The Churnet was a little coloured but looking in fine fettle, apart from the odd chunk of bank erosion, obviously due to recent flooding which had also created loads of large woody debris, which the fish would always appreciate. A Collapsed tree lay across the river at one point and this proved very tricky to clamber over, but with high banks it was decision time, forward march or retreat, which wasn't really an option for a stubborn git like me. I used my 10ft rod today which occasionally got tangled in the overhead trees, this rod proved difficult to use but you live and learn by your mistakes, so its a shorter rod next time for sure.
No grayling today I'm afraid but I managed a few hungry little trout, who might have been tricked into thinking it was spring as it was such a glorious day. I wonder if this wonerful fish originated from one of the incubation box's (Egg Box project) an adopted method of restocking on the Churnet 5 yrs ago by LADFFA, although the Lords Bridge stretch is not stocked trout move around in rivers - check there website for info on the egg box experiment. I couldn't resist a quick picture of this little beauty below, just to prove what a great success story the Churnet really is, after being heavily polluted it is truly re-born. There should be some proud chaps some where, responsible for bringing this lovely trout river to life, and I will be back come spring/summer for more of these little stunners. Setting off home, and driving alongside the river, I noticed the lower stretches looked more suitable for holding grayling, maybe I'll start at the bottom next time. To describe the location of this stretch of the Churnet as in the village of Alton, next to Alton Towers is very misleading, and is like describing Blackpool as an atol in the Maldives.
My guiding services are now available to assist fly fishermen on both game and coarse rivers. I'd be happy to advise and arrange your special day anywhere from one of Derbyshires finest trout and grayling rivers to your own local coarse river. Email Mick Martin for details and options. Please copy and paste into your own email email@example.com
Tuesday, 12 February 2008
Lords Bridge (River Churnet)
I decided to fish the Churnet this afternoon for a few hours, and after arriving at the Ramblers Retreat around 1pm, I set up s.a.p knowing my time was limited to 3-4 hours. I walked downstream along the bank for a while, until I felt I'd left enough river to use my time up fishing my way back, probably about half of the stretch I guess. I clambered down the steep bank into the river at which point I should mention that the top sections have high banks, and some careful navigation is on the menu. Upstream nymphing with a little check nymphing were the obvious methods, so after so long I set off back upstream towards the Ramblers Retreat (picture below) which I'm told serves excellent food, so maybe on a full day in summer I'll get the opportunity to fill my hodge and get back to you about that.