Guiding Service

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

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

Derbyshire Wye 15/4/08

After a warm reception at the Peacock I decided to start the day from the fishermans carpark on the A6. I walked past the first few bends checking the river out and I must say it was in good condition. After making a few casts I noticed a chap behind me who introduced himself as Bernie the bailiff. Now this was no ordinary bailiff as I quickly realised this was a skilled fisherman prepared to offer his knowledge of this river and his vast experience of flyfishing, not only his he a qualified Instructer/guide, hes a nice chap. Within a short space of time Bernie had gained me 2 seconds of drag free fishing in the faster swims, the benefits of this are imeasurable in terms of catching fish, and all free of charge. We took a short walk upstream with Bernie explaining his approach to different swims and the best techniques to fish them. We bid our farewells but not before he'd advised me at which spots to try going upstream, and as he walked away I remember thinking, well I've had my monies worth already and what a fantastic service I'd recieved - unbelievable really.

With a cold wind on my back there was no suprise that the fish were held well down and with little rising I arrived at Bakewell on a blank. I sat on a wall eating my lunch, watching the huge rainbows around the town section when all the heavens let loose. I put my back to a wall to stay dry, while praying for better weather. Luckily God was listening today and after a miserable 30min soaking, the sun broke through, the wind dropped, and the atmosphere truly warmed up.

I quickly made my way back onto the river away from the public and before long I spotted a hatch of olives followed by the plopping of fish rising. Strike while the irons hot sprang to mind, resulting in my ballon caddis being walloped by a few browns and a lovely little rainbow shown below. The rainbows breed wild here and they are an absolute joy, giving a rare chance to catch a wild rainbow in this country - truly awsome.

Below is a picture of one of the browns caught and every one as beautiful as the other, all wonderfuly conditioned, hard fighting wild brownies. The fine weather started to break and I was aproached by another chap, this time it was Jan the River keeper who had come for a chat. He came across very well and is a great credit to the Haddon estate. I managed a couple more fish on a Grey duster (showin off) before the next shower and luckily Jan obliged me with a lift back to my car for a restock, before fishing the lower middle section.

Once the rain stopped I left my car to have a mosy around the middle section and I can safely say the Wye is full of fish. With the water running clear spotting fish was no problem at all, but it was a case of visa versa. These fish can spot you a mile away and before long they will bring any fisherman to there knees. Stealth is the key here and creeping around is inevitable for you to have any success. Watching the fish shy away from you, soon puts you into jungle mode and I should mention that knee pads would be worth their weight in gold while fishing this section.

Most of my fish were taken in the faster water today, probably down to my poor stalking skills, mind you the fish have restricted vision in riffle aswell . With nothing rising I returned to my car and drove back to town for the last couple of hours. This payed dividends as I caught 2 nice grayling around Scotts Garden (quickly returned) and this wild rainbow from below town. Not only did this fish fill my landing net, it fought so hard in the fast water, I never thought I'd land it, especially as there was no chance of moving downstream with the fish. I held my breath a few times until I eventually managed to guide the fish into a small back eddie near my feet, talk about wild thing, even with slight damage to the tip of its tail, this wild rainbow was a locomotive as far as my sage rod was concerned. Needless to say as there is a no wading policy, a long handled landing net is advisable to aid both you and the fish.

Looking back on the day I can honestly say this river is so obviously cared for by conservation minded people that it bites you on the butt. By investing time, money and knowledge and most of all having the vision. I could see many Derbyshire rivers comparing to the Wye in the future and this little river presents a formidable case for promoting wild fishing, along with the benefits gained by appointing good river keepers. A day at Rowsley as momenterilly restored my belief in the saying - you get what you pay for.


Kev said...

Hi Mick,

Sounds like you had a good time on the Wye. I'm booked in myself towards the end of May. Not fished it before so need to think about how to get the best of the day.

Give me a shout if you want a day out sometime.


Max said...


We fish the Wye beginning of June - also for the first time.

Could you tell what sort of flies are the best at this time of the year? And, where is place nearby to get fishing stuff including flies?