A Different League

We returned to the Tummel today, in pursuit of late season trout and Grayling which are coming into their own now. The weather was stunning for mid September and arguably wasn’t the best conditions for fishing but you have to try. My mate and I headed to the East Haugh section, where I fished a few weeks back and while I appreciate there has not been a lot of rain recently I wasn’t expecting the water to be quite as low as it was. A few weeks back there was a rocky protrusion across the river and you could with care wade out behind it just about to the end . Below it the water was pushing so hard it was not safe )( for me at least) until you were a good 15 yards down from it. Today these same rocks were part of the beach of rocks. Wading could get you about half way across the remaining river.

  • Euan gets a fish

    Once on the far bank, first one Grayling….

    We had arranged to meet up with another angler, Euan Martin, a top competitive angler, and I believe  a member of next year’s Scotland team for the World Championship. Euan gave us a master class in nymph fishing. Neither of us managed so much as a touch for most of the morning, ( and my mate is no mean angler having had seven from the Clyde this week already) while Euan, having had a couple of fish earlier on, up on another section managed one fish in the same section we were in, but then ( being slightly less altitude challenged than us) was able to wade across the river further down and came up and fished from the opposite bank to us. This water is likely to be little fished as crossing the river is usually impossible. Euan had three fish in almost as many casts. Certainly two came one after the other.

    Netting a fish

    then another comes to the net for Euan

    While he was using a variety of bugs I asked him what he was on and he said a size 16 French Nymph. I dug one out my box and tied it on my middle dropper,and as I worked down my side of the river eventually felt a very gentle but definite take. Initially the fish felt like something pretty small and while it took a little line it was just enough to let me get the loose line on the reel and to move in towards the bank to let me play the fish in a more comfortable position. The fish still felt quite small and I was easily taking line in on it when suddenly it wakened up. I had just quipped that for once I had caught a fish and my angling mates should be getting a photo of this rare occasion when suddenly it  was on the surface and jumping. Not something you want to do with a grayling where they are happiest on the bottom. The fish was a decent one, not massive but a good sized grayling and its fin was up and kiting in the strong current. I was trying to work it into the slower water inside me with little line, it was nearly under the rod tip when  it suddenly came off. Gutted doesn’t express how it felt. I knew it was turning out to be a tough day ( for the mere mortals amongst us) and chances like this would be few and far between.

    Euan fishing the Moulinearn section

    Euan fishing the Moulinearn section

    And it proved right, we all moved down to Moulinearn later and Euan managed one more fish before we arrived, and we once again never had so much as a knock all the way down the section.

    So disappointing in terms of fish caught but a gorgeous day to be on the water before the onset of Autumn, then Winter, but Euan showed us both how its done and how an angler like him is in a different league to us mere mortals!