Blackdyke Trout Fishery, Norfolk
Buzzer and dry fly fishing has been at its best this week. Even on the colder rougher days fish were still eager to take a dry off the top. Degreasing the tippet did help on brighter days. Several anglers caught into double figures this week and several larger fish were returned and entered into the Troutmasters competition.
Chatton Trout Fishery, Northumberland
It has been another very busy week with lots of good catches, despite the cold weather conditions. Buzzers, nymphs, Diawl Bachs, Bloodworms, black and green lures and white lures have been working well. Two double-figure fish were caught this week. Matty Divine from Hadston caught a 12lb 14oz brown trout from Chatton Lake which he commented “was the best quality brown trout he had ever caught”. Matty returned a further 17 fish which he said had been in the lakes a long time and were like bars of silver with lots of fish over 5lb. The second double, a 10lb rainbow, was caught by Billy Harland from Blyth on Dunnydeeer Lake. His successful fly was a Yellow Dancer. Ian Gillie from North Shields caught a 7lb 6oz rainbow from Chatton Lake on a Yellow Dancer. Tanfield School, Stanley pupil Reece Dixon caught a 3lb 8oz rainbow and Josh Finley a 2lb rainbow. All the pupils had a fun and informative day, with thanks to GAIA instructor Barry Mitchell for all his help. The fishery is closing at 8.30pm this week and 9pm on Friday and Saturday evening (10pm when the evenings are lighter).
Elinor Trout Fishery, Northamptonshire
For the week April 18 – 24 the 183 anglers caught 818 fish of which 585 were returned. Best fish was 13lb 4oz by Ken Grigg, from Kettering, on a Black Buzzer. Other good weights were 8lb 6oz for Andy Burgess, Cambridge, on a Black Buzzer from the boat; 8lb 1oz for Mike Bownes, Wilsthorpe, on a GRHE; 7lb 9oz to Chris Redhead, Whittlesy, on a Black Buzzer from the boat; 7lb 8oz for Mike Bownes, Wilsthorpe, on a Damsel; 7lb to John Stokes, Nottingham, on a Red-head Damsel; 6lb 8oz for Mike Creamer, Oakley; 6lb 2oz to Dennis Shannon, Wellingborough, on a Yellow Dancer; 6lb for Andy Hake, Leighton Buzzard, on a Black Buzzer from the boat; and 6lb for Paul Mortimer, Thrapston, on a Black Buzzer. All bank areas are producing fish while the top boat areas at the west arm, east arm, and gravel bar. Best patterns are Black or Olive Buzzer, Damsel, Cruncher, white/green lures, FABs and Blobs. Despite the cold northerly winds there was a good buzzer hatch with plenty of birds working the water. The fish continue to feed three to six foot down on mainly small, black or olive midge pupae. Best method has been a Blob or FAB on the point with size 12 Buzzers on the dropper fished static or very slowly.
The Tommy Wood Memorial Buzzer Match will take place on Sunday May 15, a roving bank competition open to everyone. Floating line and buzzer imitations only may be used. Fishing is 9am - 4pm, free entry, and all proceeds from the raffle go to Sue Ryder, Peterborough.
Eyebrook Trout Fishery, Leicestershire
Representing the English Disabled Fly Fishers Association, Trevor Ashby of Wing and Richard Spicer of Botcheston enjoyed a day afloat recently and caught and released 30 rainbows mostly taken on Black Buzzers. Mike McHugh and Eric Glaister of Carlisle spent three days at the fishery during the past week and both enjoyed fabulous sport to the Buzzer. Arthur Cullingworth of Sandy, Gordon Price and Andy Gallacher of Leicester all enjoyed some terrific sport while boat-fishing using Buzzer patterns. Dennis Dickens of Bestwood and Norman Blake of Ilkeston boat-fished in Sam’s Dyke and caught many hard-fighting rainbows on a combination of GRHE nymphs and Black Buzzers. Tim Miller of Burgh le Marsh was taken right down to his backing line by a superb 3lb 12oz rainbow caught on a Black Buzzer. Gordon Wood of Coalville enjoyed his day boat fishing at anchor in Sam’s Dyke and caught many hard-fighting rainbows on a floating line with Diawl Bachs and Black Buzzers. Gerry and Richard Horner of Sidcup spent the entire week at Eyebrook and encountered many hard-fighting rainbows, the majority taken on Black Buzzers, Richard caught the heaviest fish of the visit, a brown trout of 4lb 8oz which was carefully returned. Colwick Fly Fishers enjoyed their visit and on his debut new club member Bill Richardson caught a bag limit on Buzzers and Diawl Bachs. Members of Foremark Fly Fishers also enjoyed their club outing to Eyebrook with several anglers taking their limit bags.
Grafham Water, Cambridgeshire
The North shore continues to make a great contribution to some excellent fishing at Grafham Water with both boat and bank anglers enjoying considerable success in this area. The rod average for the week is 7.15. Bank anglers have had the most consistent results along North shore areas such as Hill Farm, Pig Bay, Deep Water Point, G Buoy, Marlow Stones and the north end of the dam. The best method for bank anglers has been to fish floating lines with Black or Olive Buzzers, GRHE, Damsel Nymphs and large black and green lures. Boat anglers have also had a great week’s sport in the north shore area. The most productive boat areas have been Sanctuary Bay, Stumps, Hill Farm, Pig Bay, Deep Water Point, G Buoy, Willows, north dam and the Seat on the south shore. Floating lines with Buzzers, Crunchers and Diawl Bachs or fast sink lines with Tequila Blobs, Pitsford Pea, Black and Green Boobies, Damsel Nymphs and Snakes are the best methods.
The Bob Church Open on April 17 saw 24 anglers catch 257 trout for an excellent rod average of 10.7. Tim Joyce was top rod with 12 trout for a combined time bonus and weight of 36lb 11oz. He also caught the biggest fish of the competition, a cracking overwintered rainbow of 4lb 15oz. Tim used Black Buzzers on a floating line at Hill Farm. Second was Mark Rooney with 12 fish for 34lb 14oz and third Mr Bayliss with 12 fish for 34lb.
Eight anglers took part in GWFFA’s first bank match of the season, catching 55 trout for an excellent rod average of 6.87. Martin Brocklebank was top rod on the day catching seven trout for 17lb 3oz. David Spall took the best fish, a 3lb 4oz brown, and also second spot with eight fish for 16lb 13oz.
As part of the forthcoming Grafham Water 50th anniversary events there will be a boat pairs match on Sunday July 3. This friendly competition is to be fished to relaxed international rules (no anchoring or back drifting, any size fly is acceptable) with an eight fish limit plus time bonus (2lb per hour).
Packington Trout Fishery, Warwickshire
Last week 101 rods caught 408 fish for an average of 4.04. Another good week despite the lower than average temperatures and cool winds. There are still lots of fish moving all day on Cocks Close and in the evenings on Park Meadow with buzzers and olives hatching. The biggest fish was a 10lb rainbow caught and released by Mark Smith of Rowley Regis. He was fishing from a boat on Cocks Close and caught four fish on Buzzer and CdC Emergers. Harold Pritchett of Atherstone caught a 9lb rainbow from a boat on Cocks Close using a Diawl Bach on a floating line. Jonathan Preston of Solihull fished the bank on Cocks Close and caught eight fish to 8lb using GRHE and CdC Emergers on a floating line. John Riley of Atherstone fished catch and release from a boat on Cocks Close and caught seven fish to 4lb using tiny CdC Emergers fished on the top. Brian Clark of Nuneaton fished from a boat on Park Meadow and caught a fish estimated between 7 and 8lb. This was safely returned along with seven other fish which were tempted by a Black Buzzer fished on a floating line. A lot of fish are falling to small imitative patterns on a floating line with Diawl Bach, Black or Olive Buzzer, CdC Emergers, Shipman’s Buzzer and GRHE the successful flies at the moment. The fish are well spread around the pools but the road bank and high bank are the hotspots on Cocks Close. Double-figure browns were stocked this week along with rainbows to 10lb.
Pitsford Water, Northamptonshire
A variable week with seemingly no end to the changeable weather. On Saturday three-year-old Haiden Stuart made his first ever fishing trip with his father James and played and landed two lovely browns and a rainbow. Last Tuesday during bright, sunny conditions the fish were moving all along Duffers and around G Buoy. Boat angler Brian Coleman took three good 2lb-plus trout to the boat including a nice brownie. Terry Mitchell and Mick Foster took to the rudder and reported catching well in the morning, but the afternoon got quiet as the wind got up. On Wednesday Bob Aves and John Castledine had great sport on an afternoon boat, fishing in the Small Half. On Friday bank anglers were catching well from Duffers to the Gorse Bank on Black Buzzers about a foot down or used lures on sinking lines. Stuart Pittendrigh had nine fish, Doug Whibley had six, Terry Pancoust had three and David Anderson took 15. On Sunday Trevor Hall had a cracking morning despite the cold, northerly wind and had nine fish to the boat. Gavin Layton also bagged up.
The England Fly Fishers kicked off their season with their Spring match with 26 members and guests recording a rod average of 6.7. Most of the boats drifted on a gentle northerly breeze through the small half. The fishing is usually good, but this year it was exceptional. The preferred method was midge-tip and Buzzers fished very slowly just off the bottom. After a break for lunch, the fish seemed higher in the water and floating lines were successful. Several fish weighed 3lb plus with the best weighing 3lb 8oz falling to John Gamon. Club chairman Peter Hartley won the match with eight fish for 17lb 8oz, John Gamon took second with eight fish for 17lb 4oz and third was Stephen Otteridge with eight fish for 16lb 14oz.
Press Manor Fishing Lakes, Derbyshire
A few anglers braved the cold and northerly wind with intermittent snow. Fish are still caught mainly on a sinking line with Damsel Nymphs being the best flies. Given milder weather is on its way Black and Green Buzzers twitched back, with dries in the evening will be the best tactics. Local angler Steve Marbles caught his bag while fishing late on, twitching a Shipman’s Buzzer under the surface. Rainbows were hitting the Buzzer almost every cast. Mark Poole from Cresswell won the pegged Troutmasters fish-off match on the North Bank and Dam. He caught 12 fish mainly on Buzzers on a mixture of tactics, fishing Buzzers under an indicator, and three Buzzers straight-lined. Second was Brian Simmonds with 10 fish, seven of them coming in the morning session using an indicator with Buzzers underneath. Third was Mark Seery from Hucknall with six fish on a mixture of dries and lures.
Ravensthorpe Reservoir, Northamptonshire
A busy week with fantastic sport on the Buzzer from both boat and bank. This week’s rod average is 8.5.
Fish are being taken in the lower levels of the water on floating lines, long leader or sink-tip lines and intermediates. Nymph patterns proving best. Best boat areas are Coton End and Domes, best bank areas the dam and most platforms. The best fish of the week was a 12lb rainbow taken on a Buzzer by Mr Kyte. Some boat anglers are reporting catch figures of 30 or more fish. Charlie Watts took 30 to the boat. David Brady took 19 fish all with straight-line Buzzer tactics. The Lockie Party, a group of six anglers on a holiday package, had a fantastic day on Friday fishing buzzer and lures. The group took 213 fish between them for a rod average of 35.5 per anglers. The Troutmasters fish-off on Saturday April 23 was won by Anthony Lorrimer. The East Midlands Trout Fishers Association Pairs match fished on April 24 saw 21 anglers record a rod average of 7.5. First were Dave Davis and John Sears with 23 fish, second Bob and Roger with 22 fish and third Chris McCloud and Bob Aves with 21 fish.
Rutland Water, Rutland
Rutland has again been in fantastic form with many limits and fish recorded from various areas of the reservoir. The best methods have been floating or midge-tip lines with teams of Black and Olive Buzzers. Fly hatches have been tremendous throughout the week, though weather conditions have been far from ideal with cold winds bringing in frosts on some mornings. Adam Thomas, Simon Burton and Scott Barnard from Essex had a great four days’ sport with 66 fish caught, along with 30 more released. A good majority of fish were rainbows between 2lb 4oz and 4lb with six browns also taken. John Latimer enjoyed three days of excellent fishing and returned a brown estimated at around 7lb, while boat fishing off the Old Hall. French anglers Patrick Fonchaot and Jean-Louis Resioveiy enjoyed some excellent sport with around 40 quality fish, including nine rainbows over 3lb, six over 4lb and six browns, three of which were over 3lb.
The best boat areas have been Old Hall Bay and Yellowstones, for mainly stock fish. Elsewhere individual boats found grown-on and overwintered fish further down the South Arm, Barnsdale and Dickensons Bay and Cardiac Hill. Bank fishing eased off in the Main Basin, Normanton and Sykes Lane. But Whitwell Creek and certain parts of the Peninsula saw anglers coming across numbers of fish including many overwintered ones with rainbows and browns to 4lb-plus.
The Tuesday Night Boat League starts on May 10, registration from 5pm for a 6pm start. For more information please contact the fishing lodge.
Last Thursday the English Police Fly Fishing Association held their match and the 44 anglers caught 362 fish with a rod average of 8.22 based on a four-fish limit and an eight fish catch and release competition.
The Association of Major Clubs, Groups 1,2 and 3, fished on Saturday with a very cold start to the day. However, many stock fish were recorded. Group 1 winners were Rutland Water Fly Fishers; Group 2 Invicta A and Group 3 Soldier Palmers. The three matches accounted for 323 fish. The biggest fish was a 4lb 11oz brown taken by Ian Whiteside of the Greylags.
Thornwood Springs Trout Fishery, Essex
A very changeable week as regards the weather with four seasons in a day most days! On lake one lures, Buzzers, nymphs and dries have all had their moments with fish to 5lb, both rainbows and browns, reported. The end of the week saw the browns feeding harder than the rainbows. On lake two Snakes deep down still scoring with fish to 9lb recorded, but most sport on here is to Black or Brown Buzzers and emergers with fish rising as soon as the sun is covered by the next cloud. Lake three saw black nymphs tempt fish to over 10lb with a few bigger fish seen and lost.
Toft Newton Trout Fishery, Lincolnshire
For the week-ending April 23 the 93 rods caught 279 trout for a rod average of exactly three. A mixed bag this week with changeable weather from temperatures in the mid teens and warm days through to much cooler north-easterly winds and a distinct chill in the air. The result is that anglers have just had to work a little harder for their fish this week. Toft is still producing plenty of good quality overwintered fish, especially to those prepared to fish nymphs and dries. A little olive emerger pattern has been doing well. Best rainbow this week at 10lb was taken by Lawrence Chapman, while Martin Rowson had a fish of at least 7lb from a boat during a day out with Pete Cowan. There now seems to be a better spread of fish and both boat and bank anglers are enjoying success. This week should see the usual methods scoring, with size 12 Diawl Bachs, dries and Orange or Cat's Whisker-type lures all worth a try.
West House Trout Lakes, Cleveland
The better weather has certainly improved the fishing. There has been lots of surface activity in the warmer weather with anglers catching on dry patterns or Buzzers fished in the top 12 inches. Some very good hatches of pond olives with dry flies such as Greenwell’s Glory imitating the hatches and producing good results. Local angler Guy Robertshaw landed 10 fish during a morning session, most of his fish falling to Olive Buzzers and dries. Peter Wilson of Bishop Auckland landed 14 fish, his best 6lb, using a selection of Buzzers. Michael Landy of Thirsk used the Apps’ Bloodworm fished in the margins to take a total of 18 fish including a brown of 4lb. The lakes are now open from 8am until 7pm every day. Come and fish on Saturday mornings – free bacon rolls for every angler.
Witton Castle Lakes, Co Durham
The drop in temperatures certainly made the going hard this week. The 63 visiting anglers returned a rod average of just over three fish. In a tricky week no one managed the limit but three anglers did take bags of 13 fish, they were N. Horner, R. Hopper and C. Curry. Other double-figure bags were returned by A. Edwards and J. Campbell who both had 10 fish each. A. Edwards caught and returned the best fish of the week with a hard-fighting 8lb rainbow. With the fish going down due to the cold temperatures, Buzzers were by far the most successful of the flies this week. Some anglers also had limited success with CdCs and Zonkers. On Saturday Witton Castle Lakes held this year’s Troutmasters fish-off with Blythe Palmer taking the win, weighing in with a three-fish bag of 6lb 12oz and an early weigh-in bonus of 5lb.