Beat The Heat!
Beat The Heat! Paul Procter shares his top tips on how you can keep catching this summer!
At TEF we pride ourselves on keeping our finger on the pulse with relevant information. So, given the current warm and sunny spell firmly parked over the UK, here’s a handful of pointers that should help you get back on terms with trout.
The Early Bird Catches The Worm!
Persistent sunny days see the coolest temperatures at first light when both fly life and trout are likely to be active. Admittedly, it can be hard to drag your backside away from the mattress at the unearthly hour of say 3am, but more often then not, you’ll find the effort well worth it. Not only are you likely to have the place to yourself, but after a night of being undisturbed, fish usually venture in to the margins to feed. It’s wise then to keep back and deliver your initial casts with your fly line landing over grass, so only the leader and fly land on water. A small dry sedge or Shipman’s buzzer are usually my first shout.
Slow Things Down!
Due to less dissolved oxygen in water, trout tend to be a little more lethargic when water temperatures rise. Of course, fish still need to feed, but they’re more reluctant to go dashing around after food. So, rather than rip your flies back at break neck speed, try slowing things right down. The figure-of-eight retrieve should become mandatory and if you’re unfamiliar with this, simply move your flies with inch long twitches.
Search The Depths!
On lowland waters like reservoirs and smaller stillwaters the upper layers tend to warm up quickly, sending trout to deeper, more oxygen rich water. In such circumstances a fast sinking line is a good call, especially when restricted to daytime fishing. Small blobs inched back often work well now.
Head For The Hills!
If you’re restricted to daytime fishing for whatever reason and you have access to waters on the fells, or moors then it’s worth heading to upland waters. Here. temperatures are usually a degree or two cooler and being exposed there’s often a breeze which stirs up the water to prevent thermal stratification, so the oxygen levels are evenly distributed through the water coloumn.
This often means the trout are active throughout the day and willing to take a carefully presented fly. Terrestrials generally work well high up, with a foam beetle, or daddy long legs being my fly of choice.
Keep Covered Up!
Please don’t under estimate the strength of the sun, particularly if you’re out all day long. Apart from using a sun protection of factor 50, remember to wear a cap/hat with an adequate peak. A decent pair of polariods not only protect our eyes from wayward casts, they help reduce eye strain and of course the onset of headaches.
Look To The Trees!
Whether it’s a stretch of your local river, or a wooded area adjacent to a lake, trees provide the perfect shelter for trout. Not only will fish feel safe beneath leafy boughs, above them is a larder full of bugs and beasties that trout love to eat. Now, the likes of ants, beetles and even caterpillars will have trout looking up all day long in undisturbed areas. If you’re super careful and progress slowly, chances are you’ll get several chances at fish in a session.
Take Regular Breaks!
Sometimes we just plough on regardless, which seems to get worse if we aren’t catching fish. It’s now that fatigue can set in, resulting in mistakes, especially where casting and presentation are concerned. During the hotter part of the day, it’s vital to take regular breaks every couple of hours. Furthermore, remember to drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration, which can easily creep up on you. Water loaded with ice cubes in a flask is the best tonic now.
Stay Until Last Knockings!
The anticipated eveningrise is synonymous with warm evenings and whilst we might be rewarded with some sport during the day, often trout go potty as the light fades. If you’ve been out all day without a sniff, take a wee snooze and wait for the sun to go down. Those who are chained to the office all day can often look forward to evening fishing too, after dinner of course.
Sometimes it’s after 10pm before the action starts proper and chances are it will be dry fly sport. On stillwaters, caddis fly usually excite the trout. As for rivers, chances are Blue-winged olives will rev the trout up!