Saturday, 7 July 2007

The Gallery commences with a Salmon!!!

So finally, I have managed to get sat down in front of the computer and put together our gallery of angling stars! You will find a whole variety of people, from all walks of life. Many had never touched a fly rod until the day there photo was taken, others are seasoned pros who charge all over the world seeking piscatorial bliss!

The one common interest that these people share is that they all love to fish!
Kicking off with proceedings is a regular guest of Nick Hart Fly Fishing, Tim Watson. Tim is a Doctor from South Devon and is one of the most fanatical anglers you could wish to meet.

Turning up on a wet and miserable Monday morning this week (02/07/07) Tim had booked himself in for a day out on
Wimbleball reservoir in Somerset. Owing to the rivers being flooded, chocolate brown and unfishable we felt it better to go after some stocked Rainbow Trout rather than fishing in hopeless river condtions for Salmon. However during the short drive over he had a change of heart and opted to spend the day learning how to "Spey Cast" I explained there would be little hope of putting his new found casts into practice in search of that king of fish, the Salmon, but that we could certainly get to grips with the tactics, flies and methods required.
A long day of rain and wind lay
before us but Tim worked hard on his casting and by lunchtime was chucking some very nice loops indeed. Fed and watered I suggested that we head to the river and see if our luck was in. The single handed rod was no match for the high water conditions and deep wading required and after just an hour it was obvious that something a little more substantial was required. Heading back up to our practice area o Exe Valley fishery I left Tim to continue working on his Spey casts and ran back to my tackle shop for a double hander.

Another 1 1/2hours of practice with the new rod and it was back to the river once more.
An hour on Bend pool (River Exe) proved fruitless, even with a heavy sink tip and huge tube fly. Then it happened, a fish jumped just behind us on a pool I have taken several Salmon from.

Dropping into the DEEP water it was all we could do to stand up and with
visibility at just inches it really was looking like the pub was a better option! But Tim was undeterred and whacked out a perfect cast allowing it to swing nicely across Bend Pool. I was impressed and mentioned that the swing was just right and what a shame it was that the water was coloured. In better conditions he would surely have caught a fish. Next cast and I had hardly finished this statement when Tim's line came to a halt. "Somethings going on here Nick", he said and with that the rod tip nodded! We were hooked up!!!

A tense battle followed with an anxious looking Tim winding and allowing to the fish to take line based upon my excited commands! Several minutes later I was relieved to net
Tim's first ever Salmon on his first ever day fishing for this holy grail of species!

At 8 - 9lb this was Tim's biggest ever fish on fly tackle and a huge leap up from the moorland Brownies of just a few ounces that he is used to! It just goes to show that perseverance can pay off and that "if your flies not in the water!"

Tim is one of the new breed of conservation minded who fish for sport rather than food, so after a quick photo the fish was gently released.

Look out for more tales from the river bank soon and if you would like to find out about our guided fly fishing trips see

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