England Troutmasters reports for week-ending July 24th, 2015

Bewl Water, Kent
Fishing has improved massively over the last week. Catch average for the week, based on returns, is an exceptional 4.21 fish per rod. Trout are showing on the surface early mornings and evenings and in cloudy weather, and much deeper in bright sunlight. They are spread across the north side of the reservoir from the dam to past the cages in Hook Straight. A further 1500 rainbows were stocked last week. Best areas for boats have been the Main Bowl, Chingley and Hook Straight while best areas for bank fishing have been the dam wall early in the morning, Chingley and Canoe Club Corner. Flies have varied depending on the depth of the fish with Hoppers, Boobies, Blobs and Cormorants worth a try. Anglers are reminded that tying up to the towers is not permitted. Unfortunately breakfast will not be available in the Sailing Club at weekends and the clubhouse will be closed.

Derwent Reservoir, Northumberland  
The key to success this week has been to determine the distance from the shore the fish are feeding. This has been highly variable with good catches coming from close to the shore one day only to find the fish have moved out and a long cast is needed the next day. Yan Davies and A. Freeman fished from Murray’s Point and took a good number of fish using a Gold Toby with fish attacking only 20 feet out from the shore. The best way to determine the distance is to make a long cast and retrieve it six or seven yards at a time, leaving it for quarter of an hour at each distance until you get regular bites. The cooler water at inlets and stream mouths can attract fish and legered pink sparkle PowerBait Eggs have been the top bait. Fly anglers had a mixed week with some catching on small wets and others on lures with a Black and Peacock Spider or a Green and Black Nomad two of the best patterns. Soldier beetles are still around in reasonable numbers and provide a welcome snack for the fish when blown onto the water. Best areas are the stream to first fence on the south side, west of the sailing club, Meadow and north bank.

Elinor Trout Fishery, Northamptonshire
For the week July 13-19 the 130 anglers caught 355 fish of which 255 were returned. Best fish included one of 5lb 2oz for Alan Rennocks, from Kettering, who fished a Red Diawl Bach from a boat. Fish of 4lb 5oz were landed by Dennis Shannon, from Wellingborough, on a Big Red and also by Peter Dixon, from Luton, on a Damsel from the boat. Dennis Shannon, from Wellingborough, caught a 4lb rainbow on a Montana, and Bryan Swain, from Brampton, caught a 4lb brown on a Green Diawl Bach. Best bank areas are the east arm, creek and coarse bank. Best boat areas are the east arm, pylon point and down middle. Fishing is still difficult but not impossible. The water hasn't got too warm so the fish are still feeding, mainly to damsels but also corixa and snails around the weed beds. Bank anglers are advised to bring waders otherwise the weed can make fishing tricky in some areas. Dries continue to be the top method from the bank. Boat anglers are doing well using a buoyant pattern on the point with Diawl Bachs on the dropper or heavy Buzzers on a long leader in the deeper water down the middle. Best patterns are Damsel, Daddy, CdC Buzzer, Red or Green Diawl Bach, Black or Claret Buzzer. Half price boats for the whole of July.

Fontburn Reservoir, Northumberland  
A week of wet and windy weather resulted in active fish which benefitted the roving angler or those that adapted their tactics to the conditions. The top method continues to be roaming tactics, casting and walking with Mepps spinners and Toby lures as the trout still continue to hunt and feed on fry in the shallows. M. Watson and family enjoyed a 12 fish catch limit weighing in 28lb. D. Mailer landed eight fish for 20lb 4oz. M. Francis, on his loyalty day, was delighted with his 10 fish catch limit tipping the scales at 25lb. M. Keen was not far behind with an eight fish limit catch for 19lb 8oz. D. Booth landed the biggest fish of the week with a superb fully-finned rainbow of 3lb 8oz. Fly anglers are still benefitting from the abundance of insect life being blown on to the water. This offered some exceptional sport with well-presented small black flies and dries or a well-placed lure retrieved at speed attracting lots of fish. G.J. Brown returned four of his fish and M.J. Summerbell netted six fish for 13lb 8oz using a Dawson’s Olive and a Cat’s Whisker. The best area for fly anglers has been the western end near the nature reserve boundary. Best flies are Hawthorn, Dawson’s Olive, Black Gnat, Bibio and Cat’s Whisker.

Grafham Water, Cambridgeshire
Anglers are enjoying plenty of good sport with a good seasonal rod average of 4.02. The best bank fishing has been on the dam and Plummer Bank with floating lines with Shrimp patterns and Damsel Nymphs the best methods. Boat anglers have had good sport from a number of areas, particularly the Willows, Hedge End, Rectory Bay, boils, dam, Valley Creek and A and G Buoys. The best boat methods have been to fish Di-3 lines with FABs, Tequila Blob Booby, GRHE and Diawl Bachs or floating lines with GRHE, Cormorants, Diawl Bachs and Damsel Nymphs. The Anglian Water Airflo International Southern final on July 13 saw six teams of six anglers fishing for a place in the International final at Rutland Water in early October. The top three teams to claim a place in the final were first Team Airflo, second Weald of Kent and third Blagdon Flyfishers. Pete Kempton’s 4lb 8oz rainbow was the best fish of the match, and he also took the best bag at 26lb 8oz. Pete caught most of his fish on a midge-tip line with four fish on a Shrimp Snatcher, three on FABs and one on a Green Cruncher just off Rectory Bay.

Grassholme Reservoir, Co Durham
Another week of ever-changing conditions provided something for everybody and every method. Conditions not only changed day to day but hour to hour for much of the week. Powerbait and worms fished on a leger on the bottom and also from float near the surface worked well as anglers adapted to the feeding patterns of the fish. Anglers at Low Rigg and the dam wall were especially successful at the beginning of the week. Dominic Pearson, aged 12, from Washington and Harrington Angling Club, had a bumper day when he landed his limit for 24lb, his biggest specimen weighing 4lb 12oz. All Dominic’s fish were taken on white and orange Powerbait Mice-tails. Despite the changing conditions, Grassholme’s rod average on Saturday hit the dizzy heights of six fish per angler and more than a third of anglers who returned catches achieved their limits. Sharon and Mick McKimm managed 10 fish between them. Best flies are Black Hopper, Black Zonker and Black Fritz. Best areas are the dam wall, Low Rigg and bays along West Pasture.

Hanningfield Reservoir, Essex
Plenty of action for most anglers and despite strong winds and bright sunshine anglers were able to achieve a rod average of over three fish. Water clarity has very much improved in recent days and the entire reservoir appears clear although levels continue to drop. Tuesday saw the introduction of 2,500 rainbows into Lodge Bay. As a result, hectic sport was experienced near the Mole and along the Natural Bank for a number of days. Boat anglers returned with heavy catches from around the Inlet and off the weed beds in Middlemead Bay and beautiful overwintered silver rainbows are also showing well in Boundary Bay. Much of the action is on fly using floating lines and buzzers and bank anglers are seeing a marked improvement in catches off the dam wall using PowerBait. Best flies are Cat’s Whisker, Black Buzzer, Montana and FM Orange. From Monday July 13 until August 31, 2015 all midweek boats will be reduced to £10 and all weekend boats are reduced to £20 for a full day.

Hury Reservoir, Co Durham        
Some exceptional returns and numerous fish over the 3lb mark and several over 4lb 8oz. The changing conditions have dictated methods with sinking lines and a Dawson’s Olive the fly of choice for many. Intermediate lines with Blobs were also a good combination but the majority of fish have been taken on floating lines with Green and Coral Dancers. Once the wind dropped in the evenings the water surface calmed and dry flies were effective. Friday's rod average reached an amazing 9.3 fish per angler and on Sunday George Samms and Joe Watson both had limits of eight fish with four of those fish over 4lb. Best areas are the disabled platform, Corporal Hill and the boil.

Kielder Water, Northumberland 
Blustery conditions hampered boat anglers at times through the week. However, those seeking sanctuary in sheltered areas had some outstanding sport with the Belling the stand out area. P. Collins netted an impressive five rainbows for 9lb 5oz on an Orange Fritz towards the tip of the inlet. There was also notable success around Plashetts. Those fishing from the banks had most success towards the east end of the reservoir with Gordon’s Wall and Tower Knowe producing good results with at least seven anglers netting their limits in this area. David Bibby and John Fail caught their limits for approximately 11lb each fishing on the worm. The largest rainbow of the week went to I. Hamilton with a 5lb 3oz fish caught on Orange PowerBait by the lower car park at Tower Knowe. Best flies are Cat’s Whisker and Orange Fritz.

Pitsford Water, Northamptonshire
A number of anglers have recorded some good fish this week. Bob Collins, Brian Lloyd, George Hackett and Nick Nicholson have all caught beautiful 4lb-plus browns with Bob and Nick also taking rainbows of 4lb-plus. Peter Proctor caught and released a 4lb-plus rainbow using a home-tied small Yellow-olive Damsel. Simon Ashton came off the water on Sunday with a 4lb 8oz rainbow, the best he has caught so far this season, as well as bagging up with seven other rainbows. The weather has been unsettled this week but anglers continue to achieve a good rod average. The Gravels continues to fish well and the fish are still into the bank and within the top three feet of water. Good-sized fish have also been found in Sailing Club Bay and the Flats.

Press Manor Fishing Lakes, Derbyshire
Fishing is best in cloudy conditions and the morning especially is producing good catches. Best methods seem to be on the green theme whether it be Buzzers, PTNs or Damsel Nymphs. Mark Poole has used a really small Damsel under a bung with a small Blob on the top, to catch fish consistently from both bank and shore.

Ravensthorpe Reservoir, Northamptonshire
Anglers have enjoyed good sport this week. The fish are high up in the water and feeding on nymphs and dries. Best methods have been floating lines and Diawl Bachs or Crunchers, fished washing-line style or floating line with dries, Hoppers, CdCs, Klinkhamers or small Daddies, from a drifting boat. The best spot for bank anglers is the dam. Steve Holton and his boat partner caught 22 fish on small dries, drifting across the main bowl. The best fish of the week was a lovely 7lb-plus rainbow taken by Keith Bowen on Thursday evening. Keith then went on to win the evening boat event catching 10 fish on Diawl Bachs. Mick Griffin was second with five fish and Ray French took third place with two fish.

Rutland Water, Rutland
The best fish of the week at Rutland Water was a 4lb 12oz rainbow taken by Richard Cooper of Stamford during the Tuesday Night Boat League. Season ticket holder Phil Welbourne, from Deeping, weighed in a 4lb 11oz rainbow as part of a 12-fish haul he shared with Grimsby angler Mick Atkinson when the pair fished the rudder last Saturday. They had to change lines at regular intervals to keep things going, ranging from fast glass intermediates to Di-7’s. Phil and Mick started off down the North Arm and finished off in the main basin. The best brown of the week fell to John Phelps, from Fakenham, with a fish of 4lb 1oz. A mixed week with anglers having good sport Monday to Wednesday then picking up again at the weekend. Boat anglers have had the best sport in many areas, particularly around the aerators, with some boat anglers taking fish with drifts onto Fantasy Island. Bank anglers have had the best sport in the evening.
For anglers who prefer floating lines with nymphs and dries the bottom of both arms and off Yellowstones provided good sport. On Thursday the South Arm provided good sport for Anglian Water’s Andy Ainscough and Robbie Winram who used dries to good effect off Hideaway Bay and along the bunds wall.
Bank anglers venturing out in the evening had the best of the bank sport. Oakham’s Toff Crowther fished last Saturday and noted a number of fish on the surface in the North Arm shallows. Toff frustratingly hooked and lost three fish.
Week eight of the Tuesday Night Boat League was won by Adi Naylor, of Uppingham, with eight fish for15lb 8oz in less than two and a half hours fishing down the South Arm off Yellowstones. Second was Richard Cooper with six fish for 14lb 6oz including a 4lb 12oz rainbow, and third was Chris Binley with three fish for 5lb 15oz. At this time of year the boat league is usually fished around the reservoir aerators but this week a show of hands produced a unanimous decision for the aerators to be out of bounds for the night. Some anglers opted for the North Arm with others heading to the sailing club and beyond.
Last week 2,000 more rainbows were stocked at the Green Bank, Whitwell Harbour, and the sailing club. This takes the season’s total to 57,300 which includes 4,000 browns. Stocking continues this week with a further 4,300 rainbows going into the water.
It is with sadness that we report the passing of Stuart Young. Stuart worked as a part time warden at Rutland for a season and was a season ticket holder. He also assisted the England Youth Team. Stuart loved his floating line and nymph fishing at Rutland.

Scaling Dam Reservoir, Cleveland       
While the unpredictable summer weather continues, fish activity at the east end of the reservoir remains excellent with quality catches being recorded by both bait and fly anglers. On Monday, Les Wheatley, from Skelton, returned eight rainbows while flyfishing around the east end with Invicta and Kate McLaren flies. In the same area Brian Lees, from South Bank, caught four and returned two rainbows. Bait anglers George Goldsborough, from Redcar, and Bruce Hodgson, from Brotton, both caught their eight fish limits using worm and Powerbait cocktails. Saturday brought very windy conditions, yet Brian Yeoman, from Great Ayton, still managed to land six rainbows. Harry Noble, from Whitby, had 16 rainbows after buying his second permit at 10am and finished fishing before 12 noon. Best flies are Silver Invicta, Kate McLaren, Shipman’s Buzzer and Hoppers. Best baits are worm, Blue Mango, yellow Powerbait, yellow and orange Gulp Eggs.

Witton Castle Lakes, Co Durham
Improved conditions through the week saw improved visitor numbers although the 62 anglers all found the going (described as) ‘very hard’ and just managed to scrape a rod average of 2. With the fish ‘just not playing game’ the catch rates were low with no anglers even making it into double figures. Best angler of the week was regular T. Ross who caught eight fish, followed by J. Thompson with five. The remaining list was made up by T. Carr, A. Williams, A. Snowdon and J. Booker who all caught three fish each. M. Reeves caught the best fish of the week with a 5lb-plus rainbow. Anglers resorted to a number of flies in their attempts to entice fish, including CdC varieties, Bloodworm, Hare’s Ears, Diawl Bach and Black and Olive Zonkers. On Wednesday evening the lakes played host to Wolsingham Women’s Institute, who came along for week two of the introduction to trout fishing for women. The evening was hosted and coached by Anne Woodcock with the session being photographed for the local paper. The ladies all enjoyed a fun and informative evening, trying their hand at something new.