On arrival, I was greeted to a clear river, flowing strongly. Rain over the last two days had risen the water levels a little and I was grateful the river was fish-able. I met up with a fellow club member Steve and spent a few hours fishing in pleasant conditions; in fact I only wore a t-shirt and jumper - no coat needed.
We set up at the top of the beat where the cars are parked and walked to the very bottom, through the farm whose land we fish on. I fished this beat last year but never walked to the end, no idea why, I don't think I can blame it on laziness as it's not much further from where I used to start.
We patiently watched for a while to see if anything was moving. We saw no rises or any flies hatching; with more enthusiasm and anticipation than expectation, we both tied on single dries; I chose a Cul-de-Canon whilst Steve selected a beast of a CDC winged olive, I understood the logic of offering a meaty mouthful.
I fished the first pool with no luck and Steve fished the second having the same result. The next pool looked equally as unpromising, but just round the bend we found a fish rising. I saw a lot of midge shucks floating down the current and this combined with the gentle rises led me to believe the fish was taking emerging midges. Did I have a pattern to imitate that, of course not, I decided a Matt's Gnat should be suitable because if left untreated, the snowshoe rabbit fibres should keep the fly low in the surface film. Despite my best stalking skills, my haphazard casting eventually put the fish down - I'll use the excuse that it was my first time out with a new rod and line.