England Troutmasters reports for week-ending October 30, 2015

Blackdyke Trout Fishery, Norfolk
At last the trout are chasing the fry and several larger fish were caught at the weekend. Lots of action all over the lake. Cat’s Whiskers, Minkies, Damsels and Yellow Dancers on floating lines are catching well. Tuition is available here, two hours and two hours fishing afterwards is £50, a great Christmas present for someone!

Derwent Reservoir, Northumberland
Another great late season week with fish caught steadily throughout with some favoured days seeing the rod average spike to over six fish per angler. Charlie Hall and his dad, from Gosforth, completed their limit catch on Wednesday between the stream and first fence using orange and chartreuse PowerBait Mice-tails. Jon Robinson, from Bedlington, took one of the best catches of the week from disabled area with eight fish and a cracking four-pounder, all taken on legered PowerBait. Fly anglers also reported some good catches with the bank west of the sailing club offering good sport on intermediate lines and a Dawson’s Olive or small black wet flies. From Sunday November 1 fishing hours are from 9am until 4pm.

Fontburn Reservoir, Northumberland
Cooler autumnal weather this week pushed fish into deeper waters. However, anglers who heeded advice to fish the west end of the reservoir were well rewarded for their efforts. A fine example of this was Gerry Webber who fished the middle section of the north shore midweek. Gerry took the best catch of the week and best fish; a cracking home-grown 6lb 8oz rainbow caught on a legered mix of PowerBait Eggs. From Sunday November 1 fishing hours are from 9am until 4pm. Best flies are Bibio, Cat’s Whisker and Black Gnat.

Grafham Water, Cambridgeshire
Anglers continue to enjoy good sport with a rod average of 3.5 and around 30% of the fish weighing 3lb or over. There have been plenty of bag limits with the bank fishing well from the Dam, Seat, G Buoy, Harbour and Deep Water Point. The best bank method has been to fish Shrimp patterns and GRHE, floating fry and dries. The biggest fish of the week was taken by Keith Jones, of Peterborough. Keith was bank fishing from the Harbour and caught and released a superb overwintered rainbow estimated between 5lb 8oz and 6lb on a floating line.
Boat anglers have also had a good week’s sport with plenty of bag limits. The most consistent areas for the boats were Deep Water Point, G Buoy, Willows, Dam, Gaynes Cove and the Seat. Boat anglers had the best results with floating or fast glass lines with Shrimp, GRHE, dries, Cat’ Whiskers, tubes and Snakes. The heaviest bag of the week was taken by Andy Axon who caught eight trout for 28lb 5oz on Shrimp patterns.
The last day for brown trout is Thursday October 29. Any Browns caught after this date must be returned to the water alive. As from November 1 the western end of the reservoir is out of bounds until April 1.

Grassholme Reservoir, Co Durham   
The northern banks of Low Rigg and Rabbits bank have fished well this week with anglers choosing these spots over the more popular areas on the south side of the reservoir due to falling water levels. With water temperatures also dropping during the day we have seen fish going deep during these colder spells. That said, the trout are continuing to feed on fry making spinning and flyfishing with lure patterns the best methods when the fish are returning to the margins. Mr Embleton took the biggest fish of the week on Friday; a 5lb 2oz rainbow part of a six fish catch. This led us into an excellent day all round on Saturday with a number of anglers getting limit catches. Mr M. Foster took eight, of which three were taken on a Mepps spinners and five on chartreuse/scales PowerBait Eggs fished on the leger with a short trace. With temperatures set to stay low we expect the fish to remain deep so casting further should get results. From Sunday November 1 fishing hours are from 9am until 4pm. Best flies are Dawson’s Olive, Floating Fry, and Cat’s Whisker.

Hanningfield Reservoir, Essex
With perfect autumn conditions during the week, excellent sport was enjoyed around the Inlet and towards the shallows of the Peninsula. Many larger rainbows are being caught in greater numbers from both the bank and boats as anglers experience quality fishing. Denis Smith landed rainbows of 10lb 2oz, 9lb 12oz and 7lb 3oz whilst wading along the natural bank. He used a floating line with a team of Diawl Bachs on a long leader. On the same day Nigel Angus boat-fished the Inlet and tempted trout of 9lb 7oz, 9lb, 8lb 2oz and 8lb, as well as releasing eight fish using a hoglice pattern over shallow water. Nigel and Alan Stern also flyfished earlier in the week, including fish of 9lb 8oz and 8lb 14oz in their limit catches. Spinning has also proved an effective method with Mr Edvinas landing trout of 8lb 14oz and 7lb 6oz from the Goldfish Bowl on a silver lure. PowerBait remains the favourite bait but floatfished lobworm is also successful. Best flies are Montana, Damsel Nymph, Orange Fritz, White Zonker and Orange Blob.

Hury Reservoir, Co Durham
Some windy conditions this week made it hard work to fish Hury at times. However, there were some notable fish caught with Mr C. Harrison taking a 5lb rainbow on Tuesday and Geordie Samms and Joe Watson taking four fish each on Saturday with weights of 11lb 4oz and 14lb 4oz which included the biggest fish of the week recorded at 5lb 8oz. Fish have been taken deep this week with water temperatures falling making a sinking or intermediate line a must. During warmer, calmer spells fish have been seen on the surface chasing roach fry and as the fish shoal it is giving excellent opportunities to pick off a number of feeding fish, with quick retrieved lure patterns. From Sunday November 1 fishing hours are from 9am until 4pm. Best flies are Dawson’s Olive, Bibio and Floating Fry. Best areas are Corporal Hill and both sides of the dam wall.

Kielder Water, Northumberland
The reservoir continues to fall with little or no rain this week. However, this has opened up even more bank areas. Kevin Johnson, from Hexham, managed to take his limit despite high onshore winds at Hawkhope slipway at the weekend. He had to repeatedly cast his bubble float against the wind but it was well worth the effort with 14lb of fish to take home. Due to high winds at the end of the week boats were unable to go out. Earlier in the week the flat calm water provided some excellent top of the water sport with the few last sedges and daddies showing on the surface. Deeply fished floating fry and lures have also taken some good catches. The best bank areas were Hawkhope, Stockie bay and the tip of Little Whickhope. From Sunday November 1 fishing hours are from 9am until 4pm. Boats are currently due back at the jetty at 3.30pm. Best flies are Black Fritz, Orange Blob and Daddies.

Packington Trout Fishery, Warwickshire
Last week saw 72 rods catch 217 fish for an average of 3.01 per rod. The biggest fish last week was an 8lb 10oz rainbow caught by Jamie Nairn, of Solihull, who was fishing from a boat on Cocks Close and he took it on a Diawl Bach fished on a floating line. John Salisbury, of Warwick, fished from a boat on Cocks Close and he caught eight fish including fish of 7lb, 6lb and 5lb 10lb with all his fish falling to Buzzers and Bloodworm patterns fished on a floating line. Mike Ravenscroft, of Kenilworth, fished from a boat on the Park Meadow pool and caught eight fish to 4lb using Damsels and Buzzers. Fishery regular Dave Bratby, of Birmingham, caught and released eight fish to 6lb from the bank of Cocks Close and these fell to mini Cat’s Whiskers on a floating line. The changeable and sometimes windy conditions last week made it a little more difficult with the boat anglers generally catching better than those on the banks. Top flies have been Damsel Nymph, Black or Red Buzzer, Bloodworm, Minkies, Cat’s Whisker, Black Tadpole and Appetiser. The best areas have been around the old boat jetty corner and the high bank of Cocks Close. On Park Meadow, the middle of the dam wall area is best.

Pitsford Water, Northamptonshire
Another good week with a rod average of 5.0 and plenty of fish on the fry and snail and signs of them getting into the shrimp. Eddie Greenwood, from Newark, had a lovely day on Thursday, saying: “I am grateful for your friendly advice and hospitality. The fishing conditions were good, but the wind was approaching 20mph so I worked some of the more sheltered spots including Three Trees and Brixworth Bay, where I found a 6lb 8oz rainbow surface-feeding on snails. I plopped a size 16 Booby close by and he turned and took it without hesitation.” There were some impressive rainbows including a 6lb-plus specimen returned to the water by Mark Bradbury. Alex Ferguson returned a 7lb-plus rainbow tempted on a size 10 Cat’s Whisker near Ash Tree Bay. Roy Clark, from Worfield, returned a fabulous 4lb 10oz brown and had two other nice rainbows. Michael Shelton, of Northampton, caught two fish with three casts using a black/silver palmered lure on a floating line. An invasive species of shrimp (Dikerogammarus villosus), commonly known as DV, has been found at Pitsford Water. It is important that anglers continue to follow the Check, Clean, Dry procedures in place for the preservation of our environment and sport.

Ravensthorpe Reservoir, Northamptonshire
Another great week’s sport for both boat and bank anglers with a terrific rod average of 5.7. Boat anglers are catching well mostly on floating lines with dries, Black or Claret Hoppers, intermediate lines and sunken Daddies are also working well. Bank fishing has been superb this week. Charlie Watts had half a day at Pitsford last Monday and landed 30 fish on floating line with Red Diawl Bachs from Platform 3. Bob Draper caught four from Mongers. Alan Duffin also fished Mongers and landed 10 mostly on Black Buzzers. John Smith fished the dam and had six fish mostly on Red Diawl Bachs. Kevin Daykin landed 10 fish from Platform 5.
Mid Northants Flyfishers held the Bob Church President’s Trophy at Pitsford Water on Sunday. A great day was had by all with 32 anglers catching 162 fish for a rod average of 5.0. Top spot on the day went to David O’Farrell with six fish for 13lb. Second place went to Paul Gayton with six fish for 12lb 14oz. Richard Webb weighed in at 12lb 8oz for third place. The biggest fish weighed 2lb 11oz and was caught by Pip Jeffs.

Rutland Water, Rutland
Sport this week has been good for both bank and boat anglers. As the winds changed a slightly warmer front has improved conditions. Areas of the lake producing fish included Normanton and the main basin with fish showing along the dam wall, Yellowstone along to the end of the peninsula at Barnhill Creek and Carrot. Fish have also been caught along Green Bank with the usual scattering of fish (often better quality) being caught at the bottoms of the arms. Gibbets Gorse has also been worth a look.
Tactics employed have been varied, with some anglers sticking to the floating fry method and others opting for nymphs perhaps targeting the snail and corixa feeders out there. Both methods have proved successful in the right places. Mick Connor proved the first of those methods with a lumpy 7lb rainbow, well worth the walk up the south arm. Al Owen and John Slavin enjoyed some good sport on the boats this week with a variety of methods employed from tubes to nymphs doing the business.
Bank fishing continues to improve with anglers taking fish mostly on the peninsula with some anglers also experiencing success along the Normanton bank. Floating fry, Suspender Minkies and sunken Minkies have all worked along with Shrimp patterns and Hare’s Ear patterns all fished on floating/sink-tip lines.
The lake is in superb condition at present with crystal clear water all over. Some weed beds are still present and fish are often not far away. The banks have been seeing more and more anglers fishing. Roach/perch fry, snail, shrimp and corixa are at the top of the menu for the trout at the moment and feeding is often in sporadic windows through the day with crepuscular behaviour a common theme.
The George Moore Memorial rudder match was held last Saturday with nine pairs fishing for the trophy. The wet, miserable weather didn’t detract from the fishing with fish being recorded to every boat and some anglers weighed in double figures. The George Moore trophy for the best brace of fish was won by Jim Watts and Martin Hearth with 10lb 14oz. Martin took a personal best brown of 7lb. The best rainbow on the day was taken by Colan Bartrum with a fish of 3lb 9oz. The rudder series challenge concluded with this match and was awarded to the pair achieving the best combined weight across three matches. Another trophy for Martin’s ‘Hearth’, who alongside Jim Watts accumulated 48 fish for 116lb 11oz. Runners-up were Dave Porter and Steve Crowder with 46 fish for 105lb 15oz.

Scaling Dam, Cleveland  
Another stocking on Friday from our Lartington fish farm tempted Guisborough angler George Houston to brave the elements and head to the east end rocks. Armed with Yellow PowerBait and worm George caught his limit of eight rainbows with longer casts into deeper areas. Alongside George was Harry Noble, of Sleights, who managed four nice fish, all caught on blue mango PowerBait with an added orange Mice-tail as a tempter. From Sunday November 1 fishing hours are from 9am until 4pm. Best flies are Black Hopper and Black Spider.

Thornwood Springs Fishery, Essex
Lake one has been split into two sections now with an easy fishing beginners end starting at £15, with the other end being mainly browns. Some 200 14oz to 1lb 8oz fish were stocked last week to add to the resident browns in the 1lb to 10lb range. It is catch and release at this end of this lake. Small black wet flies and nymphs are best for these brownies. Lake two has been restocked with 80 four-pounders and six were landed yesterday in the 6-9lb range amongst mixed bags of up to 15 fish. Damsels and Dancers are best on here. Lake three has also been restocked and fish up to 10lb were tempted on Montanas.

Witton Castle Lakes, Co Durham
Temperatures dropped and winds picked through the second half of the week and with the season drawing to a close the lakes saw a quiet week. The 39 dedicated anglers who braved the chilly conditions returned a reasonable rod average of 3.3. The only angler to reach double -figures this week was R.M. McCullagh who caught 10 fish. G. Oliver caught seven on each of two separate visits. A. Spence and B. Wood also caught seven fish each, while P. Stonhouse and A. Hutchinson both caught five fish each. The best fish of the week was a fine 7lb specimen caught by A. Clarke. The catching flies have been the usual suspects including CdC Shuttlecocks and F-Flies, Bloodworm, Buzzers, Blobs, Hare’s Ears and one of the regulars has being doing well with Mini Damsels. With the forecast for a further drop in temperatures, coupled with mist and drizzle, sport is expected to slow down, especially as the end of the normal season approaches.