The Trout season legally opens on the chalkstreams of Hampshire, Wiltshire and Berkshire in early-April but some beats choose not to open until mid-April or 1st May.  Fly hatches can be sparse in the early two or three weeks but some surprisingly good hatches take place if you are in the right place at the right time.  In early-April last year there were swarms of Grannom over parts of the lower River Test near to Romsey and some good dry fly sport was had.  So have some Grannom Sedge patterns ready for April.  Also some beats allow you to fish a nymph in April and an appropriately weighted size 12 Goldhead Gold Ribbed Hare’s Ear is one of my favourites for early-season Brownies.  It gets down to where the fish are and the glint of the goldhead catches the fish’s attention and often provokes a take.

The last week in April usually sees the first consistent hatches of upwings/olives.  An Adams (I particularly like a Parachute Adams in size 16 with a white sight post) and an ‘F’ Fly (size 14) are two of my early-season favourites.  Look out for Hawthorn flies around late-April and early-May and carry some size 12 imitations.  I have also found that a size 12 Black Klinkhamer is a very successful fly when there are Hawthorn around.  So start tying or buying now!!!