The coldest winter for thirty years has me dreaming of balmy summer nights at Hillend Loch when the hatches of flies and free rising fish will be in great abundance. Feeling that soft warm breeze on my back as I cast my flies from the big moss into a hatch of the great red sedge seems like an age away. If you are anything like me I think you too might be feeling a bit of cabin fever coming on. It’s at times like this that get me looking forward to spring and summer and start planning trips for the forthcoming season. I love nothing better than pouring over my vast collection of OS Maps, angling books and magazines for inspiration.
I could spend all evening with the OS sheet number 15 spread over the floor. There are enough lochs and mountains to last one a lifetime of fishing and hill walking on that particular map.
There is a saying that “The journey is as exciting and important as the destination” I can empathize with that.I feel that is true in tying flies too.I find tying flies every bit as exciting as fishing. Tying flies sets the imagination on fire. It gets you thinking about various situations at any given time in the angling season and making adjustments to patterns and expressing your thoughts and ideas on what the fish will be looking for and tying accordingly.
I digress. I received a very interesting phone call just last week from my friend Tam. He informed me that this year our Big Fishing Adventure in the Highlands would be a visit to Caithness. First thing in the morning I was off through the snow into town to purchase the relevant OS Map. I have been enjoying virtual fishing excursions since acquiring this map with visits to Loch Watten, Loch Calder and Loch Toftingall.After reading all the relevant literature about fishing this wondrous area of the Highlands the one fly pattern that seems to keep cropping up is the Watten warrior. I guess I am going to be busy tying this fly which up until now I was not aware of. The most pleasing aspect about the flies that appear to be popular in the Caithness area is that they appear to be tied in my favourite style…Slightly overdressed and bushy. I’m going to have fun preparing for this trip.