The weather on Monday evening was a welcome change from the rest of the week, with light winds and a nice, mild evening. The SANA Open is a pairs and individual event, and the Sharp Gentles Fly Tying Club entered 2 teams of 2. I was fishing with Billy Gillan and John Gould fished with Robert McBride. The competition was all C&R, so no weigh in and teams or individuals with the same number of fish being separated by the time the first fish was caught. This was not a good idea for me as halfway to the island I discovered I had left my rod leaning against the lodge! My BP (Ian Stuart) was very understanding and we tried quick drifts in Hotel Bay and off Inchmahone before going to Gateside Bay. That did the trick and we were into fish off the Rookery Point, initially on a mid glass and then on a floater. John Gould was accumulating fish steadily on a midge tip off rookery point on cormorants and DBs, and Billy was getting a few on the Di3 sweep! Take your pick. I ended up on dries and hooked and lost a fish late on on a black shuttlecock, but fortunately it did not matter. Both teams had 9 fish (JG & RM 7 and 2 - Robert had a cracker of over 4lb, BG & DO 4 and 5). John and Robert were 3rd on time to 1st fish, and Billy and David 4th. Top 5 went through. Roll on the final on 1 August.
Lintrathen - RAF Northern League.
Sunday at Lintrathen was different altogether. A cold NE wind greeted us and I had my winter jacket on all day. 17 anglers from RAF stations in Scotland and the north of England braved the summer weather and eventually caught a reasonable number of fish after a slow start. A few fish were taken early on near the Rhododendrons and a few more up on the far side of the island. Lots of perch and undersized brownies were boated, too. The best drift of the day was the shore opposite the boat dock, with my friend the fish magnet Warren Gain and his BP each catching eight fish, mostly during the afternoon. All the usual flies took fish, with the booby, blob, DB, buzzer and mini lure featuring. I had 4 rainbows, for over 9 lb, on lines from midge tip to Di7 and flied from blob to Hare's ear nymph. Make of it what you will.
Lintrathen is a nice fishery, albeit a bit of a trek from Cambuslang. I'll certainly go back if invited, but suggest that it is a journey too far for the Bothwell and Blantyre at the moment.
The first couple of months of the season are now over and it's been a mixed bag weather wise. We had some unseasonably good weather in April and the reverse in May. The strong winds have been a feature latterly, making life in general difficult, not just angling! Last year at this time I blogged that my season (to that date) had been a nightmare - the opposite this season. I am enjoying my angling immensely, looking at competitions in a more relaxed way (although you couldn't have told me that between 8pm and 10.30pm on Saturday night as I tried to catch my 5th fish in the Scottish Clubs!) and generally having a good time. Roll on the Council outing to Dunwhan on Thursday when my 4/5 wt will be getting an outing (if the wind permits!) and then back to Carron on Saturday. See you there.