If you read my blog regularly ( and why would you not?) you may recall I visited a small fishery not 15 minutes from here about 2 months ago, on the road to Kilsyth, called Cloybank.

On that ocassion two of the three ponds were drained down for maintenance and though I had the place to myself, and could see the fish in the gin clear water, getting one to stick to a hook was altogether a tougher proposition. I think I landed just one rainbow and lost a couple more. 

I decided today to head back there, after getting a few messages done in the morning and though I considered heading back to the river for more Grayling fishing, I think in hindsight now, I made the right decision just going to a wee fishery as what seemed like a fairly pleasant day here, was actually pretty blustery getting on for quite wild at times not ten minutes away.


There were a couple of anglers there when I arrived and one caught two fish as I was tackling up and the owner came down literally as I had cast my first line and I heard the guy say he had five fish at that point. He was soon into a sixth, fishing a yellow “Ecstacy Blob” under a bung.

I was fishing the middle pond on my 5#rod and had a rather more conventional set up of Bullet on point, a flashback Diawl Bach with a mobile tail on middle dropper and a red DB on the top.  It never took me too long to fathom that the fish were not for rising ( though one had a rather half hearted slash at one of the DB’s ) and my flies weren’t getting down to them though I didn’t think they were deep.  I changed the point for a Beaded Hares Ear and right away I was into a fish….on the DB with the mobile tail.

Minutes later I was in again, on the Hares Ear. By the end of my first hour I had had another two also on the Hares Ear. I decided to give the adjacent (top) pond a go. Another angler had been setting up at the same time as me and we had got talking about Grayling fishing and stuff. He wasn’t having a lot of luck, I think he had hooked and lost two on the top pond.

Top Water and Top of the Water

Rainbow on the Nymph
One of Cloybanks Rainbows

It took me maybe ten minutes but I was soon into number five. All the fish put up massive fights on the way to the net. I had noticed the water seemed much clearer here and a few fish were swirling on top….with five on the sheet, I fancied a go on the dries. I was talking to the other angler on this top pond and he seemed surprised I would give it a go, but I offered him my nymph as it was clearly working. He took it and I put on a fairly large black Shuttlecock.

Netting a fish
The loaned Nymph was still doing the business for the other chap

Almost first cast a fish rose at the fly, then next cast I had a take, but alas it got off as I brought it in. Not to worry, I had the fun part – the take, out the fish.  I soon had another on, on the dry,  that once again didn’t stay on and by now I think the other guy was astonished I was even getting a reaction on the dries! He had moved back to the middle pond and was soon in to a fish on my nymph and glad to say this one made it to the net.

I persevered with the dries and saw a fish rise to my fly once, but left it in place when it came again and this time number six came to the net. Most satisfying. Things soon stopped going my way though when I realised my fly had vanished. I think maybe I clipped the wire fence bhind me on one f my casts and it broke off the successful dry. I stuck with a similar pattern and tried a few more buy the rising stopped and the takes did too. The weather was getting decidedly unsettled by now and I walked to the bottom pond to see if I could complete a hat-trick with a fish on each pond.

Wild Dancer

A bit dreich
It was pretty wild by the time I finished

By now it was pretty wild, and I never caught sight of a fish, nor touched one. I was alone by now everyone eklse having left or retreated from the wind. I changed to a Yellow Dancer on an Intermediate line but this still had nothing so for the last half hour or so I went back to the middle pond one last time and i the bottom end of the middle pond had number seven on the Dancer. Light was fading and it was pretty gloomy and wild as I returned to the car with a big smile on my face. Good fun.