|Ullswater can be a stunning place, as this February snap shows...|
|Come opening day, conditions weren't so pleasant - I took this shot during a rare break in the wind and sleet.|
Still time dragged on in this manner as I refused to accept the likelihood of an opening day blank. Surely there had to be something out there looking for a spot of breakfast? I was sure the wind had eased off, and perhaps the temperature had risen a couple of degrees, but maybe that was the contents of my now empty hip flask talking. Still, I could have sworn that I had a rattle on my rod tip just as this change in conditions was coming about... hmm, perhaps not. I tightened the line and waited. A few minutes passed, then all at once the tip sprang abruptly straight and I struck into a definite solid resistance. Not a leviathan, but after the dismal start to the day, the pulsing of the rod as the trout finned determinedly out in the deeps felt positively miraculous. Soon it was on the bank - a stunning opening day brownie, slim from the winter but wonderfully marked and fin-perfect.
|Against the odds: the first of the season.|
|The fruits of a positive mental attitude: a brace of opening day Ullswater trout.|