Over the last week I've had a few great days out here in the sunny Hebrides and I would say that Tuesday was probably the warmest day of the year so far but since then there has been something of a change.
On Monday I fished a little bit on a river and also on some Estuary fishing. Although the salmon fishing hasn't been great here this year the sea trout has gone really rather well for me and I have been lucky in being able to produce fish pretty much at will. On Monday I had 4 fish for about an hour on a local river and then I headed for the estuary. Unfortunately on arrival the sun came out and that pretty much ended the chances of a fish but it was a nice day to be down on the shore:
On Tuesday I managed to shoot a stag - there only are red deer here on Lewis but there is some fantastic stalking to be had:
Of course there are often domestic things do be done, sometimes it is necessary to visit a shop for example to ensure that I don't starve, but Thursday saw me out heading up the river with the intention of then wandering out the moor to some trout lochs. As I headed upriver it was a fantastic autumn morning for fishing with good cloud cover, a nice breeze and the temperatures were relatively mild. This late in the season we are maybe a little past the best but even so I was optimistic and it turned out that this was the way to be.
On the way to the trout lochs I decided to have a cast on the river in view of the good conditions and when I arrived at my chosen pool there were fish moving. For a short while I moved maybe 5 sea trout, turned over a salmon, released a finnock and saw many other fish. Things were looking good and it seemed that I just needed to get the right fly, in the right size, to start hooking good fish. Then the sun appeared, as if by magic:
From that point on I didn't see or move another fish for the day. However, I just love an autumn day on the moor and I was joined by an eagle, a peregrine and a merlin among other things. I made my way to a loch with a little beach where I set up the stove and made lunch while I watched the world go by:
After fishing a few trout lochs, the real purpose of the walk, I wandered back down to the river for a cast on the way home. When I got to the river there wasn't a cloud to be seen and there was a ripple on only a very small area of the best pools. I did have a few casts but to be honest they were a bit half hearted and the conditions were not on my side:
I think it is the first day that I've gone for a sea trout and come back blank, well except for a wee finnock and some brown trout, but on such a fantastic day that doesn't really matter.
It is amazing how early in the day the light is starting to fail and it seemed like I'd hardly had time to eat lunch before the shadows started lengthening and the light took on that early autumn quality on the moor. Time to work back to the car and head for the warmth of the fire: