Good morning, its probably a little to early yet to say its a nice morning but its mild and not raining so Ill assume its a nice morning. The weather started to change after last weekend and it has been a beautiful week with sunshine at times.Its forecast to get cold over the next few days as the wind comes from the East, not the best direction for angling. Although they will start to drop now that the rain has eased, water levels are very high and the tributaries are out in the fields. Its hard to believe that it is already the 2nd of December, time is flying.We have already started to receive stock for next season, earlier in the week we got a fresh supply of Leatherman tools, more about those next week.
Thought: I was looking at the river the other evening and wondering, if it was during the season and I could go fishing where would I start, it’s very high. My conclusion was that I’d probably just wait for better conditions when levels drop. In angling and in particular Salmon and trout angling, everything changes with conditions and conditions are always changing.
It might seem obvious to experienced salmon anglers that the methods we use and the tactics we employ when Salmon angling are dictated by conditions. As obvious as it is, we seem to ignore it on a regular basis. When I say we, I include myself in this. To my own downfall I am as guilty as anyone else. The main reason for this is down to plain and simply failing to think and this in itself is probably the biggest cause of failure in salmon angling. Now, I should not call not catching fish failure but I think you know what I mean.
We go Salmon fishing on Monday and we catch a salmon or two, probably lose one and in general have a good day. On Wednesday evening an opportunity arises to get out for a few hours, we jump at it and head off. Our mind is on what happened on Monday, the rod is still set up as it was on Monday. We head to the same spot and without thinking start fishing using the same method. Robotic or mechanical are the best words I can think of to describe it, we are not using our brains and thinking. We go home on Wed night, perhaps we have been lucky and caught a salmon, most likely not. If we had taken time to think about what has happened between Monday and Wednesday, we would have taken a different approach. It may be something as simple as reducing the weight we use or changing the size of fly we fish; it may be that we try a different spot.
Conditions are constantly changing as we fish, the water rises or falls, gets coloured or clears, the wind freshens or decreases or changes direction, the sun comes out or clouds appear, there’s a hatch of flies, whatever happens in nature will have an effect on angling and these things that are happening around us all add up to what I call “conditions”.
We need to constantly think as we fish or as we prepare to go fishing. There is not much point continuing fishing a rapidly rising river using a fly and a floating line just because when you started fishing at 8am you hooked a fish, its now lunchtime and everything is different. Yet if you just stand back and watch as you fish you will see anglers doing it. Some of these anglers have years of experience and know what they are doing, it comes down to the fact that on the day or at the moment they are not thinking.
That’s a glaring example and in all honesty very few experienced anglers would be that far off the planet as they fish. A lot of the things we need to think about are subtle, shadows, line diameter, weather change, depth, other anglers, where fish lie, covering those lies, angles, bait, presentation, colour, and that’s not all. There’s a big list and it would take a while to go into detail however if you have taken time to read this, a process has already started deep inside your brain. Sometime this evening or tomorrow a little piece will come back to you and you’ll compare it to a situation you had yourself. Your thinking, keep doing it and catches will increase.