Autumn Grayling Hunting in Devon, UK

FFDVCastleInn

Home Sweet Home In Search of Autumn Grayling

I had to bring my 1975 Land Rover (Gertie) back to the UK for an MOT – Spanish options looked like the proverbial massive can of worms. So to make it a more pleasurable trip (and weather permitting & it did wonderfully), I set myself up for some autumn fly fishing. Base camp for the duration was the Castle Inn in Lydford – sweet wee place that is perfectly located for many West Country Angling Passport rivers as well as Dartmoor National Park.

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The West Country Angling Passport scheme is awesome – if you do not know about or have not used it please give it a try. The scheme makes loads of UK rivers available to fish at a very affordable price – use or lose it as they say. It needs your support – get going folks!

FFDVRivers

Beautiful Waters…River Lyd, Devon

My first day on the water was on one of my faves – the wonderful River Lyd in Sydenham. Flowing though an amazing Elizabethan estate, the river is chocka with fishable varieties of fish – brown trout, grayling, sea trout and even the odd salmon. I hooked & landed 17 brownies and I saw 3 massive sea trout feeding side by side. One leapt clear out of the water to snatch a floating caddis fly and was an easy 6-7 pounds and beautifully coloured,

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River Lyd Brownies…

My second day put me on the River Tamar on the Netherbridge Court beat. I have fished this several times before and it is minutes away from the Ham Mill, Netherbridge and Druxton beats. All are a great day of fishing….

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River Tamar – Netherbridge Court Beat

While getting my Land Rover MOT’d I timed it perfectly with the Frome Farmers Market and picked up some tasty Somerset salami and rich Glastonbury hard goats cheese. A fly fisherman has to eat and this hit the nail on the head.

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Fly Fisherman’s Lunch Supreme

Though I was mostly in search of grayling, my first day was 100% brown trout…second day put me back on track and brought this wee beauty to the net. It is an autumn fish with colours to match.

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River Tamar Grayling – Sweet

My 3rd and final fish was again on the River Tamar but on the Druxton Beat. I have also fished this before and it has some sweet water but a good chunk of it is dead slow pools. Not my cup of tea…that said, it was good for 8 solid fish – 3 grayling with one to 12″ and 5 brownies. A good day had by all…

FFDVDruxton

River Tamar, Druxton Beat & Grayling to the Net.

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Harvest Time!

HRHVGrapes

Hound #1 & #2 in the vineyard with Jaizkibel Ranges; The Hondarrabi Zuri Grape on the Vine


My good friend Iñaki put the call out for some needed helping hands this past Saturday as he has managed to score 6 rows of vines in a sweet wee vineyard just outside of Hondarribia. And a very nice location it is – surrounding the awesome restaurante Bekoerrota! They had a full house that day and we could see why…

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Tank Prep…

We arrived promptly at noon to find Iñaki and Martxel hard at work cleaning a fermentation tank in preparation for the grape harvest. But first – lunch!

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Lunch!

We joined Iñaki’s mate Kike on the restaurant’s outside veranda to share the kitchen staff’s lunch before the hard slog of grape harvesting – I like this style of work! And Hound #1 loved our lunch of pork kebabs…

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Hard Labour in the Vines – Kike, Martxel, Iñaki, Alex & Billie

Post a delicious lunch, the picking crew got to work and slowly worked our way up and down each row…once a row was completed, a bit of a break was declared & we headed straight for the cider barrel as they make an excellent beverage here. And what a small world as we all were surprised to discover that the cider the Hounds loved the most at the Hondarribia Cider Fest was theirs! We now have 2 bottles in the fridge….

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Basque Rural Sports

And what would a beautiful Saturday afternoon be like if it did not have some Basque rural sports demos! Between picking rows, we dropped by for a squizzy and were fascinated with the heavy weight hoisting and especially the ax man’s skills. He chops his way up the tree trunk & then proceeds to hack the top into two bits…do not try this at home folks!