Sunday, July 26, 2009

Drawing a blank on Hayeswater!


It sometimes seems like we anglers are constantly making excuses for failure. So many variables can affect our fishing that it's usually easy to pick up on some external factor that can explain away our dismal performance. I drew a blank up on wild Hayeswater today and never really looked like hooking a fish......but I've got my explanation at the ready, naturellement!

I explained to my companion for the day, photographer Henry Iddon, that the Tarn fisher's wish is for two simple things; two elements which can be relied upon to combine on the majority of days in the Lakeland year - Cloud Cover And A Bit Of Breeze. Our grasp on both of these was tenuous at best today.

Hill tarn trout can be heartbreakingly naive at times, but given crystal clear water and bright sunshine, they can just melt away like they never existed. I was still hopeful of drawing a few fish up from the steep marginal shelf along Hayeswater's western shore, but apart from two half-hearted follows from barely interested trout, the going was dour to say the least. It's possible that a slow sinking line and/or team of weighted patterns might have snatched a fish or two, but I plugged away with hoppers/dabblers/bibios etc, gaining little more than a sunburnt neck.

Still, it's always a pleasure to escape the hamster wheel of day-to-day life, even for just a few hours. The quiet, moraine-mounded valley in which Hayeswater lies is one of my favourite places. It may only be a half hour romp up a well trodden track from Hartsop village, but once the top end of the reservoir is reached, it can feel as far removed from civilisation as anywhere in the district.

Incidentally, for those of you who may not have seen it, check out Henry's Spots of Time project - stunning nocturnal photography of the Lake District.

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