Blackdyke Trout Fishery, Norfolk
Another unsettled week as regards the weather but it hasn't put the fish off. Still good catches being made along the reeds with fish spotted about a rod’s length out. Small nymphs working well, along with Damsels, Hare’s Ears, PTN, small Cat’s Whiskers, and Buzzers on warmer days. Tuition is available for those who want to improve their casts or learn a new one, contact 07525 730447 for details.
Chatton Trout Fishery, Northumberland
Another week of fantastic sport and lots of fish in the 3lb to 5lb bracket being caught. Flies working well have been Buzzers, black lures, various Fritzs, Tinnies, Bloodworms and Diawl Bachs. The best fish of the week was caught by Tony Robinson, from Howtel, who safely returned a 13lb rainbow to Dunnydeer Lake. Tony released seven fish in total which he caught using Bloodworms and Buzzers. Chatton regular Abdul Muhit, from Morpeth, kept five fish and returned seven on a White Fritz, Tinnies and Diawl Bachs. Wullie Emery, from Newcastle, enjoyed his free day’s fishing with a full 'loyalty card', catching 12 fish on lures. Bill Braithwaite, from St Boswells, caught 10 fish using black lures. Scott Nellins, from Ashington, caught 14 on an Olive Fritz. Dan McArther, from Cramlington, caught 11 fish on Bloodworms. Connor Metcalf, from Consett, caught 17 on lures. David Fisher, from Melrose, kept four fish for 16lb and returned a further 14 fish caught on a Millennium Bug. Brian Davis, from Dudley, caught 14 fish on a Chatton Chaser. Michael Watson, from Chapel House, caught 13 fish on Buzzers and Cat’s Whiskers. Brothers Steve and Davie Bilbrough, from Newcastle, caught 28 fish between them using Zonkers and Kate Mclarens.
Reece Hepburn, from Berwick-upon-Tweed, caught a 3lb 8oz rainbow from Chatton Lake on a Bloodworm. Clement and Michael Wong, from Hong Kong, enjoyed a couple of days fishing, Clement catching a 2lb 8oz rainbow from Ross Lake. Chatton fishery instructor Bob Smith was on hand to see Olly Taylor, from London, land the first two rainbows he's ever caught. Olly caught his rainbows from Ross Lake on a Buzzer.
The fishery is fully booked on Saturday February 28 due to Jim Tucks 'Fritz 'n' Flies' Festive Final.
Elinor Trout Fishery, Northamptonshire
For the period February 16-22 the 160 anglers caught 895 fish of which 704 were returned. Fishing conditions were mostly difficult with strong winds. On the better weather days the rod average was excellent but anglers had to work much harder when there was a combination of sun and wind. Lures fished slowly on a floater or intermediate line continue to fish well but when the wind is lighter Black Buzzers or a plain Cruncher are deadly. The best depth seems to be three to four foot. Fish are being found in all parts of the lake although the lodge end is generally best. Bank anglers are still doing better than boats.
Best fish included 9lb 8oz for Olly Jary, from Narborough, on a Goldhead Viva from the boat; 9lb for Joe Grundy, from Stevenage, on a Cat’s Whisker; 8lb 4oz to Bernard Robinson, from Duddington, on a Montana; 8lb 4oz, 7lb 6oz and 6lb 2oz for Finbarr McSweeney, from Rushden, also on a Montana; 7lb 8oz for Peter Oldham, from Saffron Waldon, on a black lure; 7lb 4oz to George Brock, from Corby, on a Green and White Dancer; 7lb 1oz for Jim Nixon, from Kettering, on a Black Buzzer; 6lb 10oz for Ian Martin, from Market Deeping, on a black and green lure; 6lb 8oz to Derek Benamore, from Finedon; 6lb 3oz for Rob Jordan, from Lutterworth, on a black lure; and 6lb 2oz for Noel Duigenan, from Wellingborough, on a black and green lure.
Elinor will be holding the final of the Iain Barr/Airflo Bank Masters Final on Sunday April 19 with the chance to win £2000 and many other prizes. The final will be filmed by the Sky Sports 'Tight Lines' programme. Qualifying heats at Elinor will be on March 14 and April 5. Full details and entry forms at www.iainbarrflyfishing.co.uk
On Sunday May 31 Elinor will hold a heat of the popular Scierra Pairs competition. You get to fish with your partner and qualifiers will go through to fish the final at Rutland. Full details at www.scierrapairs.co.uk
Hanningfield Reservoir, Essex
Hanningfield opens for fishing on Saturday March 7 and for the third year running day permit prices have been frozen. A full eight fish ticket costs £26 with concessions £24, a four-fish afternoon Credit Cruncher permit costs £19. Season tickets for midweek and seven day sessions are available from £520. Boat hire charges vary throughout the week from £10 to £20 for a full day’s hire. By popular request there’s a new all-day sporting ticket being introduced for fly anglers who want to return all they catch. The sporting ticket costs £15 and is available only to fly anglers who must also use barbless hooks.
Free fishing for those under 18 years old when with their parents or guardians is available at Hanningfield, together with a loyalty card scheme offering a free day’s fishing after seven visits. Tuition courses for beginners are also run, lead by experts and with all tackle and a lunch supplied, for £69 per person. Booking for the Saturday courses is essential and those taking part must be at least eight years old. Call 01268 712180 to reserve a place.
At least 9,000 newly stocked rainbow trout will be waiting for anglers on opening day, together with the many overwintered fish from previous seasons and at least 46,000 trout will be stocked throughout the 2015 season.
More information and free copies of the Discover Hanningfield 2015 Guide are available by calling 0845 155 0236 and from the website https://www.eswater.co.uk/your-home/leisure.aspx
Northumbrian Water trout fisheries
Fishing permit prices for the new season on Northumbrian Water’s reservoirs - which opens on Saturday 14 March 14 – will not be increased for the third year running. And there’s a new all-day sporting ticket being introduced for fly anglers who want to return all they catch. The sporting ticket costs £15 and is available only to fly anglers who must also use barbless hooks.
Fish will be stocked at all the premier reservoirs: Derwent in County Durham; Fontburn and Kielder in Northumberland; Grassholme and fly-only Hury in Teesdale and Scaling on the edge of the North York Moors. Full eight-fish day permits remain at £23 with concessions at £21, the four fish afternoon Credit Cruncher is pegged at £16 and the family and couples 12-fish ticket will stay at £35. Full day boat hire charges for Kielder Water have also been frozen at £15 midweek and £19 for weekends. Advance day permits can be bought online from www.fishpal.com
The new-look ‘Discover Waterside Parks and Fishing’ guide features all the premier stocked trout reservoirs. There’s information about the wild brown trout waters of Balderhead, Cow Green and Selset and there are tips and information from Northumbrian Water’s own angling expert, Teesdale ranger Andrew Scott, who is a gold-medal winning England International.
Loyalty cards and copies of the guide are available from 0845 155 0236 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
‘Try it,’ three-hour tuition courses for the under 18s costs £15 – a special offer made possible through a unique partnership with the British Trout Farmers Restocking Association (BTFRA) which has donated the proceeds of a memorial fund collected following the funeral of the late trout farmer Rob Mackie from Lancashire. ‘Try it’ teaching days are held at Derwent reservoir on Tuesdays and Saturdays and start on April 7 and will alternate between any method and fly. Everything required is provided under expert tuition and three hour courses cost £30 for adults and only £15 for the under 18s. Courses can also be arranged at other premier fisheries by appointment. All ‘Try it day’ sessions must be booked by phone on 01207 255250.
Rainbow trout marked with special sweep tags will continue to be stocked in Fontburn, Derwent, Grassholme and Scaling. Anglers who catch one of these marked fish and who have joined the optional over 18s sweep for just a £1 stake before fishing could win up to £400.
Fishing opens at all reservoirs from Saturday March 14 except the wild brown trout waters of Cow Green, Selset, Balderhead and Blackton which open on March 22. Brown trout caught at Kielder and Derwent must be returned before May 1 and after October 31.
Toft Newton Trout Fishery, Lincolnshire
For the week-ending February 20, the 81 rods caught 269 trout for a rod average of 3.32. Another good early season week with some great hard-fighting fish featuring in the returns. The best method was to fish the washing-line with nymphs on the droppers and a small Booby on the point. Diawl Bachs, Crunchers and Buzzers are firm favourites and the point fly should be along the lines of a white and green pattern. Keep the retrieve on the slow side and don't cast too far, Toft’s shallow edges are a favourite at moment with many fish being caught in four feet or less of water. Best fish of the week at 5lb 12oz was taken by Chris Davison on a Black Booby. There are plenty of stockies about and as such the best advice is to move if you're not catching. Prospects look excellent and nymphs should continue to produce the goods but don’t rule out a lure such as a Concrete Bowl, stroked back on an intermediate line. Ricky Varley and Danny Peet enjoyed a day flyfishing for pike in the week and tempted four predators to around 13lb.
Witton Castle Lakes, Co Durham
February was very similar to January with the fishery manager having to break the ice on the lakes each morning to allow anglers to enjoy their sport. There were no bags of double-figures through February but a number of anglers had regular success, most notably A.R. Snowdon, A.P. Carroli, R. McCullagh and R. Guy. The best fish for the month was a hard-fighting rainbow of 2lb, caught by G. Lowes. Once again Bloodworms were successful, followed closely by Black Buzzers and Black Zonkers.
Preparations are already under way for the 2015 season opening weekend. The fishery manager and his group of hard-working volunteers have begun to improve the access track, cut the surrounding grass and generally give the place a good once-over ready for the new season. The lakes will close after Sunday February 22 in readiness for the opening weekend on Saturday and Sunday March 7-8, when the fishery will be open both days from 8am for ticket sales and fishing commences from 8.15am. Ticket prices remain unchanged from the 2014 season with a full day three-fish ticket costing £25 and a full day sporting ticket £16. For all other ticket prices please visit the website at: wittoncastlelakes.com or call the fishing lodge on 01388 488691.
Woolaston Court Trout Lakes, Gloucestershire
The lakes reopen on Sunday March 1. All the prices have stayed the same as 2014. The new telephone number for the lake is 07979 761123. The lakes will still be closed every Tuesday.