We are nearly a month into the new fishing season and as yet I only have managed to get out on the Liffey on two occasions. The reason behind my lack of outings is the constant flooding of the river by water being released from the dam at Golden Falls. I now have to try time my outings so I can have low water, with this in mind I choose an early morning start for last weekends outing. I have had many an early start on the Liffey but as yet I had not had an early March morning start. A first for me so I did not know how things would go.
I checked the outside air temperature before I left home for the river, it was one degree Celcius. It was going to be a cold morning on the river. It was a little before seven when I arrived at the river, all was quiet with the exception of the birdsong. While I was getting set up I wondered what was my best approach to the fishing, Nymphs, wets, dries or other. As the river would be flowing away from me I though I would start fishing with a team of wet flies so I tied on a team of three spider patterns. My choice was Snipe and Purple on the top with a Hares lug and Plover in the middle and a Yellow Jack on the point.
I was curious to see how cold the water temperature was in comparison to the air temperature so before I started to fish I checked for it. Surprisingly it read at five degrees Celcius, four degrees more that the air temperature. with my curiousity satisfied I started to fish. As I made my way downstream I cast across and down letting the current work the flies. Fifteen minutes past with not a sign of a fish I began wondering should I change the team or change the method, before I changed either my first fish of the day was on. A nice little wild brown trout was landed, unhooked and released. Choosing not to change things I carried on downstream looking for my second fish.
Another ten minutes passed before the second fish was on, another one on the Yellow Jack. As I carried on downstream things got better for me as I was getting a fish with every third cast or so. I had only planned staying out for an hour as I had made arrangements to take some young lads out to catch their first fish on the fly. My total catch for the cold early morning was eight wild brown trout. The majority of the fish were caught on the Yellow Jack with The Harelug and Plover accounting for the remainder. Had I been staying out any longer I would have taken off the Snipe and Purple, it may just be a little too early in the season for it.
Overall it was a good outing even though it was a cold one. I noticed lots of wildlife about at that time. Buzzards, Kingfishers, Mallard duck, Kestrels to mention a few. Most of my sightings were in pairs, has spring arrived?