Talking Trout Fishing and Pole Testing

cheshirefishing FLY FLY FLYToday was spent at Cheshire Fishing, once more practicing my fly fishing casting, tangling and swearing techniques as well as my “buying stuff from the tackle shop” tactics. (On the satellite photo above the “EFF’s” show the trout pools.) I’m happy to report that I actually caught two more trout on the fly although one of them was so deformed it looked like a spotted boomerang. Later in the afternoon I popped over to Lionel’s Tackle Shop to look at the MAP TKS 101 13M 2G Pole. More about that later.

To the fly fishing: I sort of wish I’d gone coarse fishing today simply because the weather ended up being outstandingly great, especially for early January. There was hardly a breath of wind and apart from the odd barely-felt sprinkle it stayed dry all day. But, I’d promised myself a 2nd day of practicing my fly casting and I also wanted to make sure that the one trout I caught a couple of days ago wasn’t a complete fluke.

For the first time I was using my new fly fishing gear. I have to say I’m delighted with the Airflo reel and the Shakespeare Sigma No. 6 rated fly rod. flyrodThe extra spools (or “Cassettes” as Airflo calls them) are already coming in very handy as I’ve loaded three of them with floating, intermediate and sinking lines. Of course time will tell if buying a reel with a total of four spools was a good idea. If the reel itself fails I’m pretty much buggered as the extra spools won’t fit any other brand. I’ll give this Fly Fishing Lark a few more goes to make sure I love it enough and if so I’ll be buying a couple of extra reels for under £30 each so that I never have to worry again.

Here’s the weird Boomerang Trout I caught today:

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Apart from the weird shape it was in reasonable condition and obviously still feeding so I returned it to the water. One wonders how it got into that state in the first place. The other fish was a nicely conditioned rainbow, about 1.5lbs so not terribly large but when you’re still in single figures when it comes to Catching On The Fly any fish is a good one.rainbow trout 4 jan 16hook just removedThis is his reaction to just having the hook removed. He was a lot happier when I returned him to the water.

Tomorrow I’m going to visit a fishery in North Wales, the beautiful-looking Llandegla Fishery.llangdelawebsite

Like Cheshire Fishing they give you the choice of Coarse or Fly Fishing. I might actually do both in one day if the weather is good enough. I will have all of my gear with me…that’s the 100lb of coarse gear and bait and the 3lb of fly rod and reel and accessories. Unlike Cheshire Fishing there is a highly rated cafe on site and I have a feeling that lunch there would give me the perfect natural break to switch from coarse to fly or vice-versa. The weather forecast (which I should learn never to trust) is set fair with no rain, some sunshine and light winds.wrexham weatherNow for a brief mention about the MAP TKS101 2G 13 Metre Pole. I had the chance to hold a fully extended pole this evening at Lionel’s Tackle Shop. I was very impressed with the quality of the trio of Top Two kits supplied with the pole. Two are power tops, the third is a match top. They come with side puller bushes already fitted to reinforced areas of the bottom section. There’s also a cupping kit included. The pole itself is absolutely brilliant without the butt and second sections at around 10.5M. At that length it’s  completely straight and stiff with no bend at all with a Power top 2 attached. At 10.5 meters or less it’s a BRILLIANT pole. maps tks 101 2g

Add the 2nd to last section to give you a pole of about 11.75 meters and there’s a tiny bit of dipping although overall the pole remains stiff and completely controllable if not all that light. However, the addition of the final (butt) section does add appreciably to the weight (naturally) but there is also a little bending along the length. It means the pole tip will wobble a bit and be hard to control in anything other than the very lightest of winds. So, my take on this pole is that for under £400 you get a fishable 13m pole, a highly competent 11.75 meter pole and a FANTASTIC 10.5 meters (or less) pole.

Me? I’m going to have a look at the MAP TKS Margin Pole, 8.5 meters, the next chance I get. As long as it handles like the TKS 101 2G at 10.5 meters or less (if you get my drift) then at £150 or so I think the TKS Margin Pole might be the one for me to get.  Of course, I’m also still looking at the Maver Thema 9M Margin Pole at around £150. I saw one the other day and I was impressed. It looks super-rigid right through it’s length  but I never got a chance to actually handle it.

maver themaThe truth is, at this time I just don’t know which pole I’m going to get. The only thing I know for sure is I’m off to Llandegla Fishery tomorrow. Full report to follow!