May 2014 Newsletter
It’s certainly pleasing to see leaves on the trees and everything looking lush and green, especially after a long wet winter. Spring and early summer often offer some of the best fishing with fish feeding avidly on natural food items both on and under the surface. The fishery looks in great shape at the moment, with the lakes offering anglers superb water clarity and as usual the fish are in superb condition.
The start of April saw the start of the river fishing season. The river looked in great shape with plenty of water and anglers reported good catches. Most of the fish have been taken on small weighted nymphs but as I write this letter things are really getting going with the Mayfly hatch just starting which should see a considerable amount of fish being taken off the surface.
Transitioning from lakes to rivers
A lot of anglers find it difficult to make the transition from fly fishing on the lakes to fly fishing the river, so I would like to give you a simple guide to starting out river fishing.
You should start by discarding anything which you don’t actually need. It’s all about keeping things simple. Rods between 6-8 foot rated for a 2-4 weight line should do the trick, anything longer than an 8 foot rod will be a hindrance on the Tillingbourne due to its width and any overhanging trees. Lines should be double taper as you will not be casting for distance. Personally, I prefer a dull colour of line like an olive colour, I think it is less likely to spook fish as a brightly coloured line might. Leaders should not be too long, a 7.5 foot tapered leader is ideal with a breaking strain of between 2.5lb and 3.5lb, this may have to increase if fishing Mayflies to present the fly properly. One small box of river flies will be quite enough. To get you started on river fishing these are the patterns I would start off with, you can add more to your collection as you gain experience on the river:
1. Copper beaded Pheasant Tail Nymph in sizes 14 to 16
2. Copper beaded Hares Ear in sizes 14 to 16
3. Olive Klinkhammer in sizes 16 to 18
4. Sedge in sizes 14 to 16
5. Mayfly in sizes 8 to 10
Above, all you need for an exciting day on the river.
Whichever fly you choose they should all be fished upstream and fished back towards you without any drag. Once drag occurs it will make your fly act unnaturally thus putting off the fish from taking. Only short casts are required to ensure good line control and fly presentation. Also try to be as stealthy as possible so not to spook any fish. Fish carefully through the water in front of you as trout can sometimes be found in the most unlikely areas.
As far as tactics on the lakes go a floating line and longish leader is all that is required. A majority of fish have been taken on BFD and Cats Whisker. Variations of a BFD are definitely something to try, like with an orange bead instead of the usual gold. The orange bead will act as a hot spot and will induce a fish into taking. If you are not getting much luck on small lures switch to a small buzzer or nymph. When fishing these small flies presentation is important so fish fairly long leaders (10-12ft). Your leader breaking strain should be between 4lb and 6lb and a slow figure of eight retrieve should do the trick.
May has seen some extremely unsettled conditions, quite a lot of wet and windy weather with sporadic hot spells which unusually has meant three diatom blooms so far (brown stain in the water). In complete contrast last weekend saw temperatures exceed 26 Degrees heating the water up and temporarily slowing the fishing. More rain please!
However, when the conditions are right we have witnessed some great Olive hatches with half the bag taken on Buzzers and other imitative nymphs just sub surface together with dry Klinkhammer patterns on the surface. The trusty Blue Flash Damsel has accounted for the other half of the bag. Best fish so far have been a 13lb 8oz Rainbow for Dave Fleming on a Blue Flash Damsel.
SYON PARK FISHERY IS CLOSED FOR AUGUST 2014
The fishery will close on Monday 21st July for draining, removal of coarse fish and other essential maintenance and re-open on Monday 1st September. Fish tickets can be used as normal at Weston, Vale End and Powder Mills
Our annual publication of the Windknot is now out and can be viewed using the following link.
Hard copies are available at each fishery next to the signing in book or just ask the duty bailiff.
Corporate Events: At Albury we are able to offer exclusive use of Vale End fishery for the whole day and if you wish we are able to organise breakfast and lunch. We can also provide all equipment and arrange professional fly fishing instruction.
These days may be suited to a group of friends, fly fishing club or as a corporate day. For all inquiries please contact Tony Hern on 07976 810737 or email him directly at [email protected].
Tight lines and best regards,