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Martin James award-winning fisherman consultant,broadcaster,writer


Trout Fishing Reports

Rutland Water With brown trout back in season and the competition calendar well under way Rutland Water is providing excellent sport. The best fish of the week was a brown trout taken by season ticket holder Malcolm Cole. Malcolm, from Grimsthorpe, managed a creditable over wintered 5lb 2oz brown, this, along with seven rainbows, made a fine limit. Boat fishing off the Normanton bank, Malcolm used a sinking line and gold and silver tube fly.Strong winds didn’t deter Rutland stalwarts John Wotherspoon, from Stamford and Brian Flack, from Orton Longueville, Peterborough. John and Brian are regular boat partners and each took their limit, boat fishing down the south arm, using sinking lines and lure tactics.Competition newsBob Church Open (Frank Cutler Memorial Trophy)The popular annual Bob Church, Northampton Town Football Club Charity match is one of the first matches of the new season at Rutland Water. Fished last Sunday, 64 anglers caught 289 fish with a rod average of 4.51. Many anglers took their 8 fish limit, some by lunchtime. Top rod on the day was Tim Leach of Waterbeach, Cambs, who managed to take his limit by 12.25 with eight fish for 18lb 4oz combined with a good time bonus, giving a total weight of 29lb 4oz. Trout Masters Fish Off Congratulations to Pete Andrews from Grantham, winner of the Trout Masters fish off. Pete took a very worthy seven fish for 14lb 14oz, fishing off the Old Hall to secure his place in the final. In second place was Melton’s Roger McCarthy with three fish for 6lb 7oz. Warren Scott from Sunderland took third place with three fish for 5lb 3¼oz.Tuesday Night boat league This popular boat league is open to everyone. The series starts on 10 May and goes through to 16 August. Fishing commences at 6.00pm, with booking in from 5.15. Sunset boat £10 (£5 per angler), evening permit £12 for four fish limit or a day permit £17 for an eight fish limit. Season permit holders pay only for the boat. Supper is available afterwards at a small additional charge. Best rainbow 5lb taken by Mr A Gill of Granthambest brown 5lb 2oz taken by Malcolm Coles of Grimsthorpebest boat areas Yellowstone, gibbets gorse, Normanton best bank area Normanton, Old Hall, Whitwell Creek, Sykes Lane, Church Bay and Green bank best methods bank – floating lines with weighted lures and buzzers.boat – as bank, but try various sinking lines

Grafham Water On 5 April GWFFA’s youngest member, Jack Easton, who will celebrate his eleventh birthday later this month, went on his first ever fly fishing trip to Grafham Water, with his grand father Gerry Bailey, GWFFA chairman. Jack and Gerry both live in Hitchin. Jack received some expert instruction from Anglian Water’s Ray Jenkins and Alan Dalton on boat safety and a few tips on fishing techniques, which obviously proved successful. Jack caught a brace of rainbows to a total weight of four pounds. This boy is now hooked.Meanwhile the adults weren’t doing too badly, given the strong winds endured for most of the week. Ian Heading landed the largest brown of the week at 5lb 12oz, accompanied by rainbows of up to 4lb 4oz in a six fish bag of 22lb.

Grafham Water continued In windy conditions most boat anglers chose to anchor and many fished floating lines with buzzer nymphs on long leaders. Prolific hatches of black and olive buzzers took place and these were the successful colours for anglers. At the beginning of the season fish were caught close to the bottom but now the middle dropper on the leader is taking the majority of fish indicating they are in mid water. On calm evenings rising fish have been seen and caught on dry flies by enterprising anglers, hopefully a sign of great surface sport to brown 5lb 12oz taken by Ian Headingbest boat areas Stumps, sanctuary bay, hill farm and G buoy best bank areas G buoy, hill farm, the stumps and methods Floaters with buzzers, diawl bachs, and small nymphs. Sinkers with black and green lures mid week boat winner Mr Laurence Ward of Garboldisham

Pitsford Water Melvyn Carpenter, a season ticket holder from Godmanchester, won the Trout Masters fish off at Pitsford on Saturday. Melvyn chose to fish the sailing club bank. With the wind off his back, on what was a rough, windy day, it was an ideal spot. Melvyn caught his fish on buzzers and diawl bachs on a floating line close in to the bank. After taking four fish he was neck and neck with fellow competitor Graham Willis from Glendon, Northants. But Melvyn caught his fifth fish close to finishing time and won through to fish in the final at Grafham Water in May. Mel’s 5 fish bag weighed in at 10lb 11oz. Higham Ferrers anglers held their annual boat match at Pitsford on Saturday. They averaged two fish per rod, in spite of the strong cold, north west wind. Some terrific fish were taken in excellent condition as proven by match winner Richard Smith from Higham. Richard caught four fish weighing a massive 15lb 6oz. His haul included a rainbow of 4lb 10oz and a brown of 3lb 15oz, all fish were taken on minkies on a di3 line. Most fish were taken in Brixworth Bay, which proved to be the most sheltered spot. Best boat areas are close in to the small half bank near the pontoon and Brixworth Bay. Further stocking is planned for this rainbow 4lb 9oz, taken by Nathan Reilly of bank areas Fish are still close to banks with top spots being the sailing club bank and the small boat areas close in to the small half bank near the pontoon and Brixworth bay best methods in warm conditions floating line with a team of small buzzers, black, green, red and brown. In colder weather black lures and boobies on fast sinking lines. In rough conditions try slow sinking lines with small lures.

Ravensthorpe Reservoir A fantastic week to report at Ravensthorpe with a rod average of 9.1 and the best rainbow of the season to date. Mark Frost of Wellingborough weighed in a superb rainbow at 12lb 8oz. Mark was bank fishing on the Dome bushes using buzzers. Recording another highlight of the week was season ticket holder Ron Gent. Ron, from Great Glen, Leicester, caught and returned two doubles, one at 10lb 4oz and the other at 11lb, along with six others from platform one, again on buzzers.The Troutmasters fish off was held on Sunday 10 April. Ravensthorpe regular and season ticket holder Jim Ferguson of Rugby took the honours with an aggregate weight of 11lb 7oz. Jim will now go on to represent Ravensthorpe in the final. Rob Keeber (Evington, Leicester) was second and Mick Griffin (Northampton) third.Buzzers are taking the bulk of fish, again this week. Black or green seem the best colours, fished off a floating line. Boat fishing is at its best on the North east side between the causeway and island. Bank anglers are catching from all areas.

Martin James Fishing