So there I was on the Gaula last week. It was Friday and after a fishless first four days I went from the Blues to being, if you will, Blue Charmed within the space of five hours.
Now I referred in a previous post to the comment from Thies R about him having seen a grilse jump in Home pool as I fished it, ‘behind me’ at lunchtime on the Friday. Now aside from the fact that this could have been the same fish I caught five hours later, three miles up the river, the reason I was so absorbed after I fished out the tail of Home and then took some shots of the beautiful fire place just up on a sort of sand dune there, is I was tying on a special-looking dressed fly I’d spotted in my box. Holographic silver body, fluorescent yellow tag, simple drop-down hairwing – and at the business end equipped with those awesomely sharp, curved predatory Salar hook points. I turned it in my fingers against Trondelag’s August midday sun and, alone on this Gaula beach, I smiled.
The truth is I’d forgotten I had this fly – but right now it looked bloody brilliant.
It was a Blue Charm tied on a silver size 7 double hook by Donegal Flies. I’d bought it a couple of years previously because it looked the business and, carefully turle-knotted onto a nice long 10ft 19lb fluorocarbon leader direct to my RIO AFS int shooting head (no polyleader, or should I say Versileader) it looked the business even more. So much so that I took some photos of it (that’s Home pool as the backdrop). Now if a fly can do that to you, a careworn fisherman who’s seen it all (or thinks he might have) and fished his guts out for four days to no reward, then it’s worth listening to your instinct. If such a fly then stops you in your tracks and you are compelled to take a mini fashion shoot – then the chances are it could do the same to a bright, fresh, 9lb Atlantic salmon covered in long-tailed sea-lice 20 miles up from the sea.
And five hours later, it did.