Mayfly Heaven at Charlton Park Estate’s Brown Trout Fly Fishery
A Review by Bill Morris
Welcome to fly fishing at Charlton Park, a unique trout fishery along a delicate small wild Cotswolds stream with a great Mayfly hatch for natural brown trout located between the Gloucestershire town of Tetbury and the Wiltshire town of Malmesbury.
Last year 2021 was the best with fantastic high clear water at peak mayfly time, the fishing being better than the best stretches of the river. Unfortunately, that is becoming a rare experience with water extraction and nitrate pollution affecting even this small stream on a year-by-year basis. The fishing is therefore best in May and June with other months regarded as shoulder months for the odd fish.
The river is small and has its fair share of brambles and overhanging trees. There are open areas and stretches covered by trees, perfect for all tastes. The fish are wild, with stocking having ceased over 8 years ago. Spawning beds were put in by the Environment Agency some 20 years ago and there is no need to introduce stocked alien fish which frighten the local river residents! Stock are mainly half pound beautifully marked fish with a fair smattering of fish to 2lb, mainly at Mayfly time.
Brown trout are the primary fish but there has been an increasing amount of chub also caught to large sizes. Flies include black and grey klinkhammers at the start of the year with the grey wulff reigning supreme at mayfly time
Long rods are best to reach over the reed beds 3 wt or 4 wt with long handled landing nets to reach the fish and even more importantly safe recovery and release of the fish. Please take special care of this precious resource. I know of one 4lb fish that was caught over 6 times last year and was seen spawning at the end of the year so the benefits of catch and careful release are enormous. Nymph is allowed but dry fly is best, barbless only with mandatory catch and release unless the fish has been damaged. Emergers are also very effective.
The syndicate is limited to a maximum of 15 rods on a unique any day basis it’s rare to meet anyone else, perfect for a few hours after work. I hope to welcome you to the river and offer a few hours guiding to cast you off on our idyllic river. To apply for the fishing syndicate please click here to visit our online application form.
For more information about Charlton Park Estate, any other events facilities at the Estate please contact the Estate Office; firstname.lastname@example.org