HAUTE-VIENNE (#14)

Now how do I get from Aubusson to Eymoutiers in time to meet Ghislain at 9am? The SatNav in my car always seems to underestimate both distance and time, and GoogleMap tends to get it right every time. One hour it told me. It did not tell me the road was closed to the west of Orladeix, and in turning around and retracing my kms., my journey would be rather longer. But what the heck, Ghislain is a ‘cool dude’ and would not/did not, mind waiting for his charge on day 2 of our adventure in Limousin.

And my car ride over the Plateau de Millevaches was just glorious in early day sunshine. Bright light shining through new pine needles…!

Le Lac de Vassiviere and the terrain around it reminded me of New England, and Vermont, in particular, with all those ‘ponds’ stuffed with the small mouth bass I loved to fish for, before I rediscovered my passion for wild brown trout.

Ghislain informed me that he had already found a short beat near the town where some fish were rising, and we headed there.

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This river here was so wide, the flow so slow, that it resembled a still water, and a poor cast would spook the little fellas immediately, and I did (with ease!). Rises were spasmodic, and neither of us determined what interested the fish for there seemed to be nothing in flight. So we knew not what the emergers were, which presumably is what they were sipping! And this bank fishing stuff was boring anyway, so we left.

We drove upstream, some twenty klicks, and past the village of Nedd, and leaving the ‘main’ road, approached an ancient arched bridge and parked by a stretch of river, of an intimacy, I enjoy.

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The foliage is late in arriving, although this high on the Massive Central, that may be usual. The river here has an openness, which will disappear soon, making casting to the banksides a challenge, in a week or three. But now, and with care, even risers close in can be reached with care. Thoughtful fishing of a type I enjoy, where stealth and patience reward.

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It was sunny, but still the air temperature out of the sun was cool. Flies were scarce, perhaps the odd olive and a gnat or two, but with nothing showing, and heads were down.

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But ahead of some fallen tree limb, and to my right, I spotted a swirl and cast to it and hooked this little chap. (You can just see the Adams in his mouth)

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Upstream and adjacent to exposed rock, I had some interest and rose a couple of the quickest, but had to be satisfied with one Haute-Vienne trout from just the morning I had, for Millau, the Dourbie, and Aveyron awaited.

A bientot, Ghislain…you are a splendid chap, whose company, over a couple of days, I enjoyed enormously. And in ‘netting’ Haute-Vienne, thanks to you, I have captured the whole of Limousin, if you will permit me a little poetic licence!

post script….a truly good guide serves lunch, bank side, like this!                                              It was beef and carrot ‘stew’ being heated.                                                                                And it was ‘merveilleux’ !!

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