Friday, 26 April 2013

Fly Fishing: River Wandle Magic

Ever since hearing first Alan Suttie and then Theo Pike (renowned author of "Trout in Dirty Places," see the post dated 1st Feb 13) give talks about how the River Wandle had been rescued from being an industrial dumping ground back towards being a chalk stream with trout in it, I had resolved to fly fish it.  Today, as my son had borrowed my car, I decided to take the bus and the tram and go check it out.  Needless to say nobody paid any attention to me wearing all my fly fishing garb as I travelled to Watermeads, a public park near Mitcham.  I was not brave enough to wear my waders on the bus, I thought that was pushing my luck a bit too far, so I carried them in a bag.
As I walked the bank I spooked a cormorant.  That is bad news and good news.  Bad news because they eat a lot of fish, good news because it was there because it obviously thought there was a chance of a fish dinner!

 Yours truely in the Wandle at last
Anyway I got into the water and had some casting practice.  River fishing is so much more challenging than still water fishing and I hadn't fished a river for 5 months.  I also benefitted from some wading practice, especially as in some areas I sank around a foot deep in silt.  I also had some dodging branches with the fly practice.
No I didn’t see any fish or catch any but there was plenty of fly life coming off the water.
Magical highlight of the day was meeting a splendid chap called Alex Titov an AAPGAI fly casting instructor who was on the water practising. 
Alex Titov
He kindly took a couple of pictures of me (to prove I was there).  He then demonstrated some superb casting and let me video him.  I know when I am being outclassed, watching Alex really was magic!  Please play the video.


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