I have just had a wonderful week accompanied by Derek Turner. I have always said you can learn something new every time you go fishing. Well this was a real two way experience. Derek at seventy eight years old is probably fitter than I am. He has been a dedicated fly fisherman for over sixty years and he thought that it was maybe time to experience new forms of angling. We had a morning out on the Mediterranean in the kayaks to start with and as we sat and discussed the mornings fishing I mentioned to Derek that he may like to try some feeder fishing for Carp and Barbel at one of the reservoirs in the Murcian region. Derek commented that he had never done it but had watched the Carp men with their wheelbarrows carting masses of equipment to the waters edge to spend days trying to catch these fish.
The next day we were sat by the still waters, with just a rod each, catching one after the other. Simple set up is always the best method and it worked well for Derek and I. Derek is, as myself, a Yorkshireman and in between catching fish we sat talking about his fly experiences from many years past at places I know well around the North Yorkshire area. Fewston Reservoir is a favourite of Derek’s and many thousands of hours of his life have been spent there. The rivers Wharfe, Ure and Nidd are where I started out fishing as a boy and the hours raced by as we sat and chatted about our experiences. Derek has, for several years now, lived in the Lake District and has some fantastic fly waters on his doorstep. To sit and listen to someone with so much knowledge of not only fishing but wildlife was a joy. Picking out some distant birds landing at the other side of the lake and naming them without the aid of binoculars is something that I found fascinating. I happened to mention that one of the last great challenges I had in fishing was to learn how to tie flies. I have a kit and have not had time to try this skilful art. Derek has tied flies from his early years and it was decided on the spot that he would show me the basics. We decided the next day was going to be a classroom and barbeque day. To watch anyone with these skills is amazing to me and as a fly came to life in the vice it became very clear that Derek knew a whole lot more than he had let on, producing some wonderful examples. We rounded of a fantastic day with a few drinks and a good meal as we were joined by Derek’s family for the afternoon. Another days Carp and Barbel fishing was enjoyed by us both and then it was time for Derek to head back to the Lake District. He will be back very soon I know and I better get practising tying flies so I can show him that I am willing to learn. It was a real pleasure to fish alongside a proper gentleman and true angler……thank you Derek.
Copyright © Gary Smith