It's been an interesting time over the last month (July) on the Eden system, the river gods have definitely not helped us fishermen and the going has been tough at times - especially during the day. Low, warm rivers with depleted oxygen levels have definitely made the fish a touch lethargic at times, but, hard work, perseverance and concentrating on sub-surface offerings has brought it's rewards.
Mike took a nice trout on the nymph
Daytime hatches have been very sparse in the hot, bright conditions. A few Yellow May Dun, one or two Yellow Sallies, the odd Pale Watery and lots of Midge. None on the water, all on the wing, so very little surface activity, only the odd small trout rising.
The better fish have been keeping their heads down, but, with fly about, hopefully there would be a bit more activity sub-surface, and, after all, they do say that up to 90% of the trouts feeding time is spent below the surface. So, that's where we've been concentrating our efforts on most outings. Depending on conditions, we've either fished the nymphs, or, hedged our bets - just in case there was the odd fish looking to the surface - and fished a team consisting of a pair of spiders and a nymph on the point.
This paid dividends on most days, with a few decent fish caught in very difficult conditions.
The nymph scored for Harry
A Grayling came to the Spider for David
Success for Seth after searching with 'The Duo'
Late evening sport has been good on most outings. The fish have been rising late in the evening - kicking off at about 9.30 to 10.00 and lasting until about 11.00 - occasionally to falls of Blue Winged Olive spinners but mainly to the Sedge. Which is a change from last year, when the spinners and late evening sedge were in short supply on most of my outings, and fish were coming to late hatches of Small Dark Olive duns and BWO duns, neither of which I've seen in the evening this year - up to now at least.
And now - the rainy season has started. They say that the jetstream has dropped South of us and we're forecast for an unsettled August, I hope they're wrong.
The rivers needed a good flush and they've had it. All in the Eden system have risen three times over the last 10 days, the Eden has been over the 2 metre mark on two occasions, and that will do them good.
Salmon are coming into the system and the drop in water temperature should perk the trout up a bit.
It certainly helped on an outing with Paul towards the end of last week. The Eden was carrying an extra 250mm and a touch of colour but it was dropping, and well fishable. Concentrating on suitable areas and swinging a team of wets produced quite a few offers, but unfortunately, Paul was more akin to swinging wets for Steelhead and his first few strikes failed to connect with our Northern Browns - he was a good fisherman though and it didn't take him long to adjust...
The rivers have been down to their bones and the water warm after the long dry spell, but now, with a touch of fresh water, they'll be at a good level and that should perk things up, and keep away those 'dog days' that were looming if the dry weather had continued into August.