Friday, 5 September 2008

Fabulous Fernworthy Fishing

Look out the window and I am sure you may have noticed the rain and probably the wind! When will it stop? The one saving grace is that the Salmon will be charging up the river and we have a season extension to look forward to on the Exe. If you want to see perhaps some of the finest Salmon fishing on the planet you should check out Henry Gilbeys Blog. He is enjoying rather finer weather along with Pete from Aardvark McLeod over in Canada.

For all my moaning about the current British climate we are very lucky to have some very sorted fishing here in the West Country which means that if one option is out another is available. After torrential rain on Wednesday night the River Exe was maxing out, chocolate brown and a waste of time in terms of fishing. Hard to believe that we had taken a few nice Browns on dries just the night before. But the blown rivers did nothing to dampen the spirits of my guests Hugh, Jim and Martin.

These guys are full on fishing nuts. They like good food, decent beer and top fishing. My kind of people! Having read my article on Fernworthy in the last issue of Trout Fisherman magazine it was a unanimous vote, lets get down the M5 and A30 to see what this stunning little reservoir could offer us. As you can see from this picture the weather went with us, but then equally quickly we enjoyed tranquility and during these pockets the fish were high in the water looking for a meal.

When Henry and I visited last year to compile the Trout Fisherman feature we witnessed some awesome dry fly sport and in particular the Big Black from the Iain Barr stable scored fish after fish. The fishing was far tougher yesterday due to the constantly changing conditions but all the guys really got their heads down and fished. The result was that all landed some good looking Browns and missed loads. For Martin it was his first ever visit to a reservoir and yet he did not let it phase him in the slightest. Patiently waiting for his dry fly to be intercepted it was very satisfying to be there when he netted his first ever Brown Trout. Later in the day he also latched into one of the really big fish that occasionally appear on this venue. But the take was so hard that it snapped our 5lb leader like cotton. I witnessed the tail as it slapped the water in disgust, a real 2 fin fish salute that said "not this time!"

But that's what makes this fishing game so very cool. The highs and lows, I wouldn't change it for the world. With an enormous low front now crossing the country it looks like we may be office bound today although I wouldn't put it past the guys to wrap up well and head out. In fact high winds and heavy rain can be worth enduring because I have had some of my very best days in these conditions. One thing is for sure, out there in a bracing wind with the rain smacking into your face certainly makes you feel alive and I like that!

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