Blithfield Reservoir, Staffordshire
With the exception of a short downpour last Friday 20th, the previous significant rainfall at Blithfield was on May 27 and waters across the country are all experiencing the same conditions – low water levels, high temperatures and lack of terrestrial activity. Vegetation along the banks has become brittle and golden brown and hatches have come to a halt. However it is not all bad news. Here at Blithfield the fish have remained fairly high in the water, feeding avidly on the plentiful coarse fry just sub-surface and still taking well-presented dry flies as well as pearly nymph imitations. Although we have been fortunate in some re-spects without a drop in temperatures and rain soon we, too, will expe-rience the trout heading to the cooler depths as they cease to feed.
Amongst the creditable returns this week are from visiting rod Lee Tel-ford on the 16th with a bag of 8 fish from the banks of the South Lake using a combination of Blobs, Red Shipman’s Buzzers and Diawl Bachs. The 17th produced some excellent sport as a brief change in air pressure and a couple of cooler evenings livened things up a little. The best bank return was from permit holder Barry Turner with 9 fish re-turned whilst boat anglers continued to enjoy the best of the sport – season permit holders Nigel Hodkinson and Pat Burton paired up in a boat and returned a very decent 22 fish between them on the South Lake, all fish caught on floating line and Shipman’s Buzzer/Hoppers tactics. Season permit holder Martin Madden recorded 12 fish to his boat all on Red Shipman’s Sugar Lumps, while visiting boat pair Tim Strachan and John Goodwin also used dry flies to great effect and rec-orded 15 fish to their boat.
On Thursday 19th we welcomed a lovely team of anglers from Cheshire Police Fly Fishing Section who enjoyed a day of mixed sport in the in-creasingly humid conditions. Despite this the match returned a note-worthy rod average of 3.38. Results: 1st Ian Wood 21lb 0oz (incl. time bonus); 2nd Anton Duerden 18lb 10oz (incl time bonus); 3rd Richard Hood 8lb 8oz. Best fish went to Fred Marsh with a 3lb 12oz rainbow trout.
On Saturday 21st visiting rod Mick Broadgate used various dry flies from his boat on the South Lake to return 8 fish during what he de-scribed as an ‘interesting day’. To round off the week on Sunday 22nd regular visiting rod and dry fly enthusiast Rod Tilton fished from a boat for a few hours and returned 4 fish, all to Hoppers and dry flies. However the exceptional thing about his return are the 2 rainbows at 5lb 6oz and 5lb 2oz which happily took the dry flies from the surface.
Best areas: Mickledale, drifts along the Gorse Bushes, drifts into St. Stephen’s Bay, drifts across the centre of the South Lake, Rainbow Corner (Mon, Tues, Fri only), Old Man's.
Best dries: Orange CDC Hopper, Red Hopper, Red Shipman’s Buzzer, Red Shipman’s Sugar Lump, Red Shuttlecock CDC, Daddy Longlegs.
Best lures: small white marabou lures, Orange Blob, Yellow Blob.
Best nymphs/wets: Kate McLaren, Invicta, Pearly PTN, Pearly Diawl Bach, Cruncher.
Best fish: Rod Tilton, 5lb 6oz rainbow, south boat, Red Hopper.
Current rod average is 2.81.
Chatton Trout Fishery, Northumberland
Fish have been deep again this week and best tactics are sinking, in-termediate or floating lines with a long leader using weighted Diawl Bachs (green rib) and Buzzers and a very slow retrieve. Dries have al-so been working when the conditions are right. Davie Parker from Wallsend caught 18 fish using Diawl Bachs and Buzzers. Mick Brown from Bedlington caught 17 fish using Buzzers, two fish weighing 7lb and one at 5lb. Bob Lonsdale from Longhorsley caught 11 fish includ-ing a tiger trout using dries and nymphs. Tony Robinson from Howtel kept 1 fish and returned 11 using a red-beaded nymph, the heaviest fish weighing 8lb. Jonathan Reeder from Wallsend caught 9 fish on Di-awl Bachs. AJ Green from Maidstone was delighted with his first ever fish caught when flyfishing, a 3lb 8oz rainbow from Ross Lake caught on a CDC Shuttlecock Buzzer. Bob Scott from Newbiggin landed a 6lb 8oz rainbow from Dunnydeer Lake on a Diawl Bach. Members of the Cramlington Renegades fished on Saturday and Adam Calvin won the friendly competition, landing a 7lb 5oz rainbow on a Cat’s Whisker.
Junior Fly Fishing Taster days start on Tuesday August 7 throughout the summer holidays, please visit the website for further infor-mation www.chattontroutfishery.com
Game Angling Instructors Association (GAIA) Open Day at Chatton Trout Fishery on Saturday 4th August starting at 10am. An informal oc-casion and arranged for flyfishers of all abilities to come along and spend some time with an experienced and fully qualified casting in-structor to iron out any problems with their casting or just learn some-thing new to help develop their skills. £5 per head and at least 20 minutes will be dedicated to individuals with an instructor, longer if re-quired. All ages and abilities are welcome and no charge for those un-der 16 years, we actively encourage youth into fishing. If you are inter-ested please contact Barry Mitchell 07979 023307, firstname.lastname@example.org or enquire at the fishery 01668 215226.
Elinor Trout Fishery, Northamptonshire
Fishing continues to be difficult with high water temperatures. For the week July 16 – 22 the 75 anglers caught 105 fish of which 66 were re-turned. Best bank areas are east arm, dam (in a north wind). Best boat areas are dam end in a north wind, pylon point or east arm in a south-erly. Best patterns are Red Apps, Black Buzzer, Damsel, white/green lures, black/green lure. Mornings have given anglers the best chance of sport. Top of the wind where the water is clearer is the best op-tion. Despite it being the hottest day so far three Elinor regulars man-aged some exceptional catches considering the harsh conditions. Alan Rennocks caught 16, Derek Benamore 8 and Clive Trundle 6. They all boat-fished in the mouth of the east arm or off pylon point and used a Red Apps’ Bloodworm and Black Buzzers. Bryan Swain managed 3 fish from the bank on an Orange Blob during an early morning ses-sion. Thanks to all the anglers who continue to support the fishery dur-ing the difficult summer months.
Foremark Trout Fishery, Derbyshire
Continual sunshine with minor winds, yet the water temperature is still maintaining around 20/21C. The cascade is still running with water ex-tracted and pumped from the Dove at Eggington. We have some indi-cations of rain, but it has failed to produce any heavy downpours. The limitations of the water in the Dove and some problems experienced with the extraction due to weed has meant that the reservoir’s water level has fallen. The pontoon has been progressively let out to cope with the falling water level. The undercurrents surrounding the tower created by the excessive extraction rate and aerators are still attracting significant fish which are sometimes proving difficult to catch. The fish-ing is still the extreme of hot weather fishing and those using fast sink lines and failing that floating lines with excessively long leaders are still catching. The hotspot is still the top dam wall and failing that the cas-cade noting some good perch are also being caught. One of the few bank anglers did state that in the bay beyond Verdun’s Point he dis-turbed some significant large pike basking in the algae. No bank angler catches were recorded during the week.
The number of rods for the week was low. On Tuesday Mr Walker caught 2 fish on a dry Klinkhamer. On the same day Mr Hayward caught 5 fish on a Di-5 line on a Blob on a slow drift basically fishing static apart from the drift within the aerators. Mr Watkin caught a fish on a floating line using a Daddy Longlegs. Mr M. Pratt on Thursday caught 3 fish in the area of the Tower using a fast sink line while Scotty Wilson caught 2 fish. Brian White, Mr Billsborough and Mr Osborne on Friday from the cascade and tower caught 2 fish each on a Yellow Fritz and a Green and Black Booby. On Sunday Mr Reid landed 3 fish to the boat in the vicinity of the tower.
Siblyback Lake, Cornwall
Fishing has been slow at Siblyback, although a number of feeding fish have been topping at Two Meadows. In addition to a healthy number of midges on the water, there are plenty of fry in the shallows which should result in some exciting bank-side sport as water temperatures start to drop. On July 15 more than 40 people attended Siblyback’s “have a go” fishing day, ranging from children to grandparents. Everyone enjoyed having some casting instruction, tying a few flies and the free BBQ. The event was run in conjunction with the newly formed Siblyback Fly Fishers Association.
Thrunton Trout Fishery, Northumberland
The UK Junior Troutmasters Final was held at Thrunton Long Crag last weekend with children travelling from as far as Cornwall to Dundee. The bright conditions and searing heat did make fishing extremely challenging but the final turned out to be both exciting and close and went to the final whistle. The full results will be in Trout Fisherman is-sue 513 (on sale August 15). A huge thank you must go to all the parents and grandparents, their support is very much appreciated. Thanks to all the marshals for doing such a great job and for giving up 2 days of their time to support this event, the GAIA instructors Barry, Richard and Kevin and the team from New Mills Fishery – Davey, Tommy, Mick and Pete. The event ran very smoothly thanks to the Thrunton team - Steve, Joe, Tom and Adam and of course to Sa-mantha Toombs and Jeffery Prest from Trout Fisherman magazine who organised the competition so well. We were also pleased to wel-come Charles Jardine who kindly gave an excellent casting demonstra-tion and offered his expert advice to the youngsters throughout the day. A really good weekend was had by all and it was great to see so many spectators coming along to support and watch this national com-petition.
In pleasure catches this week Keith Row from Ashington netted 4 fish from Long Crag on a Hedgehog; Matty Devine from Hadston landed 14 to 5lb on PTNs; Rob Hall from Morpeth enjoyed 2 visits bringing 12 to the net on Buzzers and Chamois Worms; J. Nichol from Newcastle re-leased 8 on Klinkhamers and Foam Daddies; Newcastle angler Brian Waters used Buzzers to attract 6 from Long Crag; Dennis Stephenson from Crawcrook landed 7 on Black Hoppers; Michael Hall from Cram-lington returned 5 on dries during an evening session; Tony Irving from Sharperton broke his personal best with a 12lb rainbow on a Montana. Flies of the week are Buzzers, PTNs, Hoppers, Sedges, Klinkhamers, nymphs and various dries.