It's hard to believe that this time last year we were basking in sunshine with temperatures in the low 20's. Reports of good hatches of Large Dark Olives (Baetis rhodani) and March Browns (Rhithrogena germanica) were doing the rounds, fish were rising most days and in great condition for the time of year.
Fast forward twelve months and we're looking at the coldest March for 50 years, we're surrounded by snow and hatches are virtually non-existent. With ice cold easterly winds forecast for well into next week, the thaw could be a while in coming and then I guess we'll have to look forward to rivers swollen with snow melt - it's been a pretty grim start to the 2013 trout season.
On a slightly more positive note, I did get on the river three times last week. The first two were very short, early afternoon sessions, to hopefully coincide with a hatch of olives. The third was to walk the dog, but temptation got the better of me and I decided to walk the rod too!
I did manage fish on each occasion but didn't see one olive - so even these hardy souls of spring were keeping their heads down - and I had to resort to the nymph to get any action.
Some of the fish were typical early season trout, in poor condition and desperately in need of a bit of meat on their bones.