Merseylea  Report

After spending a few days on the East Coast and having a spin session in the Upper Scamander River without even spotting a fish over a kilometer of working the river, it was back to Sheffield a day earlier than originally planned. The wife and I left Scamander around 8.30 am and headed for home and once home the car  unpacked, then it was a bit of a rest, some lunch and off to the Mersey River.

When I left Sheffield it was quite overcast but once I reached Merseylea it was clear skies and a gusty Northerly breeze. The river was still low and clear and so I knew it was going to be like the last trip here and that was a tough session, but still landed a few on that trip. So I was feeling confident that even with today's tougher conditions I was still in with a chance of getting a few. Using the same little #00 Mepps Black Aglia I picked up a small brown on the third cast in a fast water section, so this was a great start to the afternoon stint on the river. This fish was no bigger than the small ones from last week and that was the only disappointment to the start, but a fish is a fish what ever size it may be. Next cast I had another hook up and this too was another small brown that tossed the lure as quick as it hit it. Given that there are a lot of small fish around stands good for the future of the Mersey River, as it shows that there has been some good spawning seasons in previous years. Fished on for another 60 meters without siting a fish, but I knew there was still some good water ahead of me.
Came up to the fast water section that runs under the willows on one side of the river, and this was the area that held a few fish last trip here. It was on the second cast in and under a overhanging willow that a nice sized brown hit the spinner  hard and then made a run for it. With many snags in this area that was where he headed but I managed to turn him away from them before this solid brown decided to head off with the flow. Downstream we both went, over a long shallow set of riffles and into the next pool where he decided to make a few leaps for freedom. He didn't succeed though as I could see the treble was securely set into his jaw and I new then it was only a matter of time that he would soon be in the landing net. And he was! This brown was no monster size fish, but it did give it's all to escape and fought like every river fish does. After a quick weigh of the fish (while still in the net) and a couple of photos he was soon released for another day. He went 725 gms in total after deducting the weight of the net and so this was a nice size brown and he was sitting in around 4 inches of  fast water.
Fished another couple of fast waters and managed to pick up three more browns and another small rainbow from seven hits. The best brown went 340gms and the rest were just tiddlers. I did have two browns that had a dip at the spinner in the willow fast water further upstream, but I ran out of water before they could actually hit the spinner. Some of these willow covered sections hold several large fish, but it is near impossible to flick the spinner in far enough to get them to smash it. The two trout that did have a close look at the spinner were around the 1.5 kg to 2 kg mark and I think I would have had one hell of a battle on my hands had any one of these fish taken the #00 Aglia and the 4 lb line would surely have been put to the test, and so would have I.
So give me a North West river any day and next time I go East it will be with the salt water gear.
Cheers Adrian  Webb

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