Monday, 27 September 2010

Up to Beeley Woods...

Well, its been a little while since i got out fishing. Night shifts this week means that I could get out today, prior to starting my nights. The rest of the daytimes this week will be devoted to sleeping!

I started from my usual spot on Middlewood  road, just near the bottom of Stockarth Lane. I elected not to fish the waters up to the weir, as I wanted to explore a little further upstream, and would only get distracted!

I entered the river just below the footbridge, and waded up through the fast section, fishing as I went. Last time I fished here, I caught a nice trout. This time - same again!

Comparing the picture to my previous good fish here -- it is definately a different fish! The trout here obviously get a good stream of food. This one took a PTN fished beneath a Grey Wulff.

At the pool above, there were fish rising - I suspect grayling taking midges. I had a quick go at tempting them with an F fly, but to no avail. I then switched back to a copper john, and tried nymphing without an indicator. On the second cast I struck into a small brown trout, my first fish out of this fishy looking pool.

Switching back to the duo rig, I carried on up through Beeley woods. The river here is really nice fishing - small runs, little pools, and some overhanging trees.

There was a nice looking run under an overhanging tree, which I persisted with. Soon I was into a decent fish, which charged up and down river a couple of times - putting a good bend into the 9ft 5wt rod I was fishing with.

I slipped him back, and finished off fishing up to the small weir pool above, getting a small brownie on the way. Despite some pretty grim weather - constant "mizzle", I'd had a good couple of hours fishing and explored some more river. I think upstream from Oughtibridge is the Upper Don Fly Fishers waters - I'll keep my eyes open for the signs that mark their lower boundary on my next visit.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

"dry" fly fishing.....

A saturday afternoon trip out - Hillsborough was to be avoided due to Wednesday playing at home, so I opted to explore a new stretch of river, accessed from Club Mill Road. I parked up on an industrial estate just off the A61, and walked a few hundred yards to the river.

There were  couple of blokes float fishing just up from where I got in the river, so thought it best not to start wading up towards them. This however did mean that I had to wade down river, and then fish back up. I waded down, past some massive banks of Himalayan Balsam. Once I had waded a hundred yards or so, I waited for a while, sorting out my leader and deciding which flies to fish. As I got ready, fish started rising in the area I had just waded through 5 minutes previously.

The "grayling run"

I started off on a duo rig, but before long the heavens opened. I sheltered under a tree overhanging the water, which provided little cover!

As the rain abated, there were a large number of midge type flies over the water. Fish started rising all around me, so I quickly cast the duo rig (Wulff on the top, Copper John on the bottom) and covered some rises. To no avail - despite laying out some nice precise casts, nothing was interested.

Time for a change of flies - and onto a black F fly. As soon as the fly hit the water, there was a take which I missed. I cast again, missing the spot I was aiming for by about 3 foot. And the fly got hit again. And I missed again!

Fish seemed willing to take wherever I cast. I soon connected with a fish, a small grayling.

Soon after, another downpour, so more sheltering. Straight after the rain, casting to the same spot, I kept getting takes and connected with every 3rd or so. It seemed there were a lot of greedy grayling!

A cast tight into some overhanging willows produced a nice little brown trout - camera shy as it wriggled back into the water before I'd taken its pic.

After some good sport on this little run, I waded on upstream. The river was now running higher and seemed more coloured.

I fished on up to a slow glide, where there were fish rising. The F fly failed to tempt them on this occasion, and the duo wasn't working either.

Time was pushing on, so I decided to finish by fishing the fast run by the wall up to the weir, and the weir pool itself.

The bright green water weed (not sure of the name ? ranunculus) is really taking hold here, making the place look like a real trout stream!

I had a couple of hits on the copper john, before hitting into a nice little brown trout.
A nice Don brownie, with its blue-ish sheen

Fishing the tail of the weir pool, I soon had another brown trout, which skipped and splashed over the water.

The light was fading now, so off back to the car and home. Another fun trip, really enjoyable dry fly fishing for grayling and some nice brown trout as well.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010


Another quick trip out, this time an hour or so down at the Hillfoot Bridge area. There had been heavy rain a day previously, and though the river was still low, it was moving fast and quite coloured.
Sticking to the usual tactics, I was getting lots of little knocks on a shrimpy type nymph. Fishing just above the first riffle, and tight into the bank, I had a convincing take, and hit into a small trout. Just as I was bringing it to hand, off it went - wriggled off the hook and was away!

I carried up on, along the faster run and up to the weir. No hits at all. I changed from the shrimp to a red tag type nymph, and then onto a sawyers killer nymph. Nothing. The weir pool was coloured and churned, and difficult to fish. I persisted, but to no avail. Chatting to a passer by, he'd seen fish rising down by the bridge, taking daddy long legs and wasps off the surface.  A brief look down there and I couldn't see any movement. Time up, I packed up and headed home. This is one of the first trips to the Don where I've not landed a fish - I blame it on the recent rains! I know there was a recent survey match the weekend prior, which fished pretty well, with one entrant landing 50 fish!

Autumn is certainly approaching - my feet were cold when I finished today, and the trees are starting to turn. Autumn is the end of the trout season proper, and the start of grayling fishing. My visits to the river will probably become less frequent - I had a good august with shifts at work making it easy to get to the river frequently.

However, the autumn is my favourite season for photography, so I aim to get out and at least get some decent pictures!

Friday, 3 September 2010

Sunny September...

A morning trip with my brother to hillsborough, for an hours fishing. Not having waders, my brother was confined to fishing from the bank, so I figured this stretch of the Don would be most suited.
Above the bridge

There was a chap fishing from the bank a little way up from the bridge, and not long after arriving he landed a 6lb Barbel, taken on a lump of sausage!

Back to the fly fishing, it was slower that it has been previously in this area. The river was quite low with a little colour.

We fished one rod, sharing the the runs and pools. After a little while, I had a take on a GRHE, and caught a small chub.
Greedy little chub

We carried on for a little while upstream, but as time was tight, we headed to the pool beneath the bridge, for a few final casts.

Before long Brother Sheffonthefly was into a decent fish - his first on the fly. And what a first fish!

A nice grayling, caught on a copperjohn fished beneath a royal wulff

My brothers first fish on the fly
Time up, we packed up and headed home - a successful trip!