At last … a little bit of spring in the air at Exe Valley Fishery

The Beast from the East seems to have retreated and just hopefully spring is around the corner as it has been a looooong winter!  If you have had enough of it all why not head out West and wet a line, one thing is for sure the water is cold, full of oxygen and the Trout just love it.

Our anglers are making use of the Catch & Release tickets which will be held at the price of £25 for a 10 fish limit this season, with all other ticket options also held as per the 2017 rates. 

Blair Woodland makes use of the higher temps to enjoy a Catch & Release session at Exe Valley.

Blair Woodland makes use of the higher temps to enjoy a Catch & Release session at Exe Valley.

Reading from the returns archives Mr Tomkins recently tried a sporting ticket and worked nymphs for 4 fish over a few hours before switching to a stripped Blob which gave him another 5 fish in just half an hour.

Other returns mention the depth of the fish with the word “deep” used consistently along with “cold” including Mr Hobdens comment which made us chuckle “Bloody Freezing!!  But good sport!”  There is no doubt that wrapping up warm is required to enjoy a day at Exe Valley but if you put in the effort the chances are you will be rewarded with some action. 

Mr Hobden banked 4 fish during his chilly session, but John Slaven had an even more fruitful day with 5 taken and 4 released, noting that it had been a “Cold day but worth it.  Fantastic!”  Johns bag tipped the scales to 15lb 2oz with a best fish of 3lb 2oz

John will hope for an equally impressive bag in just over a weeks’ time when on Sunday 18th March Exe Valley will host its annual Troutmasters Fish Off to determine who will head to the final later in the year.  This event is already well signed up with around 15 anglers attending but if you have an invite and have yet to contact us, there is still time, if you are quick!  Please note that the fishery will be closed to regular day tickets on 18/03/18 until after the match which is due to end around 2pm.

If you are going to practice beforehand or if you are just heading to the fishery for a pleasure day it would be well worth packing Blobs, Snakes, Blue Flash Damsels, Apps Worms and a few buzzers.  Floating lines with long leaders (fished slow) will work well but in recent weeks intermediates and medium sinkers such as the Di-3 have been well worth trying.

And to round up this catch report please note that Lobbs Lake will be open by the end of the month (in time for Easter) with further details regarding the fishing that will be available on this venue posted next time.

Many thanks for reading and look our for more news soon.

For more news & pictures please check out our social media sites, Exe Valley Fishery Facebook & Exe Valley Fishery Instagram

Fishing Report & join our special event on Saturday 10th Dec 2016

November has got off to a fine start at Exe Valley with plenty of good weather and of course at this time of year the fish are in tip top condition.  This one weighing in at 7lb 12oz was caught just a couple of hours ago by Richard Mason from Dawlish using a Black & Green Lure. 

Richard Mason - 11th Nov 16 - 7lb 12oz Rainbow caught on a sink tip line and a Black & Green Lure.

Richard Mason - 11th Nov 16 - 7lb 12oz Rainbow caught on a sink tip line and a Black & Green Lure.

Richard looks more than pleased with his stunning Rainbow and Andi Avery below was even happier!  Andi visited for a two day fly fishing course during the week and took to the casting so well that by lunchtime we had a fly in the water. 

After half an hour and a couple of missed takes the line suddenly tightens up and a pretty Blue Trout is cart wheeling across Anchor Lake.  But it was not just the fish Andi netted but £50 in cash because he had landed a tagged Trout!  A couple of days later he returned to spend his winnings achieving a limit of three fish!  Nice work Andi.

Beginners Luck - Andi Avery with his first ever Trout and his winnings!

Beginners Luck - Andi Avery with his first ever Trout and his winnings!

Tagged Trout

So a new fish has been tagged and is currently cruising around Anchor Lake.  To enter this competition is very simple, just add a pound to your permit fee and then hope you get lucky.  If you catch the tagged fish you win £50!

Enter the competition and catch this fish to win £50 but ...

Enter the competition and catch this fish to win £50 but ...

... you will have to find it first!

... you will have to find it first!

Troutmasters Competition

Don’t forget that we are open throughout the winter and that the ever popular Troutmasters competition is also in full swing.  Clear water means hard fighting Trout and at this time of the year it is safe to stock the larger size specimens such as this 10lb 12oz specimen caught by Steve Bowker in late October.

Could this be next months winner?  Steve's 10lb 12oz Rainbow may top the list but more doubles will be stocked during November.

Could this be next months winner?  Steve's 10lb 12oz Rainbow may top the list but more doubles will be stocked during November.

Last month’s winners printed in issue 490 of Troutfisherman magazine were John Gilmore from Cullompton 10lb 6oz, Dave Bull from Exeter 8lb 14oz and Keith Ratcliffe from Exeter 6lb 10oz.  Well done to all and see you in the fish off next year.

November Tactics

Part of the magnetism of fly fishing is the many tactics & techniques available.  Some people like to fish fast, others slow.  Some anglers don’t mind watching an indicator all day while others get their kick from a dry fly.  For this reason you are allowed to use up to 4 flies on a leader at Exe Valley, go deep with Boobies or suspend a fly beneath a bung.  If it is fly fishing and you enjoy it we want you to visit! 

My top tactic with guests just recently has been to fish lightweight leaders (4lb to 6lb) with a 2 fly set up consisting of a Buzzer 6’ – 7’ from the fly line and then a Blob (or FAB if we need to stay up in the water) 6’ – 7’ from the dropper.  Chuck it all out, pull straight and then fish nice & slow with a figure eight retrieve, allowing the current/wind to do most of the work.  Be ready for some explosive takes but watch the line too because sometimes it is possible to lift into the fish, even before you feel it.

November so far.

Up to Fri 11th November 54 rods caught 132 fish for an average of 2.4 fish per angler.  Best Trout so far is 7lb 12oz and best 5 fish bag is 18lb 2oz

Diary Dates

We apologise for any inconvenience but due to a corporate fishing day Anchor Lake & Lobbs Lake will be closed all day on Tuesday 22nd November 2016

Join in with our Special Event - Devon & Somerset Fly Fishing Day at Exe Valley

Saturday 10th December 2016

We are having a bit of a pre Christmas bash here at the newly renovated Anchor Lake on Saturday 10th December 2016.  Fellow guide & qualified fly fishing instructor Pete Tyjas is heading over to assist and the idea is to give 10 people the opportunity to fish while we are on hand to help improve both casting & fishing techniques .... and net some fish!

Pete Tyjas (right) with Tom and his first ever Grayling.  Pete will be heading over on Sat 10th Dec to help run the Devon & Somerset Fly Fishing Day.

Pete Tyjas (right) with Tom and his first ever Grayling.  Pete will be heading over on Sat 10th Dec to help run the Devon & Somerset Fly Fishing Day.

There will be interactive demos and the day also includes a 2 fish permit plus as a very special addition ... the opportunity to catch & release throughout the day!  Other attractions include the option to watch a Grayling demo on the River Exe, enjoy some fly tying at the cafe and there will be mince pies!

All this fun & information is available for just £45 for the day to include a 2 Fish Permit, unlimited Catch & Release plus the tuition and activities as listed above. 

The event is limited to 10 people so if you would like to register your interest or book a spot please call 01398 323008. Alternatively please email here ... we hope to welcome you. 

Spectacular Stillwater Fly Fishing

Finally we have had some spectacular autumnal scenes here during the week including this one captured on a particularly frosty morning.  You can’t beat being outside in weather like this, especially when the fish are biting!

Thank you for reading and good fishing.

Nick.

Find Exe Valley Fishery on Facebook

Young rods enjoy some great catches & 12lb Rainbow Trout landed – Catch Report to 21st Feb 16

It has been some winter has it not?  Chatting with one of our regulars, just before writing up the latest catch report, we came to the conclusion that it has been about as wet as we can ever remember.  Even so, we are welcoming anglers on a daily basis and just sometimes these visits coincide with pleasant fishing conditions.   Pleasant conditions or not, the fish don’t seem to mind ... as Exe Valley anglers have been finding out.  During the last 2 weeks 54 rods have landed 171 fish for an average of 3.2

David Hants from Torquay said it was “not easy but very enjoyable” in his comments, achieving his limit of 5 fish by regularly changing tactics.  His best fish was 4lb 8oz and the total bag weighed 15lb.

On the same day a party of three arrived, for just that; a party!  A member of the group was celebrating their birthday with a fishing trip to Exe Valley and I am pleased to report that every one of them caught fish using White & Yellow flies in lovely sunny conditions.

Ian Sharpe described his day as “fantastic fun”, with a bag of 4 for 14lbs, including a fine Rainbow of 7lb while Peter Watts said “Lovely Day & Good Fighters”, achieving his limit of 4 weighing 11lb by mid afternoon.

Friday 19th Feb 2016 - Chris Adams - very happy with an eight pounder!

Friday 19th Feb 2016 - Chris Adams - very happy with an eight pounder!

One of the best fish in the last couple of weeks pulled the scales down to 8lbs exactly and was caught using a Green Hothead Damsel on a deep sinker by Chris Adams of Bampton.  At the time there was a howling gale and relentless rain, but like I said at the top of this report, the fish don’t seem to care!

Meurig Parsons summed up his session with the comment “can’t think of a better way to spend a spare couple of hours” and it just shows that small stillwater anglers don’t have to catch jumbo sized Trout to be happy as Meurigs brace weighed 4lbs.

It’s been half term week and so a few young anglers have been visiting which is fantastic to see.  Fifteen year old Sam Walker enjoyed the five fish permit he won last month in the return prize draw, landing his full bag and local lad Cozzy Soncini aged 11, also caught a limit of three from Lobbs Lake.

Star young angler of the week was a first time visitor to the lakes, Ben Taylor from Exeter who managed to catch 4 of the fish out of a 5 fish permit, shared with his grandfather!   And not content with the 4 fish Ben , age 12, also bagged himself this lovely Rainbow of 6lb 8oz from Anchor Lake which succumbed to a Bead Head Black Buzzer.  Many congrats Ben and good luck with your entry into the Junior Troutmasters 2016.

Star young angler - 12 year old Ben Taylor was thrilled with his 6lb 8oz Rainbow caught on a Buzzer

Star young angler - 12 year old Ben Taylor was thrilled with his 6lb 8oz Rainbow caught on a Buzzer

This brings me neatly to next week’s Troutmaster fish off on Sunday 28th February.  The field is one of the largest I can remember and so far not all entrants have responded to the letters sent out by Trout Fisherman magazine.  If you entered a fish last year and have a letter, please let me know this week if you would like to fish.  Amongst the seniors it is really pleasing to see that this year there will also be a couple of juniors trying for their spot in the final.  Look out for a future report on this match and please note that the main Anchor Lake will be closed on 28th Feb 16.  Lobbs lake will remain open.

Last month’s Troutmaster badge winners were father and son Rob & Paul Grisley with Richard Burt in 3rd.  Rob showed his Dad the way luring a 9lb 8oz Rainbow to a Green Nymph, Paul’s fish weighed in at 7lb 5oz caught on a Black Minkie and a Cats Whisker did the business for Richard from Burnham-on-Sea with a seven pounder.  All these fish were caught between 21st Nov & 20th December 2015 and appear in Issue 480 of Trout Fisherman magazine.

I am working on something which should be available very soon to assist with locating hotspots at Exe Valley Fishery although during the last couple of weeks the lake is fishing consistently all over.  But if I had to catch fish then my own favourite locations would be next to the outlet, fishing to the right of the stone track and from the new platform on the South side of the lake.  Confused?!  Once complete my new project will facilitate finding these areas!

Photo taken on 9th Feb 2016  - Gin clear water flows from the outlet of Anchor Lake, which has become a favourite with many anglers since the excavation in Aug 2015

Photo taken on 9th Feb 2016 - Gin clear water flows from the outlet of Anchor Lake, which has become a favourite with many anglers since the excavation in Aug 2015

Just before I sign off please remember that there is a diversion in place at Cove on the A396.  The official route requires a considerable detour so to help, please find our alternative routes here.  These are much shorter than the diversions shown on the main Tiverton Roundabout.  Please don’t follow them, there is no need!  Please click here for two alternative routes which can be printed or downloaded to a smart phone, ready for your journey.  If you don’t mind lanes, then go via Stoodleigh but for a more substantial road and probably the most direct route choose the Old Tiverton road directions.

Thanks for reading and thank you if you have visited the lakes recently.  We look forward to welcoming more of you before February is out and to greeting the Troutmasters competitors next week.  This is the first big senior match to be held at Exe Valley since the big dig and it will be exciting to see how match plays out with so much extra water available.

Shaking from head to toe - A very happy Lukasz Adamczyk with his personal best 12lb Trout caught with a home tied UV Olive Bead Head Nymph.

Shaking from head to toe - A very happy Lukasz Adamczyk with his personal best 12lb Trout caught with a home tied UV Olive Bead Head Nymph.

Late Entry - Just as I was about to put the report to bed and upload I heard a commotion outside the office window and found a couple of anglers staring excitedly at the scales.  Using a UV Olive Bead Head Nymph, Lukasz Adamczyk from Exeter had landed this fantastic Rainbow Trout of 12lbs, using just 5lb leader and a light line rod finishing his limit of 5 fish weighing 25lb 3oz.  Lukasz needed me to complete his Troutmasters form as he was shaking so much and said the big fish is his personal best!  What a fantastic way to end the week!

Best Fishes,

Nick.

Father Christmas Fishes Exe Valley & Catch Report to 21st Dec 2015

It’s the last report before the big day ... so here is another round up of the action at Exe Valley, plus the sighting of a rather important red suited gentleman! 

Unfortunately despite his very best efforts and winning the award for most brightly dressed angler of 2015, Mr Claus managed to lose all the Trout he (says he) hooked.  Let’s hope St Nick does a better job with the presents eh!

   Mr Claus protested that this picture proves he hooked a Trout during his most recent visit, but with no "grip & grin" evidence we must conclude that he hooked Rudolf on the back cast!

 

Mr Claus protested that this picture proves he hooked a Trout during his most recent visit, but with no "grip & grin" evidence we must conclude that he hooked Rudolf on the back cast!

First to unwrap himself a Trouty gift was Richard Hansell, visiting the lakes for the first time this week he picked up three fine Trout for a bag weight of 10lbs although there were opportunities to catch something even more substantial as Richard said “Lovely Day, some very large fish eluded me

It could have been another Rainbow like Rob Grisley’s fish of course that was our best fish of the week, weighing in at over 9lb and no doubt a contender for the last round of the Exe Valley 2015 Troutmasters.  Apologies I was not ready with the camera Rob!

If Rob caught the best fish then my vote for toughest angler of the week goes to octogenarian Cedric Boddington.  Visiting the lakes with Sally Pizii’s Age UK group he commented on his return that it was “A great day in the rain”, landing a nice brace of fish including one of 3lb 8oz.

   Well done to Cedric Bodington, age 83, he took no notice of the rain and was rewarded with a brace of Trout caught on a floating line near to the Anchor Lake feeder stream.

 

Well done to Cedric Bodington, age 83, he took no notice of the rain and was rewarded with a brace of Trout caught on a floating line near to the Anchor Lake feeder stream.

We also welcomed back John Gilmore who said “Very good day & quality fish”, reaching his limit of 5 for a total weight of 16lb 12oz and Darren Penfold, a Kennick regular, took some time out during the reservoir off season to give Exe Valley a try and was also rewarded with a limit of 5, tipping the scales to 17lb. 

Fly patterns have almost always been on the large size with the Snake (in Black or Pink!) once again proving to be deadly but for those who do not enjoy casting these brutes, or just can’t bring themselves to tie on 10cm of fluff, you will be pleased to hear that the Blue Flash Damsel has also been highly successful.  Goldhead Daddies, Taddies and of course that good old winter staple, the Cat Whisker, have also done the business.

I am almost eating my words; is it really winter?!  With temps of around 12C to 14C on a regular basis last week it feels more like late Autumn or even early spring, so much so that I am wondering if I should have cut the grass one more time?  We will take the conditions while we can because no doubt Mother Nature has some payback in store!

Whatever the weather if you are going stir crazy after being shut indoors for Christmas you will be pleased to know that we are open throughout the festivities!  Take a peek at the Christmas Exe Valley Fishery page for full details and find out about our very special 12 Trout of Fishmas! 

Eleven more tagged Trout will be stocked to join the Brown Trout which remains elusive.  All Rainbows, there are 5 Trout worth £20 and another 6 that will win £10, plus the Brown of course which has a top prize of £100See here for more info about this special Christmas event.

It’s time for me to wind up the last report before the festivities begin.  If (unlike me!) you are just counting down the days, with presents wrapped and everything perfectly organised why not tie yourself a Christmas Tree Fly?!

And finally we would like to say a BIG thank you to all of you have supported us this year and wish you a Very Merry Christmas & Happy New Year from Exe Valley Fishery! 

Best Fishes, Nick, Sue, Chester & Scarlett. 


Christmas Opening Hours at a glance