Once the river levels were back to a fishable condition, coarse and game anglers experienced some good fishing. On the game fishing rivers lots of seatrout have been caught with many being returned. The rivers Hodder, Ribble, Lune and Eden all offered good sport. Peter Richards of Bolton legering a lobworm for chub and barbel on the lower reaches of the river Ribble caught a salmon estimated at 15lbs which was carefully returned. Some excellent catches of chub and barbel have been caught on the lower reaches of the river, from Baldestone downstream. The river banks have plenty of anglers in residence. They tell me the best baits are pellets and boilies but some fish are being caught on luncheon meat.
Rivers Teme and Severn both need a good flush through, both rivers are low and clear, a few barbel to 8lbs and chub to 4lbs are being caught on gentles, casters, pellets, boilies and meat baits. The best fish reported to me was a barbel of 12-8-0 on swim feeder rig and gentles as bait on a size ten hook. Some big chub have been seen, but proving very hard to catch. I spent several hours trying to get a big chub to pick up my bread flake baited hook without success. So as not to spook the chub I had to keep striking off the bait when smaller chub or barbel moved into the area.
The river Kennet badly needs rain and lots of it. The river is very low with slight colour. Lots of small barbel averaging six pounds have been caught with just the odd double figure fish taken. Slough angler David Hallett had the best reported Kennet barbel which weighed in at 10-12-0 caught on swim feeder rig and three gentles on a size 12 hook. Mike Osborne made the long trip from Carlisle down south to the Kennet where he had several barbel, the best estimated around 8lbs.
I had two days fishing the river Kennet and a small side stream, catching barbel to 6lbs and chub to 4-14-0 all on yeast flavoured bread baits. Fishing a small Kennet side stream I spotted a carp cruising around in a small bay. Baiting with bread flake I cast out allowing the flake to drift slowly down through the water where it landed on a small gravel bar. Within minutes the fish moved across then hoovered up the bait. In what can only be described as an exciting tussle, the fish, realising it was hooked, moved off quickly downstream taking several yards of line. It took some five minutes of heart stopping action to get the fish in the landing net. Though it only weighed 11-8-0 it was in my book an exciting fishing session. Tackle used was a centre pin reel, Avon action rod, 6lb line and a size 4 hook. I also had a good brown trout estimated at 2lbs plus which was a welcome surprise.
BBC Radio Lancashire
During August on At The Waters Edge programme (Thursday evenings at 7-30pm, Saturday at 6-0am) you can hear Stephen Ainscow catch a 5lb chub - the programme then goes off to Swedish Lapland. From Sweden it's back to the UK on the river Teme where I fish for barbel. At the end of the month I end up in Connecticut with author Ed Mitchell. You can listen to the programme via the internet The best way to get to your fishing is by www.bbc.co.uk./lancashire/
For perhaps the past couple of years I have been using the Masterline Illusion fluorocarbon line as leader material, also as a running line on my centre pin reels with great success. I feel its given me an advantage when chub fishing on very hard fished waters. I will continue to use this line for a lot of my chub fishing. Masterline International are now importing the new Cortland Cam-o-Flage monofilament line from the United States which I have been field testing for some months alongside some other brands. I must say "I am most impressed with the Cortland mono. It comes in bulk spools with breaking strains of 6lbs 8lbs 10lbs and 12lbs. I have used the line on centre pin and fixed spool reels and there is little memory with this line which I feel is very important when used on a fixed spool reel. I have used the 12lb line on the river Teme where there are lots of snags, and the barbel fight like demons. I have felt very confident using this line and pulling fish away from the various snags on this river. You can win some of this line in a forth coming competition on BBC Radio Lancashire's At The Waters Edge programme. Why not take a look at this line in your Masterline dealer?
Think Before You Buy
On a recent trip to the river Kennet I called in a local tackle shop. In the window were displayed cans of luncheon meat, double the price than those sold in the supermarket. I also spotted some fancy weights selling at around £1-70 each. Since when has the colour of the weights we use stopped the fish eating our bait?. In another shop you could buy Garlic oil at over £5-00 a small bottle. In your local Morrison's it will cost about £1-00.
Many of you ask where you can buy LG shots. I buy mine from Ken Varey's in Market street, Clitheroe Lancs - it's the only shop I know that stock this size of shot. In fact anglers travel many miles to get LG shots from Varey's.
On page 7 in this weeks Anglers Mail you can see a picture of Paul Buckingham with a huge Ballan Wrasse weighing 8-12-0. The fish is certainly impressive. On page 5 there are some other impressive fish; an Eel weighing 6-11-0 Barbel of 14-6-0 and a Tench of 12-8-0 Neil Barry who had this huge tench also had another tench of 11-12-0. This brace of tench must be the biggest brace taken in a session. As usual in the Anglers Mail there are lots of photographs of big carp with information on how to catch carp. You can also get up to date reports on coarse and sea fisheries along with all the match reports
Mother nature was very fickle this week with hot weather punctuated by violent thunderstorms. For the first time ever the Tuesday night boat league was cancelled for safety reasons owing to the risk from lightening.
Now that the weather has settled, prospects look good with a further 3000 fish stocked during the week. Fish are feeding on small light olive buzzers and daphnia. This year’s fry are growing well - some up to two inches long and they are present in huge numbers. The best bank fishing has been off the dam. Dave Doherty took his beginners course onto the dam where most of the novice anglers succeeded in taking their first ever trout. best boat areas middle of the South arm (Brown’s Island) and the main basin best bank areas The Dam, Sakes Lane, Norman ton, Fantasy Island mid week boat winner Season ticket holder Gorton Choleric of Stafford best methods: On the bank – floating line with nymphs, dial bah, hare’s ear, pheasant tail, olive buzzers, damsel nymph, dry fly. C.o.d.'s Shipments, orange, red hare’s ear, clarets From the boat – As above, but also try various density lines with lures and nymph combinations.
Ravensthorpe Reservoir: fish week 71 (season9268) returns 30 (1971) rod average 2.37 (4.7) Dave Arrowsmith of Northampton, boat fishing in sunny, flat, calm conditions brought 11 fish to the boat, all taken on size 14 black holographic buzzer on the bung, fishing the dam weedbeds. Fifteen year old Jason King, of Nottingham, triumphed on his first trout fishing trip. Jason caught 5 nice rainbows, including a 3lb beauty. His uncle Albert managed a further 4 fish – all came to a size 1- white sparkler pattern fished off the boils. Despite changeable weather midweek, fish have continued to provide excellent sport to anglers prepared to change tactics to meet differing weather conditions.
Fish are feeding on damsel nymphs and snails over and around the extensive weed fringes – ripple conditions have seen drifting boats taking fish on small wets, c.d.c.’s, hare’s ears and adult blue damsel patterns. Sunny, flat, calm days have required anglers to fish single buzzer patterns (size 12 black) on long leaders or ‘the bung’, or drop deep with lures. Best patterns are white minkies and fritz damsels. best rainbow 3lb 10oz D Retmarski of Bulkington best boat areas main bowl of aerator best bank areas dome, bushes and platforms
Sunday saw the mid Northants Trout Fishers Fun Day. Ian Pow, organiser of the event, said it was primarily a social occasion for anglers. They met at 9 am, drew for boat partners, and fished until lunchtime. Following a relaxed barbecue lunch, anglers redrew for boat partners and fished on into the evening. Grant Gibson, chairman of the club, had 15 fish, mostly on gold and silver tubes fished deep near the Causeway. Grant said it was a most enjoyable event, very relaxing and a refreshing change from competition. Next year’s date is already in the diary. Julian Davies of Gilders Tackle Shop caught the best fish, (in a bag of three weighing a total of just over 14lb). The biggest - taken off the boils with a sinking line and tube fly weighed 5lb 8oz and was the best rainbow of the week. Fish are still close to the banks with good rises seen at all parts of the lake. Boat and bank sport are on an equal par, which is unusual for the time of year. Fish are feeding on buzzers, damsels, and daphnia. The best patterns are tube flies on sinking lines or floating line and nymphs on long leaders. Fishing is best at the start and close of the day.
The feature event at Grafham this week was the annual Grafham Open, reported under competition news. This popular match ended in a nail biting weigh in. Fish have been feeding heavily on the huge shoals of pin fry in the water, even out in the middle, with snails making up the rest of their diet at the moment. Anglers are reporting seeing hundreds of fish rising throughout the day. Although these are proving hard to tempt the wait is well worth it, with the average fish now weighing somewhere around the 2lb 8oz mark. best rainbow 5lb 4?oz taken by season ticket holder Leon Smith with a Diawl Bach from a boat in Rectory Bay best brown 4lb 1?oz taken by season ticket holder Dave Waters on a small black minkie from a boat at Hedge End best boat areas G buoy, Marlow Bay, Gaynes Cove, Savages Creek, Rainbow Point, Church Bay, Rectory Bay best bank areas the Seat, Hill Farm, Stumps, G Bank, Marlow Stones, Dam competition news - Grafham Open
The rules of this popular event have been amended this year to encourage entries from non match anglers. With the rules set as drifting boats only but any fly size and an eight fish limit with no time bonus it made the anglers target the quality fish in the water. With this in mind the 38 anglers spread themselves far and wide over the water trying to get hold of some of the larger fry feeders.The best fish of the week fell to Leon Smith in Rectory Bay on a red holographic Diawl Bach fished on a floater. Dave Waters, fishing in the same match, took the best brown of the week. Season ticket holder Dave landed a beautiful looking brown on a small black minkie from Hedge End. Dave’s confidence was boosted by a practice day on Saturday. On competition day he landed 4 fish weighing 17lb 8oz. In the end the top three positions were only separated by 7?oz.1st Julian Hubbard 8 fish for 20lb 2nd Leon Smith 8 fish for 19lb 12?oz 3rd Peter Hartley 8 fish for 19lb 7?oz