I always emphasise the absolutely essential skill of watercraft when fishing with clients especially on rivers but a big slice of successful river fishing also comes down to confidence, knowing you are fishing in the right place, with the right method and with the right flies.

Once you fully understand the river and why fish are where they are then you success rate will increase substantially and your confidence will increase accordingly.

I recently received an email from a regular client and friend which I thought pretty much sums this up, the following is an extract from that email:


“You’re absolutely right about confidence.

This year something indefinable finally clicked in my head.  I told you about that recent trip on the Nidd, not because of the number of fish caught, but because it was the first time I felt I knew what I was doing and it worked.  I can remember experiencing on Fewston a few months ago something which you will understand but Laura couldn’t.  I cast out, and cast out, and then I cast out again, but, though nothing was different this time I just knew the line would move, and it did.  It’s a sixth sense which is difficult to explain.  The same happened again on the Nidd.  I cast out over a tongue of water on to the crease and said to myself, “There will be a fish in there”, and there was.

And it is down to you.  I watched you very carefully on the river the other day and it has made a huge difference.  Possibly the biggest single thing I learned was not so much which water to fish in as which water not to fish in.  It’s quite an art to know when to pass on to more profitable waters.”


It’s very satisfying to be able to pass these skills on and know that they are making a real difference to peoples fly fishing and yes Brian I believe you do develop a sixth sense, “may the force be with you”.

Oliver Edwards - Someone who knows where the fish are.

Oliver Edwards – Someone who knows where the fish are.