Thursday, 31 March 2011

~A glassy surface hides spawning grayling~

Grayling begin Spawning:

Whilst doing a spot of invertebrate surveying, good numbers of grayling could be seen congregating in pool tails. judging by all their dashing about and shenanigans, it was clear they'd gathered for their spawning rituals. Many of the larger adults had assumed a dark pigment, making them glaringly obvious. some of these must have been nosing 3lb. Oddly, I never seem to find them during the season...? Nonetheless, it was interesting to watch and dotted about on the streambed were numerous redds, identified by freshly disturbed gravel.


~A grayling redd the size of a dinner plate~

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

~Game on-my first fish of the day is hooked~

~A fit calder trout~

Calder smiles on us:

I was off to do an evening presentation for Mitre AA on Monday and by surprise found myself there several hours before the talk was scheduled to begin (well the clocks did alter at the weekend..!). Nothing for then but a spot of fishing on the nearby Calder with acclaimed artist Liam Spencer. Liam's' quite handy with a rod too and he was first to score by prising out a couple of modest trout using nymphs. Me, I was holding out for rising fish and despite being dogged by sunlight the hatch finally got underway shortly after 2pm. With care, it was possible to sneak close enough to trout before launching the usual attack. Things went according to plan and I managed to bag myself a few spring trout including a cracker of 2lb plus that was showing in slack water tight against the opposite bank. Late on, Liam came up trumps with a brute of over 3lb though he did nobble it using a nymph!


~Certainly worth getting out of bed for~

~Liam Spencer with 3lb odd of wild Calder trout~

Saturday, 26 March 2011

~Buzzing through the mangroves-heading for bonefish flats~

~Gently does it-wading to tailing bonefish~

The Wonders of Wade Fishing:

Wade fishing allows you to get up close to this fascinating wilderness where you experience the daily struggles of nature. Quietly stalking sandy shorelines and unspoilt shallows was perhaps the highlight of my recent trip to Ascension Bay. Granted, none of the bonefish we caught would classify as record breakers, but this type of fishing unfolds up close, right before your very eyes. Here, it's possible to see fish tilt down and inhale your fly. Afterwards, a late lunch on the shores of a secluded tropical island rounded the day off nicely. We're back in November 2011 and during this month we generally find the bonefish in full swing. Interested parties should contact me:


~Mission accomplished~

~A great place for lunch~

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

~Poling deep into the mangroves~

~Even small tarpon are explosive when hooked~

Tangling with Tarpon:

Known as the "Silver King", ocean going tarpon can attain weights of 200lb and upwards. We were dealing with smaller fish but on a 9-weight outfit in the confines of a mangrove creek the whole epic is both explosive and brutal. Tony Riley and myself put a day aside to search exclusively for these tenacious creatures. Poling into a maze of mangroves we ended up deep in tarpon country where admittedly it seemed that many fish had their mouths stapled shut.... However, a little perseverance eventually paid off, that or tarpon came on the feed! Tony was first to strike when after some serious puffing and panting (well, he'd never been attached to raw power before), he boated a magnificent fish of some 25lb. I don't think he expected such an exhilarating fight. Then using size 1 whistler type flies we really started to nail fish-a day to remember.


~Tony cradles his first ever Poon~

~A modest fish, but 100% of sheer muscle and power~

Sunday, 20 March 2011

~A happy pod of dolphins~

Ascension Bay Oasis:

One pleasure of spending time in a tropical environment is the amount of wildlife you see, which includes turtles, manatees, sharks, eagle rays and even crocs. Motoring back to the lodge on our second afternoon, we chanced upon a pod of playful dolphins. By tapping the side of the skiff these inquisitive creatures came to see what all the fuss was. Flipper was there too, treating us to a display of twists and turns. A fitting end to a day stalking bonefish.


~Up close~

~This friendly chap remained at the front of our skiff~

Thursday, 17 March 2011

~The menacing shape of a hooked cuda~

~Guide-William clutches a decent fish~

Barracuda on the Rampage:

Returning home from NZ, I pretty much winged it back to Ascension Bay-Mexico. Internet coverage out there was fairly none existent, hence why no posts of late. Anyway, good friend Tony Riley and I dropped onto a nest of Barracuda and boy where they active. It all started when a rampaging cuda carved up a bonefish I was playing. Somewhat annoyed, I was soon back wielding a 10wt and large streamer pattern. Thankfully the cuda was still hungry and snaffled my fly without a second glance. No to be out done, Tony wanted some of the action too. Hat's of to guides William and Tara who dealt with the snapping jaws of fish up close (rather them than me.....). With all the fun, suddenly our day chasing bonefish had turned into a predator hunt.


~This is the beast that snaffled my bonefish~

~Tony gets a slice of the action too~