Chew Valley Reservoir – Fishing Report

Chew PikeWhen boat partner Andy Cheetham suggested a few weeks ago that we went to Chew for a weekend of fly fishing for Pike, naturally I said “yes”.   I don’t normally fish trout reservoirs at the back end of the season for a variety of reasons however, the fishing on the rivers and my local waters has been so poor this season due to low water levels and high weed growth that it would make a nice change to fish somewhere different.

When we were last at Chew earlier this year Andy had a 35lb+ fish on the fly and although I don’t think either of us had expectations of topping that fish this time round, we did have high expectations of getting among some fish.

After an early start I met Andy at the reservoir for 8am and after a a cup of tea and slice of toast we were out on the water for 9am.  The water level was down about 8-10 feet and two thirds of the water was unfishable due to the shallow depths and weed.  The weather however was perfect with a slight breeze and overcast.

We did find an area of clean water at the entrance to Heron Bay and after a couple of drifts Andy had a 20lb+ fish roll at his fly next to the boat.  A couple of drifts later and I managed a fish that registered 12lb.  The next drift I managed a slightly smaller fish that took the fly on the hang next to the boat.  It was a great sight to watch the fish sit motionless behind the fly before flaring it’s gills and nailing the fly.  Other smaller fish followed before Andy had an immaculate Perch that was chased by a number of other good sized fish as it was played to the side of the boat.

By 1pm the fishing had dropped off as it usually does.  We decided to try and find another area of the lake that wasn’t affected by weed.  Chew Perch - 3.3Unfortunately the only other area we could find was clogged up by other boats as there was a trout competition taking place.  We fished on and Andy managed a couple more small fish.  I then hooked into a very nice perch that weighed 3.3lb.  It was a personal best for me and it was a stunning fish.  Before too long I managed another Perch that weighed 2.8.

By 6pm we had managed 10 Pike between us taken on EP Roach patterns.  The water then came alive with Trout and it wasn’t long before they started hitting the fly even though we were fishing about 12 feet down.  We had to be back at the jetty for 7:30pm and we headed back in anticipation of what was in store the next day.

The weather on the Sunday was noticably different.  The wardens in the lodge warned us that we may not be able to fish the whole day due to the oncoming high winds and rain so it was agreed that we would have the boat back at the jetty for 2pm.  Determined to make the most of our limited time we headed back to the same spot.  Instantly we picked up a small fish before I had a 15lb fish take a Roach pattern near the boat.  Other smaller fish followed and I had another nice Perch around the 2lb mark.  The wind by now was barrelling down the reservoir and mixed in with it was the occasional rain shower.  To try and get a bit of shelter we moved into Villice Bay.  This did offer us some respite from the wind but it was difficult to fish effectively due to the weed.  By 1pm we were both feeling battered and bruised by the wind so we decided to call it a day and head back to the lodge for a brew before we headed off on the long journey home.

We ended the weekend with 14 Pike between us and 4 stunning Perch.  Ok we didn’t get any big Pike time time round but you never know if that next take is going to be from a 4lb fish or a 40lb fish and that is the beauty of Chew.