fly fishing sport fishing freshwater fishing
Martin James award-winning fisherman consultant,broadcaster,writer





  

ARCHIVED ARTICLES JULY-SEPT 2003

A Canal Session For Tench 18th September

An hour before dawn I had come to fish the Leeds and Liverpool canal near West Marton, a water controlled by Marsden Star Angling Society. In the darkness before dawn, I had raked and baited my chosen spot with sweet corn. As night turned to day and the first light of dawn appeared, the eastern skyline was various shades of pink, blues and greys. Slowly a ball of orange was making its way above the skyline. A light breeze ruffled the water surface, a moorhen flew low to the water disappearing in some vivid green rushes on the far bank. In a nearby hawthorn bush a wren chattered loudly, from an oak tree on the opposite bank two pigeon were cooing. Several small groups of pin head bubble appeared in my baited swim. It was a tench fishers dawn

My tackle was a thirteen foot soft action rod, centre pin reel with some forty yards of 4lb breaking strain line to which I attached a Partridge size 10 barbless hook. My float was a swan quill, dyed green with a narrow band of white below the orange tip. It was very special float, having been made by the late Richard Walker. If I got broken, I was prepared to go in the water and retrieve this special item of tackle. Plumbing the depth I discovered I had about three feet of water. Pushing the float up the line another foot it was fixed in place with a small piece of rubber tube. Three BB shot were then pinched gently on the line, a foot from the hook. Baiting with two grains of corn I made an underhand cast dropping the bait close to a patch of bubbles. Placing the rod in a rest, I sat back listening to the various bird calling, feeling at peace with Mother Earth. More bubbles appeared in my swim.

The orange tipped quill float slowly tilted as it moved across the surface disappearing below the smooth dark water of the canal. The quick controlled lift of the rod connected with a fish that tries to reach a patch of lilies on the far side of the canal. Its not a big fish, but I am more than happy to catch anything if its pulling my string. Quickly I am in control a fish swirls on the surface I can see by its olive green body its a tench of about two pounds. Pulling the fish close to the bank I can bend down and slide out the hook without touching this lovely fish of summer dawns.

Rebaiting with another two grains of corn, I cast the baited hook to the same spot. More bubbles appear, scattering some twenty grains of corn into the area, I hope the tench will continue to breakfast on these golden grains. Within minutes the float bobs then lays at a drunken angle before dropping flat on the surface. After a second or so, the float moves slowly across the wind ruffled surface of the canal towards the far bank. As it increases in speed it disappears. I lift the rod connecting with a powerful fish, the rod tip is pulled down towards the water as the reel grudgingly gives line, suddenly the water boils a good fish swirls on the surface. Its a carp of about 8lbs it then dives for the bottom where it sticks its head in the soft silt and mud , sheets of bubbles appear on the surface. Not those tiny pin head bubbles but these were large bubbles. We often see a string of bubbles coming up from the bottom to burst on the surface. These bubbles are caused by a gas build up in decaying vegetation such as leaves..

I piled on as much pressure as I dare, slowly the well balanced tackle has the fish coming to the waiting landing net which I had placed in the water. Pulling the fish over the sunken net I lifted saying "Yes it mine" A nice mirror carp. Quickly unhooking the fish I gave it an admiring look, then released it back into the canal. Baiting with two grains of corn I cast further down the canal and towards the far bank. No doubt the carp will have spooked the tench, it might be some time before they moved back into my baited swim.

As I sat watching the float I decided it was brew time, after lighting the stove the kettle which was soon boiling. Sitting with my fresh brew I though how lucky I had been to hook and land the carp. The reason I was fishing the Leeds and Liverpool canal and not one of the countries rivers, was because the rivers are very low, clear and weedy. The high water temperatures and low oxygen content are causing the fish to be quickly distressed when hooked. I felt we shouldn’t be hooking barbel, chub and pike in these conditions. If the summer of 2004 is the same as this year I will be spending much of my time fishing in the ocean for bass, pollock, flounders, mackerel and mullet or anything else that wants to eat my flies plugs or spinners. Mullet are of course a great fish to catch on float tackle using bread flake or paste.

Back on the canal the world is waking up, In the distance I can see a dog walker, further up the canal from where I am fishing, I can hear the engine of a barge being started. No doubt the crew are getting ready to continue on their cruise. Once the barges get moving it will be time for me to leave the water. Hearing the screech of the reel I picking up the rod finding myself connected to a nice fish which had hooked itself. After a brief struggle tench number two was landed. A nice fish of about three pounds. Rebaiting I cast to the same spot, using a catapult I fired some golden grains into the fishing spot further up the canal. Since catching the carp I hadn’t seen any signs of tench in my raked and baited swim. Ten minutes later the float disappeared, striking I missed the fish. Rebating I cast to the same spot. Within seconds the float disappeared this time the fish was hooked, another tench about the same size as the last fish.

In the next hour and a half I had five bites hooking and landing three more fish. A tench of about two pounds with two bream about three pounds apiece. The first barge of the day appeared moving slowly towards me. I moved the float tackle close to the near side bank. As the barge passed through my swim. A young couple called cheerfully "Good Morning have you caught anything" I answered "Yes a few nice fish, but its now time to head off home for breakfast" I reckon once the barges start to move its difficult to catch good fish with the disturbed and coloured water. We have to be honest, the canals were dug for barges and not angling. Membership to Marston Star Angling Society is open at £20-00 a season £10-00 juniors and £7-00 OAP and disabled members. For membership write to ticket secretary Mr K Brown 72, Grange Crescent Keighley West Yorks Tel 01535-667577 This is a delightful stretch of the Leeds and Liverpool canal in some lovely countryside. You can expect pike, perch, roach, bream, tench and carp. Baits I find best are sweet corn bread in various forms, lobworms or two or three red worms. I don’t use brandlings I find them useless. Apart from the canal the society also have some stillwaters and some water on the river Aire


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Even Small Bass Pull The String 16th September

Last week I was in Dorset to interview one of the authors of Hooked on Bass published by Crowood Press the authors are Dr Mike Ladle and Alan Vaughan who is a teacher in Devon, sadly Alan couldn't escape the classroom. Kent Sherrington from Burnley, Mike and myself had a couple of fly fishing session in the ocean. We didn't break any records but we did have some fun. We caught some small bass and a succession of small pollock and talked lot about fly and lure fishing in the ocean.

During the evenings we fished with Malcolm Brindle, On two of the evenings we fished float tackle and live prawns, we didn't get any bites. But it was most relaxing, sitting in the darkness hearing the waves lapping on the rocks watching our chemical night lights fitted in the top of the float. Its interesting to note that Malcolm on his return home puts his night lights in the freezer for use on another occasion. Malcolm is certainly a hive of information, I learnt a lot about bass from the guy. On the first evening, we fly fished for scad (horse mackerel) I fished a small clouser minnow on a Cortland 8 weight Ghost tip line.

When the tide really started to ebb, I was getting a hit on every chuck as the fly hit the water. Sadly some bait fishers were catching small scad and bass and keeping them. What made it worse, the poor fish was dumped on the ground to die a slow death. If we are going to take fish for the table then we must dispatch there fish quickly. I look forward to next summer when I will have a week in Dorset fly fishing for bass and mullet. Last year Mike Ladle had a mullet of seven and a half pounds on a fly. Now that's a serious fish. While on the subject of big fish Its reported from the New England coast of the USA of a striped bass of 48lbs caught on a ten weight fly rod. Another huge striper has been caught from the beach by an angler bait fishing which weighed in at 60lbs.




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We Need Rain 16th September

Rivers countrywide are in need of rain, not just a few hours but a few days of heavy rain are certainly needed. Most rivers are very low, weedy and gin clear. I was on the river Aire on Monday, I caught a pike of about 7lbs on my first cast, then noticed the fish was in a distressed state. It didn't even try to escape, it came in like a wet sponge. The fish itself looked in excellent condition but the low oxygen content, high water temperatures and lack of flow was clearly having an effect on the fish stocks. Even the chub didn't bother to swim off when I approached them. I didn't fish any more. I spent my time shifting tons of horrible blanket weed from the stream and trying to create some flow to increase the oxygen content. One area of the river was covered from bank to bank in a horrible scum which I managed to clear away. It was a wet stinking job but hopefully it will help the fish. I feel the Environment Agency should stop all fishing under these conditions. Its done in Canada and no one whinges.




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Fishery Reports 16th September

Rutland Water The best rainbow of the week came off the fishing lodge harbour wall. Tackle shop assistant Charles Bowers netted a plump 4lb 13¼oz fish that fell to a diawl bach on a floating line. Season ticket holders Leon Smith and Gordon Bloodworth had some hectic sport last Wednesday boat fishing, managing thirteen fish from the main basin, during an afternoon/evening session. best rainbow 4lb 13¼oz taken by Charles Bowers best methods Nymphs – diawl bach, pheasant tail. Try minkies on a floating or slow sinking line best boat areas main basin best bank areas Sykes Lane, Carrot Creek and the fishing lodge frontage

Ravensthorpe Ravensthorpe is in outstanding form with a rod average of 6.7. Over the last few years September has given some great dry fly sport at Ravensthorpe and Scottish duo Messrs Woods and Munroe used dry flies (Wolffs) to take over 20 fish each. However, this week buzzers have taken the bulk of fish – and a good number are hatching along with some late damsels. Successful buzzer tactics took this week’s best fish, a super 6lb 8oz specimen, taken by Mr Hutchings of Brington. Pete Sutton of Norwich had a 5lb 12oz fish on a buzzer, as did John Caldwell, again on a buzzer.
Grafham Water is providing excellent fishing for both boat and bank anglers. The best bag of the week was caught by resident guide Peter Hartley of Hitchin. Peter took 8 cracking fully finned silver rainbows by drifting from S buoy to hedge end with both floating and slime lines with minkies, diawl bachs and daddies. Peter’s overall bag weighed 22lb 8oz.The majority of fish are being caught in the top couple of feet on floating or slime lines. Fry patterns, (minkies, appetisers and sparklers) and nymphs (GRHE and diawl bachs), taking the most fish from the western bank between L, H and S buoys for boat anglers. The best spots for bank anglers are the dam and Perry Point. Dry flies have been fishing well in the late afternoon/early evening with daddies and claret hoppers catching some lovely fully finned silver fish.

Pitsford Water Sport continues to be very good, especially in overcast conditions. This has been a good week for anglers using top of the water tactics. Floating lines with wet flies and dries have done very well – with some good results on fast sinking lines and lures.

coarse fishing Ardleigh The recent excellent match results at Ardleigh continued with the visit of St Oysth Wick A/C. Fishing along the Lodge Bank South section once again all anglers weighed in and a good variety of fish was caught. Top man, with a superb 20lb 14oz roach catch, was Gary Sage fishing next to the water outlet. Full results as follows 1st Gary Sage 20lb 14oz 2nd Chris Golding 8lb 6oz 3rd Lee Patrick 6lb. 15oz 4th Bill Fleming 4lb 6oz

Wick Lane has also been fishing well, with the improved weed situation, for bream, perch and roach. On the pike front Tony Loizou landed a nice 14lb fish from the boats and Lawrence Harris had 2 fish, both12lb, plus losing 3 others.

Alton Water At Alton 17 anglers fished the GAPS Open over the weekend. A combination of coloured water and wind direction pushed the fish up above the bridge and the top 3 weights all came from this section. Overall winner, with 5 bream on the feeder, was Glen Collinson with 24lb 13oz. Top 3 places were: 1st Glen Collinson 24lb 13oz 2nd Adrian Frost 23lb 3oz 3rd Martin Collinson 21lb 6oz


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Fly-Fishing Retailer Show Denver Colorado 13th September

Fly-fishing retailers, manufacturers, members of the media, industry leaders and affiliates gathered for the 6th annual Fly-Fishing Retailer World Trade Expo (FFR) held at the Colorado Convention Centre in Denver, Colorado (September 4-6).

Those attending this years show were able to view what’s new in product innovation for the 2004 fly-fishing season along with the opportunity to reconnect with the fly-fishing community at seminars, parties and panel discussions. With two years of unstable economic conditions, fires and terrorism taking its toll on all leisure activities including fly-fishing, the industry was getting down to business and looking for creative ways to market the sport.

"We are very optimistic about the future of the fly-fishing industry. The show had a positive energy, an increase in the number of stores which attended, and a spirit of change that was reflected in the meetings, panel discussions. Peter Devin, Fly-Fishing Retailer's Show Director said "The industry and key players within, are facing some important decisions about channel distribution, pricing, warrantees and line expansion. The corresponding dialogue, added to the incredible array of new products, made this show one of the best ever," added Devin.

“We love this show" said Bill Crawley Traffic was incredible in our booth,” Jeff Fryhover, President/COO for Umpqua based in Glide, Oregon said.
“It’s been a good show, our booth was consistently busy. We’ve had really good discussions with dealers and I’m feeling pretty bullish about the future,” Education and candid discussions regarding the growth of the fly-fishing industry were a high priority as participants were invited to take part in a variety of free seminars, panel discussions and workshops throughout the show.

On the morning of Day One, a packed ballroom of over 320 people were welcomed to the show at the industry-wide breakfast hosted by American Fly Fishing Trade Association (AFFTA) and Fly-Fishing Retailer World Trade Expo. In addition to serving a light breakfast, the event featured keynote speaker Rich Luker, who presented -- “The Quiet Sport: Taking Time to Listen to the Business of Fly-Fishing.” Luker is best known for his creation of the ESPN (Chilton) Sports Poll, which collects information on American’s interests and activities related to sports and leisure activities. Jim Spring, from Leisure Trends Group, also took the stage to present the results from AFFTA’s recently commissioned Retailer Distribution Study -- “The 2002 Fly-Fishing Market in the U.S.”

Drawing a large crowd of industry representatives, AFFTA and FFR hosted their first ever “Fly-Fishing Industry Summit” on the third morning of the show. This gathering of industry leaders focused on relevant issues to fly-fishing manufacturers and retailers. Presented in a panel discussion format, topics included merchandising, marketing and how to compete with large retail chains. Mark Vidovich, President of AFFTA, acted as moderator between panellists and the audience.

Panel members included: Mark Bale -- Vice Pres. Marketing/Sales of Sage Manufacturing, George Dierberger -- Marketing/Int’l Sales Manager of 3M/Scientific Anglers, Peter Dupont -- Owner of The Fly Fisher, Denver, CO, Jon Fisher --Owner of Urban Angler, New York City, NY, Jeff Fryhover -- President/COO of Umpqua Feather Merchants, Jim LePage -- Vice President for Orvis Rod & Tackle, Monte Malzahn -- Fly Fishing Buyer for Cabela’s, Bob Marriott -- Owner of Bob Marriott’s Fly Shop, Fullerton, CA, Terry Ring -- Owner of Silver Creek Anglers, Idaho and KC Walsh -- President of Simms Fishing Products.

In response to one of the Summit’s discussion topics -- “Where do you see your business going in the next 3-5 years?” -- panellist KC Walsh, of Simms Fishing Products, responded by saying “I’m much more excited about the next five years than looking back at the past five. I have such a sense of transition for this industry…the opportunity is tangible. The days of status quo are gone and I feel the industry’s big opportunities will be to develop women and youth products and capitalize on the Christmas consumer buying season.”

Another panellist, Jon Fischer, owner of Urban Angler in New York City, NY, expressed his concerns for the industry during the Summit discussion. “Everyone of us needs to be an ambassador to the sport of fly-fishing,” said Fischer.

AFFTA and FFR hosted yet another well attended panel discussion with over 200 retailers on the second evening of the show entitled “Retail Challenges Facing Fly-Shops”. Panellists highlighted what they viewed as the top challenges for fly-fishing retailers and fielded questions from the audience.

Panellists included Todd Katz -- President/Owner, World Cellars Wine & Spirits, Lou Patterson -- COO, Radar Communications & Category One and Jon Yousko -- Former Sales Rep for Burton Snowboards. Each panellist had an extensive and varied history of working for major brands within the outdoor and snowsports industry plus backgrounds in retail, marketing and sales. Panellists also possessed a strong interest and understanding of the sport of fly-fishing.

Jon Yousko, who spent 15 years representing Burton Snowboards, was quick to point out the similarities between the fly-fishing and snowboard industries and how he could provide some insight for motivating fly-fishing dealers.

“Both fly-fishing and snowboarding are specialized markets that attract new retailers who are new to business management plus both sports are weather-dependent and male-dominated,” said Yousko. “Complacency and enthusiasm are infectious and keeping a young, eager staff enthusiastic about the sport is key for both markets,” added Yousko.

Panellists also shared their thoughts on how to compete with “big box” retailers, improve service for customers and provided practical tips on how to keep merchandizing fresh and interesting.

Those attending the show found numerous innovative fly-fishing products throughout the aisles of the Fly-Fishing Retailer World Trade Expo. With West Nile related deaths appearing in newspaper headlines almost daily, many manufacturers were providing creative solutions for fly anglers to protect themselves from pesky bugs and potentially deadly mosquitoes.

Ex-Officio enjoyed a successful launch of their new Buzz Off Insect Shield/Insect Repellent Apparel. The popular new line of apparel repels bugs by creating an invisible and odourless protective barrier around the clothes and body.

And for a more traditional solution to keeping mosquitoes away, exhibitor Insect-Out offered insect barrier clothing utilizing a polyester no-see-um mesh designed to be fine enough to screen out even the tiniest gnats, no-see-ums and ticks from biting the wearer but still allowing air to move through the mesh. The Insect-Out line includes hoods, shirts, pants, gloves and even accessories for kids and dogs.

“Every person we’ve talked to at this show has been a lead or sale. We received a lot of comments about West Nile, but really the people who are buying for their shops have customers that frequently travel to Alaska or buggy areas of the world,” said Anne Wallace, President of Insect-Out, Insect Barrier Clothing of Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Bill Crawley from FFR exhibiting company William Joseph, which manufactures technical packs and vests for fly-fishing, was surprised by the response his company received from a small accessory they introduced at the show -- a solar powered mosquito repellent device. The handy little gadget can easily attach to a vest, pack or belt loop and emits the sound of a male mosquito -- which makes pregnant female mosquitoes stay far, far away. Apparently, pregnant mosquitoes are the ones that do most of the biting.

“We came to the show with this new gadget -- the solar powered mosquito repellent -- not knowing how people would react and we received great feedback from dealers,” said Bill Crawley of William Joseph out of Salt Lake City, Utah.



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Fly-Fishing Retailer Show Denver Colorado 13th September

Fly-fishing retailers, manufacturers, members of the media, industry leaders and affiliates gathered for the 6th annual Fly-Fishing Retailer World Trade Expo (FFR) held at the Colorado Convention Centre in Denver, Colorado (September 4-6).

Those attending this years show were able to view what’s new in product innovation for the 2004 fly-fishing season along with the opportunity to reconnect with the fly-fishing community at seminars, parties and panel discussions. With two years of unstable economic conditions, fires and terrorism taking its toll on all leisure activities including fly-fishing, the industry was getting down to business and looking for creative ways to market the sport.

"We are very optimistic about the future of the fly-fishing industry. The show had a positive energy, an increase in the number of stores which attended, and a spirit of change that was reflected in the meetings, panel discussions. Peter Devin, Fly-Fishing Retailer's Show Director said "The industry and key players within, are facing some important decisions about channel distribution, pricing, warrantees and line expansion. The corresponding dialogue, added to the incredible array of new products, made this show one of the best ever," added Devin.

“We love this show" said Bill Crawley Traffic was incredible in our booth,” Jeff Fryhover, President/COO for Umpqua based in Glide, Oregon said.
“It’s been a good show, our booth was consistently busy. We’ve had really good discussions with dealers and I’m feeling pretty bullish about the future,” Education and candid discussions regarding the growth of the fly-fishing industry were a high priority as participants were invited to take part in a variety of free seminars, panel discussions and workshops throughout the show.

On the morning of Day One, a packed ballroom of over 320 people were welcomed to the show at the industry-wide breakfast hosted by American Fly Fishing Trade Association (AFFTA) and Fly-Fishing Retailer World Trade Expo. In addition to serving a light breakfast, the event featured keynote speaker Rich Luker, who presented -- “The Quiet Sport: Taking Time to Listen to the Business of Fly-Fishing.” Luker is best known for his creation of the ESPN (Chilton) Sports Poll, which collects information on American’s interests and activities related to sports and leisure activities. Jim Spring, from Leisure Trends Group, also took the stage to present the results from AFFTA’s recently commissioned Retailer Distribution Study -- “The 2002 Fly-Fishing Market in the U.S.”

Drawing a large crowd of industry representatives, AFFTA and FFR hosted their first ever “Fly-Fishing Industry Summit” on the third morning of the show. This gathering of industry leaders focused on relevant issues to fly-fishing manufacturers and retailers. Presented in a panel discussion format, topics included merchandising, marketing and how to compete with large retail chains. Mark Vidovich, President of AFFTA, acted as moderator between panellists and the audience.

Panel members included: Mark Bale -- Vice Pres. Marketing/Sales of Sage Manufacturing, George Dierberger -- Marketing/Int’l Sales Manager of 3M/Scientific Anglers, Peter Dupont -- Owner of The Fly Fisher, Denver, CO, Jon Fisher --Owner of Urban Angler, New York City, NY, Jeff Fryhover -- President/COO of Umpqua Feather Merchants, Jim LePage -- Vice President for Orvis Rod & Tackle, Monte Malzahn -- Fly Fishing Buyer for Cabela’s, Bob Marriott -- Owner of Bob Marriott’s Fly Shop, Fullerton, CA, Terry Ring -- Owner of Silver Creek Anglers, Idaho and KC Walsh -- President of Simms Fishing Products.

In response to one of the Summit’s discussion topics -- “Where do you see your business going in the next 3-5 years?” -- panellist KC Walsh, of Simms Fishing Products, responded by saying “I’m much more excited about the next five years than looking back at the past five. I have such a sense of transition for this industry…the opportunity is tangible. The days of status quo are gone and I feel the industry’s big opportunities will be to develop women and youth products and capitalize on the Christmas consumer buying season.”

Another panellist, Jon Fischer, owner of Urban Angler in New York City, NY, expressed his concerns for the industry during the Summit discussion. “Everyone of us needs to be an ambassador to the sport of fly-fishing,” said Fischer.

AFFTA and FFR hosted yet another well attended panel discussion with over 200 retailers on the second evening of the show entitled “Retail Challenges Facing Fly-Shops”. Panellists highlighted what they viewed as the top challenges for fly-fishing retailers and fielded questions from the audience.

Panellists included Todd Katz -- President/Owner, World Cellars Wine & Spirits, Lou Patterson -- COO, Radar Communications & Category One and Jon Yousko -- Former Sales Rep for Burton Snowboards. Each panellist had an extensive and varied history of working for major brands within the outdoor and snowsports industry plus backgrounds in retail, marketing and sales. Panellists also possessed a strong interest and understanding of the sport of fly-fishing.

Jon Yousko, who spent 15 years representing Burton Snowboards, was quick to point out the similarities between the fly-fishing and snowboard industries and how he could provide some insight for motivating fly-fishing dealers.

“Both fly-fishing and snowboarding are specialized markets that attract new retailers who are new to business management plus both sports are weather-dependent and male-dominated,” said Yousko. “Complacency and enthusiasm are infectious and keeping a young, eager staff enthusiastic about the sport is key for both markets,” added Yousko.

Panellists also shared their thoughts on how to compete with “big box” retailers, improve service for customers and provided practical tips on how to keep merchandizing fresh and interesting.

Those attending the show found numerous innovative fly-fishing products throughout the aisles of the Fly-Fishing Retailer World Trade Expo. With West Nile related deaths appearing in newspaper headlines almost daily, many manufacturers were providing creative solutions for fly anglers to protect themselves from pesky bugs and potentially deadly mosquitoes.

Ex-Officio enjoyed a successful launch of their new Buzz Off Insect Shield/Insect Repellent Apparel. The popular new line of apparel repels bugs by creating an invisible and odourless protective barrier around the clothes and body.

And for a more traditional solution to keeping mosquitoes away, exhibitor Insect-Out offered insect barrier clothing utilizing a polyester no-see-um mesh designed to be fine enough to screen out even the tiniest gnats, no-see-ums and ticks from biting the wearer but still allowing air to move through the mesh. The Insect-Out line includes hoods, shirts, pants, gloves and even accessories for kids and dogs.

“Every person we’ve talked to at this show has been a lead or sale. We received a lot of comments about West Nile, but really the people who are buying for their shops have customers that frequently travel to Alaska or buggy areas of the world,” said Anne Wallace, President of Insect-Out, Insect Barrier Clothing of Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Bill Crawley from FFR exhibiting company William Joseph, which manufactures technical packs and vests for fly-fishing, was surprised by the response his company received from a small accessory they introduced at the show -- a solar powered mosquito repellent device. The handy little gadget can easily attach to a vest, pack or belt loop and emits the sound of a male mosquito -- which makes pregnant female mosquitoes stay far, far away. Apparently, pregnant mosquitoes are the ones that do most of the biting.

“We came to the show with this new gadget -- the solar powered mosquito repellent -- not knowing how people would react and we received great feedback from dealers,” said Bill Crawley of William Joseph out of Salt Lake City, Utah.

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AGENCIES’ DRIVE FOR A BETTER ENVIRONMENT 13th September

England and Wales’ leading environmental organisations have called on water companies to take action to protect some of our most important rivers and wetlands from pollution and over-use of water. While major environmental improvements have been realised by water industry investment since the 1990s, pollution and over-abstraction are still problems in some areas. Some 60 per cent, by area, of freshwater and wetland Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) are in unfavourable condition, many polluted by phosphorous from sewage treatment works which upsets the natural environmental balance. More than 1 in 20 rivers in England and Wales are considered to be ‘poor’ or ‘bad’ quality, rising to 1 in 8 in urban areas.

The Environment Agency, English Nature and the Countryside Council for Wales set out their priorities for water industry investment in A Good Deal for Water, as part of the review of water company prices for the period 2005-10. The agencies believe the investment will bring economic and social benefits, as well as environmental improvements. Environment Agency Chief Executive Barbara Young said: “Our environment programme asks water companies to invest in improvements across England and Wales. This will safeguard thousands of kilometres of lakes, ponds, wetlands and coastal waters.

“The healthier and more attractive the environment, the more we will see knock-on benefits for leisure, recreation, tourism and the wider economy, the value of which we estimate to be between £5 billion and £8 billion. “This environment programme will not have a big impact on water prices. We estimate, on average, it will cost each household around the equivalent of the price of a can of fizzy drink a week.”

The Environment Agency, English Nature and the Countryside Council for Wales are calling for action on protecting our most important wildlife sites from pollution and over-use of water stopping pollution from storm sewerage overflows (which empty untreated sewage into rivers during wet periods) reducing harm caused by the nutrient phosphorus which can upset the ecological balance of lakes and rivers, and excessive water leakage

Among sites earmarked for attention are Lake Windermere and Coniston Water in the Lake District, the River Irwell in Greater Manchester, the Manchester Ship Canal between Warrington and Manchester, the Martin Mere wetland reserve near Burscough in Lancashire, and the Rivers Brennand and Whitendale in Lancashire’s Forest of Bowland. Over-abstraction of water from vulnerable wetland sites needs to be tackled. In the past 100 years many lowland raised bogs, ponds and floodplain grassland have disappeared. Changes to water abstraction proposed in the environmental programme will ensure rivers and wetlands will have enough water to support wildlife habitats.

James Marsden, English Nature’s Head of Policy, said: “We are seeking water company investment to safeguard SSSIs and internationally important sites which are at risk from abstraction. We are also asking for improvements to water quality, particularly nutrient removal, at sewage treatment works. “For the first time, we are also asking for schemes to protect habitats that are priorities for recovery under the UK’s Biodiversity Action Plan, for example Lake Windermere. This investment by water companies is needed by wildlife – it is good value for money.”

The impact of climate change must also be considered. Water companies must be in a position to supply all their customers with the water they need, no matter what the weather. Water and sewerage systems for new housing developments need to be built to high and sustainable standards. Excessive water leakage must be stopped and water companies need to encourage the wiser use of water. Anglers and other water users – from canoeists to beach day-trippers – will benefit from a cleaner and more pleasant environment. It can also help stimulate tourism and economic regeneration as seen in Manchester, where once-polluted waterways such as Salford Quays are now a centre of attention.



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Lots of Bass And Carp In St Lawrence County New York 12th September

I have just returned from a 3 week trip to the United States, I spent the first week in St Lawrence County area of N Y teaching kids to fish. I along with actor Tom Felton who plays Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter films were joint hosts to the first ever St Lawrence County Junior World Championships. During the week we visited a school in Massena, entertaining some 500 young kids. Young Tom being the big attraction with lots of girls present to meet him.

Tom impressed me with his carp fishing knowledge and the treatment of his fans. One afternoon, he was down to sign autographs for thirty minutes but spent over ninety minutes, talking and signing autographs. He is a nice likeable lad who isn’t a spoilt prima donna like so many actors. Tom along with his older brother Chris were a class act. I admire them greatly for giving up so much of their time to help others.

My first week was spent with Tom and his brother Chris teaching the youngsters to fish for carp. Starting off with a full day in the classroom in Donald Martin Civic Centre Waddington N Y In the winter our classroom is used as an ice rink. during the summer months its used for several activities. The centre was perfect for a carp instructors class room. The entrance had been designed so every one had to walk through the mouth of a huge model carp made by Waddington artist Patty Vanpatten. Many local anglers helped with instructions and Joe Babbitt of the St Lawrence Experience contributed free of charge several set of carp fishing gear for the youngsters to use.

After a day in the class room, then on the casting field, the youngsters from all over the United States, Italy, Canada and the UK, put to use their new skills by fishing a two day carp tournament on the banks of the St Lawrence river. During the two days of the competition, many of the youngsters caught their first carp. The best weighed in at over 30lbs. I visited every competitor each day, giving them encouragement, tying up rigs, advising them where to bait up, and how to hair rig a bait. What really impressed me was how quickly these boys and girls mastered the various skills needed to catch big carp. The enthusiasm of the girls was incredible. Many having travelled several hundred miles. I asked many of the girls if they had come to see actor Tom Felton Draco Malfoy or to catch carp. They all answered "To catch carp, then meet Tom"

On the second day of the competition, I gave some advice to Ovid Reichelt, Hyde Park NY who was fishing the Ogdensburg length and during the day he caught 3 fish the best weighing 31 lbs. 4 oz ending with a total of 73 lbs. 4 oz. Another youngster to catch a big carp was 11 year old Connor Loomis, Waddington NY who had a 25-9-0 and with another carp he ended with a total of 41 lbs. 5 oz. After the second days fishing, a party atmosphere descended on the ice rink as competitors, mums, dads, instructors, helpers and sponsors gathered for the prize presentation, food and drink. Karen St Hillair of St Lawrence County was the perfect MC. When Joe Babbitt stepped up to receive a plaque every youngster in the place gave him a well deserved standing ovation. Kathleen Kelly of Stellar Marketing Solutions Massena NY and her team, along with all the staff of the St Lawrence County Chamber of Commerce and the wonderful people of Waddington N Y for all their hard work and wonderful hospitality including Patty Vanpatten, Nancy Oaks, David and Kathy Duprey, Nancy Putney and all the wonderful volunteers from Waddington must not be forgotten. Without these dedicated and hard working people, non of these boys and girls would have enjoyed so much fun and enjoyment. They now had a skill that will now give them a lifetime of fun. Young Angela Peterson from Crystal Lake IL was certainly one of the girls who had a lot of fun. Seeing this young lady full of enthusiasm, vitality and joy rush up on stage to receive her prize put a smile on everyone's face.

1st Place - Warren Dolan, Essex UK - 75 lbs. 13 oz. (bag of 4)
2nd Place - Ovid Reichelt, Hyde Park NY - 73 lbs. 4 oz. (bag of 3)
3rd Place - Brandon Elliott, Iroquois ON CA - 64 lbs. 3 oz. (bag of 4)
4th Place - Stuart Saunders, Annadale VA - 57 lbs. 0 oz. (bag of 4)
5th Place - Elliott Scott, Essex UK - 48 lbs. 12 oz. (bag of 3)
6th Place - Joshua Rutberg, Hyde Park NY - 45 lbs. 6 oz. (bag of 2)
7th Place - Joel Rishe, Ogdensburg NY - 43 lbs. 5 oz. (bag of 3)
8th Place - Andrew Peters, Morrisburg ON CA - 42 lbs. 14 oz. (bag of 3)
9th Place - Connor Loomis, Waddington NY - 41 lbs. 5 oz. (bag of 2)
10th Place - Zac Premo, Lisbon NY - 40 lbs. 5 oz. (bag of 3)
Largest fish boy: Ovid Reichelt, Hyde Park NY - 31 lbs. 4 oz.
Largest fish girl: Angela Peterson, Crystal Lake IL - 17 lbs. 6 oz.

Everyone remembers the winners but few the sponsors and without these people there can be no competitions. The following all deserve our thanks. New York Power Authority, Akwesasne Mohawk Casino, I Love New York, EconoLodge, St. Lawrence Carp Anglers Association, SeaComm Federal Credit Union, Pepsi Cola Bottlers of Ogdensburg, Carp Anglers Group, North Country Savings Bank, St. Lawrence Aquarium & Ecological Centre, St. Lawrence Experience, American Carp Adventures, River View of Waddington, NYS Dept of Environmental Conservation, Cortland Line, Massena Chamber of Commerce, Waddington Chamber of Commerce, Ogdensburg Chamber of Commerce, CarpWorld & Crafty Carper, Mesa Airlines ,St. Lawrence County ARES/RACES, Travel Unlimited, WWNY-TV7 & WNWF FOX 28, St. Lawrence Newspapers, Town of Louisville, Stewart’s Shops, Jreck Subs, Kinney Drugs, Larry’s Taxidermy, Lee Harper, St. Lawrence Centre, WiseAcre Gardens, WasteStreamand Hannaford Superstore

Lots Of Bass From The Grass River

During the second week I spent some time teaching children and adults to fly fish, then going off fishing. One of the many delightful rivers in the St Lawrence county area is the Grass river where you can catch muskies, pike, smallmouth bass and chub. Though the latter probably reach a pound or so, they are good fun on a 4 weight fly rod. I targeted the small mouth bass with poppers and big streamers catching lots of fish with many between two and three pounds. When a good size bass hits a popper its explosive action and heart stopping. I used a 6 weight Thomas and Thomas Helix rod, Cortland floating bass tapered line with a nine foot leader with a 6lb tippet. Fishing with guide Peter Skomski of Massena one afternoon at the back of the Massena fire station I had over 60 bass. Pound for pound the bass is a better fighter than the trout. The river was very low with lots of weed and little flow for the first few days, then it rained hard for about twenty four hours giving a foot lift on the river which certainly encouraged the bigger fish to be very aggressive when feeding. If we had the Grass river in the UK we would all be queuing up to fish and willingly pay £30-00 or more for the privilege. I didn’t see another angler.

The fishing is certainly excellent value for money, all you need is a rod licence costing $40-00 for a season, which then allows you access to many miles of quality fishing on several rivers and stillwaters. Hotels in the St Lawrence county area offer good value accommodation. You will find plenty of restaurants with an excellent menu that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. There is something of interest for all the family who don’t fish. Why not visit St Lawrence County N Y for your holiday next year?


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Ocean Fly Box September 9th

How many times have you arrived at the waters edge to find the flies in your box looking the worse for wear? Its happened to me dozens of time. Hopefully no longer. Take a look at the fly boxes in your local shop and you will find dozens perfect for those dries nymphs and wet flies but not for a pike fly on a size 6/0 hook or a big sardine pattern on a 5/0 hook. At this years show I found a series of boxes with either cork or a foam lining which will hold my big saltwater and pike flies.All fly boxes are one piece, single hinged, injection moulded and made from corrosion resistant black polypropylene.

I loaded one of the boxes with a selection of big flies, then chucked the lot into my checked in baggag at the airport in Denver. Arriving back home, the flies hadn't shifted. The box had defeated the baggage handlers. Box and flies were in perfect condition. My vote for the top tackle item at the show goes to the Helix range of rods from Thomas and Thomas. My vote for the top item in the fishing accessories range goes to Fred Degrooth and the Ocean Fly Boxes. For further details E-mail Ocean Fly Boxes at FDeGrooth@reflexrods.com




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Fly Tackle Dealers Show Denver Colorado September 9th

I felt this years FTD show in Denver didn't have the buzz of other years . It was nice to see Lefty Kreh in action over all 3 days, following his recent illness. Lefty is highly regarded by everyone. Lyons Press held a reception for Lefty on the second evening of the show, where it was standing room only. The guy is certainly a Legend in his lifetime.

Probably the most impressive booth at the show were Thomas and Thomas of Massachusetts. Having fished and cast for many hours with the new Helix rod I felt this model was two years ahead of anything being demonstrated at the show. Designer Tom Dorsey has given us a rod for fresh and saltwater which will be around for a very long time. When you pick up this rod, it immediately becomes an extension of your arm. Its interesting to note the Helix rod sales over the past year, have turned the Helix into the companies best selling rod the company has produced in its first years sales.

Double handed rods are certainly growing in popularity, Thomas & Thomas had a model on show to suit all fishing conditions in fresh and saltwater. Its not only freshwater anglers who are turning to double handed rods. Many beach fishers are using the double handed rods for striper fishing. As Nick Curcion told me. "Martin the ease of casting ninety feet of line make the double handed rod perfect fore the shore angler" I now have a Thomas and Thomas 14 foot 5 piece 9 weight double handed rod, which I plan to use for much of my saltwater shore fishing. Why make two or three false casts, when one good over head cast will send the line over ninety feet or more. By using the longer rod you will be able to hold the rod high keeping the line from breaking waves and offer a better fly presentation. I have lot to learn but with teachers such as Trey Combs and Nick Curcion I am hoping it will be a quick learning curve. Further details from Tony Fordham Kinvale Third Street Langton Green Tunbridge Wells Kent TH3 OEN Tel 01892 863153 Fax 01892 864339


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England Ladies Sweep the board

While both our men and woman teams competing in the World Athletic Championships in France failed miserably our lady anglers showed a clean pair of heels in the World Coarse Fishing Championships fished at Furzton lake, in Milton Keynes. As in last years World championships England were the best both in the individual and team. Top lady, as in last years championships was Sandra Scotthorne who fished pole and blood worm rig. Occasionally changing to a small bit of worm catching mainly roach with the odd bream and perch. There is a full report with pictures in the Anglers Mail W/E 30th August and on page 52 W/E September 6th there is a feature on Sandra.




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Fishing News September 9th

Rutland Water Rick Varley of Castleford, Yorkshire took the best fish of the week, a super 5lb rainbow. Rick took the fish from Barnsdale Creek, it was feeding on fry and fell to a white tadpole. Mick Huffer from Clifton, Nottingham, caught 45 fish for the week off the bank using nymphs. Mick’s fish were all rainbows, the best weighed 3lb. Bank anglers are reporting fish moving well first thing in the morning and fish are being taken from the Dam, Normanton and Sykes Lane areas of the reservoir. Good numbers of perch fry are beginning to show around the shoreline, and some anglers are reporting fish feeding on them. Looking to the future – bookings for the autumn pairs on Saturday 18 October are going well, with 20 plus boats already booked. This competition is open to all and is under reservoir rules with no fly size restrictions and no time bonus. For further details call the lodge on 01780 686441.

Best rainbow 5lb taken by Rik Varley of Castleford, Yorkshire best methods floating line with nymphs, diawl bach, hares ear, pheasant tail. Dries worth a try orange, red, claret and hares ear best boat areas main basin in front of fishing lodge, Barnsdale Creek best bank areas dam, Sykes Lane, Stockie Forthcoming events 13 September – Beginners Fly Fishing Course 14,15,16 September - Inter services (all boats booked) 19,20,21 September - Todays Fly fisherman European Open team event (all boats booked) 18 October Autumn Pairs

England Disabled Fly-fishing championship
Rutland Water was on good form for this important EDFFA event which selects the team to represent England in next year’s Home International. Conditions were good for loch style fishing with anglers averaging 3 trout each and the six hour competition just finished before a thunderstorm arrived for an exciting ending. Top rod was Stuart Hume of Co. Durham, an existing England team member with the maximum 8 fish weighing 13lb-6oz , closely followed by Mike Hill and Steve Waddingham both with seven fish. It was another good day for Ken Waters from Wing in Rutland who caught the best fish of the day, a 3lb 7oz rainbow and finished in 4th place to make the England Team. Ken is having a great season at Rutland Water having recently won the Midlands Final of the Anglian Water Fulling Mill International. Ken caught his big fish on a PTN drifting off the Tower on Sykes Lane before working around the dam to the Normanton bank.
President of the England Disabled Flyfishing Association Tom Bilson thanked all the volunteer boatmen and the Anglian Water staff who had helped make the day such a success. 1st Stuart Hume 8 trout 13lb 6oz (Boatman, Ron Gent of Leicester) 2nd Mike Hill 7 trout 12lb 8oz 3rd Steve Waddingham 7 trout 10lb 14oz 4th Ken Waters 5 trout 10lb 12oz 5th Mark Andrews 6 trout 9lb 14oz Best fish: Ken Waters 3lb-7oz (Boatman, Alastair Smith Leicester) Total catch: 29 anglers for 88 trout

Grafham Water fish week 968(season20128) returns 262 (6042) rod average 3.69(3.33) Rob Edmunds of Ringstead, near Kettering, enjoyed an outstanding week. Rob not only took the best rainbow of the week (5lb 12oz) but he also had the heaviest bag (8 fish for 29lb 11oz) and victory in the Grafham Open Pairs match. The main areas have been down the west bank with L, H and S buoys and in front of the nature reserve. Another good tactic is to spot the gulls crashing into the water - an indication that there are plenty of 2lb plus silver rainbows in amongst the gulls, feeding on the thousands of fry. This method helped Rob Edmunds to account for his bumper bag of fish. Bank anglers have enjoyed some great sport in early morning or late evening on fry patterns and diawl bachs on floating or intermediate lines. The best areas have been the dam, G bank and pylon point. Fish have also been taken from Perry Point in the early evening. Competition news Grafham Open Pairs match. Grafham Water was on top form for this competition, producing a cracking rod average of 5.89. The average weight per fish was 2lb 5½oz for the 38 anglers who took part in relaxed international rules competition. (Drifting boat no fly restrictions). The competition was won by two of our local anglers Rob Edmunds and his friend Simon King (Wellingborough). Simon and Rob won the competition by fishing minkies and humungous on slime lines from around the L buoy area. 1st Rob Edmunds & Simon King 16 fish for 44lb 8 7/8oz 2nd Leon Smith & Dave Doherty 16 fish for 42lb 3oz 3rd Mark Haycock & Brad Gifford 16 fish for 39lb 71/8oz best rainbow 5lb 12oz taken by Rob Edmunds on a white booby best brown 4lb 2oz taken by Charles Bowers on a diawl bach best methods Slime, di 3 lines, minkies, sparklers, diawl bachs, sparkler booby best boat areas L, H and S Buoys, nature reserve frontage best bank areas Dam, G bank, pylon point and perry point mid week boat winner I Pow of Milton Keynes forthcoming events 21 September Beginners Course 25-27 September English National Loch style final all boats booked

Pitsford Water fish week 349 (season 10952) returns 159 (3932) rod average 2.2(2.8)Several good browns have been caught this week, the best weighed 10lb and was taken by local angler Pete Gillett from Brixworth. The fish fell to a black cdc emerger on a floating line, with a 6lb leader. Pete fished from a boat in bog bay. Browns of 7-8lb have been returned. Top of the water sport continues to be excellent, orange and claret hoppers are scoring well. Soldier palmers, raiders, diawl bachs are also catching fish. The narrows, Brixworth Bay and Bog Bay are the best boat areas. The best bank areas are the cliffs, blue gates and duffers reach.The Sunday boat league made a promising start this week. Fortified by sausage baps and hot drinks ten anglers fished from 9am to 1pm. Pavenham’s Mel Parrott had the winning weight of two fish for 5lb. Following the weigh in everyone enjoyed soup and a roll. best rainbow 5lb 12oz taken by Dave Rowe of Northampton on a floating line whilst drifting across the narrows. best brown 10lb taken by Pete Gillett of Brixworth best boat areas narrows, Brixworth Bay, and Bog Bay best bank areas cliffs, blue gates and duffers reach best methods orange & claret hoppers, soldier palmers, raiders, diawl bachs

Ravensthorpe fish week 445(season10036) returns 84 (2117) rod average 5.2(4.7)

The best fish of the week was a huge 12lb 8oz rainbow taken by Mr Mahon of Rugby, who was boat fishing near the boils with an olive buzzer. This beauty was returned safely to the water. Another excellent fish this week was taken by Jon Ball of Cogenhoe – a fine fish of 6lb 1oz on a GRHE, Jon also fished from a boat.

Bank anglers have also been enjoying some cracking sport. Dave Smith of West

Haddon managed 26 from the Monger Bank on buzzers. It was a cause for double celebration for Dave who’s fishing return won this week’s draw for a free mid week boat.

Best rainbow 12lb 8oz taken by K Mahon of Rugby from a boat with an olive buzzer best boat areas Coton End, Boils best bank areas Mongers to Hickmans best methods boat anglers have been using floating lines with buzzers, olive being the best, fished very slowly. Bank anglers have been using similar methods



coarse fishing

Ardleigh continues to fish well along the Lodge Bank with good bags of roach, perch, chub and some bream reported. John Servant and Chris Earnshaw, also fishing the Lodge Bank, both managed to catch 12lb pike and together, with a reported 20lb fish, reflects an increase in activity for this species. Best fish of the week however must go to season permit holder Craig Woodhouse who had a lovely 23lb fully-scaled common while fishing from the Dam Wall car park.

Hollowell is in top form. Feeder fishing is producing some very good catches of bream around 7-8lb, with some double figure fish showing. Tench are also feeding, with one angler reporting 8 fish in one morning session, the biggest weighing 8lb. Best areas are the east bank between the overshot and the plantation, the tin shed area is also worth a try.



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Two Great Days On The River Aire 21st August

Last week I was on the Wasing Estate fishery syndicate, this week I have been on my local river Aire. On Tuesday I visited the Keighley AC stretch near Kildwick where a membership card is just £20-00 a year which includes a pass for fishing various canals. Tickets available from K L Tackle at Keighley West Yorks. I fished several swims with legered crust or flake catching plenty of chub between three and four pounds. Later in the day I found a delightful swim with quite a strong flow of water and lots of swaying weed. A spot I thought that might produce some fish off the top on floating crust. Sitting several yards upstream of the chosen stretch of water I dropped in some two dozens bits of crust as the sixth piece drifted downstream over the swaying water crowfoot it was intercepted by a good chub. Suddenly the water resembled a trout hatchery at feeding. As chub swirled and sucked down chunks of crust, as if there was no tomorrow. Baiting with a bit of crust I dropped the bread a few yards out from the bank. After the bread had drifted downstream some ten yards a pair of lips engulfed the bread. After a brief tussle a nice chub was netted unhooked and released. In ten casts I caught 7 fish then the swim died. It had certainly been a fast and furious session.

Pike On The Fly

The next day I was back on the Aire, but further downstream below the Golf Course. I was recording a programme in the series At The Waters Edge on BBC Radio Lancashire Thursday evenings at 7-30pm and Saturday at 6-0am You can also hear the programme on the internet www.bbc.co.uk/lancashire

My tackle set up was a Thomas and Thomas nine weight Helix, a Cortland nine weight pike taper floating line, eight foot of Frog Hair leader material with a tippet BS of fifteen pounds. I attached a foot of twenty pound wire to the leader with an Albright knot, then attached the fly to the wire leader with a crimp. The fly I chose to start with had a red head yellow body and tail on a size 3/0 hook. I only had two hits but they were both very good fish one about twelve pounds, the second fish was probably about fifteen pounds. Another successful recording session


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Game Angling Reports 21st August

Rutland Water Highlight of the week was a fine 6lb brown taken by Warren Scott from Corbridge near Sunderland. Warren took the cock fish from the main basin using a black sparkler fished deep on a Di 7 line. Warren was enjoying a fortnight’s holiday and recorded 52 fish (including rainbows to 4lb ½oz) in twelve visits, a remarkable achievement considering the weather conditions. Best rainbow for the week, a splendid 4lb 6¼oz over wintered fish was taken by Stamford’s Paul Wild, whilst fishing the Tuesday night boat league. In spite of the extreme temperatures fish have still been near the surface, with some taken on dries. With nymphs, diawl bachs and hares ear also working well. Lure anglers have caught in the main basin fishing around the aerators. best rainbow 4lb 6¼oz taken by Paul Wild best brown 6lb taken by Warren Scott of Corbridge best methods bank anglers - floating line with diawl bach, hares ear, pheasant tail, red dries, orange hares ear, claret hoppers, c.d.c or shipmans boat anglers – as bank anglers but include gold and silver and orange best boat areas main basin, Normanton, Sykes Lane best bank areas the dam, Sykes Lane,

Grafham Water In hot weather conditions early morning and late evening have been the best time of the day to fish. Bank anglers have had some cracking sport from the dam and G buoy areas on hoppers, diawl bachs, damsel nymphs and suspender minkies. Boat anglers have fished successfully from the boils at the dam (no anchoring) with intermediate lines and buzzers and diawl bachs taking the majority of the fish. Best methods floaters with diawl bachs, damsel nymphs, minkies, boobies, pinfry patterns, (hoppers in the evening). Intermediate sinking lines with sparklers, cats, minkies, diawl bachs and damsel nymphs. .Ravensthorpe Local season ticket holder Dick Haynes was top boat man this week returning 10 rainbows to 4½lb on Sunday. Dick swapped tactics throughout the day, taking most fish on a ‘Dave Doherty’ thin black buzzer special fished three to five feet down on a floating line. Two Ravensthorpe regulars, Reg Belham and Jim Ferguson (both season ticket holders) have taken some nice rainbows from a number of the platforms and the lodge end of the dam. The pair have casted to fish rising in the ripple, using hoppers, small parachutes, hares ears and diawl bachs. Chris Skillen took six fish to 4lb on buzzers and thin damsel imitations in a morning boat session last Wednesday. best rainbow 4lb 8oz taken by Dick Haynes of Ravensthorpe on a size 12 black buzzer Pitsford Water Pitsford Water is providing excellent sport with a lot of action for boat anglers. Despite the hot weather fish are out in the middle of the reservoir from the main bowl to the tops of the narrows. best rainbow 5lb taken by P Moore whilst tube fishing best boat areas main bowl best bank areas gravels, sermons, pines treatment works side best methods nymphs on intermediate and small lures. Di7 deep fished in the main basin

Coarse fishing Hollowell The kids go free fishing event at Hollowell was a great success. Twelve boys and girls aged between 8 and 16 fished the Dam wall at Hollowell with float and maggot. A few perch, roach and bream were caught. The wind picked up and the young anglers tried feeder fishing with some success. All of them went home having caught a fish or two. The local experts were on hand to give guidance - thanks to Dennis Footman, Pitsford warden Stuart East, Hollowell’s stalwart and current tench record holder Mick Stevens and Pitsford shop assistant Brian Lloyd.

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PLANS TO BOOST RIBBLE CATCHMENT 21st August

The Environment Agency is urging anglers with an interest in one of Lancashire's main river catchments to help develop long-term plans to improve it as a fishery. The Ribble Fisheries Action Plan (FAP) is being developed by the Agency in partnership with a range of organisations with interests in the Ribble and its tributaries – which covers an area of Lancashire from the estuary as far as Chorley, Blackburn, Clitheroe and Burnley.

Now the Agency is keen to hear from other angling groups or individual anglers who want to input into the development of the FAP, which will cover lakes, ponds and canals as well as rivers including the Ribble, Calder, Darwen, Hodder, Yarrow, Lostock and Douglas. FAPs have been developed as partnerships between the Agency, anglers, conservationists and other interest groups to increase public involvement in their local fisheries.

The Ribble FAP aims to improve the rivers' fish stocks, to conserve and improve river banks and the water environment, to enhance the contribution that fisheries make to the local economy, and to promote the value of fishing. The Ribble catchment has been divided into four geographical areas for the purposes of the FAP. Each area will be looked at in detail by a team made up of interested people and representatives of involved organisations. In future a draft FAP will be produced, followed by a consultation stage.



Dr Mike Horner, chairman of the Ribble FAP, said: "This is the most important programme of action ever to involve the entire Ribble catchment. We want to protect and significantly improve our fish stocks, the water and the habitats they need. "As a result of this work the Ribble catchment will be popular both with anglers and with people who want to see thriving wildlife. As well as boosting angling, the Fisheries Action Plan has the potential to benefit the whole area – helping tourism, employment and the local economy. We want local people to be involved so we can all feel proud of the outcome." People who want to get involved in developing the Ribble Fisheries Action Plan should contact Steve Whittam at the Environment Agency on 01772 339882

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American Sports Fishers Need Help To Protect Striped Bass 21st August

Capt. Jim White, writes Martin can you and your fellow anglers help with reference EEZ-Zone opening, it would be greatly appreciated. The commercial fishing can ruin the striped bass fishery. I feel with many Europeans coming here on vacation and spending lots of dollars. The National Marine Fisheries Service may listen to you guys. Thanks for any help you can be on this. Jim White NOAA is accepting written comment (of fax only) on the opening of the EEZ-Zone to commercial and recreational fishing with a 28-inch limit. This, after a 13-year closure to all types of fishing. It is in my opinion that should the EEZ-Zone be opened, we can kiss this fishery goodbye in less than two or three years.
With the illegal netting already out of control and now the reports of a disease, they know nothing about or how to control, it doesn't take a degree in Marine Biology to figure out where this is going and how its going to end. The only authority in the EEZ Zone is NOAA and the Coast Guard. That is out of any states jurisdiction. The Coast Guard can't handle what they have already with drugs and terrorism how do you expect them to handle illegal poaching of bass. They don't have the money or the manpower to handle this. There is a new twist on the written comment this time.. They aren't going to accept any e-mail comments. They know thousands will e-mail but only a few if any will actually send a written letter or fax.
WE NEED AS MANY PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE TO WRITE OR FAX THE NMFS THAT WE OPPOSE THE OPENING OF THE EEZ-ZONE. If we don't you might as well sell your rods, or just wait till the end of the year for bluefish to show up.

Letters should be sent to Anne Lange Chief State Federal Fisheries Div.
Office of Sustainable Fisheries National Marine Fisheries Service 1315 East West Highway RM 13317 Silver Spring MD. 20910 USA I ask all of you to support Capt Jim White’s request and write that letter now. The fax number is 001 301-713-0596 My letter reads as follows




Dear Madam

As a writer, author, broadcaster and TV presenter I was disturbed to hear about the proposed increase in the netting regulations reference to
Amendment 6 of the striped bass management plan. As I see it the current issue of a new disease that cannot be identified and is already infecting over half the Chesapeake population will not be sorted out by allowing commercial fishing to increase. I feel it is unnecessary and very foolish to even consider opening the EEZ-Zone to commercial and recreational fishing.

I often use as an example the fishery regulations for striped bass on the
eastern seaboard when I am talking with Members of Parliament about
preserving the bass stocks in UK waters. What you have achieved over the years working with sports fishers, environmentalists and commercial fishing interests has been out standing. Do not undo all the good work that has been achieved over the past years. Now is the time to conserve and see what happens. If you give in to commercial fishing interests, which means an increase in netting, I believe this disease that has the potential to devastate the striped bass population.

It must be pointed out that the striped bass is worth hundreds of dollars as a sports fish and only a handful of dollars as dead fish on the fish mongers slab. The commercial caught fish, can only be caught once but as a sports fish they are caught several times over. Its a well known fact the fish are to valuable to catch once.

I believe the tourist trade will be hit very hard, many UK anglers visit the eastern seaboard for one or two weeks of striper fishing. In fact I will be across again in September with a group of anglers. Remember we hold our fish stocks in trust for the youngsters, not yet born. We must not forget kids hooked on fishing, don't stick an hypodermic needle in their arm later in life. They usually become better citizens and care about the environment. I am more than willing to visit and discuss the effects of commercial netting on your tourism industry and fish stocks at my own expense. Your sincerely Martin James


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Lancashire School Girl In Prize List 21st august

England youth international 14 year old Lisa Isles who attends Hodgson High School Technology College Poulton-Le-Fylde has just had another good competition Lisa and her dad Nick travelled from their Poulton-Le-Fylde home arriving at the Farmoor fishery Oxford for 8-30 am where they were met by the coaches and the manager, plus the organisers.

Lisa said "We had a briefing about the rules and what time we had to be back. We all had to draw a number from a hat to decide which group everyone would set off in. If you were in group one you would go first and so on. I got number 3. Though it was a windy day I managed with my casting. At about 1 o'clock I decided to change tactics completely as the conditions were now calm. I put on my floating line, 10 foot leader, then tied on two buzzers fishing them static. On my 5th cast I had my first fish, I was relieved to know that I had not blanked.

Spooning the fish I found it was jam-packed with green and black buzzers some still alive. This was a great confidence boost. Sadly the calm conditions didn't last as the wind picked up again. With about 1 hour to go, I decided to switch to an intermediate and my Thomas and Thomas Helix which makes it easier to cast out into the wind. I walked further round the fishery to another mark which looked good.

One of the coaches came to me and said "Get this Ginger Hopper on", I also tied on one of my own tiny Black Fritz flies. On my second cast I hooked good fish which was soon netted. My third fish was a very savage take. I didn't need to strike because it had hooked itself. I quickly got that one in the net . By this time the wind had really picked up making it virtually impossible to cast. Thankfully the horn sounded the end of the My 3 fish weighed 7lbs 11 oz, I had got 2 nice 3lb fish and a small one about a pound which I caught on the buzzer.

After a nice buffet an auction was held where my Dad picked up a SAGE line for £20.00 Then the presentation, I was 3rd in the Juniors in the Heaviest bag section and 1st with the heaviest fish of the day. The prizes I won were a Cortland rod 9 1/2 foot 7/8 weight, an extending landing net, 2 slow sink Masterline WF7 lines, and 2 shields which are on my trophy shelf now, and I am very proud of them.

Lisa Isles qualifies for 2004 England international team

Lisa Isles of Poulton-Le-Fylde fished a national qualifier at Grafham under some tough and testing conditions On the practice day the weather conditions were awful for fishing. On Sunday the wind had dropped a bit which was a positive sign which helped Lisa build up confidence. At 10.00am all the boats headed out onto the reservoir. Lisa’s boatman was Alasdair Smith and her boat partner was Dan woods. On the advice of the boatman they headed off for Savages due to the fact that the resident fish were there.

They would be harder to catch but, one of those would amount to 2 stockies. At savages the trout were fry bashing. As Lisa said "I stuck it out with my floater for 3 hours and then decided that we had gone over hundreds of fish, but they just were not interested. I decided to change tactics, changing from a floating line to a Rio full sinking line. I had to do what I had to do, even though I don't like fishing with lures I tried the washing line method. I put a wet black hopper on my 1 st dropper, 2nd dropper I put on a diawl bach and on the point I put on a bright orange boobies to attract the fish.

This didn't work for about 1 hour and I was starting to panic. I thought seeing as I had one and a half hours of my time captaining where the boat goes, I asked to go across to the Hedges. Just as we were coming out of Savages I could see fish going crazy, I shouted to the boatman, "Stop the boat". On my first cast I had a hook up a nice 2lbs 6 oz fish.

We pulled out for another drift. The fish seemed interested in my boobie so I cast and stripped it back across the top. I got another fish on, it went under the boat, I managed to get it out, then it went under the boat again, I got it from under the boat again, then it went like a train, it wouldn't stop. I looked out to where it was, it was a big fish my boat man said that is a good one, about 8lbs, then...my line went slack. I could have cried, but I kept it together and stayed focused. I thought right, lets get another and so with about 30 mins to go I thought right, this is it, if I don't catch one now that's it. My line tightened and I struck, it was a fish and a good one. I got it in, it was a nice fish 3lbs 4 oz.

Time was up and we headed back to the lodge. I was so worried, it was time to see what everyone else had caught. I asked the 1st angler what he had, Nil was the answer, the second angler had one fish while the third angler had nil. It really was a hard day. The presentation started after we had all weighed in. I had 2 fish for 5lbs 10 oz. I was really pleased, because I had worked hard and I had a good chance of getting in the team. The results were announced 1st 2nd 3rd then 4th was Gavin Hunter. And now can we please have a warm welcome for Lisa Isles. When my name was read out I could have cried like I did the year, then I though WOW, I made it again. I was so pleased. only myself, Luke Shevlin, and Luke Lavelle who got in as a reserve, were the only anglers who made it from this years team into next years. Oh I was made up.

England Lady Wins Gold

14 year old Thomas and Thomas sponsored lady fly fisher from
Poulton-Le-Fylde Lancashire has just returned home from the International Fly Fishing Championships with a Gold Medal using the Thomas & Thomas Helix 9' 6 weight rod.

During the two practise days at the Scottish venue Lisa was one of the top angler. On the evening before the big competition, Lisa tied up all the flies for the
England team to use during the competition. On match day the England team
finished way out in front of the other teams from Wales, Scotland and
Ireland. Two days after the event Lisa and her family jetted off to The Best Western Hotel in Titusville Florida to fish the Indian river and Mosquito Lagoon


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A New English Rose 21st August

Some months ago a young lady fly fisher turned up at the BBC Radio Lancashire studio to appear on my show At The Waters Edge. Her name Lisa Isles, I had invited Lisa on my show as she had just qualified to represent England in the Youth Internationals. The only lady in the team. Lisa had travelled from her Poulton-Le-Fylde home with her Dad Nick to fish the English Youth qualifier at Rutland Water. After a tough days fishing, Lisa weighed in ten fish. A very surprised and happy Lisa then heard she was in 4th position with a place in the England team.

14 year old Lisa attends Hodgson High School Technology College Poulton-Le-Fylde where she competes in several sports and winning trophies. In her recent exams she had all A’s. Lisa’s talent has been recognised by Thomas and Thomas and Rio Lines two of the leading American companies who have sponsored Lisa

I suppose non of us forget our first fish, Lisa remembers it vividly. as she writes I was up in Southern Scotland with my Granddad, my Dad's Dad, I was at a place called Broom Fisheries. It was a really good day for nymphing. I was letting my buzzer come round in the wind using a floating line, all of a sudden I felt this bump. I struck as hard as I could, I had hooked my first fish a rainbow trout. It was a tremendous feeling. My Granddad was on the other side of the lake, I remember quite clearly shouting my Granddad's name. He looked at me then said "Well done your brother is coming around with the net don't worry, let it run if it wants to". I remember that day quite well.

Talking with Lisa I said "What made you go fishing? "Fishing is such a unique sport for a young girl, I thought that it would be a great hobby and I would get more time with my Dad and my two Granddads. The fact that people underestimate girls of my age that take part in angling which has given me a driving ambition to accomplish something that not a lot of people would think I was capable of doing".

How long have you been angling? Since I caught my first fish, I have been a keen angler for about 4 years, enjoying every moment at the waterside. My favourite water has to be Tewitfield. where I have had a couple of double figured fish and lots of great memories.

What are the thoughts of your school friends? My school friends think its different, they think I am doing really well in proving we ladies can actually go into competitions and catch fish. My best friend Grace Reilly thinks I have done really well to get this far, she is proud to be my friend and support me all the way.

My main ambition is to be successful in my fishing career, to become a fishing journalist and enjoy what I do, plus make all of my family proud but it seems like I have done that already. In achieving my ambitions, my parents are a great deal of help I know that they will support me all the way. They give me lots of confidence. I need their help both in the good and the bad times to achieve my ambitions.

Other school girls who would like to start fishing, I would say "Go for it". It is a sport that involves a lot of patience and a lot of skill. If they want advice on what tackle to buy, I will help. I can also teach them the basics, if they want this help. I would certainly encourage them to get involved in this sport as much as possible.


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Hyndburn and Blackburn AA 21st August

Work parties have been going on all through the summer months, two nights weekly and every other Saturday. Hundreds of man hours have been put into Rishton Reservoir recreating new platforms up to 30 feet long (these will be superb waggler platforms, enabling the angler some superb winter roach fishing)

A new fence has been erected along the road side of the reservoir, trees have been cut back to enable easier access to the fishery, and the new path is taking shape this is a two year project so we have plenty of hard work ahead of us. Also work has been undertaken on Butts Mill erecting new fencing, cutting trees back and renovating existing pegs.

Alan Lord, Jonathon Heyhoe and Dave Sharpe have been working hard on the associations junior teach-ins with up to 25 junior members in attendance. Sponsorship this year has been superb with thanks to Aquamania, Dinsmore and Fishrite. During the heat wave the club had to call out the Great Harwood Fire Brigade to Butts Mill to help aerate the lodge as fish were showing signs of distress. The clubs thanks go to the fire men involved. The club are now the proud owners of HawkEye the new hand held fish finder. Graham Parks the associations chairman said HawkEye will be a most useful piece of equipment for mapping waters and checking fish stocks.


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The HawkEye Launched At Royal Lancashire Show 21st August

This years Royal Lancashire Show on the banks of the river Ribble was certainly well supported by anglers and non angles alike. Visitors to the Piscatorial centre had their first chance to see the latest hand held fish finder The HawkEye

The FF3300 series portable fish finder is the latest piece of electronic equipment to be available in the UK. The HawkEye portable fish finders incorporates the state of the art fish finding features found in the most expensive fish finders, the whole lot also fits into a small bag.

Its extremely simple to use HawkEye, turn on the power, toss the unique floating transducer from the shoreline, bridge, jetty, pier or boat and you will have an instant depth, fish, and bottom structure readings. you will also get the water temperature which as every angler knows can be so important in knowing where to fish.

Angling Given The Royal Seal Of Approval

Angling was given the Royal seal of approval with the presence of the Countess of Wessex Princess Sophie. I spent some thirty minutes showing Sophie around the Piscatorial Centre, where she showed considerable interest in every thing that was being demonstrated, from fly tying to Spey and Wallis Casting. Prince Albert AS organised a tombola with prizes donated by Thomas and Thomas rod builders of Massachusetts, Stephen Turner www.Bensen.co.uk of Preston and Pendle Fly Dressers Guild. During the two day show Prince Albert AS raised £214-50p for Ribble Valley Crossroad Carers Charity.

Where many shows only feature game fishing the Piscatorial centre featured beach and boat fishing demonstrations. There were talks on chub, pike and bass angling. A team of fly tiers were on hand to instruct the visitors. Among the many other interests for the visitors, was the riverside walk with Dr Malcolm Greenhalgh which proved very popular.

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A Mixed Bag 20th July Mixed Bag - Martin James


The red tipped quill float, bobbed, then dropped flat on the surface, as the float lifted to a 45 degree angle it slowly moved through a patch of pin head bubbles. Picking up speed as it moved across the calm bubble spotted surface then disappeared. The answering strike connected with a powerful moving object. Suddenly the rod was pulled over at an alarming angle, I was forced to give line.

With my local rivers low, gin clear with a mass of horrid clodorpha weed, the prospects for seatrout fishing were poor. I decided to fish a syndicate water down south on the Wasing Estate Fisheries in the Royal County of Berkshire. The Wasing Estate fisheries syndicate control several lakes, including a predator lake which will open for business in October. If like me you fish for trout, you will be pleased to know the Wasing Fisheries syndicate also have two trout lakes and a stretch of the river Enborne for we fly fishers. The big bonus is without doubt the four miles of the river Kennet. Thankfully the Kennet had a good flow despite the dry weather, that’s one of the advantages of a chalk stream.

The Wasing Estate with its extensive lakes and rivers has been owned by the same family since 1760. The lakes and rivers stretches are situated in the tranquil Kennet valley. In my book, the river Kennet is still one of England's nicest rivers although not as nice as when I first visited the river back in the late 1940’s. In those days the river really did flow as clear as tap water. I can still remember standing on one of the bridges looking down into the crystal clear water of the Kennet, seeing a dozen or more big roach swimming to and fro among the swaying water crowfoot. They were big roach, probably two pounders.

As a syndicate member, you will meet a bailiff force that are most friendly and helpful, which supervise, protects and maintains the fishery, it’s environment, wildlife and privacy. Your tackle and car are quite safe at no time did I and my friend lock our car. On one occasion we left our tackle at the waters edge and with the car doors open for some three hours, as we walked the banks of the river Kennet, talking with other members and helping them with advice. Many of the waters are sites of special scientific interest. What I like about this syndicate is, there is no fishing for the coarse fish species on the lakes between March 15th and June 15th both days inclusive. The dawn chorus has to be heard to be believed. Its magnificent and you will see kingfishers in profusion. I just love the place.

The river Kennet fishery comprises four very attractive and separate beats of mixed single and double banks amounting to nearly 4 miles, starting downstream of the Old Mill at Aldermaston up to Brimpton Mill. As we know the Kennet is a mixed fishery where you have a good chance of 2lb roach, 6lb chub, 10lb barbel, 6lb bream and 3lb perch. I know, as I have caught fish of these species over those weights. One of the big problems facing today’s anglers is safe car parking. As a member of the Wasing Estates fishery syndicate you have that safe parking.

For my latest three day trip Mike Osborne of Cumbria and I left my home around 3pm travelling down the M6, M5 and M42 then onto the A4 following the signs for Reading, on reaching Woolhampton, you turn right at the Angel pub after crossing the railway line and canal you come to the Row Barge pub where you will find the gravel drive leading to the tench and carp lakes. It was just after seven PM when we arrived at the Row Barge pub, while Mike had a pint of bitter, I put the kettle on for a fresh brew. Some thirty minutes later fishery manager Kevin Rolls turned up with his delightful girl friend Juliet who has caught rainbow trout to nearly 12lbs. We followed Kevin down the gravel path towards the lake passing over the river Kennet which looked magnificent in the evening sunlight. After a ten minute drive we arrived at the chosen area of water, Kevin thought would be a top spot. After a good chat, it was time to give my swim a good raking, then put in some feed in the form of hemp and corn. Once the tench moved in they would have plenty of small food items to keep them interested.

As day passed into night, I cast out three grains of corn on a size ten hook to 6lbs line, matched with a Masterline 5 piece rod and centre pin reel. I used a single swan shot for weight. After an hour without any sign of interest from the tench I decided to get my head down setting the alarm for an early morning start at 4-0 AM. After a quick rinse and cleaning my teeth I climbed inside my sleeping bag. .


The Perfect Dawn


In no time at all, the alarm sounded its strident call. Crawling from my sleeping bag, I spent a few seconds rubbing sleep from my eyes, I could see the lake wreathed in mist, it seemed as if all the pigeons on the estate were cooing at the same time, then a blackbird called. In the nearby reeds a wren had set up its incessant chattering to let me know it was there. After putting on the kettle for that all important mug of tea, I walked slowly towards my raked and baited swim. In walking the few yards my trousers were wet through, there had been a very heavy dew over night. The swim was fizzing, masses of pin head bubble appeared momentarily on the surface before disappearing. A good tench swirled on the surface. A bream of some ten pounds cruised alongside the weeds then disappeared into the depths. A few yards along the bank, the water resembled a washing machine doing the weekly wash, as huge clumps of big bubbles appeared, then burst on the surface as a carp rooted for its breakfast. Either side of my swim, the bank was lined by rushes and small willow bushes. A kingfisher flew low over the water going from right to left. A reed warbler had a nest a few feet to my right, every few minutes it appeared with food to feed a hungry clutch of youngsters. Some fifty yards to my left a group of coots were fighting and squabbling. As the sun slowly rises over the far bank trees, I bait my size ten hook with three grains of corn, with an underhand cast the red tipped quill float settles quietly in the water a few feet out from the rod tip. With a mug of tea in my hand, I sat back contented and happy with life. Nothing beats a late summer dawn tench fishing session.

Powerful Fighters


Some five feet from the bank a shoal of perch averaging some eight ounces were herding the small fry into the shallow water, where they would suddenly attack, killing and eating the fry. Looking up from watching the perch, I noticed a big patch of pin head bubbles. The red tipped quill float, bobbed, then dropped flat on the surface, as the float lifted to a 45 degree angle it slowly moved through a patch of pin head bubbles. Picking up speed as it moved across the calm bubble spotted surface it disappeared. The answering strike connected with a powerful moving object. Suddenly the rod was pulled over in an alarming curve. Some ten yards of line were taken off the reel by a powerful fish, as it fought to gain sanctuary in a weed bed in its bid for freedom. I cramped on all the pressure I thought the tackle could stand. It worked as the fish finally turned away into another direction. Bits of weed along with masses of bubbles appeared on the surface. Slowly I was gaining line, the red tipped quill float appeared I was winning the fight. Sliding the landing net out into the water I lifted the rod dragging the protesting fish to the net where it was soon safely engulfed. The fish was mine. It felt a good one, laying down the rod I heaved the net ashore then parting the wet mesh I could see it would probably go five pounds. The scales said 5-14-0. After a couple of quick pictures the fish was returned to the lake.

Rebaiting with another three grains of corn, I cast to the same spot, then fed a dozen grains of corn as a free offering. Fifteen minutes later I was hooked into another hard fighting fish, after a good fight I netted my second tench of the session. Another five pounder, I moved along the bank a few yards before releasing the fish. My third bite of the session happened just as Mike had given me a mug of tea. The float virtually lifted right out of the water then dropped flat I tightened into a good fish which shot off at a fast rate of knots. A minute later the fish was gone. I was left with a bare hook and limp line.

Use A Plummet

After plumbing the depth to make sure I was fishing with the weight just on the bottom I baited with three grains of corn. With an underhand cast, the float settled in the required spot. I chucked in a handful of corn. Within minutes the float bobbed twice then dropped flat then stood up right. Thirty seconds later it was slowly submerging as it moved across the surface of the lake. As the tip disappeared I tightened into another fish which hugged the bottom then moved slowly to my right. A big sheet of bubbles appeared as the fish dug its head in the bottom, as it tried to get rid of the hook. I cramped down hard, then slowly pumped the fish towards the surface, it wallowed on the surface, I pushed the net forward so it was a foot or so below the surface then pulled the fish over the net and lifted. I could see it was a good fish. The scale needle went round to give a reading of 6-1-0. After a couple of pictures the fish was returned to grow into a ten pounder. With the sun climbing higher into the azure blue sky and the mercury rising, I decided it was time for breakfast.

Fresh Mackerel Fillets

As the day progressed the bites ceased as did the sub surface activity, the fish had moved off for the weedy snaggy water to escape the bright sunshine. I had two more five pound plus tench giving me a total of five fish. During the day I grabbed an hours shut eye, walked the banks of the Kennet where I chatted with other members, helping them with advice when needed. At around five PM I decided it was dinner time I had planned to have Pasta and roasted vegetables that Mikes daughter Alex has prepared. As I sorted out the cooking utensils Kevin turned up "Martin would you like some fresh mackerel fillets for your tea?" being a diabetic I answered immediately "Yes please" Kevin then said "One of my fishing mates has been down to Chesil Beach today" Dinner would be now two courses. The mackerel cooked, then doused in vinegar and sprinkled with black pepper tasted delicious. I didn’t catch any more tench, I had a nice perch that grabbed my corn baited hook and lost two carp but enjoyed every moment of the day. If your interested in joining the Wasing Fisheries Syndicate Telephone Kevin Rolls on 07769-653496 or E-mail or


The Magnificent Kennet

After a day fishing the lake, I then fished the river Kennet, the water was lower than I would have liked, but it was still flowing better than any of the northern spate rivers which could be described as bare bones. What I did notice this year was the lack of weed growth on some stretches of the Kennet. After my usual mug of tea, Picking up my tackle, I slung the bait bag over my shoulder then headed off downstream. My battle plan was to cast a bait into every likely looking bit of water paying particular attention to fishing swims that were shaded by over hanging trees and also fishing the white water of weir pools.

A Good Bream

The first swim was some five minute walk from the car park, I chucked a bit of crust on a size 4 barbless hook with one LG shot stopped some six inches from the hook. As the bait trundled under the branches I felt a pluck. the answering strike connected with something solid. After a couple of minutes I had a good size bream wallowing on the surface which was quickly netted. Returning the fish, I moved off downstream some thirty yards to another over hanging bush. The bread baited hook was dropped in close to the bank then allowed to slowly move downstream, after it had gone a couple of feet, The bait was taken, After a brief struggle I netted a good chub of 4lbs plus. This was followed by another chub of similar size on sausage meat paste. Three bites, in two swims. It was turning into a good day. Could I catch another chub I thought as I dropped another chunk of sausage meat paste into the swim allowing it to trundle downstream. It had gone ten yards when I had a savage take, a powerful fish had hooked itself. The reel gave line as the rod was hooped over. After a very tense scrap I had a good barbel two or three feet upstream of where I sat. Sinking the net I forced the fish on the surface. I then dragged it downstream and into the net.

Weir Pool Stream

After fishing several more swims without success I decided it was time to fish the weir pool and side stream. Fishing the pool I had two bites both missed then a bite less half an hour. It was time to move. I chose a swim some fifty yards upstream of where the weir pool stream made a sharp right hand turn. Baiting with crust I dropped the bait on a patch of gravel between the swaying water crowfoot. Immediately a big crayfish grabbed hold of the bait. Lifting the rod I dragged it over the landing net where it was crushed under my boot, then chucked into the stream. Baiting with another bit of crust, I cast the bait upstream into another gap in the swaying weed. Immediately I had a bite, hooking a chub of about three pounds which I dragged into the waiting net. Moving downstream I cast a bait into the fast water allowing the bait to trundle under a big weed raft, as the bait started to roll from under this raft I had a small pluck then a solid pull the answering strike connected with a good fish. After a brief struggle which was being recorded for my "At The Waters Edge" programme on BBC Radio Lancashire. You can of course hear the programme on the Internet. www.bbc.co.uk/lancashire then click on fishing. I netted a good chub. It pulled the scale needle round to give a reading of 5-4-0 I fished on until teatime without another bite, then called it a day.

Barbel On The Feed

My last day was spent on the Kennet, fishing with the same tackle but with one additional bait, some meatballs given to me by Kevin Dyer of Maidstone. I fished my way downstream from the car park catching a couple of chub both on crust. Arriving at the weir pool, I baited with a chunk of sausage meat which I dropped in close to the white churning water of the weir pool. It was immediately taken, after a good fight I netted a barbel about six pounds. Moving to the bottom of the pool I had another barbel of about the same size. Fishing a couple of swim down the stream I caught a brace of chub averaging about three pounds. I then moved back to the car park for a well deserved lunch. After my break I moved off downstream where I spent the rest of the day fishing the main river. I caught four barbel, the best weighing in at 9-1-0 on sausage meat paste, two more fish about six pounds were caught using meatballs as bait. I also had another barbel on legered crust. I lost two fish both of them getting rid of the hook, and I was busted off by another fish. It had certainly been some great fishing in delightful surroundings







With the my favourite rivers in Lancashire and Yorkshire very low, weedy with high water temperatures and low oxygen content I decided I didn't want to attempt to catch fish which were virtually trapped in small pools. I considered the seatrout fishing not worth the effort. I decided to travel south with Mike Osborne of Cumbria to fish the Wasing Fisheries syndicate lakes on the Wasing Estate where there is some delightful tench fishing. The added bonus I would have some 4 miles of fishing on the river Kennet.

The drive down the M6 M5 and M42 to the Royal County of Berkshire was well worth the effort and despite the bright sunshine and the hot muggy conditions I caught some good tench all over 5lbs plus with the best at 6-1-0. Tackle was a Masterline Avon action 5 piece rod rod, centre pin reel, 6lb line and a red tipped quill float taking three BB shot. The size 10 hook was baited with two or three grains of corn. I raked the swim on several occasions feeding with hemp and corn. I then baited my swim with half a dozen grains of corn every ten minutes or so. After my tench fishing session, Kevin the fisheries manager turned up at teatime with some fresh filleted mackerel caught that day from Chesil beach. I cooked them for a couple of minutes, then sprinkled the fillets with black pepper lemon juice. With some brown bread and butter and a mug of tea it was a delightful way to end a fishing session.

After a day fishing the lake I spent a couple of days fishing the river Kennet where I caught bream to 6lbs, chub to 5-4-0 and barbel to 9-1-0. Baits used, were crust and sausage meat, my tackle choice on the river Kennet was the same tackle as I used for the tench fishing. If your interested in joining the Wasing Fisheries Syndicate Telephone Kevin Rolls on 07769-653496 or E-mail rollskevin@aol.com or Kevinrolls@wasingfisheries.co.uk

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Bass are Feeding 20th July

The warm weather and calm ocean conditions have certainly helped those anglers who target the bass with flies or lures. One successful angler has been Kent Sherrington from Burnley Lancashire. Kent visited the the north Wales coastline for a couple of days catching bass on fly fishing gear during the dawn session. Fishing the first couple of hours of darkness Kent used lure fishing gear to take his bass.

Peter Howlett from Blackburn on holiday in Devon caught a personal best bass of 8-12-0 fishing a strip of fresh mackeral on a size 3/0 hook and 15lb line. In the Anglers Mail Author Dave Tipping of Harrogate is featured with a good thick-lipped mullet of 4-12-0 caught on bread flake. 11 old Connor Hayes fishing with his Dad Mark off the Essex coast with John Rawle caught a super 50 pound tope which was returned to the water Well done Connor. These days cod are in short supply, but Paul Bigwood tempted a super cod of 26lbs fishing a wreck near the Needles off the Isles of Wight. The ladies are also in the big fish stakes Suzanne Martin of Seaford East Sussex has just become the only second woman to win the British Conger Club Championships with a magnificent 69lb 3 oz conger eel

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Angling Reports 20th July

Rutland Water Although temperatures have been in the high seventies, fish are not that deep and some have been seen moving on the top on calm days and just under the surface when there is a bit of breeze. The best rainbow and best brown were identical weights this week at 5lb 4oz. The two ‘hot spots’ are the main basin and the south arm (in open water) with anything from small dries to gold and silver sparklers catching. best rainbow 5lb 4oz taken Ken Newton of Selby best brown 5lb 4oz taken by Terry Oliver of Lincoln.best boat areas bottom of the south arm in open water and main basin best bank areas Sykes lane, stockie bay, Ernies point and Normanton

Grafham Water Although the hot bright days have proved a challenge for some anglers, an early start paid off for Rob Edmunds who took the biggest brown of the season at 7lb 12oz. Rob caught the fish at 5.30am off the seat fishing a waggy on intermediate line. Fish have remained in the top 6ft of water throughout the lake and the best spots have been rainbow point, Gaynes cove and the boils. Local angler John McCullum caught a fantastic rainbow of 8lb 1oz drifting out off rainbow point using floating line and red headed diawl bach. Anglers using big tubes going point first through the middle of lake have also enjoyed some great sport.A variety of methods have worked, including a team of static nymphs on a floating line with a sight indicator, floating or slow sink line carrying a sparkler or bobby on the point with nymphs on the droppers or a blob on the top dropper with two nymphs beyond it. Di7s stripped basck with sparklers or blobs are also accounting for some good catches.

Pitsford Water Although fishing has proved difficult in the hot temperatures some anglers have had some very good catches on slim profile nymphs fished on long leaders with a very slow retrieve. Bank fishing is most productive during early morning or late evening sessions. Despite tough conditions for the Wednesday night boat league, Brian Mead of Bozeat managed to catch 4 fish for 9lb 4oz. The best fish of the week was noted as 6lb 1oz but unfortunately the captor left no further information.

Ravensthorpe Reservoir Fish continue to gorge themselves on Ravensthorpe’s prolific damsel hatches giving both boat and bank anglers excellent sport from the reservoir margins.

Fish thinly dressed hares ear, diawl bach and damsel patterns just sub-surface to take these fish with a slow figure of eight retrieve Peter Turner from Brigg elected to bank fish twice this week and was rewarded with some excellent rainbows, tipped by a 7lb 12oz over wintered fish. Peter fished hares ear (12) on floating line Daddies, olive and claret hoppers, fiery red raiders and cdc emergers will all take fish in overcast/ripple conditions – the adult blue damsel is well worth a try from the boats. Early and lake is best from the bank (try platforms 2, 3,10 & 11 and wade the cotton shallows adjacent to the car park) mornings are best from boats.



coarse fishing Anglers are advised to take a little extra care in selecting their swims at the moment with the recent increase in weed growth. Andy Rollings certainly got it right when he fished the lodge bank and was rewarded with a superb bag of 27 bream up to 7½lb. Mike Barker and son also did very well, again on the lodge bank, near the sailing club and had over a dozen bream, 8 perch and 10 good sized roach. Another favourable area is the car park at Noah’s Ark where several good mixed bags have been reported. Anglers are reminded that the boats are back in operation and may be booked on 01206 230642.

Hollowell Reservoir Anglian Water in partnership with the Sportsmans Lodge, will be offering juniors the opportunity to fish for free under the guidance of local experts on Sunday 10 August. The day is aimed at juniors aged 8 – 16 and fishing will be between 10.00am and 4.00pm. Tackle and bait will be provided. Space is limited so you do need to book by telephoning 01604 781350 and juniors attending must be accompanied by and adult throughout the day.

Anglian Water Fulling Mill International Following last week’s successful North Wales heats Anglian Water’s Fishery manager Jon Marshall and Jon Mees are in Scotland for the five Scottish heats followed by two finals on Sunday 20 July. Jon said the Welsh heats were great fun and the Scottish event is going to be one of the highlights of the year. There are two heats every day taking advantage of the long day length and seven teams will qualify for the International Final at Rutland Water in October.

North Wales Heats, Llyn Brenig 3 & 4 July Cloud and light wind provided superb conditions for the Welsh heats held over the two days at Llyn Brenig in early July. Fish were caught on dries on the surface;, nymphs and floating and slime lines and some anglers caught pulling lures. As the results show everyone enjoyed good sport. The first three team on each day qualified for the Welsh Final at Llyn Brenig on 16 August Thanks go to the staff and rangers at Llyn Brenig for making everyone so welcome. 3 July 36 anglers caught 214 fish giving as rod average of 5.94 1st Llanilar Ty-Nant 45 for 93lb 14oz. 2nd Cheshire Hawks ‘Blues’ 45 for 87lb 9oz 3rd Clwywedog Otters 40 for 67lb 7½oz Best fish of 2lb 13oz went to Tony Bevan of Llanilar Ty-Nant 4 July 36 anglers caught 176 fish giving a rod average of 4.89 1st Cheshire Hawks ‘A’ 34 for 52lb 4oz 2nd Yamaha Flyfishers 29 for 50lb 7oz 3rd Adfail Ty-Nant 29 for 49lb 5½oz. Best fish of 2lb 13 oz went to Wayne James of Adail Ty-Nant


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Great Fishing Off Rhode Island 15 July

The fly fishing this past week has been superb. there have been many large striped bass in the bay feeding on menhaden, an oily baitfish that grows up to three or four pounds so you can imagine the size of the fish that is trying to eat them. Anglers who are able to cast a very big fly, of up to 10-inches in length are getting the bigger fish. they are very specific on the size and colour of flies they are eating right now. Small flies are producing small fish, while the big flies are getting the larger fish.
Capt Jim and his son Justin White have guided their clients to the capture of three fish over thirty pounds this past week. Eight fish were over twenty pounds and two dozen in the teens. Large bluefish have also arrived in huge numbers. They are everywhere in all sizes.
This is truly a world class fishery. With the fall just around the corner, it should be wild fishing going into late August and September. I will be across in late September chucking big flies in the hope of hooking up to a thirty pound plus striper. If you planning to visit the east coast for these big stripers, then take a ten weight The Thomas and Thomas Horizon or Helix models are perfect for the job. If you fish with Capt Jim White or his son Justin they will give you the tools for the job which includes Thomas and Thomas rods.

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Fishery Reports 11th July

Rutland Water ) Rutland Water is giving consistent sport with a rod average of around three. The best fishing has been in the open water of the south arm, with fish moving well throughout the day, in the light wind conditions of last week. The trout are feeding on small olive buzzer, daphnia, with one or two on sedge pupae in the evening. Bank anglers caught off Stockie Bay, Sykes Lane, the Dam, transformer, and Ernies Point. Everything from small nymphs, lures to dry fly, fished mainly on floating lines were used. The aerators in the main basin have attracted boats as well as the fish, with one or two bag limits coming from this area.M J Wagger of Edith Weston, on Rutland Water’s south shore, used his local knowledge to take the best brown of the week a super 6lb 8oz fish. Ramsay Hodgson recorded the best rainbow of the week at 4lb 10oz in his four fish limit. best rainbow taken by Ramsay Hodgson 4lb 10oz best brown 6lb 8oz taken by M Wager of Edith Weston best boat areas across the middle of the south arm. Main basin and aerators, cardiac hill best bank areas stockie bay, sykes lane, whitwell, ernie’s point, transformer best methods floating lines with hares ear. Diawl bach, pheasant tails, damsel
Grafham Water Mr Foley of St Neots took the largest rainbow of the week at 4lb 2oz. The best 8 fish limit of 21lb 9oz was recorded by Bob Ayres of Cambridge Invicta, whose boat partner Steve Middleton also had a good eight fish. Most of their fish came to slow or static nymphs with three fish coming quickly on tube flies.With relatively settled weather this week providing even temperatures, and a mixture of sun and cloud and light winds catch rates at Grafham have been consistent. The best areas have been those upwind where the water is clear of algal build up. Fish have remained in the top 6 feet of water. Sometimes showing well at the surface in response to either pin fry or hatches of buzzers and sedges. best rainbow: 4lb 2oz taken by Mr Foley of St Neots best boat areas whole of the North shore best bank areas G bank, best methods floating lines, static nymphs, green buzzers. Slow sink lines with nymphs and a bobbie on the point.

Pitsford Water Pitsford held the Todays Flyfisher European Open on Saturday 5 July. 36 anglers competed in perfect trout fishing conditions, cloudy and warm with a light ripple. Fish were rising all over the reservoir. The largest fish, weighing 5lb 8oz was taken by wild card qualifier John Innes. Season ticket holder John, of Sleaford, took this quality fish at the dam on a black buzzer. Pitsford produced a 5.1 rod average with a superb average size of fish at 11lb 14oz. Star of the show and local lad was Richard Slater. Richard caught 6 fish and released a further 11 fish to give him a total haul of 17 fish. Richard, who holds a season ticket and comes from Northampton, caught all of his fish at the top end by the dam. He used a midge tip line with four flies, a red head diawl bach, and a green flash back nymph and a pheasant tail nymph. Richard was over the moon with his result as it was his first major match win. John Horsey, match organiser, said the event could not have run more smoothly.

Ravensthorpe Reservoir Ravensthorpe is fishing particularly well with a rod average of 6.5. There have been some excellent catches. Holiday package angler R Sheddon of Broxborn in West Lothian made his trip ‘down south’ to Ravensthorpe worthwhile. He took the best rainbow of the week, weighing over 7lb, part of his total catch of 40 plus. best rainbow 7lb plus taken by R Sheddon of Broxbourn West Lothian best bank areas Platforms, Mongers to Coton End best boat areas The island, Coton End and Mongers Bay best methods Fish are in the top of the water. Use dries and emergers. Also damsel fly, hares ear nymph. Best time is morning through to early afternoon. Evenings are proving less productive.





coarse fishing Ardleigh There have been some really good mixed bags reported this week. Fishing on the Lodge Bank, John Judge had 20 bream and 10 roach while David Gray had 6 bream, 4 roach and an 8lb carp. On the Wick Lane Bank Ian Symington had an unusual bag of 10 bream/roach hybrids. The Butterfly Pond is also fishing well with Andrew Mitchum having a bag containing over 20 skimmer bream plus good numbers of roach and perch. Best pike of the week was caught by John Servant lure fishing from a boat. Amongst some smaller ones he had a 14lb fish in beautiful condition


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Big Grayling in Swedish Lapland 11th July

I have just returned from an exciting week in Swedish Lapland, I started off fishing the Baltic sea in the Nordmaling area. Despite the strong southerly wind creating big white caps I managed to catch some pike and perch on surface fished flies. I stayed at the Tema Gården hotel with Ingemar and Britt-Marie.
Apart from catering for anglers, hikers, bird watchers and family groups, the hotel is used for conferences and other business meetings. Ingemar and Britt-Marie offer a full service including meals, packed lunches beer, wine or any other beverage. The Tema Gården hotel has 32 beds in 16 modern rooms with sauna and games room with darts and table tennis.

There is also a small kitchen with fridge and microwave-oven for the use of guests. Outdoor (and sometimes indoors) there are several activities, such as team building, playing crocket, football etc etc. The food was excellent on the first night I dined on fresh salmon, it was some of the nicest fish I have had the pleasure to eat.

After a morning fishing Ingemar and Britt-Marie arranged for lunch to be taken on their private island. Again the food was excellent as was the hammock I had the use of after such a great lunch. I made up two outfits for fly fishing the Baltic sea. Rods were Thomas and Thomas Horizon nine weights, one with a Cortland ghost tip line for when I was fishing surface fished flies in the shallow weedy areas. The other rod was matched with a Teeny 350 grain shooting line. This outfit was used when I was fishing big flies on size 8/0 hook close to the bottom in the deep water.

My guide was Torbjorn Holst who built the beautiful clinker built 18 foot boat which proved ideal for fly fishing and very stable despite the rough sea. I was also impressed to find that Ingemar and Britt-Marie also supply life jackets which should be worn at all times when your afloat. The sport of angling in the UK is the most dangerous sport of all. More anglers are killed than any other group of sports people. If you facy fishing the Batic Sea for pike grayling Big perch seatrout or salmon E-mail ingemar@temagarden.com

After a couple of days in the Nordmaling area, I then moved further north to Kattisavan where the Lapland World Cup was taking place. I wasn't fishing this event, my job was to act as Master of Ceremonies for the event which was very well organised by Greger Johnnson and his team of controllers. This years event was certainly an international affair with anglers from the UK, USA, Romania, Poland, Italy, France, Denmark Finland, Germany and Holland. It was pleasing to see many ladies taking part, who were also among the prize winners.

The competition was spit into two sections, fly fishing and spinning. Before the prize presentation and dinner there were three talks and slide shows Tim Twist from Derbyshire discussed grayling fishing, Cecilia "Pudge" Kleinkauf author of "Fly Fishing Woman explore Alaska" gave a very interesting talk on fishing in Alaska, while I gave a talk on bonefishing in the Bahamas. After a delightful dinner everyone moved outside where there was dancing to live bands and lots of drinking as I was getting up around 8-0am some of those attending the event were just going off to bed.

Long Drive North

Sunday morning, I and Tim Twist moved north to Ammarnas up near the Norwegian border and close to the Arctic circle. The village of Ammarnas is where the culture of Laplander and settler meet Its a wilderness of forests lakes rivers stream hills and mountains. While Tim and a group of anglers and wildlife photographers moved off on Icelandic ponies to a camp in the mountains with Ulf as their guide. I stayed behind in a luxury cabin close to the the village. After a short walk I had some excellent grayling fishing with the chance of 3lb grayling a possibility when fishing the Tjulan river. The wading is very easy in the gin clear water where you can see and target single big fish. I fished both dry flies and nymphs with a Thomas and Thomas 4 weight rod with a Cortland 555 floating ghost tip line, Having mentioned I fished nymph's it was only on an odd occasion. Dry fly fishing was excellent, my top three patterns were European 12's, Suppa puppan's and Klinkhamer Specials.

Gothenburg angler Peter Schmitt who was stopping in the area for the summer months invited me to join him on the various rivers including the Vindelalven river where some of the biggest grayling were caught. The Vindelalven river is Sweden's national rivers which means it cannot have power plants, hotels etc built on its banks. No way must the flow be impeded. In fact, where the river was straightened and rocks were removed by the logging companies in the past. Work is now being done on the river to make sure the rocks and flow of water are put back in there original position before the logging days. Peter Schmitt and Matthew who works as a guide out of the Ammarnas Fiske centre really looked after me and all three of us caught some great fish. One evening Peter spotted a fish taking flies off the surface, casting a Klinkhamer Special Peter hooked up to a big brown trout. It was a some fifteen minute fight, on two occasions we had a good look at a brown trout which we estimated at around 12lbs. Sadly the fish decided to go down the river which flowed from the lake where it busted off Peter. That was some fish which Peter had hooked on a Thomas and Thomas 4 weight Vector series rod. This part of Swedish Lapland certainly offers some excellent grayling and brown trout fishing. The cabins were excellent and the food was most tasty. If your up that way try the reindeer meat. If you want more details on this area E-mail Ulf Bodil ammarnas.fiskecentrum@telia.com


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Rivers in desperate need of rain 11th July

Despite the low water levels on our rivers some good fish have been caught. The rivers are once again bare bones with clodorpha weed causing a lot of problems on some rivers. We desperately need a lot of rain to give the rivers a good lift especially the seatrout and salmon rivers in the North of England. despite the low clear rivers some anglers have experienced some excellent sport.

Alan Roe of Blackpool fished the river Ribble at Salmsbury where he caught an eight pound bream, certainly one of the better bream taken from this river.
On the river Teme near Worcester, Cumbria angler Mike Osborne had a great fishing session taking 17 barbel and 5 chub, which included a barbel weighing in at 9-14-0. with two other nine pounders.
Graeme Cook a civil servant from Lancaster had a great chub fishing session on the river Wyre. catching 8 chub with weights of 2lb 11oz, 3lb 3oz, 3lb 5oz, 3lb 7oz, 3lb 8oz, 3lb 12oz, 4lb 7oz and a personal best of 5lb 1oz all on bread, two on legered bread, and six on floating crust. Floating crust was a method that Graeme hadn't used before, he described it as "Very exciting".

In this weeks Anglers Mail there is a picture and story of a river Trent new barbel record caught by Stuart Valentine weighing in at 16-8-0 Its the best barbel reported this season and I say well done to Stuart for allowing us all to see the picture and read his account of the fishes capture. All you carp fishers will find several pages of big carp captures and various ways of catching big carp in this weeks Anglers Mail. Its also nice to know that reporter Gary Newman is himself an experienced big fish angler with many big fish of several species to his credit. Sea anglers are not forgotten in the Anglers Mail with 5 pages dedicated to your sport
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Rain Encourages Fish To Feed 3rd July

For a long time our rivers have been bares bones, I feared for the fish and aquatic life should we get some chemical into our waterways. It can happen so easy. All it takes is some industrial site, farmer or contractor to put something down a drain, into a stream or on the land. An accident on our roads with a tanker carrying chemicals, could cause death and destruction to our rivers and streams. Often all it takes when our rivers and streams are low and clear with little flow is a thunderstorm with very heavy rain causing local flooding, with sewage storm over flow pipes allowing sewage to escape into our rivers.

Thankfully during the day on Monday and in the early hours of Tuesday we had a lot of rain which lifted our rivers an average of two feet. The gauge at Grindleton Bridge on the river Ribble at 9-0am on Tuesday morning gave a reading of two and a half feet. The river Aire had an average of some eighteen inches. Though the rivers on Tuesday were highly coloured with lots of rubbish and masses of clodorpha weed, the fish were willing to feed if you could overcome the floating weed problem.

On the river Ribble anglers were catching chub and barbel, the best results coming from the bottom end of the river. An angler fishing downstream of the motorway bridge had a nice barbel on swimfeeder maggot rig weighing 8-12-0 Prospects for seatrout fishing have greatly improved. On the river Wyre some nice chub have been caught on lobworm bait. On the rivers Calder, Wyre and Ribble eels are proving a nuisance when fishing with worms, gentles and meat baits. Bread and boilies used as bait should help overcome this problem.

Civil Engineer Matthew Blyth who originally comes from Blackpool, now working in the oil industry in Nova Scotia Canada is a regular listener to my programme At The Waters Edge on BBC Radio lancashire via the internet.
Matthew had E-mailed me to say he was coming home for his fathers funereal and asked where he could fish on the Ribble while he was at home. I said "Come and have a day with me", Despite the highly coloured water with masses of blanket weed I decided to take Matthew to the river Aire on the Keighley AC. Mathew fishing with legered crust caught chub to 4-12-0 which proved a personal best. During the morning session I didn't fish but after Matthew had caught some fish He said "Come on show me how you catch these chub". Within minutes of casting out a big bit of crust on a size 4 hook to 6lb line I had a drop back bite which turned out to be a chub of 5-6-0 in excellent condition. My bait was only a few feet from Matthews. (Who said isn't a lot of luck in fishing) Due to being diabetic and trying to sort out my diet, we only fished a short session but as Matthew said I learnt a lot today and it was most interesting " I enjoyed taking Matthew to the waterside where hopefully he was able to enjoy a few hours of enjoyment.

Bob Graham of Preston who has just moved into Lancashire from the White Rose county of Yorkshire has today Wednesday 2nd July caught a good seatrout from the Ribble near Osbaldeston weighing six pounds on a small Mepps spinner.


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Martin James Fishing
Email: info@martinjamesfishing.co.uk