Happy New Year Broadlands 13 Jan 2015

Well, it’s hard to write a fishing blog when you caught FCUK ALL, but here goes. It’s a story of a series of unfortunate events. I had been looking forward to getting back to Broadlands for some time. The fishing I enjoyed there in October last year was nothing short of exceptional. I had suggested to Graham that we revisit Wherewell and he offered up Broadlands as a nice change as over the years we have fished Wherewell to death. The night before I was tucked up early excited by the prospect of catching huge Grayling, sleep did not come easily though. The rain was pounding the window like a jackhammer and the worry of what it was doing to the river mounted in my mind. I picked Graham up nice and early and we stopped off for a spot of breakfast the rain was subsiding and blue skies could be seen creeping across the landscape. As we arrived at the fishery a couple of the regular rods were just arriving, we found out later that they were there to trot for roach.

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As I parked up I leaped from the car to have a look at the river and my heart sank. It was really high and dirty. For the briefest of moments, I thought about jacking it but Graham assured me there would be sport hard into the margins. So we paid up and ambled up the bank it had turned into a lovely morning and was very mild. If it had not been for the state of the river it would have been the perfect day. We reached one of our favorite marks and began to fish, fifteen minutes went by without so much as a sniff. I motioned to Graham to move down the river to another spot that had produced so many fish just months before. Graham fished one side of the bank in the margins while I crossed a bridge and fished the other bank and proceeded to fish my double nymph set up for not much reward. Graham was fairing no better and then I felt the juddering of my rod tip as I looked back round from Graham I watched my rod arc over and I could feel the unmistakable head tugging of a big Grayling. As the fish flew into the heavy current all I could do was hang on as I watched in alarm as my reel refused to give up any line. The inevitable happened and the hook peeled out of the fish. I checked the reel (a cheap eBay job) only to find that it was jammed solid, so what I thought had been saving a few quid turned out to be a false economy. As when I got home I kicked it around the garage for a good ten minutes before throwing it unceremoniously in the bucket! So the first lot of bad luck or admin depends on how you look at it had struck. On the other bank, however, Graham was catching fish after fish using some freshly tied squirmies the cheating bar steward.

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We moved down the river a bit hoping to find some fish taking shelter in close to the bank again Graham had found a few fish and unselfishly ushered me up to have a go at them. A couple of casts in and the rod buckles over again, I knew immediately it was not a Grayling and initially thought OOS Brownie. Anyway conscious I had a piece of shit holding my line solid to the rod I was on the hoof chasing the fish down the bank much to Graham's amusement. I managed to toss him my camera as I went hurtling by him, eventually catching up with the fish and getting far enough below it to get it in the net. A nice Sea Trout around the two and a half pound mark which is grand and all but not much cop if you're after Grayling. After that, we could both see a storm fast approaching so it was time to retire to the fishing hut for a cuppa and let it pass. Graham had managed eight Grayling a remarkable achievement given the conditions. So the storm came and went and it was pretty impressive with some of the trees bent right over the river and the rain was rather horizontal. Once it passed though it was like it never happened and we were left with a beautiful day again.

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We decided to walk upstream this time and optimistically I ventured that some of the colour was dropping from the river. That may have just been wishful thinking though! We wandered up to the top car park and it’s a fair old distance, the walk had given Graham the urge to visit the thunderbox. I was re-rigging before starting the afternoon’s campaign. When Graham came out of the thunderbox (that’s one of those porta loos for those that don’t know) the smell was like a six-day old curry that was just fired out off a weasels arse. I indicated my displeasure at the smell and all Graham could say was he could not claim credit for all of it. Well thank goodness for that I thought I was going to have to call the air ambulance! We moved up from the car park slightly and began fishing a likely spot. I had not been fishing long when the indicator stopped I struck and was caught solid on the bottom. A swift tug and my leader went above the indicator, bugger, bugger and double bugger, I really liked that indicator. It was one of those ones with the little bobbles on that you can see in almost any light. By chance, I had a spare indicator so got it out and began to re-rig amid a lot of muttering under my breath. A fresh leader all ready to go I eased myself back into position and carefully set myself for the cast. I executed the cast perfectly but there was no tell-tale plop of the nymphs hitting the water. I looked up and sure enough, the nymphs and leader dangled precariously from an overhanging tree. I thought if I could just dislodge it with my rod tip I could get away with this. WRONG……It went from bad to worse and to cut a long story short I left with no nymphs and no indicator. This was fast turning into a disaster; I still had my trusty bung from the Grayling Festival I will just set that up instead. That lasted about as long as the new indicator and I just hope some poor bird doesn’t come along and pluck it from the tree where it now lives and chokes on the thing. A good mile and a bit from the care and another spare indicator Graham was a good sport and we hiked back down. Neither of us had caught anything from above the lodge anyway. So back to the car and another re-rig, filled with fresh confidence we returned to the areas where we and when I say we I mean Graham had enjoyed some success in the morning. And this is where it gets a little samey Graham finds a few fish ushers me in and I catch another Sea Trout oh the joy! The light was fading and I fished on desperate to avoid my first ever Grayling blank, it wasn’t to be though and as the last of the light disappeared I knew it was all over. Anyway, I would like to take this opportunity to talk about my new hobby……Golf!

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Not the best start to the 2015 season but I am sure all my bad luck has been used up on that trip onwards and upwards. Many thanks to my mucker Graham for putting up with me all day.