Winter is still refusing to loosen it's grip on us.... it's not official yet, but according to the Met Office we're set for our coldest March since 1962.The cold spell is certainly taking it's toll on our fishing. Air temperatures have been driven down by bitterly cold easterly winds and water temperatures over the last week have ranged from 36°F - 40°F.
From what I've read, it's probably the water temperature that has slowed the fishing and been responsible for the lack of surface activity from trout - even when we have had a trickle of Olives. Apparently, at 38°F and below, appetites may be suppressed and digestive systems operate very slowly.
I managed two sessions on the river last week and on both occasions there was a sparse hatch of Large Dark Olives, but no rising fish. I did spot a few fish and watched for a while as duns floated over them - they showed no interest - suppressed appetites or still digesting ? Interestingly, I did try a selection of nymphs on these fish, but they wouldn't look at them either.
Luckily, not all the fish were struggling with the conditions and a few have shown an interest in the nymph.
From what I've heard on the fishing grapevine, decent hatches have been witnessed by some and larger numbers of duns have got fish feeding at the surface - one friend reported a fifteen minute rise, resulting in one fish just under 2lbs and another lost. So there is the chance of sport to the dries, it may just a case of being in the right place at the right time at the moment.
The sunshine over the last couple of days may be enough to get things moving, another friend found good numbers of duns and rising fish on a recent outing, check out his blog, so with a sunny day forecast for tomorrow (Monday) I'll be out hoping for my first nymph free session of the season.