Blithfield Reservoir, Staffordshire
The wet, cold start to the week saw relatively slow sport but from Wednesday onwards it improved dramatically with some incredible returns recorded, especially on Saturday and Sunday. The bank fishing continues to be good but the rods that took to the boats also enjoyed excellent sport. Dry fly tactics are now coming into their own with notable bags recorded by visiting rods Mick Broadgate and Sam Forrester who landed a total of 16 fish to their boat, with some stunning overwintered specimens amongst them. The evening of Sunday 6th saw almost flat calm conditions with a heavy buzzer and sedge hatch which produced rising fish all over the reservoir. Three visiting rods, Messrs. Wood, Prince and Finney enjoyed what they described as “a brilliant evening’s fishing” catching a total of 39 fish between them, all to Buzzer and dry fly tactics. Also on Sunday visiting rods Phil Williams and Eddie Guest proved that boat fishing during the day in bright conditions can also be productive, recording a total bag of 61 fish, all caught and released, using a combination of Eddie’s own-tied Cherokee lures and Buzzer patterns. Eddie declared it “the best days fishing in my life – unbelievable sport!”.
Other creditable returns were as follows – on Monday 30th season permit holder Maurice Dewey recorded 7 fish from the South Lake banks using various lures with his best being a 3lb 8oz overwintered rainbow, while visiting rod Mr Freegard returned 9 fish from the banks. On the 2nd season permit holder Pat Burton released all 9 of his fish, caught on Damsel and Cat’s Whisker patterns but it was on Thursday 3rd that the sport really started to pick up. Boat anglers saw great results with season permit holder Dr Ian Greaves recording 25 fish in just 3 hours on orange lures and Olive Damsels and season permit holder Richard Meehan, fishing from a boat with his guest Mr Houston, record 12 fish while Mr Houston recorded 9, all caught on Damsels and Orange Tadpoles. Bank anglers also enjoyed great sport with visiting rod Fred Salt returning a total of 36 fish caught on Damsels and Cat’s Whiskers while visiting husband and wife rods Tony and Pauline Bridgett managed a very creditable 40 fish between them in Ten Acre Bay, all on green & black lures. On Friday 4th season permit holder Bill Scarlett caught and released 14 fish from the South Lake banks and visiting trio Steve Cooper, Iain Baddeley and Paul Bentley returned total bags of 20 fish, 20 fish and 15 fish respectively. On Saturday 5th, permit holder Roger Smith paired up in a boat with visiting rod Andy Gibbs and each caught and released 13 fish, a very good total of 26 to the boat by the end of their day.
A quick reminder this week that if you wish to fish in the Cancer Charity Day event on Saturday June 2 there are just 2 boats left available so you need to book quickly on 01283 840284.
Anyone wishing to take part in the Scierra Pairs heat at Blithfield on May 20 can do so by booking online at www.scierrapairs.co.uk
Chatton Trout Fishery, Northumberland
The AT Team England Fly Fishing Bank Final was held at Chatton Trout Fishery on Sunday May 6 when 104 fish were caught between 24 anglers giving a rod average of 4.4 fish per angler. Congratulations to Gareth Tilley on becoming National Champion 2017/2018. The England squad for the Bank International being held at Chatton Trout Fishery in October is: Gareth Tilley, Edward Upton, Andrew Taylor, Alec Harvey, Lee Cartmail, Mark Harrison, Brian Lillie (rsv), and manager Alan Jenkins. Best flies this week have been Buzzers, nymphs, dries and lures. Chatton closing at 9am this week and 5pm Saturday.
Elinor Trout Fishery, Northamptonshire
A fantastic week for boat anglers with some large fly hatches that brought the bigger fish on the feed. Best fish: 9lb 11oz, S Millar, Scotland, Black Buzzer, boat; 8lb 8oz, Adrian Portlock, Daventry, Blue-flash Damsel, boat; 8lb 6oz, Jason Cooke, Roade, Black Buzzer, boat; 8lb 4oz Trevor Partridge, Corby, black/green lure, boat; 8lb 2oz Jason Cooke, Roade, Black Buzzer, boat; 7lb 2oz, Trevor Partridge, Corby, black/green lure, boat; 6lb 8oz Greg Potts, Whittlesey, Black Buzzer, boat; 6lb 1oz, Luke Key, Market Harborough, Black Buzzer with gold cheeks, boat; 5lb 8oz, Steve Windram, Stoney Stanton, boat; 5lb 7oz, Gavin Cairns, Newmarket; 5lb 7oz, Phillip Slane, Old Weston, Cat’s Whisker, boat; 5lb 6oz, Terry Caddy, Northampton, boat; 5lb 6oz, Tim Ward, Kirby Muxloe, Black Traffic Light Buzzer, boat; 5lb 2oz, David Dearman, Peakirk, Olive Cruncher; 5lb 2oz, Neil Groves, Oundle, black/green lure; Brown 3lb 6oz, Steve Owen, Kettering, Hare’s Ear. Best bank areas are coarse bank, lagoon, shallow bay, gravel bar, east arm. Best boat areas west arm, gravel bar, down middle. Best patterns
Black or Olive Buzzer, Olive Cruncher, small Damsel, Olive or Hare’s Ear CDC, Black Hopper, Tequila Blob/FAB, white/green lures.
For the week April 30 - May 6 the 226 anglers caught 1422 fish of which 1121 were returned. A much warmer week saw some excellent fly hatches with fish gorging themselves on buzzers, hawthorn fly and alders.
The water is crystal clear again so the warm bright conditions made bank fishing trickier over the Bank Holiday weekend although Liam Johnson managed 18 from the coarse bank on Tuesday by fishing his Buzzers deep and slow. Top score on the boats last week was Andy Lane from North London who had 49 on Black Crunchers in the morning and Olive or Black CDC in the afternoon. On the same day, Friday, Chris Redhead from Whittlesey had 40 on size 14 Buzzers.
Prospects for boat fishing remain excellent. Please book boats in advance as Elinor is busy at the moment. Bank fishing should be easier in the cooler temperatures forecast for later this week.
On Sunday May 6 the Kirby Muxloe Fly Fishers had 7 pairs fishing a boat match. A total of 67 fish were weighed in with plenty more returned. Biggest fish 5lb 6oz by Tim Ward. First Tim Ward/John Foster 12 fish 28lb 3oz; second Frank Parker/Russ Jackson 12 fish 27lb 12oz; third Richard Dayman/Malcolm Peck 12 fish 26lb 6oz.
Foremark Trout Fishery, Derbyshire
The water temperature has increased over the week from 9 degrees last Monday to 11.5. The first hawthorns of spring have been seen, and anglers are catching fish on dries. The fish have continued to move out of Flamingo Bay although from a bank aspect it is still the hotspot. Boat angling returns are on the increase and returns suggest that in Carvers Arm and around No 1 buoy, the fishing is improving. Earlier in the week, the colder weather saw the fish deeper in the water as intermediate and sinking lines produced better returns but with the warmer weather later in the week Buzzers and Damsels have been yielding some significant bags of fish and pleasingly most anglers are catching fish, with naturals fished static or with a very slow retrieve being the preferred option.
Monday and Wednesday saw little activity as the weather was either cold, raining, very windy or spells of bright sunshine. Tuesday was the best day of the week with a rod average on nearly 6. Mr Coley and Mr Taff headed into Carvers Arm and used lures fished deep to produce over 25 fish to the boat. On the bank, season ticket holders Mr Wilson and Mr Fogg both recorded double-figure catches fishing Buzzers and Diawl Bachs adjacent to the pontoon. Carvers Arm also produced on Thursday for Mr Lancini who recorded 5 fish using a Minkie Booby on a fast sinking line. Meanwhile on the bank, Mr Blatchford landed 13 fish while Mr Elms took 9, both using static Skinny Buzzers. Friday saw a slight dip in the rod average although the Cornforths took 8 fish between them on their last 4-hour ticket using Olive Damsels.
Saturday saw a variety of methods producing with Ruth and Tony Kirk landing 7 on Buzzers and Hawthorns while Jack Wheeler took 8 from the bank using a Black Snake on a Di-7. Brian White fished Verduns Point and took 6 fish to 3lb using Diawl Bach and Fritz while Mr Jones took 8 on Damsels. Sunday was very hot, but Mr Toyne took a boat down to the bay behind the valve tower to take 6 on dries, while in Flamingo anglers were catching on Buzzers, Damsels, Bloodworms and Diawl Bachs
Our next tuition day is being held on Sunday May 20 with spaces remaining. Please visit www.flyfishtuition.co.uk/prices to book. Please note that also on Sunday May 20 we will be hosting matches for both the Foremark Fly Fishers and the All Abilities Fishing Group and consequently there will be no boats available that day.
Thrunton Trout Fishery, Northumberland
Thrunton has experienced some remarkable catches this week, with anglers recording bag numbers around 18 to 20. Some anglers found fishing in the blustery conditions difficult at times, however it proved successful for some who were fishing small dries like F-Flies. During the latter part of the week, the bright sunshine left anglers having to adapt to find the fish that were deeper in the water. Thrunton hosted the Breast Cancer Now fishing competition. A total of 28 anglers fished on Long Crag over 4 hours in bright conditions with plenty of fish coming to the net. Grandfather and grandson, John and Jack Metcalf won the Senior and Junior competition with John winning the McEwan Blythe Trophy. Jack also won the James Robinson Shield for landing the biggest fish by a Junior over the past 12 months – an 11lb 12oz rainbow. We have currently raised over £3,700 for the charity with more still to come. A massive £1000 was raised from the sale of raffle tickets for a beautiful box of flies, kindly tied and donated by Andy Richmond. Many thanks to him and to all of the people who helped on the day, donated prizes and contributed to the charity. We also welcomed 6 anglers from The Blyth and Wansbeck fishing club, who all had a ‘great day’.
In other catches this week, Cory Dow from North Shields kept 4 fish for 12lb and returned 6 on small black dries and Diawl Bachs and a further 8 on his next visit; Jim Lumsden from Cramlington used black lures and a fry pattern to tempt 11 from Long Crag and 17 on his second session; Matty Devine from Hadston safely returned 17 from both lakes on PTNs, Diawl Bachs and a Black Bunny; Stirling anglers S. Leyden, C. Leyden and J. Gilchrist enjoyed 2 sessions landing 28 on the first and 32 on the second with wife Sonia Leyden adding another 10 on FABs, Buzzers and dries; Jimmy Gargett from Wideopen kept 4 for 11lb 3oz and returned a further 5 from both lakes on Shipman’s and black bugs; Michael Hall enjoyed 2 visits releasing 12 and11 from Long Crag on Buzzers and dries; Willie Emery and John Metcalf from Newbiggin fished dries, Buzzers and lures, releasing 18 and 10 fish; Ken Ward from Cramlington landed 14 from Long Crag on various home-tied flies; Dennis Stephenson had a good evening session netting 11 on Shipman’s Buzzers; Neil Purvis from Heaton returned 16 from both lakes on a Black Zonker; Spike Millican and Jim Smith from Blyth released 22 between them on Cats, lures and Buzzers; Josh Piper from Morpeth landed 14 from Coe Crag on Buzzers and dries; Mick Brown from Bedlington returned 17 on Buzzers and Diawl Bachs; Davy Parker had a good day on Buzzers and dries, releasing 16 from both lakes; Paul Cranston from Rowlands Gill netted 10 from both lakes on Top Hat Buzzers and Black Buzzers.
Wednesday May 30 – Junior sessions. Please see Thrunton website for details. Please contact the Fishery to book on 01665 574400 or 07795 002607
Saturday June 2 – GAIA Day. Four GAIA instructors will offer instruction and guidance to any anglers. Please contact the Fishery to book on 01665 574400 or 07795 002607.