THE LAST CAST

Changing weather challenges anglers

Jarlath Gallagher

Reporter:

Jarlath Gallagher

Changing weather challenges anglers

Des Cossuan and his granddaughter who had a productive time on Lough Rowan recently.

The mayfly season is well underway as I write. The beginning of the month began with near perfect conditions that led many, myself included to believe that 2017 could turn out to be a bumper year.

Mother nature then threw a curveball and temperatures and wind direction both changed to such a degree that all existing hatches ceased and things were looking doubtful.

I am glad to say that reports from all the large lakes are now very positive but still quite challenging due to the changeable nature of the weather conditions.

Due to these conditions it is vitally important for all of us to remember that safety is of the utmost importance, never ever take a chance, wear your lifejacket, inform people of your return times and stay in contact on your mobile with someone onshore.

If you are any way like me you will probably lose faith in a fly almost as soon as you tie it on. By the time you have completed about a dozen or so casts you begin to think that maybe you should take it off and try something else, first you try a different pattern.

Then you might rummage through the fly box and put on a trusty nymph, as soon as it is in the water you begin to think maybe a muddler minnow would work better. This kind of messing is all in the head and it has taken me a long time to realise that it actually takes from the real enjoyment of fishing.

There is a really simple solution to the problem of losing faith in your chosen fly and the indecision that generally follows. It is to fish with two flies or even three if that’s what it takes to settle your mind.

With more than one fly on your leader you can offer the fish a number of interesting combinations, for example two contrasting patterns of wet flies, a wet fly and a nymph, or whatever suits you fancy!

While there are obviously more chances of attracting fish with a team of three flies there are also some serious drawbacks using this method. Wind is the bane of the angler using a team of three.

Too many times I have found myself in the middle of an evening rise with fish boiling all round me trying to unravel a birds nest due to some sloppy casting or being over enthusiastic in trying to “bag the big one”. Time wasted on tangles is time-wasted full stop.

These days I prefer to use a single fly. I have found that a single fly on a very long leader is a rolling wave can do just as much damage as a team of three.

With a single fly you can present better, not fret over wind tangles and if you really think about it what’s the problem in trying a new fly say every 15 minutes or so? I have come to learn that it’s all part of the mystery and excitement of fishing.

Until next time, stay safe on the water and tight lines.