OK, it has taken me a while to catch up with things following my 5 Rivers Adventure, writing, sorting hundreds of photos, drying out everything I own, laundry, ordering up a new section for a rod I broke, etc, etc. I am there now back on top of things so I will report on the 4 remaining days of the trip in fairly quick order and clear the decks in time for some saltwater flyfishing this weekend - a great motivation!
Day 2 was a shorter journey, 20 odd miles and I guess perhaps because of this I had completely underestimated the task. The first 3 miles were uphill, seriously uphill and damn nearly killed me! I found throughout the trip that as far as cycling goes, I am a slow starter and to climb immediately, before 'things get going' wrote me off for the rest of the journey. I laboured in to Witheridge and on to the start of the day's beat after about 4.5 hours in the saddle. The Little Dart is a tributary of the Taw and as I looked over the bridge it looked low and yet coloured, this could be tough.
I saw few fish moving as I crept my way upstream, nevertheless I persevered with a single dry fly, mainly due to the shallow water. This was a relatively small beat - 500m consisting of a few runs and some slow pools, you can imagine peal coming through here, given water.
with very little flow to disguise your approach, everything had to be delicate and sneaky.
By the time I reached the top of the beat I had two small fish to my name. Thankfully immediately upstream of this beat was another Westcountry Angling Passport beat and after lunch I made my way upstream and popped 3 tokens into the Essabeare beat postbox. Immediately things started to look a little more lively.
the Essabeare beat is descried as 'fishing lilliput' in the brochure. This was the widest section.
Fish rising under the leafy trees with no real hatch evident had me thinking that maybe aphids and bugs blown on to the water were on the menu. A tiny green F-fly fished under the trees produced some good results, a succession of lovely brown trout up to around 10inches graced my net. Given the conditions a pleasing result salvaged from a very slow start.
The trout was suitably impressed with Derrick's two weight.
A short hop on the bike to the local campsite and a well deserved shower. As the clouds gathered I sat down to dinner - pasta.