The weather men (and ladies) reckon that Spring begins on March the first. I wish someone had told the weather. For the last two or three weeks it has been getting colder and colder, with bitter winds and frost burning the fragile edges of leaves and plants which had had the temerity to start sprouting. For weeks during December, January and early February, hazel catkins and pussy willow have been showing, and the birds have been singing joyfully in the dawn. We are now getting a payback for this early optimism, just at a time when we really should be seeing Spring proper.
At least there has been just slightly less rain, and Storm Jake with his 100mph winds at Portreath in Cornwall did not flood us out like some of his predecessors. At last it has been possible to do some river work, and even have a cast for grayling.
|David Pilkington keeping warm twice, by making a fire and working!|
|The sappy wood took a while to get going|
|A healthy blaze, to gladden the heart of the latent pyromaniac lurking within all of us|
|A stunning Periwinkle on the Lyd, blooming in defiance of the cold winds|
|The monster flood following Storm Imogen last month has completely reshaped the gravels in Big Round Pool on Beat 3 ( and many other pools on the Lyd). How any salmon ova can survive is definitely a miracle.|
|Nymph fishing made easy. Note the little flash of orange on the water, top left of picture level with David's ear - an 'indicator' of floating yarn, which dips when a fish takes, prompting a very quick strike.|
|Success! A grayling in the net|
|The protruding upper jaw shows how the grayling has adapted as a bottom feeder|
|The 'lady of the stream', showing her superb dorsal fin.|
|Eleven inches of pure silver from the Lyd|