I arrived eventually after a slight Sat Nav Diversion which took me to a farm at the north end of the reservoir to find that all 5 members and Alan Duncan’s guest, Euan Morrison, had arrived safely.
I was partnered with Matt Wolstenholme, Peter Fionda with Steven Kilpatrick and Alan Duncan with Euan and even at 08.20 the sun was splitting the sky and the north east wind was fairly fresh and cold. It was looking like a tough day and it certainly proved to be the case. After chatting with a few of the club members who run the fishery and were there on tidy-up duty, we took to the boats, which were at the end of a wobbly but safe jetty. The members had mentioned to us that the fishing had been tough (familiar story) as the water level had only returned to a more normal level (+5 feet) in the last two weeks. Significantly, there were no other anglers in the car park!
Matt and I decided to start at the north-west corner and set up for a long drift down that bank. The area past the island was extremely shallow and full of weed, so avoiding this we started level with the island. A number of drifts later and with nothing showing, or any fish encountered, we moved to the east bank, where I spotted a fish rise. At last, we thought we’d found the elusive creatures!
Half way down I had a nibble and then hooked a nice brownie that came-off at the side of the boat. However, after drifting down the rest of this bank nothing else had moved and when approaching the jetty area, a member fishing from this was surprised to find we had nothing. After some lunch we set up for a drift below the jetty and I managed to land a fish of about 3 lb on a green holo Diawl Bach. Yes, we thought now’s the time, but it wasn’t and nothing further happened!
We then moved to the dam wall, where there was a flat calm, and started to see a few fish move. Matt quickly caught a fish of about the same weight as my one on a small olive, but despite changing to dries we couldn’t tempt any of the few fish we saw. Matt then caught a nice brownie of about 3/4 lb, out of the blue, but it was hard going! Eventually, I had a fish of about 4 1/2 lb on the same Diawl Bach that gave me a spectacular fight after being hooked in fairly shallow water and then powering past the boat.
That was it for the day, and we agreed to finish at 4 o’clock. Alan and Euan had already left about 2 o’clock, both having blanked. Peter and Steve had 1 fish apiece and lost a couple.
Total 6 fish for the 6 anglers . Overall a difficult day for judging a fishery where we’ve not been for a good few years, but I think that we all agreed it was probably not a future venue.