Angling: Reluctant fisheries springing into life

Moortown's Andy Limbert shows part of his bream catch from the Aire and Calder Navigation that made a day off work all worthwhile.
Moortown's Andy Limbert shows part of his bream catch from the Aire and Calder Navigation that made a day off work all worthwhile.
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Catch reports always seem better when the sun shines; last week’s rise in temperatures, both day and night, appeared to kick-start all the fisheries reluctant to come out of winter mode.

Yorkshire Water’s Washburn Valley trout fishery was the first to burst into life after weeks of chilling winds were replaced with milder gusts and lengthening days. The heavily stocked Fewston was the best of the site’s reservoirs with just 26 visiting anglers returning over 250 fish over the week, giving a total rod average of 9.7.

With teens of rainbows topping the three-and-four-pound mark caught over the Easter period, the £20 day ticket is as good a value as it gets, particularly as it allows the angler to take up to four fish for the table.

The changing conditions have prompted buzzers and beetles to make a show with sedge and midge encouraging a good rise. Best fish of the week fell to a Mr James Ferguson, who took a cracking rainbow of over 4lb that fell to the expected Black Beetle.

On its northern boundary, the wilder sister reservoir, Thruscross, seems to have woken up with its more-difficult-to catch brown trout now making an appearance and anglers are averaging 4.5 fish per rod.

Visitors are reminded that this reservoir is catch and release.

Swinsty is the only reservoir that allows coarse fishing and roach and perch have started to show in the shallower water. But the skimmers are still hugging the deeper shelves and not wanting to move just yet.

Best methods are small groundbait feeders with caster and worm or waggler and maggot with a ball of soft groundbait every other cast to follow.

Equally as good but a fair few miles south, the Aire and Calder Navigation is in the kind of form to put it up there as the country’s best canal.

Dull, warm and windy conditions would normally be needed to provide big bream catches but, after days of bright sunshine and clear conditions, this canal just seems to get better and better.

Round four of the sell-out Win Win-sponsored spring league event, held around Great Heck, provided anglers with some brilliant bream fishing.

Winner on the day was Diawa Dons team man, Steve Lowther, who fished the usual groundbait and wormy maggot feeder just past the boat channel for a terrific 24 bream, weighing in at 79-08.

Sensas Saints angler, Mark Webb, would have won most matches with his 51-11 of big bream, skimmers and hybrids but, unfortunately, fell over 25-pound short of the winner to take second place.

Though feeder-caught bream were needed to make the main prize list and over 20lb was only good enough for sixth place, the canal showed it to be much more than just a bream fishery with some brilliant roach weights taken by those choosing to target them.

Pleasure anglers are also getting in on the action with some staggering catches being reported from all lengths of the canal running between Leeds and Goole.

Latest results

JT Rodgers Brafferton Island Lake Round 1: 1, A Jackson 105-05; ,2 D Shaw 104-04; 3, D Watson 102-03.

JT Rodgers Forest Lane Oaklands Round 2: 1, T Biggins 102-04; 2, D Shaw 97-01; 3, I Jordan79-03.

JT Rodgers Southfield Reservoir Cowick Round 3: 1, A Jackson 60-02; 2, T Biggins 37-05; 3, I jordan 32-07.

Win-Win Spring League Aire & Calder Great Heck: 1, Steve Lowther Diawa Team Dons 79-08; 2, Mark Webb Sensas Saints 51-11; 3, Gareth Bins Mirfield 35-15; 4, Mick Schopen Goole 29-04; 5, Ian Saiger Sensas Lifestyle 28-00; 6, Dean Grace Pontefract 23-13.

Oaks Open Cedar: 1, M Calvert 118-14; 2, D Wood 90-08; 3, M Baker 82-12; 4, D Birdsall/ P Brunyee 80-14.

West Yorkshire Wagglers AC Birkwood Oscar’s: 1, J Stark 33-10; 2, A Howsham 14-08; 3, J Slater 7-11; 4, S Hobson 7-10.

Moor Monkton Pools, Cyprio/Match: 1, Ben Fisk 68-13; 2, Steve Mazza 55-13; 3, Andy Middleton 35-09; 4, Tom Bainbridge 34-08.

Moor Monkton Pools, Wednesday Open, All Pools: 1, Dave Wright 117-04; 2, Martin Dodsworth 81-13; 3, Dave Pollitt 79-07; 4, Eddie Story 72-03.

Moor Monkton Pools, Good Friday Match, Cyprio: 1, Mick Green 114-08; 2, Craig Burton 102-11; 3, Martin Dodsworth 98-04; 4, Roy Worsnop 88-10.

Moor Monkton Pools, Sunday Spring League, Cyprio/Match: 1, Gary Watson 93-03; 2, Kenny Priestly 86-00; 3, Tom Bainbridge 83-01; 4, Dave Pollitt 83-00.

Moor Monkton Pools, Easter Monday Rover, Cyprio/Front: 1, Dean Appleby 115-12; 2, Lee Myers 114-07; 3, Martin Dodsworth 89-11; 4, Kenny Priestly 89-11; 5, Dave Pollitt 87-08; 6, Ollie Hewitt 86-00.

Moor Monkton Pools, Wednesday Rover, All Pools: 1, Dave Wright 122-04; 2, Gary Watson 98-12; 3, Andy Hornsby 69-10; 4, Luca Wilshaw 61-00.

Kippax Park Fishery, Tuesday Open, Osprey/Lapwing: 1, Steve Nanna 73-04; 2, Tony Hewson 60-10; 3, Steve Pearson 57-09; 4, Paul Carter 66-14.

Kippax Park Fishery, Saturday Open, Osprey: 1, Luca Wilshaw 93-13; 2, Andy Middleton 70-11; 3, Eddie Story 68-206; 4, Steve Pearson 66-14.

Kippax Park Fishery, Tuesday Open, Osprey/Lapwing: 1, Bob Rymer 113-03; 2, Richard Thomas 86-06; 3, Paul Cromie 84-01; 4, Steve Pearson 66-07.

Kippax Park Fishery, Saturday Open, Lapwing: 1, Bob Rymer 76-00; 2, Mark Rockingham 57-13; 3, Dave Cockrill 55-14; 4, Tony Hewson 47-04.

Angel Lakes, Sunday Open Lookout: 1, John Dryden 126-11; 2, Dave Pearson 97-13; 3, Rob Emery 77-13.

Viking Saturday Open (Hawk): 1, N Taylor 99-03; 2, L Hardcastle 71-07; 3, A Blythe 70-12.

Viking Saturday Open (Deer): 1, N Taylor 70-11; 2, A Harrison 65-07; 3, L Tones 64-01.

Harehills WMC (Viking Deer): 1, J Simms 113-01; 2, R Smith 96-08; 3, D Beaver 89-03.

Rothwell WMC (Viking Hawk): 1, J Brogden 52-00; 2, M Redicker 43-03; 3, A Crampton 30-02.

Match Diary

Saturday

Kippax Park: Saturday Open, Lapwing or Osprey, contact 07967000746.

Poppleton: Saturday Open, pools £15, draw cafe 10am, contact Roger 01904737279.

Birkwood Farm Fisheries: Emily’s or Oscar’s, draw 8.30am, contact 01924 892251.

Woodlands: 72 pegs, tickets £18, contact 01845 520110.

Oaks: at Sessay, 50 pegs, tickets £17, contact 01845 501321.

Langwith Lakes: 60 pegs, tickets £16, contact 01904 431874.

Moorfields Farm: 54 pegs, tickets £16, contact 07710817150.

Fleets Dam: 50 pegs, tickets £15, contact 01226 292579.

Birkwood Farm: 60 pegs, tickets £16, contact 01132 80609.

Viking: Saturday Open, Hawk Pond, 30 pegs, £18, contact 01405 785206.

Tollerton Ponds: Open Match, all ages, (Kingfisher 20 pegs, Coot 18 pegs, Heron 32 pegs), contact 01347 838115.

Kippax Park: Winter Series, Osprey Lake only, contact Stan 0796700046.

Sunday

Leeds & Liverpool: Kirkstall, contact Roger Movley 01132 772215.

Listerhills: Leeds & Liverpool Canal, contact Eddie Harrison 07518721051.

Woodlands: 72 pegs, tickets £18, contact 01845 520110.

Oaks: at Sessay, 50 pegs, tickets £17, contact 01845 501321.

Langwith Lakes: 60 pegs, tickets £16, contact 01904 431874.

Oak Tree Leisure: 50 pegs, tickets £15, contact 01347 810686.

Poppleton: Sunday Open, 50 pegs, draw 11am Cafe, contact 07425 146677.

Monday

Woodlands: over-50s, 30 pegs, tickets £15, contact 01845 520110.

Langwith Lakes: over-60s, 30 pegs, tickets £10, contact 01904 431874.

Tollerton Ponds: over-50s, tickets £16, contact 01347 838115.

Tuesday

Kippax Park: over-50s, draw 10am, tickets £10, contact 07967000746.

Wednesday

Leeds & District: Moor Monkton Pools, draw 10am, contact 07967000746.

Birkwood Farm Fisheries: Emily’s or Oscar’s, draw 8.30am, contact 01924 892251.

Woodlands: 72 pegs, tickets £18, contact 01845 520110.

Fleets Dam: 50 pegs, tickets £15, contact 01226 292579.

Tollerton Ponds: open match, all ages, contact 01347 838115.

Thursday

Poppleton Lakes: Thursday, draw car park 5pm, pools £11 contact Roger 01904 737279.