Round 2 of the SWLT / FLUFF CHUCKERS Brown Trout Masters at Fernworthy lake on Dartmoor.

A good turn out with anglers from all around the South West.
With the weather not really making its mind up whether it’s summer or early spring, sunshine, overcast and very windy.
Fishing has been a little harder on Fernworthy in 2024 compared to 2023 when a lot of really nice fish were being caught.
But we had some real talent on the banks today so even though it could be hard going there was always going to be some great results.
And results we got, everyone caught fish with
Keith Burnett landing the most fish with 11, Roger Trusscott was runner up with 7, Richard Adeney  & Rodney Wevill joint 3rd with 6 .
Once again following on from round 1 Kevin Sellar caught the biggest fish at 41cm
With Wayne Thomas runner up.
A massive thank you to Turrall Flies and Lakedown Brewing . Co for their support and providing some great prizes .
Now is off to Roadford lake on the 12th October for the 3rd and final round. Where the 2024 Brown Trout Master will be crowned.
Overall results of round 1 & 2 combined
1 Roger Truscott. 582cm
2. Keith Burnett. 433cm
3. Richard Adeney. 274cm
4. Rodney Wevill. 204cm
5. Kevin Sellar. 171cm
6. Wayne Thomas. 163cm
7. Philip Hoskin. 138cm
8. Matt Rodwell. 67cm
9.  Ben Elliot 64cm
10. Dave Perks. 64cm
11. Pete Williams. 54cm
12. Slawomir Olaf Pilecki 32cm
13. Jack Welshman 30cm
14. Dave Cook. 28cm
14. Andrew Watson  27cm
15. Peter Finnis. ……….,
Winner Keith Burnett
Runner up Roger Trusscott
Kevin Sellar caught the biggest fish at 41cm
Wayne Thomas runner in biggest fish category


Fernworthy Reservior is situated high on Dartmoor a few miles from Chagford an ancient and fascinating moorland village . I had not fished the reservoir since a distant day as a teenager back in the late 1970’s but I certainly do not intend to wait so long until my next visit.

Pre competition chats at the waters edge.

The reservoirs surroundings are steeped in history with ancient stone circles showing glimpses of a fascinating history. The reservior itself was built during the Second World War a time of death and turmoil that seems so far removed from this early summer day. There is a certain reassurance to be gained by spending a day in such a place far from the worries of this troubled world and something that was touched upon as we chatted briefly of war in todays world before the presentation.

Fernworthy is a brown trout fishery with a good head of wild fish supplemented with regular stockings each season. A brisk cool North West Wind and sunny spells were perhaps not ideal conditions but all competitors caught some lovely trout with some stunning looking fish amongst them. I had a frustrating day hooking nine fish an up Roger Truscott had had a similar experience. The vast majority of the fish were caught using small immitative patterns as is to be expected at a natural catch and release brown trout fishery.

A special thanks to Rodney Wevill for organising the event and gaining the support of the generous sponsors. South West Lakes Trust, Turral Flies and Lakedown Brewing

Early Morning cloud at the competitions start



Fluff Chucker’s /SWLT Brown Trout Masters Heat one – Colliford

Round one of the SWLT / FLUFF CHUCKERS Brown trout masters at Colliford lake on Bodmin Moor.
A good turnout of anglers from all over the South West met up for a 9am start on a cold, wet and very windy morning.
But the conditions suited the browns with Roger Truscott netting the most fish with 12 lovely browns.
Runner up for most fish was Keith Burnett  with 4 good fish to the net.
The largest fish of the day went to Kevin Sellar with a fantastic 44cm fish with similar markings to a spartic trout .
Runner up largest fish went to Philip Hoskin with another lovely fish of 40cm.
A big thank you to all the anglers that supported todays event in not so great conditions
And a massive thank you to #yetiuk and #lakedownbrewingco for supplying some really fantastic prizes for the winners and your continued support of Fluff Chuckers – Fly Fishing Fanatics.
All the total lengths of each anglers fish today will be added up and added to the next two rounds to find the 2024 SWLT / Fluff Chuckers Brown trout master .

Roger Truscott 363CM
Keith Burnett 126CM
Wayne Thomas 98CM
Richard Adeney 96CM
Philip Hoskin 93CM
Kevin Sellar 74CM
Matt Rodwell 67CM
Ben Elliott 64CM
Dave Perks 64CM
Rodney Wevill 56CM
Sławomir Olaf Pilecki 32CM
Jack Welshman 30CM
Pete Williams 28CM
Peter Finnis ——

My day at Colliford – A cunning plan

Colliford Reservoir high on Bodmin Moor was the venue for the first leg of the Fluff Chucker’s and SWLT Brown Trout Masters. With a favourable weather forecast I was looking forward to a Spring day targeting the brown trout for which this venue is renowned.

I arrived at the assembly point to meet fellow Fluff Chucker’s and on stepping out of the car I was pleased that I had dressed up for temperatures were far lower than forecast. Whilst the wind was Southerly it felt particularly Baltic as the wind swept across the 900 acres of water.


The atmosphere was cheerful and friendly as angler’s swapped tales and talked of prospects for the day ahead. The rules were carefully explained by head Fluff Chucker Rodney Wevill. At 9.00am suited and booted up, the go fishing call was made and we all set off for our chosen areas.

I had only fished the venue on one previous occasion so headed for the area I had fished before two years ago. Like Baldrick of Black Adder fame I had a cunning plan! Basically I would wander the shoreline casting a black woolly bugger on the point and a  small black spider on the dropper. I would cast and take a step covering plenty of water.

I had every confidence in my cunning plan and persisted throughout the morning. After two hours I had not had a pull but surely persistence would pay off? Dark clouds crept ominously closer and the chill wind showed no sign of relenting. An angler fishing further along the bank caught a trout which gave me hope but also made me wonder if my lack of success was unique to me?

As heavy rain started to fall I thought of breaking for a drink and snack but all thoughts of this were put on hold as  the line zipped tight and a lovely brown trout gave a pleasing account before slipping into the waiting net. After slipping the hook out and recording the fish I resumed  fishing confidence fully restored. A few casts later and a savage tug a big swirl at the fly. Looked like a good fish and a chance gone. I fished on down through the bay and then retraced my steps fishing over the successful section again.


Heavy rain on the camera lens made focussing nigh on impossible plus the fish kept leaping out of the guttering !


Two more trout followed in the next twenty minutes before all seemed to go quiet. I decided to try a new area and walked to a new section of bank. After half a dozen casts I hooked another trout that came off after 30 seconds.

With a few hours left in the day I decided to try the hotspot one more time before working my way slowly back to where I had started the day. I bumped into a couple of fellow fluff chucker’s on route and compared notes to find that whilst most had caught no one seemed to have bagged up big time.

The cold wind persisted but at least the cold rain had stopped falling. I heard sky-larks song drifting in the breeze. I looked out for early spring migrants hoping to see my first swallow or sand martin but the skies remained devoid of these harbingers of Spring and summer. At least the lake was brim full after an exceptionally wet winter.

I found some quieter water at the top of the lake and climbed out onto an old bank that allowed a nice long cast parallel to the reed fringed shore line. A trout rose within casting range and I instinctively changed my tip fly to a small tungsten headed black spider.

The cast landed perfectly and within seconds of touching down the line zipped tight and there was a boil on the surface. B***er another chance gone.

            I fished on for the next half an hour without a pull and eventually called it a day with a couple of minutes before competition end.

            I walked back to see what had been caught and found that I had done Ok. A couple of big trout had been tempted the best a beauty of 44cm. Venue regular Roger Truscott recorded twelve browns and had been favourite to win from the start.

            Reflecting on my day I was pleased to finish third one more fish would have resulted in runner up spot. I should perhaps have persisted in the area I had caught in but the general consensus seems to be that roving works best. A classic case of should I stay or should I go?

            I reality it really doesn’t matter for I had enjoyed the day immensely despite the cold wind and chilled fingers. I look forward to heat two in June when it will surely be warmer?

            Many thanks to Rodney Wevill for all his efforts in putting the series together and of course to SWLT, Yeti, Lakedown Brewing co and for their generous support.


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My friend Danny Ford dropped a me a Facebook message to say he was visiting Bratton Water; would I like to join him. Whilst I had not got time to fish I had got time to pop down for a chat and a catch up. On arrival the lake was mirror calm with the trees and reeds casting reflections across the still-water that was punctuated by the pleasing rings of feeding trout.

Danny was casting a line from the Dam and fishing a team of small buzzers very slowly watching the tip of the line intently for any movement that could indicate the deception of a wily trout. Danny pulled a fine prize from his trout bag a stunning brown trout of around 6lb. Its flanks were decorated in crimson spots. its tail was full, a perfect brown trout that would please any angler.


We chatted about fish, waters and prospects for the coming year. I told Danny I wanted some action shots and for a while he struggled to get a take. This is so often the way with trout in small still waters, Danny had caught three trout within his first hour and had taken a short rest to find that the fish had stopped feeding. Eventually after half an hour of varied retrieves the line drew tight and Danny played a beautifully marked brown trout to the net.dscn5053dscn5017dscn5029dscn5034dscn5039

Danny undoubtedly went on to catch his final fish of a five fish limit bag. We talked briefly of flies and concluded that one of the most important aspects of fly is that the angler has confidence in it. Danny carries a small selection of flies on most outings and has total confidence that he can catch on all but the hardest days.


Danny’s five fish bag


Longest Day at Wistlandpound

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Danny Ford
Danny Ford

It’s hard to believe that the longest day has passed us by already and the days are starting to recede in that ever revolving circle of time. I met South West Lakes Trust Ranger Danny Ford on June 20th at Wistlandpound just before 6.00pm with fours hours of fishing ahead of us, if only these summer days would last. I had fished earlier in the year when Wistlandpound had opened as brown trout fishery a new era in its development as North Devon’s largest trout water. Since those early season days a further stocking of brown trout have been introduced ensuring a healthy population of both stock fish and existing wild fish.


The evening was overcast with occasional glimpses of the sun and a light breeze. Ideal conditions I thought. We were using Wistlandpound Fly-fishing Clubs boat paired up with an electric outboard that gave us ease of maneuverability and was certainly easier than rowing. Danny suggested we try the deep water at the dam end of the lake as he had landed several trout from this location on his last visit a week before. A fast sink line, a black tadpole on the point of the leader and brightly coloured blob on the dropper was Dan’s suggestion. An erratic retrieve and the occasional pause allowing the fly to hang motionless in the water was the tactic to employ. Success came first to Danny, a handsomely marked brown of around 12oz. A few follows but no more hook ups called for a move and a change of tactics.

Danny Ford - brown trout
Danny Ford – brown trout


Putting the boat within casting range of the West bank we began a drift. With the occasional fish rising we both set up with floating lines. Danny using a dry fly whilst I opted for a bead headed pheasant tail on the point with a cormorant on the dropper. After a couple of drifts honors were even with trout falling to both dry fly and nymph.


I had heard that there were a few quality rudd being caught so I persuaded Danny to put us on a few rudd. Drifting close into the weedy margins soon brought success with these pretty golden flanked red finned coarse fish. The rudd proved a pleasing distraction for a short period with a double shot bringing a pleasing opportunity to capture the variance in the hues of these fish. There are those who curse the rudd that do not give a good account of themselves. But as they tend to congregate in certain areas it’s not too big an issue; though it is undoubtedly more difficult for the bank angler to avoid them.

A double shot of rudd
A double shot of rudd

After the rudd interlude we headed back out into deeper water and targeted the trout that were rising frequently. Danny and I both enjoyed success before the rise petered out. I picked up the sinking line once again and employed a fast retrieve with the occasional pause. This brought quick success in the shape of a brown of over 1lb. For the next twenty minutes or so we had several follows and a couple more stunningly marked browns.


As the battery was running low and the light fading we headed back to the dam end where I landed one more trout. The water surface became becalmed as dusk set in and what wind there was died away. The occasional trout punctuated the surface with a telling ripple. The sun sank behind the trees, the crimson sky reflecting through the trees onto the lake like a burning fire. Owls hooted in the trees and blackbirds cries echoed across the still water. It was time to go the longest day was as all days do ending.

Embers of a dying day
Embers of a dying day


We had ended the session with five browns each to around 1lb 8oz and five rudd each. The fishing is comparable to wild brown trout fishing savoured by many on upland tarns and lochs in the North of the country. Fascinated fishing in beautiful surroundings and at a very reasonable cost.

Wistlandpound Day tickets cost :- £15:00 for full details visit