River Blau (Germany)
Two degree Celsius, mid October, just the time to buy a couple of buns at the bakery in the village. It is 8 c'clock when I arrive at the parking slot in the woods, as shown on the fishing permit. The lungs fill up with the scent of the humus and the morning haze. With waders on I walk along the path that leads me to the river. On the little bridge at the end of the path, I get to see the water.
I turn to look at the opposite direction, downstream, and my heart skips a beat and let me perceive the image before that the optical nerve can transmit it to the brain ... the fish are already rising !
I have to behave myself not to slip on the wet path. I find my way through a muddy terrain, after sinking to the knees. Eventually I put some solid ground under my feet, near a group of low reeds.
The fish are rising regularly, there is no hurry, it is not just a sporadic emergence. I have the time to observe and decide on which fish to cast first. Little Baetidae mayfly duns lift from the surface, thus I bind at the end of the leader a 'Arpo', a well known italian pattern.
I see the back of a really big trout nymphing in the mid of river. A perfect cast, and softly the fly slides in line with the fish that rises and gently takes the fly. The trout is big and strong, she manages a couple of times to drag away one or 2 meter of flyline. After a couple of minutes I have her on the bank but with a sudden leap she jumps back into the water, without giving me a chance to take a picture. In the next half hour, several brown trout are seduced by the same fly, especially when it sinks a bit and I re-animate it with a delicate twitch.
I catch in the same place about ten trout, mostly brownies, some rainbow and even a brook trout.
Upstream, on a long flat stretch, several trout swim above green prairies of water-weeds and rise to take emergers. A huge rainbow feeds on drifting nymphs, about two palms under the surface. She just stations at that depth, swinging from left to right to intercept the nymphs. I mount a "Scart", little olive nymph, unweighted.
The fly sinks slowly as the stream takes it along. On my knees, half hidden in the high grass, I can follow all the underwater scene like if I were watching it through the glass of a Dutch-aquarium. But it is all real, even when, with a little twitch of my wrist, I let the fly come up of a couple of centimeters and the trout takes it with no hesitation. After coping with the first violent flights and a couple of leaps in the air I try to force it a bit downstream. She's big and she makes me sweat more then I though on the 0.14 nylon. It takes about 5 minutes to win her resistance, a fat rainbow of around 5 pounds.
Proceeding upstream, the river widens. The sun warms the air and the haze is gone, it turns out a beautiful sunny day. Sedges swarm on the vegetation, each step I take scares off a flock of them.
The river runs free in the middle of the meadow.
Some parts of streams are completely paved with underwater prairies that often reach up to the surface.
The fishes are less active now, I eat something and take a self-portrait while trying a cast on a rising trout.
When the sun lowers a bit, the Baetidae mayfly duns decide to come up again sailing on the surface.
When the fish is this active it is pure fun. Additionally I am the only one to have purchased one of the 3 available day permits today. Advantages of fishing on a working day.
Another nice rainbow taken on a small dry fly tied on a 18 size hook.
On the opposite side of the river, a couple of meter away from a group of ducks, there are at least 3 trout rising. I manage to hook the the biggest one at the first cast: a wonderful brown trout.
Short before packing up things and leave I catch another rainbow over 4 pounds, what a magnificent day.
The strecth presented in this article is located in Arnegg, close to the city of Ulm. For those who might be intersted in sightseeing, I recommend a visit to the village of Blaubeuren and its ancient abbey (year 1085). In the borough one can as well admire the Blau Topf , the spectacular source of the Blau river, along with a net of brooks where trout and grayling rise amidst the houses.
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