GOODING IS BEST OF THE BEST FOR THE THIRD TIME…

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GOODING IS BEST OF THE BEST FOR THE THIRD TIME…

Andy Gooding has won the annual Snowbee Best of the Best competition at Kennick Reservoir for the third time in five years. Andy scooped a cool £1000 for his efforts, catching 8 fish for 15lbs 12oz with the successful flies being Damsel Nymphs fished high in the water on a floating line with 20 foot leader. Andy’s largest fish was 2lb 14oz.

32 anglers fished on the day and a huge congratulations goes out to all of them in qualifying for the final. The weather was very unsettled with sunny spells and gentle breeze turning into gale force winds and very heavy downpours! Casting in some zones was very difficult but the anglers really stuck at it well.

A cracking BBQ was provided by South West Lakes Trust (SWLT) Countryside Warden Mark Baxendale and the presentations were made at the Kennick Lodge.

The event was sponsored, yet again, by Snowbee UK who are a leading manufacturer of fishing equipment and clothing. The products they supply are simply superb – www.snowbee.co.uk.

Ben Smeeth, Head of Angling for SWLT, thanked Simon Kidd and Russell Weston of Snowbee for supporting the event and being very generous in the prizes they provided.

Full results and prize winners:
Result                                          Fish Weight  
Winner – Andy Gooding 8 15.12 £1000 BOB trophy & Snowbee Hat
Runner up – Paul Jones 5 10.07 £400 BOB trophy & Snowbee Hat
Third – Ron Wilday 5 9.02 £250 BOB trophy & Snowbee Hat
Heaviest Fish (not finishing in the top three) John Huckings 2.06 £200 & Snowbee Hat
Second heaviest fish (not in top three) Dave Perks 2.05 Snowbee Stowaway Bag
Blind Pairs winners: A Gooding/R Gale 9 17.11 £50 each (£100)
Blind Pairs runners up: P Jones/M Sinclair 6 12.11 £25 each (£50)
4th  – John Huckings 4 8.00 Snowbee Nivalis Jacket
5th Andrew Alger 4 7.04 Snowbee Onyx Cass. fly reel system
6th Al Lawson 2 3.14 Snowbee Breeze Bloc Softshell Jacket
7th Roger Truscott 2 3.11 Snowbee Ultralite Chest Pack
8th Allan Brown 2 3.08 Snowbee 14740 Fly Box Tool Kit
 

9th

 

Dave Perkls

1 2.05 Snowbee Easy vue competition fly box L

 

 

 

QUALIFYING PRIZES

Weight

 

Heaviest Fish Kennick  –

 

Janet Till 4lb 8oz Snowbee Softshell Gilet
Heaviest Fish Burrator  –

 

Mark Sinclair 3lb 11oz Snowbee Softshell Gilet
Heaviest Fish Siblyback –

 

Ron Wilday 3lb 14oz Snowbee Softshell Gilet
Best Qualifying Junior  –

 

Alex Venn – Kennick 2lb 4oz Snowbee 16203  Classic Trout Bag L
Name Number of Fish Biggest Fish Total Weight Position Prize
Andy Gooding 8 2.14 15.12 1 £1000 BOB cheque & Snowbee Hat
Paul Jones 5 2.06 10.07 2 £400 BOB cheque  & Snowbee Hat
Ron Wilday 5 1.15 9.02 3 £250 BOB cheque  & Snowbee Hat
John Huckings 4 2.06 8 4 Snowbee Nivalis Jacket
Andrew Alger 4 2 7.04 5 Snowbee Onyx Cass. fly reel system
Allan Lawson 2 2.04 3.14 6 Snowbee Breeze Bloc Softshell Jacket
Roger Trustcott 2 1.14 3.11 7 Snowbee Ultralite Chest Pack
Allan Brown 2 2 3.08 8 Snowbee 14740 Fly Box Tool Kit
D Perks 1 2.05 2.05 9 Snowbee Easy vue competition fly box
Graham Watts 1 2.04 2.04 10
Mark Sinclair 1 2.04 2.04 10
Malcolm Ure 1 2 2 12
John Rumbold 1 1.15 1.15 13
Rob Gale 1 1.15 1.15 13
P Brown 1 1.14 1.14 15
Andy Lobb 1 1.13 1.13 16
Chris Bolt 1 1.11 1.11 17
Alec Hoare 1 1.1 1.1 18
Janet Till 1 1.09 1.09 19
Darren Penfold 1 1.09 1.09 19
John Hern 1 1.07 1.07 21
Alan Behan 0
Terry Diamond 0
Stuart McCullough 0
Tom Hendy 0
Paul Wicks 0
Barry Ware snr 0
Andy Lawson 0
Alex Venn 0
Darren Everitt 0
Mike Stone 0
Barry Ware Jnr 0

 

Andy Gooding has won the annual Snowbee Best of the Best competition at Kennick Reservoir for the third time in five years. Andy scooped a cool £1000 for his efforts, catching 8 fish for 15lbs 12oz with the successful flies being Damsel Nymphs fished high in the water on a floating line with 20 foot leader. Andy’s largest fish was 2lb 14oz.

32 anglers fished on the day and a huge congratulations goes out to all of them in qualifying for the final. The weather was very unsettled with sunny spells and gentle breeze turning into gale force winds and very heavy downpours! Casting in some zones was very difficult but the anglers really stuck at it well.

A cracking BBQ was provided by South West Lakes Trust (SWLT) Countryside Warden Mark Baxendale and the presentations were made at the Kennick Lodge.

The event was sponsored, yet again, by Snowbee UK who are a leading manufacturer of fishing equipment and clothing. The products they supply are simply superb – www.snowbee.co.uk.

Ben Smeeth, Head of Angling for SWLT, thanked Simon Kidd and Russell Weston of Snowbee for supporting the event and being very generous in the prizes they provided.

Full results and prize winners:
Result                                          Fish Weight  
Winner – Andy Gooding 8 15.12 £1000 BOB trophy & Snowbee Hat
Runner up – Paul Jones 5 10.07 £400 BOB trophy & Snowbee Hat
Third – Ron Wilday 5 9.02 £250 BOB trophy & Snowbee Hat
Heaviest Fish (not finishing in the top three) John Huckings 2.06 £200 & Snowbee Hat
Second heaviest fish (not in top three) Dave Perks 2.05 Snowbee Stowaway Bag
Blind Pairs winners: A Gooding/R Gale 9 17.11 £50 each (£100)
Blind Pairs runners up: P Jones/M Sinclair 6 12.11 £25 each (£50)
4th  – John Huckings 4 8.00 Snowbee Nivalis Jacket
5th Andrew Alger 4 7.04 Snowbee Onyx Cass. fly reel system
6th Al Lawson 2 3.14 Snowbee Breeze Bloc Softshell Jacket
7th Roger Truscott 2 3.11 Snowbee Ultralite Chest Pack
8th Allan Brown 2 3.08 Snowbee 14740 Fly Box Tool Kit
 

9th

 

Dave Perkls

1 2.05 Snowbee Easy vue competition fly box L

 

 

 

QUALIFYING PRIZES

Weight

 

Heaviest Fish Kennick  –

 

Janet Till 4lb 8oz Snowbee Softshell Gilet
Heaviest Fish Burrator  –

 

Mark Sinclair 3lb 11oz Snowbee Softshell Gilet
Heaviest Fish Siblyback –

 

Ron Wilday 3lb 14oz Snowbee Softshell Gilet
Best Qualifying Junior  –

 

Alex Venn – Kennick 2lb 4oz Snowbee 16203  Classic Trout Bag L
Name Number of Fish Biggest Fish Total Weight Position Prize
Andy Gooding 8 2.14 15.12 1 £1000 BOB cheque & Snowbee Hat
Paul Jones 5 2.06 10.07 2 £400 BOB cheque  & Snowbee Hat
Ron Wilday 5 1.15 9.02 3 £250 BOB cheque  & Snowbee Hat
John Huckings 4 2.06 8 4 Snowbee Nivalis Jacket
Andrew Alger 4 2 7.04 5 Snowbee Onyx Cass. fly reel system
Allan Lawson 2 2.04 3.14 6 Snowbee Breeze Bloc Softshell Jacket
Roger Trustcott 2 1.14 3.11 7 Snowbee Ultralite Chest Pack
Allan Brown 2 2 3.08 8 Snowbee 14740 Fly Box Tool Kit
D Perks 1 2.05 2.05 9 Snowbee Easy vue competition fly box
Graham Watts 1 2.04 2.04 10
Mark Sinclair 1 2.04 2.04 10
Malcolm Ure 1 2 2 12
John Rumbold 1 1.15 1.15 13
Rob Gale 1 1.15 1.15 13
P Brown 1 1.14 1.14 15
Andy Lobb 1 1.13 1.13 16
Chris Bolt 1 1.11 1.11 17
Alec Hoare 1 1.1 1.1 18
Janet Till 1 1.09 1.09 19
Darren Penfold 1 1.09 1.09 19
John Hern 1 1.07 1.07 21

 

Blakewell – Rainbows Give great Autumn Sport

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Garry Brown enjoyed a great session at Blakewell Fishery on the day of my book launch banking six fine rainbows the best a superb fish of 6lb that secured a bottle of champagne for the best fish caught during the event. The coming months should see anglers enjoying good sport on the small Stillwater trout fisheries with both Blakewell and Bratton Water well worth a visit.

BLAKEWELL RE-OPENS SATURDAY AUGUST 17th

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Blakewell Fishery is due to reopen on Saturday after a short closure to eradicate weed growth for the lake. After restocking with a good head of quality trout sport is likely to be excellent.

Don’t forget here is also the Fun Fishing Lake for the younger anglers and the chance to visit the otter via prearrange appointment. Hope to see as many as possible on August 31st for my book signing event see details at bottom of page.

Blakewell Trout Sport Under Blue Skies

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Wistlandpound Fly Fishing Club Members assembled at Blakewell Fishery the lake looking stunning with fresh green foliage forming a stunning back drop. Members elected to opt for the sporting ticket allowing two fish to be retained before continuing on a catch and release basis.

The competition was run on the first two fish caught.

1st – Colin Combe – 3lb 9oz

2nd – David Eldred – 3lb 7oz

3rd – Nigel Bird – 3lb 5oz

4th – Andre Muxworthy – 2lb 10oz

5th – Wayne Thomas  2lb 4oz

Small imitative patterns worked well in the clear water and bright sunshine with all members catching their allotted brace and then enjoying some exciting catch and release sport. From mid may until the end of June the English countryside is at its very best with everything a vivid green with bird and pond life flourishing all around.

(Above )Time for break and a chat.
(Above) A pleasing brown of close to 2lb

Good Friday Trout Fishing

April has to be one of my favourite months to target reservoir trout with that vibrancy of new life all around. Having enjoyed a good day at Wimbleball a few weeks ago I was keen to return and hopeful that with warm temperatures forecast there would be the chance of catching fish on the floating line.

This was to be a short session during the middle of the day with a catch and release ticket. Pauline would enjoy a well deserved rest with a good book whilst I waded out into the cool water. The drive across Exmoor proved to be an enjoyable experience with a stop off at Wheddon Cross to enjoy a Croissant and a hot coffee.

On arrival at Wimbleball it was clear that the holiday season had kicked off with families enjoying the warn sunshine, picnicking, floating about on the lake and generally having fun.

After checking into the ticket office and gleaning information from the catch returns it was time to head off and find a peaceful area of the lake away from the crowds. There is plenty of space at Wimbleball for everyone to do their thing. The information board in the ticket office indicated that some very good trout had been coming out to a variety of flies but that when the sun was out the fish tended to go down and become difficult to tempt.

We parked up past Bessoms Bridge and headed for the shallows where Jeff Pearce and I had enjoyed good sport a couple of weeks back.

I put down the tackle and surveyed the scenery. The lake stretched out before us sunlight twinkling on the ripples whilst a few swallows, swooped past and a butterfly fluttered in the light breeze. It was an idyllic spring day and with a warm sun and light breeze I was confident that the trout would be up in the water despite no signs of fish rising.

I waded out in to the crystal clear water and worked out a length of line to place a team of three flies. On the point a Montana, a buzzer and a Zulu on the droppers. I soon settled into that rhythmic routine of casting and retrieving. Birdsong, the call of toads and the sounds of people enjoying the day drifted across the water. My eyes searched the lake for feeding fish, my chilled fingers retrieving the line in slowly with the expectancy of that pleasing tug through the line.

After ten minutes or so the line pulled delightfully tight and a trout cartwheeled on a tight line before shedding the hook. That connection however brief always gives faith that the tactics will work and allows fishing to continue with conviction. It wasn’t too long before another trout was deceived and this time the barbless hook held firm. The trout was not to be easily subdued and threatened to strip line to the backing on several strong runs. After a couple of minutes the fish was ready for the net. A fin perfect rainbow of between four and five pounds.

As the afternoon approached I was pleased to hear the pleasing sound of trout rising. Several fish could be seen breaking the surface just out of casting range. After losing a couple of fish I eventually connected again and another stunning battle a rainbow of over four pounds was admired.

Pauline was called upon to briefly put down her book and capture the moments.

As the afternoon grew late it was unfortunately time to leave with other engagements looming away from the pleasing shores of this splendid lake. As other anglers passed by we chatted and exchanged notes. Several anglers had also enjoyed success and carried nets of weighty looking rainbows. As we walked back towards the car two anglers were fishing in the bay and one of them had hooked into a fine rainbow and was netting it as we approached. Yet another pristine full tailed rainbow of exactly 5lb was held up for the camera by captor Steve Essery who later informed me that he had finished his day with four fine trout scaling 2lb 4oz, 3lb 8oz and 3lb 10oz. His fishing companion had also enjoyed success ending with his five fish limit bag. He commented that it was great to see the fishery turned around under Mark Underhill’s management.

Wimbleball offers a superb trout fishing experience its not always easy but the fish are full tailed and hard fighting with the catch and release option working well. As the summer approaches it may well be worthwhile taking the option of a boat to cover more water. Summer evenings will I am sure provide some exciting sport from both bank and shore with free rising trout.

Torridge Fly Fishing Club – Spring Sport

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Located at Gammaton Reservoirs ( 2 four acre lakes) .Annual membership £170. Members can keep up to 6 fish a week.
Day tickets £20 (3 fish) available from Summerlands Tackle, Westward Ho! & Tarka Country Pursuits , Torrington.
Membership enquiries to Mike Ball 07899 742757 . Email : [email protected]com

(Above) Limit bag for day ticket angler Richard Penton. Not bad for £20 & the option for catch & release on the lower lake if you want to carry on fishing after you’ve got your 3 fish.

EXE VALLEY TROUT MASTERS RESULT

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Troutmasters Results

Well done to everyone who took part in the Troutmasters competition on Sunday 14th April 2019. The competition took place over four hours and even with the freezing cold easterly wind the ten anglers that attended managed a rod average of 2.4 fish per angler, with several anglers heading back to Anchor lake to continue fishing after the match had ended. Best tactics throughout this colder spell have been to fish deeper and slower.

  1. Chris Short with 5 fish weighing 16lb 8oz
  2. Keith Ratcliffe with 4 fish weighing 11lb 12oz
  3. Philip Duckett with 3 fish weighing 10lb 12oz
  4. Mary Ratcliffe with 3 fish weighing 7lb 12oz

  5. Ben Cheeld with 3 fish weighing 6lb 4oz

  6. Richard Cooper with 2 fish weighing 5lb 8oz
  7. Mike Duckett with 2 fish weighing 5lb
  8. Sam Shepherd – Junior with 2 fish weighing 4lb 12oz

    9 -Terence O’Keefe

    9 – Peter Kyle

    Junior Winner – Sam Shepherd

South West Lakes Trust Trout Fisheries Report – March 2019

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The unseasonably warm weather in February could not continue and early March saw strong winds and heavy rain, making conditions challenging for anglers. However, as the month progressed the weather became warmer and calmer, with some hatching insects evident, and a few surface-feeding fish (a few fish even being caught on dry patterns). The water levels are still all full, with water temperatures rising – up to 10ºc by the end of the month.

Fishing:

Kennick– Rods averaged around 3 fish per angler, with a number of full bags and fish over 3lbs being caught. The North end of the fishery continued to prove the most productive, with bank anglers finding fish from the Causeway, Laployd and Smithacott Banks, as well as Clampitts Bay, while boat anglers tended to concentrate on the Narrows and deeper central water. Some surface-feeding fish are evident in the early mornings, although few hatching insects have yet been seen, and no fish could be tempted to rise to a dry pattern. Gold-head Damsels and Montanas fished on floating or intermediate lines have caught well, as have lure patterns (such as Kennick Killers, Tadpoles and Cat’s Whiskers). The best Rainbow caught during the month was a 3lb 11oz Rainbow, caught by Jim Heathcote (from Totnes), while Wes Ower caught a bag that included a Rainbow of 3lb and a wild Brown of 3lb while fishing from a boat. Mr A.Lobb had two excellent sessions, catching full bags on both occasions, with two fish and three fish of over 3lb respectively, although the best bag of the month was caught by Mr. M.Ure, catching (and releasing) 17 Rainbows up to 3lb 8oz on a tadpole pattern.

Siblyback– After a tough and windy opening weekend, both the weather and the fishing improved as the month progressed, with some nice full bags of fish being caught, rods averaging around three fish per angler, and surface feeding fish evident at the Marshes and Two Meadows (a few being taken on Black Gnats and Hoppers). With plenty of Buzzers hatching, small nymphs and teams of Buzzers have been successful patterns, while pulled deeper fished lures (Baby Dolls, Orange Blobs, Tadpoles and Vivas) have also caught well. The best fish caught in the month was a 3lb 8oz Rainbow caught by Mr Westlake.

Burrator– With two Coulam boats now at Burrator, and boats available for anglers from the beginning of the season, the opening weekend at Burrator got off to a flying start from both the banks (Longstone and Sheepstor Dam) and boats, with rods averaging 5.6 fish per angler. In addition to the freshly stocked fish, a number of wild Browns and overwintered Rainbows were caught. While fish have generally been feeding on small buzzers, small lures and flashy nymphs fished on intermediate lines proved to be the most effective method. Local club member, Stuart McCullough, caught the best fish of the weekend – a Rainbow of 3lb 8oz. As the month continued, catches remained high, with anglers averaging 5 fish per rod (and plenty of fish over 3lbs), with the best fishing to be had from Longstone Bank, the Lawns and Sheepstor Dam, mainly on Intermediate/Slow-sink lines, with a selection of patterns (Green-flash Damsel, Cats Whiskers and Tadpoles) slowly retrieved. Mr McMahon (from Walkhampton) also caught a 3lb 8oz Rainbow on a Goldhead, while Allan Lawson caught the best bag of fish – nine Rainbows from Longstone Bank and eight from the Lawns, using a Blue-flash Damsel.

Stithians– Pub Bay, The North Bank and Yellowort have proved to be the best locations in the opening month at Stithians, with anglers averaging just fewer than two fish per rod. As yet there are few surface-feeding fish and most fish have been caught on either a selection of nymph patterns (Pheasant Tail, Hares Ears, Diawl Bachs, Damsels and Montanas) or deeper fished lures (Orange Blobs, Tadpoles and Nomads). As the month progressed, fish also started to be caught from the banks at Mossops and Goonlaze.

Roadford– The opening weekend at the Brown Trout waters was met with gale force winds and driving rain, deterring all but the hardiest of anglers. Duncan Kier (from Belstone) caught six fish up to 1lb, fishing from the more sheltered banks in Dam Bay and Shop Inlet, using a Woolly Bugger. The weather improved the following week and local angler Dean Boucher caught nine fish in good condition from Davey’s Bank using a Black Tadpole. There are two new Coulam Boats on the water this year and over the winter we have cleared hundreds of metres of self-seeded willow from the banks to improve accessibility to the water’s edge.

Fernworthy– The first week of the season produced some wonderful sport at Fernworthy, with a number of anglers catching more than ten fish in a session and, overall, anglers catching 5.5 fish per rod. Fish have been moving throughout the day, taking buzzers and small nymphs (try Hares ears and Midge Pupae) in the calmer conditions, but otherwise Black Mini-lures on floating lines caught well in the deeper water by the dam.

Colliford– Fish are well spread out over the water and being caught off most banks – it pays to keep on the move to cover as much water as possible at Colliford. With some fish already starting to move on the surface, a few fish have been taken on dry patterns (Soldier Palmer and Black Bits). Floating or intermediate lines have worked best, even in the deeper water by the dam, with Black Spiders and dark lures catching well.

Chris Hall (April 2019)

ENDS

Issue date: 3 April 2019

For more information, please contact:

Rosie Vine

Customer Communications and Marketing Manager

South West Lakes Trust

01566 771930

[email protected]

EARLY SEASON TROUT FISHING – Another Perfect Day

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The journey across Exmoor on a late March day evaporated into a whirl of fishing talk and tales as Jeff drove us to Wimbleball Lake high on Exmoor. On arrival we were greeted warmly by Trevor Telling who assists Mark and Tracey Underhill in running Wimbleball Lake.

Its just over twelve months since Mark took over running Wimbleball and I am sure that many of the anglers who have visited since will vouch for the Stirling job that Mark and his team have done.

I asked Mark to summarise his feeling after a year running the Lake.

“During our first season it was certainly a surprise to us how many fishermen came to fish at Wimbleball, and that gave us confidence to go on and order the Coulam boats. I don’t think we could have picked a worse year to have started running Wimbleball due to beast of a the east and then that awful fishing summer. But even with that we were very pleased with everything. The lake fished it’s socks off and we only had a few blanks all year, It’s truly a magical lake and I feel very blessed to have taken on the fishing my end goal is make Wimbleball one of the country’s top lakes for cracking quality and the hardest fighting fish any where in the country.”

Trevor Telling is himself a keen angler and is passionate to ensure that all those who visit the Lake enjoy the experience. He shares information freely suggesting where to fish and what flies and tactics are likely to succeed. We chatted at length about trout fishing and fisheries and how important it is to all work together in promoting this wonderful pastime. One issue that Mark and Trevor feel strongly about is the need to encourage young anglers into the sport and to promote this they offer Juniors under 16 the opportunity to fish for free when accompanied by a permit holding adult.

The adoption of a forward thinking catch and release policy has proved very popular with visiting anglers. The sensible catch and release ticket option costs the same as a five fish ticket with the first two fish to be retained ensuring a constant turnover of stock. The angler can enjoy a full days fishing without any worry about bag limits and having to leave when the quota is made.

A blue sky interspersed with white cotton wool clouds, birdsong drifting through the air, fresh green leaves and buds all around. Daffodils, celandines and primroses denote that we are in that delightful yellow phase of spring. Time to go trout fishing!

The bright sunshine and cool North West Breeze would undoubtedly make the trout a little harder to catch but this did little to dent our enthusiasm as we tackled up in the car  park close to Bessom’s Bridge.

I threaded the Intermediate line through the rings attached a leader of 8lb b.s Fluro-carbon and put a bead headed black lure on the point with a buzzer pattern on the dropper.

Snowbee Ambassador Jeff Pearce set up with some of Snowbee’s finest kit  and elected to start off with a booby on a fast sinking line.

We both walked eagerly to the waters edge and took a few steps out into the gin clear water before extending our lines. And so, the search began in a rhythmic cast and retrieve that is so absorbing. The icy cold water on the fingers, the coolness seeping through waders, the expectation as the line is pulled back through the rod’s rings.

This wonderful vibrant spring landscape is surely all so vital in this quest to connect with the hard fighting trout that live within this other dimension beneath the surface. It’s all so hard to put into words but I can only link the total emersion into this trance like state as the mind set determined during yoga or mindfulness endeavours.

It was mid-morning by the time we started fishing and I am sure that we both expected success early in the day. I persisted with the set up I had started with whilst Jeff continually swapped and changed lines, tactics and flies. After an hour I hooked a rainbow trout that erupted at the end of the line leaping two or three feet into the air in a flurry of spray before racing away at a rate of knots then coming detached from the hook. This frustrating occurrence was to be repeated several times throughout the morning. This at least gave hope that I was doing something right, as Jeff had not even had a pull in the first two hours.

We stopped briefly for lunch resting our arms and assessing the situation. It was apparent that other anglers were also struggling to find the fish as they were constantly moving around searching.

By mid afternoon our spirits had dipped slightly and we decided it was time to try a new area. If nothing else it would give us a change of scenery and fresh hope. We figured that the shallow bay opposite could be worth a try. Whilst several anglers had been fishing there in the morning they had moved on and the area had been rested for a while.

As we walked to the water’s edge there came that welcome ring upon the water that signifies a feeding trout. Jeff put out a long floating line with a Black n’ peacock on the point. First cast came a pull; second cast a bent rod and an acrobatic rainbow. We were both relieved to break the prospect of a blank day and I captured the moment before resuming my own quest for a trout.

A few casts later and I was once again enjoying the thrill of a hard fighting rainbow at the end of the line. Exhilaration once more turned to disappointment as the hook once again lost its hold. I was now however brim full of confidence and expected a take with every cast and It wasn’t long before I was again relishing the battle with one of Wimbleballs hard fighting trout. Each trout seemed to be turbo charged ripping line through the fingers as the rod bent and bucked to the strain.

The next couple of hours saw us hook multiple hard fighting rainbows with black lures fished on an intermediate line highly effective. We don’t know of course whether it was the change of location that had brought success or the trout’s appetite or mood.

The fact that we had eventually unlocked the key to success brought satisfaction, whilst the perfect light as the day faded brought appreciation of the artist in us both. As the sun slowly sank it was difficult to know what mattered most, was it the thrill of hard fighting trout or the capturing of that moment with the camera?

With bare trees silhouetted against the skyline and the mirror of the lake reflecting the glowing embers of the day I hoped that Jeff could seal the moment. As I framed him fishing; a fish seized the fly. The next few minutes we both relished the moments as a hard fighting trout tested the tackle for several minutes before eventually surrendering into the folds of the rubber coated net. The barbless hook slipped easily from the  jaws of a stunning wild brown trout. After capturing the moment Jeff let the fish swim away into the cool waters and into our memories.

We packed away, our fingers tingling with the cold water, our feet numbed after  hours stood up to our waists in the cool water. As we left enchanting Wimbleball Lake I commented  that we would never endure such discomfort during a day at work!

As the road climbed up onto the moor Jeff’s phone sprang into life. The fact that he was due at the pictures at 8.00pm had totally slipped his mind whilst lost in the waters of an angling life.

Its always good to be at the start of a season with those longer spring days and summer evenings still to come. The thrill of rising trout during perfect days beside well stocked waters.

Wimbleball Lake is a large reservoir with a surface area of 374 acres. The dam construction was completed in 1979 and provides water that is distributed by  South West Water and Wessex Water. It was run as a trout fishery for many years by South West lakes Trust who downgraded the fishery in 2016. Mark Underhill took on running the lake in 2018 stocking it with quality rainbow trout from Rainbow Valley Trout Farm.

The lake also has a good population of wild brown trout that run to over 6lb.