Last two weeks of Troutmasters 2015 plus this week’s catch report to 6th Dec

We are proud to have been supporting the Troutmasters competition, organised by Trout Fisherman magazine, for many years now. 

It’s a kind of FA cup style fly fishing contest which means that pleasure anglers have the chance to compete against (and most importantly, learn from) more experienced competition anglers.  To be in with a chance of qualifying contestants attempt to catch one of the biggest fish of the month from a host of participating waters across the UK.

Following this qualifying round, badge winners are invited to an early season fish off to determine which Exe Valley angler will head to the 2016 grand final.  But there are only a couple of weeks left as the event will close on 20th December for 2015 entries ... so be quick!  With a double figure Brown Trout swimming defiantly around Anchor Lake (I spotted the beast this morning!) there is at least one fish which could guarantee somebody’s place in that fish off. 

And here is another good thing about this friendly competition; three lucky anglers receive a badge each month and a mention in the magazine.  Steve Guscott contacted me this week to say how chuffed he was to receive his badge in the mail for his 8lb 12oz Rainbow caught during October (see that fishing report here) which formed part of a huge bag weighing in at 27lb 12oz.

Checking this month’s Trout Fisherman magazine I see that John Salter took the top honours with his 10lb Rainbow, Exe Valley regular Mary Ratcliffe was runner up with an 8lb 12oz Rainbow and Robert Grisley placed 3rd with an 8lb 7oz Rainbow.  Well done to all! (see TF issue 477, page 89)

This week I am pleased to report that we have been much busier as the weather has been a little better.  Once again the 26 anglers who decided that a day out in the fresh air wetting a line was more fun than sitting indoors were rewarded for their efforts catching a total of 70 fish for a rod average of 2.7 

   Regular Peter Bridges with the best fish of this week - 8lb 1oz caught on a Black Snake Fly.

 

Regular Peter Bridges with the best fish of this week - 8lb 1oz caught on a Black Snake Fly.

The best Trout of the week was landed by one of our new regulars Peter Bridges fishing sensibly in the margins with a Black Snake Fly to outwit a lovely looking fish of 8lb 1oz Meanwhile it is not just regulars visiting Exe Valley these days, we are noticing a lot of new faces too. 

Patrick Silk is one of them, commenting on his return card “First Visit ... there will be more”, landing a limit of 3 fish for 14lb 4oz including another beautiful example of a Rainbow Trout, weighing 7lbs.  And all of this on a light 6 weight rod, floating line and a Blue Flash Damsel in double figure temperatures! 

   Patrick Silk with a 7lb Rainbow landed on a 6 weight rod

 

Patrick Silk with a 7lb Rainbow landed on a 6 weight rod

Floating lines have certainly been catching fish but Graham Lavender wisely opted for an intermediate early in the week, after a couple of days of heavy rain which lowers the water temperature.  His successful fly was also a Blue Flash Damsel, helping him to a 3 fish total of 13lb 10oz including a best of 7lb 10oz.

Of course not every angler walks away with a specimen fish that visits Exe Valley and a few comments have said it has been “hard fishing”  this week.  However some of the anglers making these comments have bagged themselves limits, so success is here to be had.  It's just a case of using the right tactics, which is why we believe Exe Valley is now a far more interesting fishery since the big dig back in August.  

   This angler worked out the tactics & is rewarded for his efforts - Exe Valley, Sun 6th Dec 2015

 

This angler worked out the tactics & is rewarded for his efforts - Exe Valley, Sun 6th Dec 2015

But what do you think?  This is your fishery after all.  Is the fishing too hard now?  Do more anglers want to be catching their fish in a couple of hours?  Please use the comments section below to tell us what you think or contact me here.

And just before I sign off for another week, we have had several enquiries about purchasing gift vouchers as Christmas presents for both permits and tuition.  Watch this space; I am aiming to have something live on the website by the end of this week or please call 01398 323008 and we can organise on the phone.  And just before I go, the main update this week has been to improve the text font used (hopefully the site is easier to read now?) and the permit page has also been updated.

Thanks for reading and look out for more soon ... I have a few exciting bits of news lined up!

Best Fishes,

Nick.

Great sport at Exe Valley this week: New fishing report up to 2nd August 2015

It’s already a week since the launch of the new website and I have been busy guiding for most of it, therefore no major changes or features added just yet.  But please watch this space because they will happen!

Rather than the clunky way of reporting available to us previously, one of the great features of the new site is that a report can now be added very quickly, plus there is an archive of reports which can be used so that all of you can get the low down on the best patterns, times of day and areas to try your luck.  Check the right hand side of this page to see the archived reports.

Its summer and so the number of anglers often decreases, as the water warms up.  However we attracted 34 anglers this week, catching 98 fish for a rod average of 2.8, with some great bags amongst them.  The weather has also been playing its part, as the water temperature is much cooler than usual for this time of year.  There have also been some improvements to the inlet flow leading to the kind of clarity more typical of April than July.  Totals for the month of July are 148 anglers caught 382 Trout for a rod average of 2.5 fish.

Top catch of this week (commencing 27th July) went to Nigel Tranter on holiday in the area all the way from Essex.  Now this guy can fish and he will experiment until he gets the right tactics, something which I advise all anglers to do.  If the Cats Whisker on a floating line fished at break neck speed is not working, then have a go with something else!

   (Above) Nigel Tranter & Gary Brewster made the journey from Essex well worth it landing some very decent Trout during their recent visit to Exe Valley.

 

(Above) Nigel Tranter & Gary Brewster made the journey from Essex well worth it landing some very decent Trout during their recent visit to Exe Valley.

Nigel did just that, using a team of three flies to stay in the upper layers with a Drowned Daddy proving to be irresistible to the Exe Valley Trout, resulting in a bag of 5 fish for 23lb.  A few days later he followed this up with an epic display of stalking tactics landing another 5 fish bag weighing in at 21lb 9oz, all on a Blue Damsel with his best fish tipping the scales at 6lb 2oz.  Not to be out done, Nigel’s good mate Gary also got in on the action using similar tactics to pick up a couple of high quality Trout that put up a very good account of themselves in the improved water quality.  Well done to both!

Peter Bridges used a Snake Fly to tempt a bag of 5 weighing 20lb on the nail, Chris Short caught 5 on a Black Minkie for 16lb with a best of 5lb 12oz and Richard Carr from Wellington managed to put one of our hire fly fishing kits to good use to land his 5 fish limit during an afternoon of hectic sport, weighing out at 19lb 4oz.  Thank you to all for your amazing comments, it really makes our work here even more rewarding, so this week rather than adding them to the report I have printed a few which can be seen below.

Of course we don’t always get a glowing report and there have been some blanks.  We are sorry to see anglers go away empty handed but sometimes the tactics seen vary enormously.  For example while Nigel was busily harassing Trout all around the lake, others got nothing by standing in one spot hoping the Trout would come to them.  Worse still, a rusty old Montana and 20lb leader more suitable for Cod is unlikely to do the trick!  Even so we read every comment and will do our best to improve, messages about weed are fully understood for example and we have cut a huge amount of the Canadian pond weed offering pretty much normal fishing conditions, especially considering the time of year.

Thankfully it looks like the strong NW wind encountered this week have blown out and from Monday 3rd August things will begin to improve with a Southerly in place and the speed lowering somewhat.  There’s the chance of some rain which is no bad thing because it will keep the water fresh and forecast temps are comfortable at around 20C  Hatches include Damsel flies so have some nymphs at the ready and always check out the feeder streams and outflow at this time of year.

Finally I will close this week with a couple of announcements.  First of all many congratulations to Paul Carter, the winner of our July return card prize draw, a complimentary 5 Fish Permit will be in the post tomorrow morning.  Completed returns, even Nils are essential to help us maintain stocking levels.  Paul had a blank during his session in July but by completing his return card he now has a chance to settle a few scores with the fish he lost during his last visit! To enter during August just complete your return after fishing, post it in the box and you could be next!  Meanwhile meet our new message board and this rather colourful Trout (well my abstract version of one!) which displays the Tagged Trout Tussle info.  The new fish stocked is red tagged and the lucky captor will walk away with £100.00, all for just a £1 entry fee added to the permit price.

   (Above) After the capture of the Blue Trout last week earning Tim Nickel £60 in cash, another fish has been stocked and this time it is worth £100.00! Just add £1 to your permit to enter the Tagged Trout Tussle.

 

(Above) After the capture of the Blue Trout last week earning Tim Nickel £60 in cash, another fish has been stocked and this time it is worth £100.00! Just add £1 to your permit to enter the Tagged Trout Tussle.

We will be welcoming the RETA youth fly fishing day to the venue on Monday 3rd August and hope to see you to on the banks of Exe Valley in the near future.  For updates please don't hesitate to call 01398 323008 (leave  a message and we will call back if working on the fishery or away guiding)  for general conditions, water clarity and wind direction plus check back here for regular online reports.  

Best Fishes,

Nick Hart.

Welcome to the new website & latest fishing report!

It has been a long time coming but finally here it is, our brand spanking new website for the fishery.  If you have stumbled across us for the first time then a very warm welcome and I hope to meet you on the lake someday soon.

And for those of you that visit the fishery on a regular basis, my thanks for your patience, at last the website is up and running!  This is very much a first draft and I won’t bore you with the reasons why it has taken so long other than to say I suffer from chronic OCD plus hourly web company rates seem to be heading North by the month...  So this is my attempt at a website for the fishery, BIG thanks to Henry Gilbey for bringing the platform used to my attention.

It’s my intention to add a few more features & pages, but right now the most exciting part about the site is that finally it’s possible to write up & post reports on a regular basis, So without further ado here it is, the first Exe Valley Fishery Fishing Report on the all new 2015 website!

Welcome to Exe Valley Fishery!

Welcome to Exe Valley Fishery!

Its now late July 2015 but while I sit here polishing up the site ready for launch the weather outside resembles October!  However the forecast is that the current wind & rain will blow through leaving a pleasant week ahead - commencing 27.07.15.  Although the weather maybe a little wild considering the time of year there is no doubt that in terms of stocking & maintaining a fishery the low temperatures keep the fish happy.  In July we often expect 20C and above but right now the water is just 15C.  

The result is that dry fly and nymph fishing near the surface is not only a very enjoyable way to fish but also highly productive.  Using the natural pattern approach regulars Keith & Mary Ratcliffe showed their fellow anglers how to do it this week, taking an 8 fish haul between them on simple Black Buzzers tied on small light wire hooks and fished in the surface film on long leaders.

Ivan West has also been in amongst the fish catching a limit once again, on, yes you have guessed it, Buzzers.  Ivan finished with 5 for 15lbs, the best fish tipping the scales at 5lb 4oz and commented "very enjoyable as normal, lots of takes.  Lovely everything - wish I could come more often!"

I mentioned it on the old report site but I cannot miss from my inaugural post 91 year old Stan Tooze, sensibly fishing the feeder stream to tempt Trout basking in the high oxygen levels and willing to take.  With a Blob fished as a dropper Stan placed an old faithful Alexandra on the point and was latched into a full tailed 7 pounder for over 10 minutes!  It was just brilliant to see his smile and even better to hear that it was his "best mornings fishing he could remember for a long time!"  And there was another big fish to come on the same day, as Dil Singh managed to tempt a spanking Trout of 10lb 1oz, his first ever double and a possible candidate for the top Troutmasters honours this month.

   (Above) Tim Nickel with a cracking Blue Trout on a Cats Whisker and £60 in his back pocket!

 

(Above) Tim Nickel with a cracking Blue Trout on a Cats Whisker and £60 in his back pocket!

Biggest smile of the week probably goes to Tim Nickel after not only bagging his 5 fish limit but also landing a Tagged Trout.  For those of you new to this competition the fishery is stocked with a lucky fish or two sprouting a tag from their dorsal fin.  Its only £1 to enter and the entry goes into a pool which pays out when one of these fish is caught.  Tims lovely Blue Trout put up a great fight having fallen to a Mini Cats Whisker, earning him sixty quid!  Well done Tim!

And finally to round up this report so that I can head off to play with DNS settings and the like, hopefully winding up with this report being live on tinternet (as we say around here!) by the evening, you will be pleased to know that young Sam Baycock (check out his cracking blog here) is back at the fishery during his break from Uni and hard at work.  Between the pair of us we have been cutting weed and there are many exciting plans (no scratch that, very, very exciting!) for the coming weeks at Exe Valley so please do pay us a visit and look at the improvements we have been making.

   (Above) He calls this work?!  Sam Baycock "hard at it" on the fishery.

 

(Above) He calls this work?!  Sam Baycock "hard at it" on the fishery.

And if you would like an update please don't hesitate to call 01398 323008 (leave  a message and we will call back if working on the fishery or away guiding)  for general conditions, water clarity and wind direction plus check back here for regular online reports.  Thank you for visiting the site now come and try Exe Valley Fishery for real!

Until next time,

Best Fishes,

Nick & Sam.