October 2013 fishing report

Let me start with the NEWS, for a CHANGE…

Over the winter months we are changing the way the fishing lodge is used. We will be providing self-service tea and coffee making facilities in the lodge and will no longer be serving food and drink from the bar. Anglers will be able to access the fishing lodge at all times by using a pin-code door entry system with the number available in the signing in shed. Anglers are of course very welcome to bring their own food and drink to eat in the lodge. The lodge will always be a warm and of course dry place during the winter and the toilet facilities will now be available to you at all times and kept to their usual nice clean standards! We ask anglers to pay by cash or cheque. Credit/debit cards can only be used when a member of staff is present. We will still be serving our breakfasts and lunches for groups, but please let us know in advance so we have time to get this ready for you.

Rod Heeson receiving the St. Michael’s Hospice Allan Keates Memorial trophy

The St. Michael’s Hospice Allan Keates Memorial Fly Fishing Day

The day was blessed with beautiful autumn weather, lovely people and fantastic fishing. All those anglers who were generous enough to come and support this very worthy charity had a lovely day fishing so a big thanks to them and all of the “back stage” helpers, without whom this event could not take place. A magnificent total of over £1,100 was raised for the hospice. The winner with the heaviest bag of fish was Rod Heeson.

Late Summer Competition

We had a good turnout for this popular change of season get together. The fishing was a little tricky as we were still experiencing some mild weather and the water temperatures remained stubbornly high for this time of year. However some good fish were caught with the largest bag winner on the day Jon Holman with his 4 fish bag weighing 8lb 8oz. The largest fish of the day was 2lb 13oz caught by Frank and the smallest 1lb 11oz caught by John Williams.

Xmas Ladies V Gents

Saturday 28th December is our next competition date for your diary. This event has proved to be a much loved post-Christmas, head clearing, and fresh air boosting FUN angling day. Starting with a locally produced sausage in a baguette (if you have room!) and coffee on arrival we proceed to fish in teams throughout the morning for a joint heaviest bag to win a most coveted, marvellous trophy with additional prizes for the smallest and largest individual fish. We could really do with some more Ladies this year as we are always out-numbered by the Gents, so come on and seize the opportunity to put down your dusters and oven gloves and go fishing!! Cost for the day £35, includes a 4-fish ticket.

All the details of up-and-coming events and dates can of course be found on our newly designed web site and many more wonderful photos can be viewed on our Facebook page.

Glen Allen caught this beautiful 11lb 8oz rainbow using a floating line with a Crisp Packet Buzzer on a dropper

Catch News…

We have had some exceptional fish caught just recently! You’ve all heard about “the one that got away” well for once I can tell you about the one that didn’t! One of our regular anglers Glenn Allen from Hadlow Down, on his second cast, caught and landed a whopping 11lb 8oz rainbow from Brick Lake. He was fishing in-front of the lodge, next to the aerator with a floating line and an 8lb leader. He said “I knew it was a big fish, I took my time, and about 10 minutes to land it. I broke my priest trying to dispatch it and had to borrow one from the next guy!”. He caught it on a dropper with a small Crisp Packet Buzzer following a Fritz Montana on the point. His hands were shaking with excitement and we had to weigh it on the kitchen scales as the usual scales only went up to 11lb. He treated himself to a new priest in the lodge and I treated him to a coffee to steady the nerves. This fish had clearly resided in the lake for many, many months to grow to this size. This is a testament to the excellent water quality and abundance of natural insect life present here that a fish can grow to these proportions.


Ivor Clark from Heathfield looks rather pleased with this 5lb 2oz rainbow caught in Well Lake using a floating line with a 16 foot leader and a White Fritz fly

Then, two days later, Ivor Clark from Heathfield caught a beautiful 5lb 2oz rainbow from Well Lake. He was fishing very deep with a 16 feet leader. The fish are still visible on the surface, mainly in the mornings, but have been mostly caught down deep with a very slow retrieve.

Caroline providing a coaching taster session at the Ardingly Game Fair

Both lakes have benefitted from the recent heavy rainfall. Brick Lake has coloured up a bit from the stream, but Well Lake is the opposite, very clear from the spring. They are both still producing almost equal quantities of fish. We are stocking most weeks and as we are a Troutmaster Competition water, still adding some larger specimens each month. Flies working well have been the normal Nymphs and Buzzers, but also with the odd fish still falling victim to a dry fly, particularly on Well Lake. With the clocks now back an hour and the damp, dark, dull days of November upon us it will be all too easy to become a bit depressed but chins up! The fishing is now often at its best. Although the days are shorter and darker the fly fishing outings are action packed and full of excitement and fun. Let us all embrace the elements, wrap up and go fishing.

Other recent rainbow catches include a 4lb 8oz by Ian Mepham from Robertsbridge, a 5lb 12oz by D Grubb from Crowborough on a Fritz Damsel, a 3lb 12oz by Adam Page from St Leonards-on-Sea using a Montana, a 3lb by Karl Histed from Battle on a Goldhead Montana, a 3lb 12oz by Alan Parr from Brighton and a 2lb 12oz brown trout by Jim Fulbrook from Crawley.

Peter James fishing in Well Lake on a stunning autumn day

And Finally…

“Change”, they say “is as good as a rest” but I must admit, like many of you out there I guess, I find change a bit of a worry. I’m quite happy, thank you very much, to go on day-to-day in the comfy world of my own little routine. I like the familiarity of “the same old”, contented to let time tick away with its steady ebb and flow of the daily “normal”. When things change around us it’s all too easy to fight against them, to try to cling to the old routine instead of going with the flow of the tide and embracing and accepting new situations, people, places, technology ( particularly in my case), etc. etc. When we look back, change is almost always, in hindsight, a blessing in disguise, a good thing and often provides a refreshing detour, a new path for us to travel and a fresh chapter to start in our lives. In short, change is usually for the best! We hope that you find the changes we are making to the day-to-day running of the fishing lodge both convenient and beneficial to the enjoyment of your visit to us at Brick Farm and we will of course be on hand to help all of our anglers whenever and however we can.

Wishing you all tight lines for November.  Stop Press!! Cats Whiskers are hitting the spot on Well Lake at the moment.