At the last council meeting a couple of weeks ago a discussion was had about the number of blanks recorded by members visiting the Tarn. It was agreed by majority that we should put in an additional 100 rainbows at the beginning of August and monitor the result in terms of impact on fishing success and the health of the Tarn.
We shall be putting this stock in at around 5pm tomorrow evening which should be entertaining as thunderstorms are threatened tomorrow.
The river continues in stonking form thanks to the persistent heavy showers that are making this summer a bit of a washout. I stood by the garden pool yesterday afternoon dodging the showers and watching fish rising all the way up the pool from New Inn to Harber meadow. This pool would appear to be alive with fish.
A wet night and even wetter morning until lunchtime lifted the river to the extent that it was running strongly under the west arch at New Inn. Consequently there should be some decent fishing for a time tomorrow although the best conditions are probably right now.
I have been away from this keyboard for several days helping Sheila prepare an exhibition on the history of Horton school. The village school closed yesterday for the last time bringing to an end nearly 600 years of continuous education provision at Horton. The earliest reference to a school here that we have found is dated 1523, a will leaving money to “our ladies school at Horton”. Until 1876 the school was a free grammar converting in that year to an elementary which it has remained until yesterday.
The MAA in the early 20th C organised sports events and awarded prizes for the children. Times change, families are smaller, village populations age and small village primaries with their wonderfully happy and nurturing cultures become untenable. Very sad.
This morning I put 100 rainbows into the top end of the Tarn. They should hopefully lift the catch returns a bit.
When we arrived with the fish a large flock of duck took off in a flurry of wings and much complaining about being disturbed.
The recent wet weather is a bit of a pain, but it is keeping both the river and the Tarn in decent water. The Tarn is still crystal clear with no sign whatsoever of algae or the filament weed that has made fishing so difficult this past couple of years. Taking a lot of rooted weed out has certainly made casting easier, but I am beginning to wonder whether the resident fish have migrated to the weed bed at the top of the Tarn. Recent fishing returns have been much lower than my calculation of remaining fish suggests they should be. Let’s see what difference this stocking makes.
I suppose the only positive one can take from this persistent wet weather is the fact that the river remains fishable on most pools and runs and the water is cool enough to suit our wild brown trout. Apart from that it’s pretty miserable. As I write this we sit in a spell of heavy mizzle. Not really rain, but wet enough to soak through a sweater in no time at all.
I was out this afternoon when an esteemed member called by seeking urgent medical attention for a tooth broken on a vicious apple. This set me thinking that we do not have much information available to members who may suffer accident or become unwell whilst on the river or at the Tarn. Given that the average age of Association members must be over 60 there is perhaps more chance of a need for medical attention than for a group of 20 year old’s. Having said that, in my 16 years as keeper I have known few occasions when members have been taken ill at Horton. However, I’ll give the matter some thought over the next few days and discuss it with Council.