I joined the Fluff Chucker’s group event at Colliford Lake on Saturday March 26th in search of wild brown trout. Cast off for this informal competition was at 9:00am with pre meet at 8:00am.
I arrived on time at the car park to meet with fellow fluff chucker’s who were eagerly debating the day ahead and recent excursions with their fly rods. It was my first visit to this vast lake of 900 acres situated high on Bodmin Moor and my first impression was that it was a little daunting. These fears soon evaporated after chatting with fellow anglers who assured me that the trout were often found close to the margins.
I had undoubtedly been lulled into a false sense of security over recent days of warm sunshine as I had underestimated how cold it was likely to be. Whilst there wasn’t a cloud in the sky a bitter east wind was blowing across the lake creating many white caps.
We all donned our waders and set off shortly before 9.00am eager to cast a line with the majority heading for a bank that gave some shelter from the wind.
The lake is surrounded by ancient moorland with craggy granite outcrops and wind swept stunted trees. Sheep grazed here and there with old stone walls and fences dividing this harsh yet beautiful landscape. The water clarity was good and peat stained resembling the finest malt whiskey.
I approached the water’s edge with a degree of stealth and put out a short line with a small black lure on the point and a black spider pattern on a dropper. As I retrieved and lifted the fly ready to recast there was a swirl in the water and the glimpse of a golden flank. This gave my confidence an immediate boost.
It was however three hours before I actually made contact with one of the resident trout after moving to a bank that was being battered by the strong wind. A pleasing wild brown of 12” bringing welcome reward for my efforts. I had spoken with a few other anglers as I wandered the shoreline and knew that no one seemed to be catching a lot which was not surprising in the conditions.
I wandered back and forth along the shoreline trying different retrieves and searching the water. I had confidence in the flies on my leader and stuck with the tried and trusted.
Success came once again as I stripped the lure to suddenly feel that delightful connection as a good fish hit the fly leaping from the water in a somersault of spray.
I was relieved when a pleasing 15.5” wild brown was safely within my net. After a quick photo and careful measuring the fish was returned and swam strongly away after holding in the cold water for a few moments.
The remaining hour or so was a little frustrating with four more trout being hooked briefly before shedding the hook.
It was all back to the car park for 5.15pm and the prize giving. The event was generously sponsored by Partridge of Redditch, Yeti, Hooks and Hackles and South West Lakes Trust.
I was delighted to receive the runners up prize for the second biggest fish of the day.
Full results below with thanks to Rodney Wevill who was the events main organiser.
Fluff Chuckers / Partridge of Redditch Brown trout bank event.
Not a great day for pictures at the event today.
Bitter cold easterly winds made it a day of heads down and try very hard to find some fish.
A very good turnout with anglers travelling from North Devon, Somerset and the usual pirates from Cornwall.
The overall winner was Roger Truscott with the longest fish and the most fish caught.
The runners up being Jack Welshman, Wayne Thomas and Jon Allen.
Even though it really wasn’t ideal brown trout weather there was a good amount of fish landed with respectable fish from 13” to 17”.
Fluff Chuckers would like to thank all the anglers that supported the event a great turnout and most importantly the sponsors for their great generosity providing the prizes.
Partridge of Redditch
Trout Fishing South West Lakes Trust
Hooks & Hackles