The Lambourne 12 Feb 2015

A combination of work and to be honest a lack of motivation on my part has prevented me getting out much over the last couple of months. I am looking to put that right in the upcoming months. I had an opportunity to get out with my regular river partner Graham who has been around this neck of the woods longer than anticipated. We discussed options and decided to go for a free stretch of river that we have fished in the past in Newbury. The river Lambourne is a chalk stream that runs through a country park and a residential area. So as long as you can get over the odd dog walker and curious onlooker it’s not a bad option. The river is heavily populated with Grayling, Brown Trout and I have seen the odd Pike. Of course, the biggest pull is the price tag….£0.00 always good. Graham had kindly offered to make the lunch and I picked him up around 0815.

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Considering the time of day the traffic was very well behaved and we arrived at the river around nine. Graham was telling me all about his planned trip to the Czech Republic later in the year. I am sure I must have looked like the incredible hulk without the muscles mind. I would love to have gone but the time frame was too long. Anyways enough about future adventures and back to the present, the day was very mild and Graham was giving me a bit of stick as I pulled on my neoprene’s. I recalled my last visit to this river it was a lot colder than today but the water runs particularly cold in this river finding its source at one of the deepest springs. We walked up to the bottom of the beat and chewed the fat while we tackled up. We were going to fish within sight of each other so we could communicate successful methods and patterns. Graham was off to a flyer and was almost instantly into fish.  

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I took a little longer to find the measure of the fish but once they started to come they came in good numbers and within half an hour or so we had taken a dozen fish between us. We were well sheltered in this part of the river only disturbed by the occasional passer-by. As we stopped off at likely looking runs we both picked away at fish, twos  I took a little longer to find the measure of the fish but once they started to come they came in good numbers and within half an hour or so we had taken a dozen fish between us. We were well sheltered in this part of the river only disturbed by the occasional passer-by. As we stopped off at likely looking runs we both picked away at fish.

I took a little longer to find the measure of the fish but once they started to come they came in good numbers and within half an hour or so we had taken a dozen fish between us. We were well sheltered in this part of the river only disturbed by the occasional passer-by. As we stopped off at likely looking runs we both picked away at fish, twos  I took a little longer to find the measure of the fish but once they started to come they came in good numbers and within half an hour or so we had taken a dozen fish between us. We were well sheltered in this part of the river only disturbed by the occasional passer-by.

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As we stopped off at likely looking runs we both picked away at fish, twos, and threes coming out in short runs. I had dropped into a deeper run that looked promising, although there was plenty of I took a little longer to find the measure of the fish but once they started to come they came in good numbers and within half an hour or so we had taken a dozen fish between us. We were well sheltered in this part of the river only disturbed by the occasional passer-by. As we stopped off at likely looking runs we both picked away at fish, twos  I took a little longer to find the measure of the fish but once they started to come they came in good numbers and within half an hour or so we had taken a dozen fish between us. We were well sheltered in this part of the river only disturbed by the occasional passer-by. As we stopped off at likely looking runs we both picked away at fish, twos, and threes coming out in short runs. I had dropped into a deeper run that looked promising, although there was plenty of opportunities to loose flies. Not one to let an opportunity pass me by I immediately managed to wrap my entire rig around one of the numerous obstacles and lost both my flies. I rigged my set up again fishing quite a long duo set up, in hindsight a double nymph rig would have been better suited to the situation. I had only brought one rod and most of the river was amiable to the duo rig so I made the best of a bad hand. The first cast with the new rig and the sedge disappeared from view and the rod had a healthy bend in it. The fish rolled on the surface and it looked like a decent lady, she had shot past me downstream in a fairly strong current. I had visions off the barbless hook peeling free but luck was with me and after scooting down the river and regaining control the fish was safely in the net. Best fish of the day so far, OK so we had only been fishing for around an hour and a half.

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Graham kindly stopped fishing and came over to take a photo for the album. It was time to move on so we bimbled upstream a little until we arrived at the housing estate part of the river. I spotted nice looking run lots of gravel and decided to give it a go. Graham had walked on a little to see if he could get in further up. I had only just returned my first fish and was salivating at the prospect of what else the run could hold when I heard what can only be described as a bit of a barny going on just up from me. It was more than a bit of a barny and I could hear some aggressive language being used. It was at this point that I thought Graham might be in a bit off bother so I got out the river as fast as I could (that’s no very nowadays) and moved round the bend to see a group off hoodies on a bench. Graham was in the river in one piece and I walked over to see what was going on. He told me that they (the hoodies) had just been arguing amongst themselves. So no harm no foul, having two daughters I hope to goodness they bring nothing like this home! The fishing was kind of ruined well at that spot anyway so we moved back to the car for a hot cuppa and a bight to eat. I was conscious of the time as I had to go and pick the kids up so lunch was a short affair then it was back to the river.

In the afternoon we were keen to hit a couple of areas that Graham had identified on his last visit.  I could see the fish in the water in front of me but they were proving difficult to tempt. They seemed unspooked by my presence and I tried many different patterns to try and induce a take to no avail. Graham was fairing no better and we were both scratching our heads a bit. We persevered for some time and eventually, Graham cracked the code scaling everything down brought a few small fish to the net. Still, plenty water left to go at so we pushed upstream a little further narrowly avoiding being savaged by a couple of poodles while we walked. We had dropped into a corner pool that Graham had marked as a fish holding area and even as we both moved into the river Graham pointed out a number of fish moving under the cover of an overhanging tree. It would be difficult to present the flies and this would have to be done downstream. Well I tried and then I tried some more and at last, I got one and it came off……**-)%”££ you get the picture. I decided to move upstream and try elsewhere, I shouted to Graham before moving upstream a little. The new bit of water could not have looked peachier and I anticipated a few fish. Try as I may I could not even buy an offer after twenty minutes or so I wandered back down to find Graham in my footprints catching a few fish. I got in above him but did not get my flies wet before hearing Graham exclaim he had a nice fish. I moved down to get a photo.

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Lovely fish nice and clean and returned safely to fight another day.  I had barely gotten three steps from Graham when another shout went up another cracking fish I tried to get some shots of it being returned underwater but made a hash of it. As I headed back to pick up my rod for the third time, you guessed it  Graham who had obviously stuck on the leprechaun underwear and stuffed them full of four-leaf clovers when he woke up was in again. Another lumpy fish came to the net. In a fit of depression I wandered up to the little weir at the top of the fishery. I had taken good numbers of fish there in the past……but not today not so much as an offer. Time was wearing on so I wandered back down to find Graham, he was trying to catch number 30…..bar steward! He also explained that he had caught the fish of the day after I had left and managed to get a snap of it on his phone, good angling. A pretty short session but most enjoyable if a little frustrating towards the end, Graham once again showing his quality almost doubling my numbers. Well done pal, remember the boat fishing is just around the corner ;-)