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The latest report from South West Lakes Trust indicates some good catches from reservoirs throughout the South West. At recently downgraded Wimbleball several overwintered rainbows were landed. Wistlandpound Opens on March 15th following a substantial stocking of brown trout that will boost existing stocks of browns from last year and the resident wild population. The abundant rudd that are thriving in the lake could well result in some big brown trout in the years to come.

South West Lakes Trout Fisheries Report (Opening Weekend 2017)


The 2017 season opened earlier this year at South West Lakes Trust’s Rainbow Trout waters (4 March, with a preview day for season ticket holder on 3 March) and got off to a flying start at the lakes, with the opening weekend producing some outstanding sport, both in terms of the quality of the fish and their willingness to take the fly in spite of the cold, wet and windy conditions


Kennick – Rods averaged nearly 4.5 fish per angler over the opening weekend, with a number of fish over 4lb being landed. Very little insect activity is yet evident but fish were keen to take sub-surface nymph and lure patters, fished mainly on intermediate lines. The most successful patterns included Damsel and Montana nymphs, as well as deeper fished Tadpoles and Boobie patterns.

The best fish caught included a 4lb 4oz Rainbow, as part of a full bag, which also included another fish of 4lb, caught by Paul Lee from Ivybridge fishing with a nymph pattern from the bank. Mr Peppit caught a full bag, which included Rainbows of 4lb 4oz, 3lb 10oz and 3lb 2oz, while fishing from the bank.

Siblyback – Anglers averaged 3.7 fish per rod over the opening weekend, with most fish being caught in Two Meadows, The Marshes and the North Shore, with fish following the windblown food source. Floating and slow sink lines proved to be the most successful, with darker nymph patterns, such as Montanas, Dark Damsels, Diawl Bachs and Black Pennells, or pulled lures (Tadpoles, Cats Whiskers, Orange Gold-heads and Baby Dolls) catching fish.

The best fish was a 4lb 6oz Rainbow, caught by Mr R. Cogar from Bodmin.

Burrator – With the reservoir full and boats not yet available at Burraor, fishing from the bank at Longstone has been the most productive, using mainly intermediate lines. Rods averaged just over 2 fish per angler, with Montanas and Gold-head green Damsel nymphs catching well, as did dark lure patterns such as Tadpoles and Black Boobies.

The best fish caught was a 3lb 10oz Rainbow, caugh by Pat Power, fishing at Longstone, using a White Strike.

Stithians – The harsh conditions meant that the fishing at this exposed site proved to be challenging, with Pub Bay and North Bank proving to be the most productive locations. Sub-surface nymphs and lure patterns fished on sunk lines proved to be the only method, with Gold-head Tadpoles and weighted Orange and Yellow lures the successful patterns.

The best fish caught was a 3lb 8oz Rainbow, caught by Mr. Docking from St Agnes, using a Gold-head Tadpole.


Drift – Rods averaged 3 fish per angler, which included a number of Blue Trout which seemed to favour small lures and Damsel patterns. The Badger Sett bank proved to be the most productive area, with teams of nymphs (Damsels in particular) catching well, as well as deeper fished Black Woolly Buggers and Pink/Orange fritz mini lures.

The South West Fly Fair was held at Roadford on 25 February, for the fifth consecutive year, and proved to be even bigger and better. In spite of poor weather forecasts, the rain held off to allow for outdoor casting demonstrations and clinics, while indoors there were fly tying demonstrations, along with numerous stands offering tackle, advice and information, as well as a masterclass Trout cookery demonstration from a local top-class chef. Show patron Charles Jardine was on hand all day and, when not giving demonstrations, was available for advice or just a chat.


The Trust’s Brown Trout fisheries open on 15 March. For detailed fishery information and prices for the 2017 season visit or visit one of the fishery-based self-service kiosks.

Rising water temperatures should see an increase in surface activity, with floating lines starting to come to the fore in the next month.

Chris Hall (March 2017)