I'm not much of a winter grayling angler. I lack the stamina and determination to stand bollock deep in freezing cold water for long periods of time, and my often poor returns from winter sessions reflect this. Today was pretty much true to form, although a couple of nice fish did rescue the day somewhat and it was nice to get out of the house for a few hours.
I chose the Eamont today, at Whinfell Park - a beat that Jeremy Lucas once described as 'one of the top grayling beats in the country'. That may well be the case, but whilst I've never fished it at this time of year, I have found it hard going here for the last couple of trout seasons.
After the mile long walk up to the top end of the beat, I tackled up with a team of bugs and set to the nice riffles and pocket water that the Eamont provides hereabouts. A couple of immature fish obliged straight from the off and my hopes were high for some sport. However, I had to wait a couple of hours for further action and struggled away in the gin clear water without so much as a take until I came to a bouldery run about half way down.
After missing a good nudge, I finally connected with a grayling - a nice fish of around the pound which took the ginger shrimp point fly. A few casts later I was in again, this time a better fish of 1lb 11oz in absolutely beautiful condition - the pink shrimp the successful fly this time.
So, three hours, two nice fish. Not too bad an afternoon...and I could have been stuck at home with cold chipolatas!