Fly fishing diary: September 2020

Matt catches a big sparctic on a trip to Ellerdine Lakes and we enjoy some late summer grayling action on the dries at Carrog.

Fly fishing diary: September 2020
© Fly and Lure
Fly fishing diary: September 2020
Picture copyright © Fly and Lure
Fly fishing diary: September 2020
Estimated reading time 5 - 8 minutes

Sunday, September 13th, 2020

Ellerdine Lakes re-opened yesterday after its summer shutdown, so we headed there today to enjoy some peace and quiet in the Shropshire countryside. It was, unsurprisingly, on the busy side, with maybe 30 anglers fishing the four lakes.

Picture copyright © Fly and Lure.

Conditions were very hard indeed - fly fishing in hot weather is always hard. There was a strong wind blowing and it was much hotter and sunnier than of late, and this seemed to put the fish right off their food. Despite only being stocked recently, everyone was struggling to catch and we didn't see anyone hook a fish for hours.

Picture copyright © Fly and Lure.

We tried a range of tactics from dries, washing lines, various flies of all shapes and sizes and nothing seemed to work. It was very hard work. Just before lunch, we moved to the top end of Meadow and I switched to an intermediate line with a tan apache on the point. I counted this down to about 20 and then commenced a slow twiddle back in to try and keep the fly nice and deep. Much to my surprise, the line locked up halfway back.

Picture copyright © Fly and Lure.

It was immediately obvious that I had not hooked a small fish. While it didn't swim off rapidly, it felt heavy and was staying deep and moving off slowly but powerfully. Getting it up towards the surface was a challenge and when I did, it headed for the reeds, then a weed bed.

Picture copyright © Fly and Lure.

Eventually, after a minor panic at losing it to the weeds, George slipped the net under. It was a Sparctic char in fantastic condition and was probably around double figures, with a short but extremely thick-set body. A great fish on a very tough day.

Sunday, 20th September, 2020

We headed back over to our favourite beat on the River Dee this morning to see if we could catch a few grayling. As the river was on the low side at 51cm, we made our way towards the lower end of the beat, where the water is deeper and faster.

Picture copyright © Fly and Lure.

George wanted to brush up on his nymphing skills, so I gave him a quick lesson in setting up the flies, casting, covering the water and wading safely. He picked it up very quickly and was soon wading comfortably around the pool looking for fish.

Picture copyright © Fly and Lure.

With no sign of fish at the bottom end, we moved up to the middle. Wading is much harder here as the water is dark and the bottom is littered with massive boulders, which make wading a bit challenging. Clearly, we picked the right spot though as I hooked a good grayling on the first lob of my nymphs. It put up a superb fight for its size and swam off strongly after a quick snap. 

Picture copyright © Fly and Lure.

After a relaxing lunch on the bank, we headed further upstream and had a change of tactics. George switched over to fishing a squirmy under a New Zealand strike indicator, which allowed him to cover a lot of water without the need to wade out of his depth. After just a few casts he hooked a hefty grayling, only for it to shake the hook...

Picture copyright © Fly and Lure.

A couple of small brown trout fell to my nymphs fished across the faster water, but I missed loads more, so they were obviously feeding well today. The weather was glorious and the river looked spectacular in this warm early autumn weather, so it was a lovely day to be out. 

About the author



No comments yet. Go on, be the first to comment...

Fly fishing diary: July 2022 George's team wins silver at the International Youth Fly Fishing Championships on Lough...

Fly fishing diary: June 2022 We fish the mountain lakes of Snowdonia including Llyn Bugeilyn, Llyn Gamallt Fawr, and...

Fly fishing diary: May 2022 We have two cracking days on the boat at Llyn Brenig and Blithfield Reservoir and some...

How to get into youth competition fly fishing Everything you need to know to get started in competitive youth fly fishing so you can...

We're running FREE junior fly fishing coaching courses George and I are running FREE junior fly fishing coaching sessions for members of...

Fly fishing diary: January 2022 We have a few sessions Euro nymphing on the Welsh Dee and George catches a new personal...

Fly fishing diary: December 2021 We fished at Llandegla Fishery and Ellerdine Lakes, where George won the annual Fur and...

Fly fishing diary: November 2021 We fish at Ellerdine Lakes, Llyn Brenig, and Llandegla and enjoy some superb winter...

Fly fishing diary: October 2021 After being struck down with COVID 19, we get back out on the bank and enjoy some...

Get fly fishing updates

You may unsubscribe at any time. Check our privacy policy for details on how we use and protect your data.