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Grayling - "The Lady of the stream"

Discussion in 'North East Fresh Water Fishing' started by Davo, Jan 11, 2010.

  1. Davo

    Davo Rockling

    Fantastic report as usual Rupert, and well done on your Grayling. I've fished the Severn a few times for Brownies at Sinnington and enjoyed every minute of it.

    Dave
     
  2. mattylamb

    mattylamb Rockling

    great report Rupert, me and sam were hoping to try for grayling on the swale last weekend but i came down with a bout of man flu so we called it off
     
  3. rupert

    rupert Blenny

    With the inclement arctic weather we’ve had since the middle of December, the chances of soaking a deadbait for a winter stillwater pike, which is my normal line of attack at this time of year, has been nil. So with the lakes frozen solid, I’ve turned my attention to the local rivers, in search of grayling and with a view to christening my new Okuma centrepin reel.

    As a member of York Amalgamation of Anglers, I have access to a few stretches of River and fancied my chances on the River Severn, which is a tributary of the River Rye. Even in its lower reaches, the Severn is a very small river, in many places you could almost leap across it. I’d never fished it before, so it was going to be fun, travelling light and exploring a fresh stretch of River.

    [​IMG]

    I had my first expedition on the Severn just before the Christmas snow arrived. Armed with a 13 foot match rod, my centrepin reel and an apron pouch holding a pint of mixed red and white maggots, I started trotting a stick float on the first pool I came to immediately by the road bridge which crosses the Severn. It was quite a pacey but narrow pool at just over a rod length in width.

    [​IMG]

    I hand fed half a dozen maggots upstream then followed down the pool with the stick float. On the first trot, the float swirled round in the current and dragged under as it trotted down the flow. The bait wasn’t over depth, but the small stick float had not got enough buoyancy for the conditions, so I batted the spool of the pin ready to change to an Avon type float, when this little tiddler popped onto the surface! One of my smallest ever grayling!

    [​IMG]

    I swapped floats anyway and had another dozen trots through the swim, along with a small amount of loose feed, but nothing else showed. What I thought was another fish turned out to be tree root, to which I lost my 2lb hook length. Definitely time to re-tackle and move on!

    The next bend looked inviting, a deep channel on the outside of the bend protected with overhanging willows. Again, first run through and a better grayling this time. This was looking easy, but as with the first pool, it seemed to be one fish, then the swim went dead…..

    [​IMG]

    Onwards downstream and another deeper run yielded a two more grayling this time. I thought it might be fun to film the action, but single handed operation of the centrepin, camera and then winding in proved impossible. Should have thought that one through really. Doh!

    [​IMG]

    I walked on down the Severn towards its confluence with the Rye. Despite fishing some more likely looking runs and pools I drew a blank, but thought the slack water before the confluence must throw up a fish or two – possibly some chub and dace too. Here you can see the river Rye on the left of picture with the Severn coming in from the right.

    [​IMG]

    I steadily trickled a few maggots in every third cast, not wanting to overfeed the swim. After 20 minutes, I still hadn’t had even a sniff of an enquiry, so cut my losses and walked back towards my parked vehicle, which was a couple of miles upstream. I dropped into a few pools on the way back, but with no further joy. There was a distinct chill in the afternoon air and I guessed I’d had the best of it by that stage anyway.


    The next chance I had to fish was on Christmas Eve. Tim, invited me to join him on his club water further up the Rye.

    [​IMG]

    Tim is one of those competitive fishing mates and after water-licking him two salmon to nil on the Tweed last year, he was looking for revenge! It made me smile when I saw the gear he was using – an old mitchell fixed spool reel but fished on a fly rod, the mono looked pretty stout and coily – surely this was going to be a walk in the park???

    This was the pool I started at, a nice clean gravel bottom dropping away into a deeper gulley. Surely there must be something in residence??

    [​IMG]

    Nope, and neither in this one either.

    [​IMG]

    By the time I had caught up with Tim, I hadn’t had a touch but Tim said he’d had five – two trout and three grayling! Just to rub the salt in further, he was just landing his fifth fish as I walked up to him.

    Honour was partially restored when I cadged some of Tim’s bait – fresh brandlings from his composting bin. Clearly these fish had a discerning pallet and my maggots just didn’t cut the mustard. Anyway, the lesson learnt came too late in the day and I was water-licked this time by nine fish to three.

    [​IMG]

    Last weekend Tim rang me asking if I’d like another grayling fishing lesson from him. Cheeky beggar! I picked him up in my 4x4, as the backroads were still pretty slippy. This time I made sure I blagged some of his magic brandlings! We fished further up the Rye this time.

    [​IMG]

    After 10 minutes walking/fishing, I dropped into the tail of a longish run.

    [​IMG]

    First trot through, the float submerged, but my strike met with no resistance, but the worm had gone! Next time I made sure I was quicker and this time I connected. By the time Tim had walked past, I’d had 3 grayling and apparently thus far, he’d blanked.

    [​IMG]

    I fished on and nearly every trot through the swim gave another grayling. In the next 30 minutes I had another 12, making my total fifteen. The last fish broke the 2lb hooklength as I man handled it lifting it from the river – I really should have use the net. After that escaped grayling, the swim died and I couldn’t get another. I’d had some nice fish too – this was one of the bigger specimens.

    [​IMG]

    Although sport was fast and furious, it wasn’t easy fishing – the rod rings kept freezing up!

    [​IMG]

    I walked downstream and after trudging through the deep snow in my chest waders finally caught up with Tim who had waded the river and was fishing from the far side most intently. He hadn’t seen me on the skyline, as I had kept back from the bank, so a couple of snowballs lobbed at him had him completely fooled. He kept shouting expletives, but had no idea as to where his assailant was!

    I poked my head up over the skyline and Tim said he’d had four grayling. Once he had waded back across, I needed to be in his worm tub again, as I was all but out. 15 – 4 the score then! We both leap frogged from pool to pool downstream for another 200 to 300 yards, before I said I was going to head back to the run where I’d had a few an hour or so earlier.

    It took me at leat half an hour to trudge back to the swim and I managed one more, but by this time it was nearly quarter to four in the afternoon and with the temperature falling, ice in the rod rings was being a complete pain.

    [​IMG]

    Judging by the shotgun fire further up the valley, The Rieveaux Estate were having a shoot. Then I noticed something floating down the river and it turned out to be a freshly shot French partridge. Unfortunately, I couldn’t quite reach it with my net, but as it was, the score between Tim and I was 16-4 and I don’t suppose the partridge, even if I’d netted it, would have counted anyway.
     
  4. biscuitlad

    biscuitlad Guest

    Well done Rupert. I've heard the fish on the Rye tend to be on the small side. Pricey too, so I hear!
     
  5. bucko

    bucko New Member

    Brilliant report Rupert- thanks very much.
    We'll have to see how quickly this snowmelt runs off but this has certainly inspired me to get out after the grayling as soon as things settle down.
     
  6. Sambo

    Sambo To the MAX!

    Lovely report Rupert, made a great read as usual :yes: Some beautiful pics there, something special about Grayling fishing in the snow :happy:

    Like the video as well, that reel is a beauty!
     
  7. rupert

    rupert Blenny

    I suppose it depends what you call a small or large grayling? What do other folks think?

    I tend to think of a grayling over 1lb being a respectable fish and anything over 2lbs as a specimen. I didn't have scales to weigh any of them, but I guess the grayling pictured over the landing net probably weighed in the region of 1lb 8oz. The Centrepin in that picture is a 4 1/2" diameter reel, so you can estimate the nose to fork measurement of that fish quite easily, but I don't have any info on length to weight for grayling.

    As to the Rye being expensive, yes, I know what you mean, the annual club memberships don't come cheap. As a guest of a member, however, it cost me nowt! Sometimes it's a case of not what you know!
     
  8. mystic girl

    mystic girl Blenny

    Large or small?
    They look about pan size (or fish pie) to me Rup!!!!!!
    Why didn't you dive in after the Partridge?????

    Regards John
     
  9. biscuitlad

    biscuitlad Guest

    Your mate there isn't a certain Tim Clarke is it?

    Hadn't realised the reel was so big. A pound and half grayling is very respectable. Did you keep it?
     
  10. rupert

    rupert Blenny

    It was a different Tim that I was fishing with.

    That biggest one went back, but I did keep just one of about a pound for supper! I quite like 'em grilled with butter.
     
  11. coasty

    coasty New Member

    Not been on this forum much must say though your post was great and the photos excellent, Interested what you say about size of Grayling . I have fished for Grayling for at least 25 years in The Derwent, Rye ,Dove and also in the seven stretch you were on from the YDAA . In all that time I have only caught 3 over 2lb, personally I think anything over 1lb in the Yorkshire streams is a good fish and a 2lb fish is a true specimen . My PB is 2lb 6oz and when I caught it I thought I had caught a 3lber . Dont think I will ever catch better.

    I did notice that there seems to be more grayling about this season than there has been for a few years . The Dove seems to have an excellent head of them. Lets hope they have had a good spawning season.

    Centre pins are great to use aren't they. That one of yours look like the dogs danglies.
     
  12. WillW

    WillW Whitby Fishing Forum _ Simply The Best

    Great report Rupert and some nice fish as well! Always enjoy the grayling but never tried trotting for them, outside of my comfort zone (fly)!

    WillW
     
  13. bucko

    bucko New Member

    BUMP

    As its 'that time of year'
     
  14. Sambo

    Sambo To the MAX!

    Good bump Bucko, as you say 'tis the season' :yes: Great article this one, hopefully I'll be out Grayling fishing in Jan-Mar.
     
  15. Sambo

    Sambo To the MAX!

    Anyone know of any Grayling day ticket venues? Been talking to Matty and we both really fancy some Grayling fishing this winter but don't really want to be joining any clubs just yet. Any info is always appreciated. Cheers.
     
  16. bucko

    bucko New Member

    Now then Sam

    The Swale at Richmond (below the waterfall) is supposed to be excellent- tickets from Gilsans.
    Tees around Dinsdal is said to have some good shoals but I'm unsure of where to get permits.
     
  17. lochbois

    lochbois Guest

    Bishop Auckland and District Angling Club do day tickets on the Tees and Wear the Wear has 25 miles of water and their is also the River Browney.
    I would be out for the grayling but their is just too much water at preasent for me.Give the lakes at Witton le Wear a ring for more details.
     
  18. bucko

    bucko New Member

    And hows about that for timing- This months Trout & Salmon has just arrived and theres an article on the Laver near Ripon.
    More of a beck than a river but certainly looks a lot less intimidating than wading on some of the bigger rivers.
    Permits are £6 from Bondgate Post Office and Ure Bank Caravan Site.
     
  19. Sambo

    Sambo To the MAX!

    Cheers for that guys, a few stretches we can have a go at there. Will post a report on how we get on in the near future.
     
  20. brian carragher

    brian carragher Whitby Fishing Forum _ Simply The Best

    Never thought of joining one of the local clubs that will give you access to some of the finest grayling fishing in the North right here on the Tees, for not much money either, three or four trips will pay for your membership comared to day ticket prices
     

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