Blagdon trout

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.


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

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

Cold Spring but Great Fishing!

This has definitely been the longest and coldest Spring since I have been a fishing guide - it's now past Mid Summers Day and the winds keep on blowing!
Water temperatures are rising slowly and the weed growth on both Chew and Blagdon is heavy - due to the April sunshine apparently.

Still, in spite of all these cold winds, the trout and pike have fed well on all the Bristol Waters.  Average trout sizes on Chew Valley are 2lbs 15ozs at the present time - bigger than any of the UK's major reservoirs in fact.  And man do they fight hard!

Pike on Chew have been lazy - as usual.  However, catches are decent on overcast days and I have already had a 40:08, 31:08, 27:08 and several others over 25lbs this season on the fly.  I also went through a spell where my clients and I lost 11 pike on the trot as we simply could not hold them!  So pike on the fly is certainly worth a shot.

Lexus Team Heats

Last saturday we had a sell-out Lexus Teams Heat on Chew and 217 trout were caught by the 66 competitors.  Top Rod was Alun Williams of Cwm Flyfishers, whose 9 trout weighed in at 28lbs 1oz.  The biggest fish weighed 5lbs exactly and was landed by Steve Winstone of Team Airflo.
Congratulations to the 5 qualifying teams; Team Airflo, Anglo Welsh FF, Team Snowbee, Blagdon FF and The Water Rats. 
They will join 15 other teams at the Grand Final to be held at both Chew and Blagdon lakes on 15th and 16th August 2015.

Sky TV Tight Lines

Last Friday I was the guest angler on Sky Sports TV fishing show "Tight Lines".  We discussed plenty of fly action, both home and abroad for all species on the fly.  If you missed the show, then it is available on the Sky Sports Podcast.

With Keith Arthur in the Sky TV Studios
Cracking 27:08 Chew valley Pike on the fly
Fin Perfect 5lb Chew Rainbow

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