First trout after lockdown.
Heather  with a good perch from last year

            The Glorious Sixteenth of June Covid 19 style


The 16 June is one of those dates when I could tell you exactly where and what I was doing over dozens of years.

In the days when the 16th denoted the start of a new season on all coarse fishing waters, the night before would find me either sleeping on the bank or dozing fitfully, while waiting for my very early alarm to send me racing to make that first cast. Usually this was in search of Tench, Barbel or Carp but it didn’t matter. The important thing was being able to go fishing again after what amounted to an early ‘Lockdown’. Next day at either school or     work I would be gritty eyed and full of excuses for my absence . Most of these were wasted due to the vague smell of fish and     groundbait that clung to me like a virus, but I was usually a much happier individual than before. And that is perhaps another one of the reasons to go fishing.


This year things are very different.  I am going fishing this evening (rudd not tench, because they are local) but  the guiding and tuition side of things will have to change.

Fly fishing, casting tuition  and trout and salmon guiding will be possible with due care, dilligence and masks but days out on the lake will be different.

Sadly, due to the difficulties in applying social distancing rules in a sixteen foot boat, I will not be able to offer the very popular parent and child days out for the foreseeable future. This is a huge disapointment to both me and no doubt many of my regular clients. I have tried to find a way forward but the idea of towing a second boat around or dealing with tangled lines, unhooking fish or simply offering a helping hand, are  impossible under current restrictions.

Similarly, I will have to limit the number of anglers in the boat to just one. This is another blow as many of us enjoy  days out fishing with a friend or family member as much for the crack and banter as the fishing itself. Until we find a way out of the crisis I’m afriad this is how it will have to be, even if we are so masked up we look like angling versions of Darth Vader. Hopefully things will change for the better  when we get to the other side of this pandemic.

Till then, stay safe look after your loved ones and go fishing when you can and if I can help, I will.