My first port of call was a bit of a diversion. I visited an area a little upstream of my eventual destination. This is where an outfall flows in to the river directly below a bridge. The outfall does have a constant discharge of water but it's insignificant and doesn't add much to the volume of water flowing down the river.
|The "Bridge Pool"|
Looking down from the bridge, I could see two trout. One was sat on station at the very edge of the pool in a small funnel of current; the other, was cruising around the pool and crucially it was rising; infrequently but nethertheless still rising.
I sat on a small island and tackled up. From my position I could see the cruising trout clearly. I tied on a size 22 black Klinkhåmer; the fish I have previously caught here have fell to small black flies. It took a couple of casts before the fish sucked down my fly. Cautious of the fine tippet (0.11mm) and small fly I gently lifted into the fish. However the fish stayed on only for a second or two; I'd clearly not lifted hard enough. I'd blown it!
I knew from experience not to waste further time here, the other trout would have quite likely been spooked too, so I moved downstream. I didn't fish here at all last year, only coming as far down as the outfall pool. In the past, I have caught a reasonable number of fish all the way down, to what I consider the bottom end of the urban section. I have even had a 6lb 2oz chub on bread flake, the river is not much more than fifteen yards across through most of this part.
|The small weir pool|
|Second fish of the day|
|This fish had an interesting mark on it's nose, it looks like it has been worn away|
|The run that the 15" fish came from, the current runs down the right hand side|
|Look at the tail|
|What a corker|
I took a break after releasing the last trout. As I watched the river, a fish rose across on the far side in the main push of current. I gave it several attempts but couldn't tempt this fish.
Upstream, was a short length of shallow riffle which I quickly made my way through, before settling at the bottom of another run. Ahead of me lying hard on the bottom of slacker water in the edge, I could see a small shoal of dace. Being mindful not to spook these fish, I cast across the river into the main run of water. I managed only one fish here; I connected with a couple and missed two rises. That was the end of the section, upstream is wide and shallow, holding very few fish.
Almost at the end of my afternoon I decided to head back to where I started, at the outfall pool. Looking again from the bridge both trout were still there. I opted for a different approach and decided to target the fish holding station. I climbed down into the river upstream, slowly creeping through the water under the bridge; I settled the other side of the pool from the trout, immediately in front of the outflow.
|Looking at the outflow, I caught the trout on the far right against the wall|
|Heading to the net|