guided fishing on Chew and Blagdon lakes

Superb early season fishing!

Well what a great start to the 2017 fly fishing season this has been on the Bristol Waters.  Both Chew and Blagdon have been alive with buzzers, making the trout fishing incredible.  People have been using nymphs, small lures and even dries at times when the weather allowed.  And with more mild weather forecast, the prospects look even better for the coming weeks.

Trout

Both boat and bank anglers have been treated to some sensational fly fishing so far this season, with Chew opening for action on 9th march and Blagdon a week later.  Some key hotspots on Chew were behind Denny Island and down in Herons Green Bay - even though neither of those areas were stocked prior to opening day!

The best area at Blagdon was the Top End, although Butcombe was also good at the opposite end of the lake!  Once again, no fish were stocked at the Top End so it just goes to show that these trout will wander to where they find the best feeding areas, regardless of where they are stocked.

Pike

The pike fly fishing on Chew has been pretty difficult so far, but to be fair, there are not many anglers out there chasing them at the moment.  I have had several guided days and have boated a few, but have also had a fair amount of missed chances and some follows from very big fish - so I know it can only improve.

Guided Fly Fishing

Now that the new season is well and truly underway, I have plenty of availability; particularly midweek, during April.  May is already very busy and June is filling fast.
If you would like a guided day on Chew, Blagdon or Litton, then please go to the "Contact" part of this site and let's get a day or two organised!

Charlie Noble & Harvey with his first pike on the fly
Martin Watts on Chew fishing sinking line tactics with great success
John Horsey with a cracking early season Blagdon rainbow from Top End

Spring has finally sprung!

This last week has seen temperatures soar and put an end to the 3rd cold Spring in successive years!
Water temperatures have reached 22.5 degrees on Chew but the fish are still feeding happily and oxygen levels are fine - water clarity is also excellent.
On Chew the main trout areas have been the deep water at the Dam - but don't think these fish are deep - quite the opposite.  On overcast days Dry Fly is the best method and in other conditions it is Washing Line or simply straight lined nymphs.

My clients have had superb sport in recent weeks with lots of limit bags and hard fighting trout.

Pike

After weeks of rock hard fishing, the pike have finally started to feed with a vengeance on Chew and loads of big 20's plus a few 30's have been caught on the fly.  Jake Belgium has had an awesome year so far and topped it off last week with a 25lb 4oz pike - taken on a competition size Cats Whisker Booby intended for trout while fishing - wait for it - at the Dam!

My clients have all had good sport recently but we seem to be hitting doubles rather than 20 or 30 pounders.  Luck of the draw I suppose, but I am also sure some biggies will follow in the coming weeks.

England duty and the Grafham Trophy

Last week was spent in Ireland on the wonderful Lough Lein near Killarney fishing in the International Loch Style Spring match.  The wild brownies were small but plentiful and the rules were that only fish measuring 10" from tip of snout to INSIDE fork of tail would count.  On the first practice day, Richard Slater and I boated 43 trout and only 1 was sizeable!  We knew then that numbers in the match would be low.

However, with great team practice and top angling by my England team mates, we managed 18 fish for the team and brought home the covetted Gold Medal.  Wales were 2nd with 13 fish, Scotland 3rd with the same number and hosts Ireland were 4th with just 8 fish.

I also had the honour of being top English Rod and brought home the impressive Grafham Trophy.

Guided Days

Now I'm back until September (when I leave for Vail, Colorado and the World Fly Fishing Championships) so most of my days will be spent on Chew or Blagdon guiding for trout and pike.  I still have plenty of places available in July and August, so simply drop me an email to book a day.

John Horsey Fly Fishing
John Horsey Fly Fishing
John Horsey Fly Fishing

GREAT NEW SEASON SPORT

What a great start to the 2016 fly fishing season this has been on the Bristol Waters.  Superb quality rainbow and brown trout being taken from all corners of both Chew Valley and Blagdon Lakes on a huge variety of methods.
Although the weather has seen cold winds and many layers of clothing have been required at times to keep warm, the trout have never been very deep and on Chew they are feeding hard on small black buzzer, while on Blagdon they are stuffed with daphnia.

Dry Fly!

Whenever the wind drops on Chew, the fish have risen to hatching buzzer and people were reporting catching on Dry Flies as early as the 18th March - the day after Opening day on Chew Valley!  This is almost unheard of on any of our reservoirs.

Teams of nymphs on Midge Tip lines have been very effective and on the colder, windier days, a DI5 with a bright Blob on the top dropper, a Black Diawl Bach Nymph in the middle and a Black Booby on the point has normally taken plenty of fish.

Buzzers everywhere

Every year the buzzer hatches on Chew seem to get earlier and definitely more prolific.  Black buzzers are already covering the surface of the lake and ducks, gulls, sand martins and swallows are feasting on them - as well as the trout!  Now that the winds have dropped recently, the nymph fishing is really taking off and some quality trout are being caught.

Pike slowly starting to feed again

Fishing for pike on the fly has been slow this season.  We are not sure why this is, but water temperature and possible spawning might be the reasons.  Every year the times that the pike spawn vary, so no-one ever knows how this affects the fishing. 
Thankfully a few have started to feed again as the days have grown longer and warmer - the best two being one of 32lbs and another big double - both taken while trout fishing on a Blob and Booby by the same angler; Dean Kibble from Wales.  Every year Dean catches big pike at this time of the year on small trout flies, so it's no coincidence.

Guided fishing on both lakes

Now that the season is in full swing, I am already heavilly booked for Guided Days, but still have plenty of mid week dates available throughout June and a few remaining in April and May.  The trout fishing should become more "top of the water" in the coming weeks and the pike fishing will become top drawer during may and June.

 

A cracking Blagdon rainbow
Anthony Tabor with a nice Chew Brownie
A nice Chew double taken on the fly

2016 Season looming

Not long now before the new fly fishing season begins on our reservoirs.
Blagdon Lake opens for business on 10th March, while Chew Valley opens a week later on Thursday 17th March 2016.

The Winter so far has been mild, wet and windy - although we have had nowhere near the huge amounts of rain experienced in the North of England, Scotland and Ireland.  In fact, neither Chew Valley or Blagdon are overflowing yet, but they are only a couple of feet below top water so we expect them to be full within a few weeks and certainly before Opening Days.

Book now for Guided Days

I am now actively taking bookings for Guided Days in 2016 on both Chew Valley and Blagdon Lakes.  Fish for quality Brown and Rainbow Trout on either lake and of course there is the opportunity to target massive pike on the fly at Chew. 

If you fancy a lake to yourself, then why not try Litton Lakes with me from a boat.  It is possible to have not one, but both lakes to yourself for the day, along with exclusive use of the Fishing Lodge where we can barbecue lunch in a truly peaceful environment.

Just drop me an email on my "Contact" page and we can get a day or two arranged for the coming season.

Chew Spillway
Herriots Bridge
Enrico Pini and I with his 40:08 fly caught Chew pike last March

Blog Archive

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