How is your trout fishing season progressing? If I had to sum up my trout fishing season in a couple of sentences, they would proably include the words hot, strange and small!
Why ‘hot’? This season has seen some very hot weather and the water levels in the lochs (not to mention the rivers!) have dropped accordingly. In my experience as far as the lochs go anyway, this isn’t always a bad thing. Sure it can make the fishing difficult but it also exposes features normally covered over by water and gives you a great opportunity to see the ground and holding spots that at normal water levels you would be fishing over. Very useful information indeed: drawing up a map and noting where these features are is never a wasted excersise. It also allows you to fish from the bank into water that would be out of casting reach normally.
‘Strange’ and ‘small’ would appear quite closely together. Looking back over my records of seasons past, normally I would be catching fish using #12 flies such as my Awesome Olive and Black Pennell, in addition to other flymphs and palmered wet flies. So far this season, it has been the season of the small black fly. The Black Spider in #16 to be exact. This pattern has taken the majority of my fish so far, despite there being large amounts of olives, sedge and stoneflies being on the wing in addition to tiny reed smuts. The pheasant tail nymphs, hares ear spiders, Whickhams Fancy et all were consistently ignored during such situations. The only fly the fish seemed bothered about was something small and black. Strange indeed. I did notice that the water snails seemed to be on the move however on a few occasions, so perhaps the fish were focused on these small dark coloured snails. That may explain the lack of interest in flies such as the PTNs and the preference for the #16 Black Spider.
In nature, nothing stands still of course and all that will change as the season progresses and the weather patterns change. And so too will the flies that tempt our fish.