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Another Year - Another Great Start

On a cold but dry day in late February the group met down at the river to undertake two key aspects of the programme.  Firstly all the scouts had to undertake a safety and wading practice session.  For all those involved this was the first time they had experienced the force of moving water and on the day the river was pushing through a little stronger than normal.  The rigour of donning waders, a life vest as well as use of a wading staff all took some time to master but soon enough they appreciated why and how to proceed in running water was a necessary skill.

The we moved onto the equally challenging demands of Kick Sampling.  After demonstrations led by Paul Leng and Peter Welsh the group all had a go at the various aspects to gain a suitable sample.

Then the fun began in trying to capture and place the sample into categories.  Paula Child provided some expert assistance and soon enough the group were able to pickout the numerous insects and other river life.  Making notes as they progressed so they could record their findings in their work books.  The pictures capture the fun and rigour of the day.

These are a few examples of the variety found in the kick sampling exercise.  There were a number of Mayfly Nymphs and this is a promising sign for a good hatch later in the year.

Having examined the life forms found in the river it was time to turn their efforts towards Fly Dressing.  David Hild lead the sessions held in the Scout Hall and soon the Scouts were producing quality flies.  Some techniques like 'Whip Finishing' are always difficult to master but after a couple of supported attempts all the group were able to complete the whole process of dressing a fly from start to finish.

It is always good to enjoy catching a fish but if that happens using a fly you have tied yourself the pleasure always seems greater.

Here Isla has completed an excellent fly.  The group spent 2 hours on a Thursday evening learning and successfully completing North Country Spiders.  This fly shows all the skills well executed 

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