22 February 2015

We had some snow today.  Fairly slushy stuff that soon thawed at valley level leaving just the fell tops with a dusting of white.  The forecast for the early part of the new week suggests that wet and very windy weather will sweep in from the west.  Hopefully this will not cause a severe spate as trout redds may be hatching right now and the swim up fry are very vulnerable.

I’m meeting two prospective new members next week for a Cook’s tour of the fishery and a chance to chat and get a measure of them.  If Council approve their applications this will kick the new season off well as membership of the Association is lower than it has been for several years.

I always try to present the fishery to prospective members as it truly is;  A natural water with wild fish stocks that are not easy to tempt to a fly.  Fishing here takes immeasurable patience and stealth, but we now have evidence that trout are present in abundance.  One does not wish to create false hope, particularly for those who imagine that every visit to the river will be blessed with riches.  It ain’t like that.

The purchase of the Deighton water should be completed this week.  Its only taken about nine months to get this deal done.  An astonishing length of time.  However, by the opening of the new season we shall once again have the right to fish through from Helwith Bridge to Far Gearstones, nearly 14 miles as the river flows. Celebrations are in order.


9 February 2015

Another very quiet week with some glorious sunshine.  Its been cold, but virtually windless.  Such a nice change from the pigging wet weather we had this time last year.

The river is now quite low after over a week with no precipitation.  Most of the snow has gone from the hills so no meltwater run off.  Still, the water looks in great nick so I’ll try to get an invert sample done before the level falls too low.

My bottom garden is now festooned with fishing net.  We have two nets hung up.  One 25 meter and one 50 meter.  If the EA funded plan to survey the Tarn goes ahead these nets will be used.  The reason for hanging them is to ensure that they are sterile and free from anything that might affect the biota of the Tarn.  The garden looks like Grimsby.

The swans are still sculling around and much happier now that most of the ice has gone from the Tarn.  The resident cormorant seems to have cleared off last week much to the relief of the fish population.

Just 34 days to go to the new season.



2 February 2015

I really should learn to keep my big trap shut.  After my comments last week about perfect spawning conditions it began to rain.  And it rained so much that by Tuesday we had one of the largest spates of the winter.  No doubt some damage has been done to redds, but hopefully the return we now have to calm, cold, dry conditions will allow things to recover.

I was up at the Tarn first thing yesterday in a wind so cold that I was surprised not to find penguins fishing instead of the cormorant hat been around all week.  The scarer is still blasting out, but the resident cormorant seems to have worked out that the sound is no threat.

It seems incredible that there are now less than six weeks to go before the start of the 2015 season.  This will be the 137th since he Association was founded and the 133rd since we arrived at Horton.  It’s also my 14th as keeper!  A long way yet to go to match Nat Hunt who clocked up over 40 years.