've hardly fished since Christmas - I'd signed up to do my AAPGAI (Association of Advanced Professional Game Angling Instructors) advanced assessment in March and have spent as much time as possible over the last three months practicing my casting and doing the necesary studying for the assessment.

I'm very pleased and proud to say that I passed the assessment and am now a full member of this exceptional association.

For anyone interested in going down the instructor route I would definitely recommend that they go along to one of AAPGAI's open events, it will give you an idea of the standard required and the opportunity to meet, and watch some of the countries top casters in action (plus you couldn't meet a friendlier bunch) - this spring's event was held at Woodall Farm near Cockermouth where we were treat to some outstanding double and single handed casting demonstrations from John Legg, Lee Cummings, Tony Reilly and others, plus a fly tying demonstration by Gary Champion.

For updates on AAPGAI events check out their website

Sunday, March 15, 2009

The Glorious 15th

50 years old and I still look forward to the 15th March like a child looking forward to Christmas, it's a feeling I don't think I'll ever lose.

We were on the water by 10.30 this morning, I'd set up to fish a single nymph on a tapered leader giving me the option for a quick change to the dry if I came across a rising fish.
Large Dark Olives were hatching sporadically by 11am and the odd fish was rising to them, a change to an Olive Comparadun produced no respone so I soon changed to my 'old faithful' the Klinkhammer and rose, and lost a fish straight away before taking my first of the new season, a nice 14 inch brownie.
The Klink scored twice more before lunch but only one came to the net and just as things were looking good for an afternoon on the dries, the sun came out and put an end to that, the hatch of olives petered out and we never saw another for the rest of the day - large darks have never been real sun lovers.

With not a rising fish in sight, the afternoon was dedicated to the upstream nymph and another five fish took a liking to it, the best, a nice but relatively thin 16 incher - I'm not complaining though, a seven fish opening day is a great start.

I won't get out next weekend but hopefully the weather will be suitable the weekend after for me to get excited about my first outing of the new season on Ullswater.