From the bottom of the beat I made my way upstream casting the nymph at fairly close range as the river is quite confined here. the first few runs produced nothing so I downsized the fly and leader and as if by magic my first wild trout of the season came to hand. I stuck with the little brass nymph and then I hooked a solid lump. After a battle which I initially thought was a stockie I just about netted a beast of a Grayling. I estimated it at near 45cm and over 2lb. Without too much fuss I gently held it in the flow and watched him swim away all coloured up and in the throws of spawning. Needless to say I felt guilty, but privileged to have held such creature in my hands.
I went on to catch many more Grayling, some big, some small, but tried to avoid any shoals I had clocked moving upstream. I caught a handful of wild Brownies and the odd obvious stocked fish. In the moments of real warmth in the sun small upwings began to come off and the odd rise materialised. I immediately switched to the dry and although not connecting tempted several rises from small fish.
At the top end of the beat I was snapped off by a very large Rainbow and watched with curiosity the unnatural behaviour of the stockies ignoring the nymph on the dead drift but chasing competitively in shoals as soon as I imparted any movement. For one moment I tempted myself with the thought of a Damsel which would have cleaned up, luckily for them the biggest fly in my box was a Size 14 Hares Ear. Exhausted but fulfilled I return home, I know its trout season but a PB Grayling can't be ignored!