Iain Barr Fly Fishing - Chew Valley
One of the best stocked fisheries in Northern Europe and is famous for it’s 'top of the water' sport.
Chew Valley Lake at 1200 acres is famous for its scenery and top quality fly fishing. The condition and size of the trout caught here is ‘second to none’ and anglers will find success using a wide variety of fly patterns and methods. It is a relatively shallow water, with an average depth of only 14ft at top level and a maximum depth of just 37ft.
The area it covers was once rich farmland, and is now fertile ground for the aquatic life so necessary for quality trout fishing. The deepest part of the lake is by the Dam and the outlet tower, where the steeply sloping banks of Walley Bank and the North Shore can make the depths of up to 20ft become within the reach of bank anglers.
Heading southwards, the water gets progressively shallower until at Herriot's End, where the River Chew enters the Lake. Here there are only one or two feet of water covering the tree stumps and river bed. Between these extremes are a variety of contours including the large offshore shallow areas of the False Island and the Roman Shallows where dense weed beds appear in the warmer months, producing huge quantities of aquatic and insect life.
No fishing is allowed from the Dams or stone embankments, the Sailing Club, in front of the Picnic Areas and in the Nature Reserve. Care must be taken when fishing from the shore as deep holes and ditches occur around the lake side. Anchoring is not permitted from the Dam to the line of yellow buoys between the North Shore and Walley Bank. No boats are allowed in the area marked off by white buoys in front of Stratford bird hide.
There is a fleet of 32 motor boats on Chew Valley, plus a Wheely boat, that has been especially designed for use by wheelchair anglers.