Thymallus Thymallus Revisited

Saturday 27th November 2010 and, for the past week, I had experienced the feelings and emotions that go hand in hand with the first fishing trip ventured after a prolonged absence; more specifically, an absence of nearly two months.

My previous visit to the lower river in the search for grayling seems far too long ago, and I had relished the opportunity to visit her again all that past week. The previous outing saw the larger fish happily eluding our fraudulent invertebrates fashioned from fur and feather, but on this cold early winter’s Saturday, with temperatures holding at a happy -2°C (and with the threat of snow looming, causing the rest of the country to panic over 2cm’s of snow), the idea was to fish with Terry and to (this time) successfully search out a few of our localities larger grayling inhabitants.

The forecast, in the end, ammounted to a crisp, dry and snow-free day.Weather Forecast (27/10/2010)

The morning began beautifully, albeit very cold; with a white, snow-covered landscape, bitingly cold crisp air, and bright sunshine, somehow managing to add a sense of beauty to the lower, more industrially-touched lower valley of the Taff catchment. Meeting up with a grinning Terry at 9am and, having passed the usual happy hand-shakes and kindest regards, we walked to the river with the crunch of snow underfoot. Terry is one hell of a great angler, and a guy after my own heart; laid back, and lives for fishing.

Frosty Starts…
Fishing Revisited - Frosty Starts

Terry was to play host and guide for the morning affair as I’d not had chance to visit this stretch of water before, and Terry knows this stretch of river, truly, like the back of his hand. Searching our way downstream (a change to my ever upward-facing style of fishing, and probably due to too much dry fly fishing), Terry was quickly into a good fish which easily pushed 3lb, then another at 2lb, all deceived by a pattern of his own tying and via the French Nymphing technique.

Fishing a trio (large, foam-post Klinkhamer with two nymphs underneath), it wasn’t too long before I managed my first fish at around 2lb and, you guessed it, it fell to the same pattern that Terry was using. The fly shall now be known as ‘The Fish Stalker’…or it will be on FFISW at least! All fine specimens, the fish, and wonderful examples of the jewels that the catchment holds.

Terry’s largest fish; 3lb of wonderful silver beauty…
Fishing Revisited - 3lb of Taff Grayling

After a quick stop for a warming coffee, we decided to jump into the car and try a lower stretch of water, and one which was (this time) a first for Terry; hosting and guiding duties passed to myself.

After introductions to Terry’s new stretch were complete, we walked downstream to a position which looked as good as any to start. With a fresh bitingly-cold downstream wind starting to blow (and then gust), we began our search back upstream, but sadly, the afternoon was a slower affair, and one devoid of fish. I’ll happily blame this on the -5°C downstream wind…and not my guiding skills!

We fishing the duo, trio, as well as fishing French, Czech, and high-stick nymphing techniques, but alas, the fished seemed to be down and were happy to replace feeding activities with the conservation of warmth. We will, however, return.

Terry, a top day on the river, and one which we’ll have to do again. A pleasure to fish with you mate!

A few more images from a very cold, but rather wonderful winter’s day (click to enlarge)…

A rather happy Terry holding a VERY decent grayling before it’s safe return.
Fishing Revisited - Terry with his 3lb Grayling

Fly of the day – ‘The Fish Stalker’.
Fishing Revisited - The Fly of the day: The Fish Stalker

The 3lb fight ensues…
Fishing Revisited - The 3lb fight...

FFISW, or yours-truly, with an obliging Thymallus thymallus
Fishing Revisited - FFISW with an abliging Thymallus thymallus

…and again, short-lining a likely looking run.
Fishing Revisited - FFISW short-lining a likely looking run

Terry utilitising the French Nymphing technique
Fishing Revisited - Terry utilitising the French Nymphing technique

…and a winter wonderland…with water…
Fishing Revisited - Terry utilitising the French Nymphing technique

FFISW with a rather handsome grayling
Fishing Revisited - FFISW with a rather decent grayling

Short-line nymphing in fast water, usually devastatingly effective.
Fishing Revisited - Short-line nymphing

Saturday 27th November 2010 and, for the past week, I had experienced the feelings and emotions that go hand in hand with the first fishing trip ventured after a prolonged absence; more specifically, an absence of nearly two months.

My previous visit to the lower river in the search for grayling seems far too long ago, and I had relished the opportunity to visit her again all that past week. The previous outing saw the larger fish happily eluding our fraudulent invertebrates fashioned from fur and feather, but on that cold early winter’s day, with temperatures holding at a happy -2°C and with the threat of snow looming , the idea was to fish with Terry and to (this time) successfully search out a few of our localities larger grayling inhabitants.

7 Responses to “Thymallus Thymallus Revisited”


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