Today I tried the Hamps which is a small wild river as I fancied the challenge of stealth which is never easy for a fat bloke like myself. While parking up I noticed Bob driving by, a fisherman I'd met before on the Dove. I knew Bob lived on the Hamps and after a chinwag involving a broken rod, he demanded I park at his house for both safety and convenience. What a great start, being able to take Bobs steps straight into the river Hamps - cheers Bob.
Anyway the river itself appeared a little low and cold have done with a good downpour but there were 1 or 2 deeper pools that were still fishable. I walked the whole length of this little gem and as always the barbed wire catches you out a lot, so some back tracking now and then is to be expected. There is a slight tinge of brown to this river and there were no rising fish or insect life to speak of but I have it on good authority that it holds a few surprises above the 2lb mark. Although a short time was spent fishing, I managed to catch a little wild fish of a few inches, but no picture I'm afraid as I feared squashing it and it slipped away from me before i sorted my camera.
Stealth was the test today, and as I spotted a few fish dart away from under my nose, then I suppose I passed the test, getting so close before disturbing them. I aim to visit this river after a rainfall sometime this summer to have a bash for something larger but with a few hours to kill today, I decided to visit Lords Bridge for the evening.
Arriving at the Churnet I soon realised just like everywhere else, no mayfly or any insects being taken by fish. I walked downstream intending to fish my way back, on reaching the end I met Glen off the forum. We had a chat and a few casts to realise it just wasn't going to happen here so we set off in search of trout. He set off downstream, me upstream, so who knows how his evening unfolded but I hoped it was better than mine. Like Mayfield at the weekend the Churnet had become a local lido for teenagers and look carefully at the picture below and you can spot a punctured dinghy and some oars, left in the river for someone to remove, thanks very much you chav scum.
Navigating the banks was a little scary at times, due to plant growth and extremely high banks which is a bit of a problem getting in at certain spots, this could do with addressing in my opinion. The trout were nowhere to be seen, however a few grayling obliged me by taking my mayfly nymph just to keep me interested as I think they felt sorry for me. I can feel a break coming on if this strange dissapearance carries on much longer.