from Nick Moore;
Like you Jeff, we had the most wonderful end to the season on the Stour. Myself and very best pal/drummer/fisherman Buj (who was taught to fish by one Dexter Petley in the village of Hawkhurst, Kent in the early 1970s and they have since been reunited courtesy of CBTR) chose to use the last trip of the season to fly fish for pike and had a (cliche warning) red letter day. We covered a lot of water in weather that ranged from sunshine, to rain, to near darkness as rain clouds moved in, with extra, added rainbows. We managed to catch and release 16 pike (and lost a further two). These fish were in peak condition as they prepare for spawning and fought so hard – using appropriate rods we kept the fight as short as possible to minimise stress on the fish (and us). We failed to take anything over ten pounds, eight pounds being the largest.
Strangely (paticularly given the imminent end to the season and such perfect conditions) and covering all that water, we did not see another fisherman.
Every now and again everything comes together – lovely weather, clear water, great company, obliging fish and fish and chips and (local) Badger beer afterwards. No one was counting but we caught 8 fish each and both lost one.
I won’t see Buj for a while now as he is off to Canada so it was a truly fitting end to a magical day in a fairly average season.
all the best
p.s. Some home made pike fly recipes from Buj; The three dames;
Dame Barbara Cartland – a fluffy ball of bubblegum pink marabou. Tie on a tail mix of opalescent lureflash and light or striped cock/grizzle hackles. The head is formed by building up turns of heavy gold wire or thread before daubing it with clear nail varnish. All that is missing is the romantic novel but I haven’t managed to tie in one that withstands the pike’s teeth. Yet.
Dame Edna Everage – more garish than Dame Barbara. I choose a mix of yellow and purple or mauve (like marigolds) marabou for the body with a tail mix of gold lureflash and darker cock hackles. Occasionally I tie on a pair of large eyes on the gold-thread head for that extra effect.
Dame Shirley Bassey – Black marabou feather to pulsate provocatively in the water as it is twitched back. The tail is a mix of deep bronze/gold lureflash with black cock hackles. The golden head finishes her off nicely to wow the pike. A classic and classy lure in a little black number.