I am a middle-aged man and have been fishing on and off for probably 45 years. Despite all that ‘experience’ I remain pretty hopeless. Fair-to-middling at best probably. But I have enough success to keep my enthusiasm going. I live in North Yorkshire in England, just south of the great city of York. Like most anglers I began with coarse fishing, in my case on the River Gipping in Ipswich. These days I do more fly fishing for wild brown trout.
Fly fishing is mostly on small becks (streams) near the North York Moors close to Pickering, and on the River Seven nearby. Both waters hold a decent head of – mostly small – wild brown trout and some grayling. Most years I go up to Scourie in the far north west of Scotland to fish the hill lochs for the wild trout. Best I’ve had is around a pound and a half.
Almost all of my coarse fishing is done on the lower Yorkshire Derwent. It runs along the bottom of a field next to my house and I can walk to the river in a couple of minutes. The river rises and falls depending on the rain, and in the winter can become unfishable because of flooding. The river holds a decent head of small to medium-sized chub. A two-pounder is an excellent specimen – as far as I am concerned at any rate. Also gudgeon, perch, roach and dace together with the odd bream and roach-bream hybrid. It’s a good pike water.
Recently I’ve started a bit of sea fishing from what must be one of the tamest marks in the country, that being the car park at Sandsend on the North Yorkshire coast. I am hopeless at that, too. In around eight or nine visits I have caught two small flatfish – neither of which I realised was on the hook.
But I remain optimistic!