Junior Fly Fishing Event & Latest Catch Report - Week ending 9th Aug 15

It’s been a fantastic week here at Exe Valley since the most recent report. We have seen some great anglers come in, followed by some even better fish coming out! Conditions are looking fantastic, the wind has dropped and warm weather coupled with dappled cloud has got the fish in a feeding mood.   This week 72 anglers caught 131 fish for a rod average of 1.8, some managing to work out the fish & conditions much better than others!

Exe Valley Fishery on a beautiful August day - photo by Sam Baycock

Exe Valley Fishery on a beautiful August day - photo by Sam Baycock

On Monday 3rd August the River Exe & Tributaries Association (RETA) descended upon the fishery to host their fantastic Junior Fly Fishing event in memory of Robin Bailey, where a combination of casting, fishing  & entomology lessons had 22 young anglers captivated for the day. 32 fish were landed, with the biggest being a stunning 4lb 8oz fish. A brilliant day was had by everyone and all the children left with one of Nick Hart’s Essential Guide to Fly Fishing books, although one lucky participant also left with the top prize, a Fulling Mill box stuffed with over £50 of flies!  Our thanks to RETA committee member Richard Horrocks for organising the event so professionally and the assistance of several instructors which resulted in the general opinion that this had been the most successful day yet.  Here are just a few of the lovely post event comments:

“Frankie says thanks to both of you for a lovely day, she really enjoyed herself and I'm sure she'll do it again.  A really well organised and great day out for all the children - thank you.”  Sally Fulford and Frankie

“Thank you all so much for a fantastic day for the children, a wonderful opportunity for all.  Excellently run, Alfie had a brilliant day and is now keener than ever!!
Thank you to you all.”  Jo Scott and Alfie

“Just a quick note to say thank you so much for giving the kids the opportunity to spend the day fishing with you.  Georgie really enjoyed herself and we had the honour of enjoying some delicious trout tonight.  The day was fun and educating at the same time plus gorgeous weather- perfect. I hope there will be the same opportunity for the kids in future years (Georgie has got three younger siblings....).  Thanks again and: tight lines!”  Patricia Soendgen-Brown and Georgia

“Just a quick note to say many thanks for the days fishing.  Imogen had a wonderful day and thoroughly enjoyed the new experience. Even though she wasn’t successful she did voice interest in trying again.  Many thanks.”  Simon Miller and Imogen


“Henry was very pleased with his first ever days fishing. He gutted, cooked & ate a whole trout for his supper, the other is in the freezer already.  Thanks for organising the day, it was a great experience.”   Sue Carless and Henry

We are keen to encourage as many young people into fly fishing as possible and will be making an announcement in the future about how we intend to do our bit.  But for the moment if you know of a youngster who maybe interested in having a go at fly fishing the Salmon & Trout Association will be running another of their days here at the lakes on Sunday 20th September 15.  For further info please contact Fred Leach on 01398 331019 or email here Junior Fly Fishing Day.

The River Exe & Tributaries Association Robin Bailey Junior Fly Fishing Day 2015 (photo by Richard Horrocks)

The River Exe & Tributaries Association Robin Bailey Junior Fly Fishing Day 2015 (photo by Richard Horrocks)

It has been a pleasure to read the catch returns this week, and I want to begin the stats by thanking you all for your kind comments. As you know, we work tirelessly here to keep the complex looking as beautiful as possible and to keep up our standard of fishing that Exe Valley is famous for.  When we receive complimentary and constructive feedback from our anglers we are truly grateful for such comments. D. Harfield took a couple of lovely fish and said “Lovely site; healthy fish; what’s not to like?” The high average size of fish for August continues as Ivan West’s return reads 5 fish for 15lbs, the heaviest being a plump 4 pounder. R Warry visited Exe Valley for just half a day and in his short spell landed 4 fish for 20lbs including a 5lb 8oz lump. More fantastic bags continued to come out as the week went on including husband & wife regulars Keith & Mary Ratcliffe weighing out 10 fish with a best of 5lb 4oz and Dave Bull took 5 fish for a total 16lbs 4oz. As always, both lakes remain well stocked and the fish are looking happy and healthy.

Mary Ratcliffe with her 5lb 4oz Trout caught using a small nymph fished in the top 2 feet of water.

Mary Ratcliffe with her 5lb 4oz Trout caught using a small nymph fished in the top 2 feet of water.

The burning question on the majority of angler’s minds is “which fly is the key to catching my bag?” So in case you don’t catch us in the shop when you visit, I’ll delve into fly choice and conditions on here.  As mentioned before, buzzers are working well on our lakes and especially on the warm still days we are having. Black buzzers with a little dash of red are favoured by our regulars but Olive colours are also worth a chuck. Dry flies such as Hoppers or Daddies have been fishing well recently, so don’t be afraid to take off that lure and do something different! Try light fluorocarbon leaders of at least 12 feet, skinny Damsel flies, fish Biscuit Blobs "slow" or go stalking with a Shrimp.  Catch a warm day with broken cloud and you will have some fantastic surface action. Otherwise, pay attention to the deeper areas, along with the feeder stream. Conditions wise, remember that Trout are not lovers of bright sunshine or warm weather, so the best sport is to be had in the mornings and evenings if you’re visiting on a hot day.

That’s it from me and Nick for the time being, as always we are swept off our feet with things to do here. We hope you are all enjoying the new website; we certainly are! Please don’t hesitate to drop us a line by email if you have any queries or concerns – we will always do our best to help!  Telephone 01398 323008 or 07971 198559.

See you on the lakes soon!

SamNick