Last week the weather was none too special; that is for certain! Even so 17 anglers made their way to the fishery, catching 48 Fish for a 2.8 fish rod average.
Top bag went to Peter Bridges, landing 5 weighing 23lbs and including specimens of 7lb, 7lb and 5lb that all succumbed to a change of tactics which had previously taken a couple of quick 2lb stockies.
Successful method was a 12 foot leader attached to a White Bead Head Minkie, counted down to 30 and fished back with an ultra slow retrieve. Regulars like Peter certainly are beginning to learn the lake since the changes and last month he was top of the Troutmasters leader board for Exe Valley with his 8lb 1oz Rainbow taken on a Black Snake Fly.
Many congratulations to Peter and the other Troutmasters winners Jonathan Moore from Sidmouth with a 7lb 12oz Rainbow caught on a Snail Blob (not heard of that one before!) and Graham Lavender who was just 2oz short, placing 3rd with his 7lb 10oz Rainbow which fell to the ever faithful Blue Flash Damsel. All these fish appeared in issue 749 of Trout Fisherman magazine and were caught during the period 21st November to 11th December 2015.
Other good catches last week include Gerry Manser, back in town after an extended visit of a year to Kent. He said he had a “Great Day” on his return and finished up with 3 for 11lb 12oz. Richard Burt took 5 for 12lb as did Chris Short , while Chris Swain noted on his return that the 3 Trout he landed all took very softly. Once again Jonathan Moore also got in amongst the big fish when he bagged himself a 5lb 4oz Trout.
This week rather than pictures of anglers with their catches I am posting up this, the biggest Trout ever caught at Exe Valley Fishery. Weighing 25lb on the nose it was caught by Les Carter in 2014 during a heat of Iain Barrs Bank Masters competition, providing him with a win which he then followed up in 2015 with another top spot. Can he do it all again in 2016?
If you fancy a crack at this year’s heat the date for your diary is Sunday 20th March 2016. The competition will be fished to a 2 fish limit with catch and release to follow, a special allowance for the bank masters match.
There will be prizes to 3rd place and the chance to gain yourself a spot at the final with a top prize of £2000. You can find out more about the Iain Barr Bank Masters 2016 here and if you would like to enter please click here for an entry form. Alternatively see me at the fishery and I can process both entry fees & forms.
This year we expect a very fair match with the new access to deep water. It’s an exciting event too, with points scored on each peg and a move every 30 minutes, to ensure all competitors gets a chance to fish their way around the lake.
The main attraction is not just winning a place in the final or taking home a prize, but the chance to enjoy a great day out with like minded anglers and who knows you may just be drawn right next to an experienced competition angler so that you can watch their every move. From my own experience it is a very rare thing indeed to fish a match and not learn something from it!
Just before I go, one other date for your diary. The Exe Valley Troutmasters Fish Off will take place on Sunday 28th February 2016. We had a lot of big fish caught last year and expect a decent turnout. If you were one of the anglers to win a badge last season, please watch out in the post for your invite landing very soon and I wish you the very best of luck on the day.
That is it for this week. Please find more information about the above competitions featured in the new Fly Fishing Competitions 2016 section of the Help & Info pages. And if competition really isn't your thing, look out on this page and also in your inbox if you subscribe to our newsletter for some none competition Exe Valley Fishery events happening during 2016.
Thanks for reading, I hope the weather behaves and you can wet a line very soon. Gorgeous here today!