River Glass - Tromode
Got the afternoon to myself Good Friday and I was going to head to Peel and the Neb but then "she who must be obeyed" found me a pickup to do later so I only had a couple of hours. The River Glass at Tromode it was to be then.
I've had some really good catches from this river in past years but last season it was very hard going. I hoped this trip wouldn't be the same.
I parked up at e2e in Clucas's Industrial estate and dropped into the river. There are some good runs there down to the bridge and a very deep pool at the bridge and another just beyond.
Frustrating wasn't the word for it. I didn't move a single fish with fly or as I waded through. That was until I got to the deep pool at the bridge. I spent 30mins putting various nymphs and dries through the deep water and watching fish swim with their nose on the fly but not actually take it. In the end I had to give up or go loopy.
Moving under the bridge down stream is another deep hole. I saw a good swirl just under a tree as I approached. I put a few casts into the neck of the pool but nothing. There was a flash of a very large fishes flank in front of the tree. Then it flashed again deeper in the pool. Rather than spook the fish with poor presentation I got out of the river and gave the pool a wide berth so I could attack it from the tail.
A few drys drifted over the tail, nothing. so I crossed the river putting a steep stone retaining wall against my left shoulder and worked my way upstream getting deeper with every step. I was now on a ledge with 6 foot of water in front and to the side. No where to go but at least I was now in range of the flasher!
I made the first cast and the fly flicked round the tree to land in the current and drift over where the fish had risen before. Less than a second and the fly was engulfed. I bent the rod and the fish just went deep and sat there with a shake of it's head.
"Uh oh"... Was what went through my mind. The only time that's happened before has been with big sea trout, but it's a bit early for them surely! Perhaps it was an escaped rainbow, but they usually take off like a rocket as soon as they feel the hook.
So I'm there with the rod bent and the fish swimming lazy circles and giving the odd head shake. I didn't have to wait too long. The fish decided it had had enough of that and decided upstream it was going. I couldn't follow without swimming, and no way was I swimming this early in the season. The rod was double and nothing was stopping the fish. Something had to give and it did. The fly parted company with a ping and the air turned a little blue.
Still, lesson learned. If it's a big fish you are targeting make sure you can run the bank to keep up with it. Did I wish I had my standard river setup with a reel... Hell yes! but then I thought about it. If I had my old river rod I would not of been able to make the cast without the line spooking the fish. So on reflection I'm still sticking with tenkara.
I got myself back into a position where I could fish the pool and make a dash for it if I had to. The big'un didn't show again but I had a small 5 inch brownie for my efforts.
Time to head back upstream to a run I have had many many fish from. The river bed is treacherous with green slimy weed.I can't say I'm enjoying the wading. I lost my footing a couple of times. I would recommend a wading stick to anyone familiar or not with these waters.
They feed the ducks in this pool, so it's not surprising there are usually a number of good fish about. It's not deep, only about a foot but there are plenty of subsurface features for fish to hide around.
Only one for my efforts and not big either. It is not looking like the population has recovered from last season. So I press on. At least I can get out of the water and use the bank instead of slipping and sliding like I'm on ice. I have tungsten studs and it's making no difference.
It really is a beautiful river, but where are the fish. I picked every pocket as I went and nothing was coming to drys or to any of the nymph imitations that are common in this river. All I got for my effort was some bruises when I finally did lose my footing and like a first time ice skater with legs kicking in all directions trying to keep me up I hit the deck. Fortunately I was in very shallow water and managed to beach myself in the dry. The rod didn't touch the ground
or tree or anything else. My chest pack similarly didn't make contact because it had my phone in and neither did my head. A result! Just my ego bruised... as well as my left arm and hip but nothing major.
The fishing must go on! Last resort pool up by "Panel Craft". This is a deep pool that has always had a good head of fish. It's like a mill pond.
Not a single rise on it. I cover the water efficiently with nymphs. Nothing. I put some dries over the riffles at the top that usually have a fish in the margins waiting to snaffle a meal. Nothing. Weighted flies in the main bit of current. Nothing.
A disappointing outing. I think next time I try the Glass it will be higher above St. Georges bridge with is fished much less often. Perhaps that is where the fish are lurking. However, that's for another day and another report.
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