The weather last week was very wet and windy, not good for fly fishing. The fishing was slow as one would expect for mid August.
Lakes – last week members visited the lakes on 28 occasions, mostly at Little Bognor where there is feeding activity at all times of the day. Members caught 11 fish. Well presented small dry flies and buzzers will catch fish if good use is made of the cover along the banks.
River – the heavy rain at the start of the week caused the river level to rise and although the level quickly dropped, further rain at the end of the week and over the weekend, brought the level back up again.
Members visited the river on 17 occasions and caught 4 fish. A sea trout of 2lbs was caught from Beat E, the Fish Pass. The rain has encouraged the sea trout to move up the river and there is a chance of a good fish on all beats. There is no heavy rain forecast and the river should drop back to its normal level towards the end of the week.
Last week the wet and windy weather discouraged members from visiting Little Bognor and the river.
Lakes – members visited the lakes at Little Bognor on 33 occasions and caught 20 fish. The springs that feed the lakes are keeping the water temperature down and fish were rising for buzzers. The recent cooler nights and heavy rain should lower the water temperature and the leaf debris will encourage the trout to explore the surface for food. A quiet approach and a long leader enables fish to be caught from the margins where there is cover.
River – the river level rose on Friday night and the strong winds during the week made casting difficult. Members visited the river on 18 occasions and caught 8 trout. The heavy rain last night has coloured the water but the water level should drop quickly.
The Environment Agency gauge at Halfway Bridge is not giving accurate readings and it is best to check with Andrew for advice on the river conditions before leaving home.
The weather in July was extreme, the hottest month ever recorded including 38.7 degrees on 25 July. Nearly two inches of rain fell, spread over 10 days but the hot nights kept the water temperature in the rainbow lakes high. The fishing was difficult and the trout were only active in the early morning and late afternoon/evening.
During the first week of July members caught 42 trout from the lakes including a fish of 4lbs 4ozs from Little Springs. A few mayfly could be seen along the river but the trout had ample food on the river bed and had no need to chase flies on the surface. A kick sample was taken from the new riffle above Rotherbridge which showed plenty of shrimps, olive and stonefly nymphs.
In the second week of July the water temperature in the rainbow lakes reached 22 degrees and the trout were difficult to tempt, 9 fish were caught. The water temperature at Little Bognor, where the lakes are spring fed, was 17 degrees and the fish rose well for buzzers. Nine fish were caught from the river including a grayling. Nymphs fished deep in the late evening accounted for several trout.
Heavy weekend rain in the third week of July saw the river rise and then drop back to its normal summer level. The majority of the lake caught trout came from Little Bognor. The water temperature in the rainbow lakes increased to 25 degrees. The trout in the river were quite spooky, a careful approach and a well presented fly was essential. Ten fish were caught during the week on a variety of dry flies and nymphs.
Towards the end of the month 17 trout were caught from the lakes, all except one from Little Bognor. The successful flies were Pheasant Tail Nymph, buzzers and Adams. There were 10 trout caught from the river and the fish were rising for dry flies at dusk. In the last week of July and a few days into August, members visited the lakes on 47 occasions and caught 29 trout, all from Little Bognor. The river was fished on 23 occasions and a total of 11 trout were caught mainly from Beat E, the Fish Pass.
If the hot, humid and thundery weather continues through August the best fishing will be found at Little Bognor and the river. Flying ants were swarming on Thursday and it would be good to have a couple of imitations in your fly box. Crane flies will hatch from the water meadows along the river and there will be hatches of sedge in the evenings.
The high water temperature made fishing at the rainbow lakes difficult but the lakes at Little Bognor are still producing fish. Last Thursday the temperature broke the all time UK record and the water temperature in the rainbow lakes rose to 25 degrees.
Lakes – last week members visited the lakes on 40 occasions and caught 17 trout, all except one from Little Bognor. Two wild fish were caught from the top lake, successful flies were Pheasant Tail Nymph, buzzers and Adams.
River – last week members visited the river on 20 occasions and caught 10 trout, two chub and a good dace. The most productive beats were Keepers Bridge and Rotherbridge. Fish were rising this afternoon and if you can find a rising fish they will generally take a well presented dry fly. The most successful flies were Adams, GRHE nymph and dry Pheasant Tail.
A nice condition chub from Keepers Bridge taken on a dry fly.
The river was in fine condition until the heavy weekend rain, the water level has now dropped and the river is looking beautiful. There is plenty of bankside cover to hide behind when approaching trout. There are also sections where the grass has been mown short to enable easy casting and good access to the water for landing and releasing trout.
Lakes – last week members visited the lakes on 41 occasions and caught 13 trout including a wild fish from Little Bognor. All of the fish, except one, were caught at Little Bognor. The water temperature in the rainbow lakes will increase in the heat wave this week. It is probably unrealistic to expect to catch trout when the water temperature is so high but the fish at Little Bognor are rising throughout the day in the much cooler, spring fed water.
River – last week members visited the river on 18 occasions and caught 10 trout. Yesterday afternoon, from Rotherbridge to Taylors Bridge, fish were rising for midges and damsel flies and it was possible to catch trout on both dry fly and nymphs.
The fish are quite spooky, it is essential to approach carefully and present the fly without alerting them. In the bright sunshine the trout seek shelter under marginal bushes, trees and streamer weed. Fishing in open water, in the heat of the day, will probably not be successful. In the early morning and the evening, a well presented dry fly under an Alder tree or a weighted GRHE nymph run along the side of a bed of streamer weed should produce a couple of trout.
Lakes – last week members visited the lakes on 36 occasions and caught 9 trout. The rainbow lakes are not performing well because the water temperature has risen to 22 degrees. The weed cutting on these lakes will continue throughout the season.
The water temperature of the spring fed lakes at Little Bognor was 17 degrees this afternoon and the fish were rising well for buzzers.
River – last week members visited the river on 21 occasions and caught 9 fish including a grayling and a wild trout.
This evening the fish were rising and several fish were caught after 7:00pm. The bright sunshine is making the trout hide under the bushes and in the streamer weed during the day. If trout are not rising, a heavy nymph fished close to cover should produce a few fish.
Lakes – during the last two weeks members visited the lakes on 118 occasions and caught a total of 42 trout including a fish of 4lbs 4ozs from Little Springs.
River – members visited the river on 46 occasions and caught 14 fish including a 9oz wild trout and a small perch.
A few mayfly hatched throughout the day and midges clustered under the alder trees along the banks. The most productive fly was the Grey Wulff. The best times to fish the river are dawn and dusk. During the day a weighted nymph fished alongside the streamer weed and under the bushes might produce a fish.