Water levels pose a major headache

Local rivers are now all desperate for water to bring in runs of salmon and sea-trout.

Local rivers are now all desperate for water to bring in runs of salmon and sea-trout.

Should the situation persist then there will be real problems on the River Tyne.

With the news that Kielder Water will not be giving the river water until mid- August at the earliest, the situation becomes desperate on the Tyne estuary. A few dead fish were reported at Wylam last week with odd fish trying to beach themselves in the pools.

Among the catches reported was Kevin Foster from Throckley, who had salmon of 17lb and 12lb off the main Tyne on small Mepps. Members of NERAC did well with sea-trout in low water just prior to darkness on flies such as Silver Stoat's Tail and Muddler.

Eight sea-trout between 3lb and 7lb were caught by members off the Lower South Tyne and at Widehaugh on the main river. Rob Tait, manager of Sweethope Loughs, had a 9lb salmon off Redeswood Beat on fly. Reports from the upper North Tyne indicate low numbers of sea-trout present compared with previous seasons. The low flows are obviously are not attracting many fish to run the river at present with the best chances on the main river and lower North and South Tyne beats.

Sea-trout are being caught on some of the mid-river beats on the Wear despite the really low water. Bishop Auckland AC members have been taking sea-trout between 2lb 8oz and 8lb on fly at night from pools in the Newfield and Vinovium areas of the river. Reports indicate fish being seen in the Durham area too.

On the lakes and reservoirs the best tactics have been to allow nymphs and dries to drift naturally when cloudy and breezy. Early and late has seen some good sport, with late evening the best time.

*The Lowther Horse Driving Trials and Country Show takes place from Friday, August 5 to Sunday, August 7 inclusive. The angling events there are very popular with Andy Murray, of Hardy Greys, and various instructors such as Clive Mitchelhill and Glyn Freeman, both STANIC instructors, operating from the Salmon and Trout Association marquee. Casting competitions, fly dressing and river entymology are all on the programmes. The fishing events are on Saturday and Sunday.

*The 'T' nets being operated at the Tyne mouth off South Shields pier are not removing fish from the river they are tagging them. The purpose is to see how they move in the estuary and this operation as part of the investigation into Tyne salmon and sea-trout deaths.

Anglers who find dead fish below Wylam or above should contact the Environment Agency on 08708 506506.

*Large brown trout are not reported very often these days but I heard of a cracker taken on the River Skerne, a tributary of the Tees. Fishing the Ferryhill AC stretch, George Soppitt landed a 4lb 11oz wild brown trout which he caught on worm.


David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer