Tuesday evening, Durnford. I wanted to wade so was glad to secure the disc for beat 2. I had feared that this year I would (again) miss the peak of the Mayfly but hoped that this evening would see me hitting the sweetspot. I was loaded for bear and as I strolled down to the start of the beat it was gratifying to see a lot of duns on the wing. The weather was pretty much perfect and the water was in fine fettle. In short I was anticipating a great evening of fishing.
Getting into the water I managed to resist the temptation to start fishing straight away and spent a few minutes just observing. Any rises that I observed were sporadic and did not appear to be to any of the Mayfly. I started fishing with a pretty standard Mayfly dun pattern but other than a few swirls this fly did not receive any interest. I must admit that I really am no kind of an entomologist but what the trout were taking was small. Scaling down my approach I replaced the dun with a sparsely tied CDC emerger and was soon in business.
From this point the fishing could be described as technical. However I am not, yet, a complete tosser so I will refrain from that. However it would be accurate to describe the fish as being locked into a certain size and attitude of the fly, unwilling to move from station and intolerant of drag. Ultimately I ended up with three fish, all of a similar stamp, and got absolutely smashed by a fish feeding in the crease of a ripple, all of three inches deep. Screamed off upstream at a rate of knots and then shed the hook.
So I didn’t make hay at the height of the Mayfly, but in reflection, I think I probably had a more challenging, and ultimately satisfying evening than I thought I was going to have.