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

Sunday, 12 October 2008

Willersley Castle

Today me and my brother were joined by Nick off the fish and fly forum and we all set out with grayling in mind, using trotting with bait as our method so how could we fail. The Derwent was a little high and holding a little colour, not a bad situation for grayling fishing, but the temp was a little on the warm side, mind you nobody told the ladies of Willersley Castle who came out to entertain us in our first few casts.

On arrival we had walked straight to the weir where good numbers of grayling always hold up, along with a variety of other fish. We managed tons of grayling of all sizes along with Dace, chub, Barbel and a few trout. I must say I really enjoyed the first few hours which took me back 35 yrs to fishing the Embankment near the Forest ground as a small boy with my dad. After leaving the weir I slowly began to miss my fly rod, to be honest there was no challenge to speak of as we had lost count hours ago, mind you being in good company on a beautiful autumn day takes some beating.

Walking back downstream and fishing the tail ends of the pools in search of grayling, which often hold out there, I came across some course anglers swim feeding and effectively knocking the crap out of all the brownies, with no intention of changing pegs or methods. I witnessed one bloke catch 4 browns in 4 casts using his feeders and there was no stopping him, his arse was obviously super glued to his box and I dread to think how many trout he caught. Driving home a little annoyed at the situation, I decided to boycott trotting and bait fishing for good, and just fly fish for grayling in future, this prevents me from being a called a hypocrite when moaning about course anglers with no respect for trout during closed seasons.
The amount of browns being caught far exceeded any amount I've witnessed being caught in Mayfly season on the fly rod, this convinced me a ban on bait fishing would be the best way to give the browns a much deserved rest. All in all a memorable day's fishing but I'll be glad to go back on the fly next time out.


mrkleeg said...

I don't blame the coarse fishermen at all - it's the rules of the club that need changing to give that stretch of the Derwent a rest.

Anonymous said...

At the age of ten I started work on a trout farm on the opposite bank to Willersley Castle, in the grounds of the Mill. During our lunch hour we used to fish for grayling using a matchstick at a float and no shot. The weight of the hook was enough to drift the bait down to the fish, in the margins at the back of the Church under the trees. That was some of the best fishing I had come across and I really enjoyed those brief respites.

The farm eventually closed due to chronic diesel pollution on the Via Gellia tainting the flesh of the trout and spoiling the taste.