Contributed by Brian Kirkwood
The fly life is no better or worse than previous years. There are plenty of stone flies under rocks and shrimp in weeded areas. The hatches of iron blues and large olives are quite consistant. There are no obvious signs of pollution. I have noticed an unusual amount of salmon parr, especially around Warcop.
Water levels have been inconsistent, very low in the middle of the first half of the season with a lot of weed growth and very high at the end of May. I have noticed very few May flies. Another factor seems to be the very low water temperature with cold nights even into late May.
I have fished 22 sessions for 3 fish over 12oz. plus a few small ones. In the 2000 season it was 10 times that number.
I have spoken to more than 20 other anglers and no-one seems to be fairing any better (unless you know different). I have walked most beats on the river and have concluded that there is a distinct lack of fish. There does appear to be more fish under and around bridges where predators would be disturbed so perhaps there has been a predation problem with the river being undisturbed last year.
Perhaps, as a club, we should seek professional advice and possibly consider restocking.
Finally, I have still not found an owner for the fly box found 16th March at Musgrave bridge.