With Autumn well and truly upon us, the colours around the loch are changing and here and there are the first signs of the gorse bushes starting to produce their winter bloom. Fly life is still evident both on and around the loch, thanks to the warmer conditions, but over the last couple of days the temperature drop towards the end of the day has been very noticeable. The loch is in superb condition with the water crystal clear and the temperature sitting at around 10 degrees C. The fish seem to be very well distributed and as such, hot spots are harder to identify, but the north end of the loch towards the reed bed seems to be holding a lot of fish just now.
Catching remains somewhat hit and miss with two rods fishing exactly the same tactics, on the same day, from the same boat, producing totally different outcomes ……… but hasn’t that nearly always been the case? Hard to explain how this can happen, but happen it does and sometimes we have to remind ourselves how many Coldingham Lochs there are out there, as on a daily basis we hear so many different stories of what takes place. Some may say that there is an element of luck, and this is undoubtedly true but more likely it’s perhaps just that subtle difference in how someone is fishing. The difference between retrieves, line choice, depth, presentation etc etc, the list is probably endless as are the number and variations in outcomes.
Fly patterns as always are vitally important but how a fly is fished can vary immensely from rod to rod and one shouldn’t assume that just because you are using the same fly that you will necessarily get the same outcome as someone else. Certainly a quick glance at the catch returns book before going out can be a big assist but ultimately it’s what happens on the day that counts and what worked the day before might not necessarily be what’s working today. However there have been one or two trends or patterns that are worth noting at the moment and they are, coral booby, coral blob, smaller sized buzzers and diawl bachs fished in conjunction with the afore mentioned boobies and blobs, foam daddies and black foam beetles fished static or very slowly retrieved, shipman’s buzzers and small emergers. When we look through the book these are the patterns that are being mentioned repeatedly over the last two weeks so our advice would be to start with these patterns and change if and when it is obvious that something else might be needed.
Notable catches in the last two weeks are as follow:
- Bob Cockburn 12 to the boat including 2 brownies
- Robbie Bell 13 on one outing, 15 whilst fishing for the Ellem Club and 17 on his last visit.
- Paul Hird had a great week whilst staying at Lochside Cottage, days of 20, 15, 9 in 4 hour session, and 12+ are examples of the great fishing he experienced using a variety if flies including buzzers, diawl bach and damsel
- Alistair Fyvie and his mate had 16 to the boat
- James and Joy Gardiner as always covered all areas of the loch fishing loch style and finished with 22 to the boat, honours even. Fab black hopper and a range of dries worked for them
- Ian Goddard had 10 in a 4 hour session including 4 brownies using shipmans buzzer fishing near to the reed bed
- Graham Dea had 12 rainbows to the boat using cdc
- Paul Shirkie had 8, using predominantly muddler
- Neil Keillor on the next day also had 8 including one blue, using a combination of buzzer and booby
- Jim Fairgrieve fishing with his son Ben had 8 to the boat
- Ellem Club: had a total of 76 fish for 19 rods which gives an average of 4 per rod, most number of fish on the day went to Robbie Bell
- Bank of Scotland: had a great day with 58 fish for the 10 rods, Derek Purvis had the best four fish bag and the heaviest fish with a rainbow of 4lbs 3oz
- Heriots AC: fishing the day after bank of Scotland had a much trickier day with 34 fish to 13 rods
- Mid Lothian AC also had an extremely tricky outing fishing in very strong easterly winds but managed to land a few
- You will see for the photographs that we have three incidence in one week of Goldcrest, Britain’s smallest bird, flying into windows. Thankfully on all of them recovered and flew off. Whilst it’s not nice to see this happen, it’s always a treat to see one of our most beautiful birds in close up.
- Graham and Mary Witty, whilst staying in Lochside cottage observed something very unusual. As darkness fell, they were looking out of the window and were amazed to see a sparrow hawk pluck a bat straight out of the air.
- There is still another 6 weeks to go before the end of our season and as always, we would encourage people to take advantage of some cracking end of season fishing, particularly as the weather remains on our side. The last day of the season Sunday 27th
- Blackbull FFC
We look forward to welcoming Blackbull FFC which will be our last visiting club of the season and we hope the weather is kind and the fishing good
Robbies Blog: This was blog was written after our Charity Day which we reported on in our last report. We will let you know on our next report final amounts raised as we are going this week to hand the monies over the St Abbs Independent Lifeboat
As you can see above I was lucky enough to win the Individual Top Rod for the second year running in the Annual Lads and Dads Charity Competition
However I possibly could say I was unlucky on the day…………
Towards the end of the morning session I hooked a very large trout in the 8 to 10 lb bracket which eventually got the line round the engine a snapped me off.
Taking with it the fly that had caught my previous four fish!
For those of you who have not fished this competition each angler is supplied with the same set of 12 flies at the start of the day and those are the only ones you can use. Lose any and it is Tough Luck.
This is the criteria for the flies.
- Each Pair of Lad and Dad must supply 24 identical barbless/de-barbed flies of their choice (this year we are providing 12 boats in order to maximise fund raising). Flies will be shared between all the other anglers thus giving everyone 12 flies This means that everyone will have the same 12 patterns and these are the only flies that can be fished for the duration of the competition. Tactics therefore are all important!
The competition is of course catch and release and each angler records the length of each fish caught and the fly used.
Now I had not fished the Loch for a over a month as I had been on holiday in Montana for three weeks of River Fishing but my luck was in there as well as my choice of fly just happened to be the top fly on the day. J
Having lost that fly in the big fish and with nothing else like it in the set I was forced to rethink my strategy.
Now the majority of you will know as a general rule most Fisheries become harder in the afternoon.
Overnight the fish and fishery have been quiet and perhaps there has been an evening hatch with a corresponding spinner fall as dawn breaks.
Fishing does not usually start until 09.00 hours and so the fish have been rested. Trout that were caught and released or pricked and jagged the day before will have resumed feeding and generally the fish are in a receptive mood.
As the morning turns into afternoon the fish become more and more disturbed.
Boats moving around, fish being caught, released and lost as well the odd noisy angler!
So as a general rule it will get harder as the day goes on.
Anyway my luck seemed continue in the afternoon when by using a more subtle approach I landed another five fish.
However during the day I was unlucky enough to hook a further 5 or 6 fish which came off.
At least 3 of them close to the net.
So was I Lucky or Unlucky?
I think it was Jack Nicklaus who said the more I practice the luckier I get……….
Changing subject a few years ago Gareth was doing a bit of gentle touting for me first thing in the morning in the hut.
The potential customer asked me how much a half day session was and I replied around £100.
His response was that he did not think I could teach him anything that was worth £100.
I have to admit that I had wry smile when he came in Blank.
Perhaps I could have taught him to be Lucky! J
The Heriot AC photos below are published with kind permission of Colin Riach who took the photos whilst fishing with the club on their outing. The Ellem Club photos below were taken by Brian Turner who took them from the bank whilst fishing with the Ellem Club, and are published here with Brian’s kind permission