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Graylings reports from Wales

Re: Graylings reports from Wales

Postby Sonia » Fri Mar 05, 2010 1:00 am

Finally the day has arrived when we can go fishing for grayling on this section of the Alyn which is closed during the winter months, so we have joined the club lower down the river to gain full year access to small river fishing especially the grayling. By the time Simon arrived home and I'd finished doing the things I needed, we arrived eagerly at the sewage works. We hurried to get into our waders before heading in different directions to see what the winter weather had done to the river, as the last time I was in this field the water was following its old course and debris was rushing downstream. Looking at the water nothing was rising so the tenkara was quickly set up with a GRHE and I wandered down towards the cornfield. The first glorious sight was of a kingfisher with its vivid colours flashing downstream which put a smile on my face and it felt great to be home. I slowly got into the river and started fishing only to have the smile taken off my face when I noticed I was being watched by a brown mink who kept his beady eye on me for a few moments before moving upstream. The beauty of fishing tenkara is its simplicity and getting into tricky areas for longer can be helpful but you have to me mindful of your surroundings at all times as trees can be a hazard when lifting your rod while under a tree. Having fished most of the likely runs without a bite but getting stuck on bottom and having to retrieve my fly a few times it was time to move upstream behind the sewage works. The first thing I noticed was the amount of clearance that had taken place over the winter months and I quickly gained access to parts of the river seldom fished without having to wade from further downstream. Again I started fishing and as I flicked the rod before starting a new cast I had a tiddler only just bigger than my hand at the end of my line. As I wet my hands to release the beautiful grayling I noticed just how cold the water was so I put my gloves on to warm my hands, yes I am a wimp that feels the cold. Moving through the run I could feel the change in depth from the previous season due to work done on the river and I moved carefully through the run where I had another nibble which was self releasing as I was bird watching at the time, always fatal. Simon and I moved further upstream at willow islands where the only thing I caught was willow as I tried to cast close into the bank. There was no way I was going to lose one of my favourite flies if I could help it, so I started to collapse my rod to protect the delicate tip and headed waist deep to retrieve my fly. Fly back in hand it was time to get out of the water and head for home as I had completely ruined the run besides it was starting to get very cold as the wind increased. The Grayling are still in the river and hopefully next time I will have a few more and of a larger size, but I can't grumble it was great being back on the river hearing the bird song and being reminded that spring will soon be with us.
Sonia.
Grayling the Lady of the stream!
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Re: Graylings reports from Wales

Postby Sonia » Sun Mar 14, 2010 3:06 am

We decide to go fishing locally, as even though Wales aren't playing their best Rugby this season we are going home to suffer the match after fishing, who knows miracles may happen and they could hold it together. As I loath being cold I prepare to get into my many layers to keep my legs warm in the cold water and we set off. Eager to get into the upper part of the river where there were cracking fish last year and by Simon's experience yesterday they have only improved, I get into my waders, grab my rod and head towards the river. Simon wants to start in the lower run which was one of my favourite places last year, he hardly gets into the river when I can see the typical bend in his rod and the smile on his face. I wandered into a run where I usually had decent fish last year and where Simon caught yesterday. As I worked my way through the run I was amazed to have caught not a single fish and as Simon came along side with his camera he was also stunned I hadn't had a bite as he was hoping for a little more footage of the beautiful grayling we are so lucky to have in our river. Simon then noticed that my casting wasn't quite as good as it could be as I was tending to keep too much of my leader in the water and that day I seemed to be almost dragging the rod up and behind me instead of lifting it as I should. I also tried Simon's rod and there is a considerable difference in the two, with his seeming lighter in the hand and more flexiable and delicate in casting. Simon went further upstream and I got on with the task of improving my casting and concentrating on keeping in touch with only having a couple of inches of leader in the water. Now it was time to continue fishing for grayling and I naturally decided to go lower down where I knew there were fish. I went lower than the run Simon had his fish and after a few casts bang the line stopped dead before moving towards branches of a tree in the water. By the way the rod was moving and the feel I thought I had a really good fish on and as the sail of his fin moved majestically through the water I called Simon letting him know I had not only caught a grayling but a very nice grayling for our waters. As the fish got closer I had a better idea of size and my heart was beating faster and my mouth was starting to feel dry as I kept telling myself to play the fish and not to loose him as he needed to be measured. He put up an amazing fight on the tenkara and I bought the fish to net as quickly as I could, with my other hand I grovelled for my tape measure as he was a decent size. Sure enough it was my largest grayling on the Alyn measuring a little over 42cms I was elated, and after looking at the fish in the water and seeing the colours and shape of a wonderful specimen he dashed off home to fight another day. I had to steady myself after that and I took a few moments to look at the birdlife and ponder what had just taken place, I had a very broad smile on my face that would remain for the rest of the day!! Having composed myself and still feeling a tingle in my soul it was time to try the run where Simon caught a couple of fish, I started fishing and within minutes the line moved and I tightened into a decent grayling which made the rod bend and me extremely happy to see the fish to hand before being released quickly, again the small tungsten GRHE was taken. I was feeling great with the fish I had caught so I decided to have a few more casts in different runs of differing speed keeping in touch with the leader and paying attention to accurate casting close to the bank and along the food lanes. I called Simon who had tried the first run I fished and he also blanked before moving into another run where he caught fish. It was time to take the leader off, collapse the rods, and wander towards the car to get out of our waders and go home with smiles on our faces.
Sonia.
Grayling the Lady of the stream!
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Re: Graylings reports from Wales

Postby ConorUK » Sun Mar 14, 2010 11:01 am

42cm, thats a club record surely! well done sonia :D
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Re: Graylings reports from Wales

Postby pedros » Sun Mar 14, 2010 2:43 pm

Polaris class Grayling for the Alyn. Well done Sonia.

Simon - You may have have overtaken Sonia in the numbers game this year, but it's quality that counts... ;)
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Graylings Report 21st March

Postby Sonia » Mon Mar 22, 2010 12:09 am

After what seems to have been an almost endless week I am feeling shattered; while the head is suggesting it may be a good idea to have a rest the heart decides to go fishing and if it gets too much I can relax and watch the world go by. We decide to go to Worms Wood where we get kitted up, say hello to the horse who is on the other side of the fence we need to climb over and we go our separate ways. I start at the beginning of the field while Simon goes upstream, I start fishing what looks like a lovely, deep run but nothing is interested in my nymph so I have a change and still the same result – nothing. Simon suggests it may be a hard day as he hadn't caught a thing either. Moving upstream trying different runs and flies I'm struggling to connect with a fish, the sun feels wonderfully warm on my back, olives are steadily coming off the water but not a single fish is interested in them. Getting a little too close to the bank I ended up getting my fly in some vegetation in the water much to my annoyance as I am going to have to retrieve my fly ruining the rest of the run, time for a drink before moving on. Simon has now caught a trout as I keep moving and searching another deep run that gave me some wonderful fish in the past, but it was fruitless today, so yet again it was time to move upstream. I started fishing a fast flowing, deep run where I have never had a fish, after a few casts I decided to use a heavier, larger GRHE and after another few casts I thought I had hit the bottom again but as I lifted the rod it bent and moved with force. The trout briefly came to the surface where I could see the very dark ochre of a stunning brown trout, then it headed straight for the bottom of the pool before deciding to change direction. My rod was bending as I tried to bring the fish close so I could get hold of the leader, the fish had other ideas and there was no way it was interested in coming anywhere near me, one look and it headed off towards the bank. I had the feeling it was going to take some time to get the fish under control and it felt and looked like a decent fish. Moving my rod backwards I was finally able to get hold of the leader and the fish was scooped into the net at last, where I quickly removed the hook before having a longer look at my first brownie. The fish was truly stunning with deep ochre underneath and beautiful large spots, it was fin perfect and feisty, when released he darted off in a flash and I was left in need of a drink to revive my parched throat. Moving a little further upstream again the leader halted and I lifted into another brown trout but this time after a short fight it was self releasing. Feeling a little drained I decided to call it a day, I collasped my rod, put my fly and leader away before getting onto the bank and walking downstream. Crossing the river I settled down to listen to the bird song and watch the birds while enjoying the warmth of the sun after a dreadful winter. Time to go home.
Sonia.
Grayling the Lady of the stream!
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