Where To Fish the Courtfield fishery

THE COURTFIELD FISHERY STARTS AT THE SEVERN TRENT PUMPING STATION ON THE ROSS TO COLEFORD ROAD AND ENDS AT THE TOP END OF THE VILLAGE RIVERSIDE PARK KNOWN AS THE TUMP.

The Where to Fish is a coarse fishing guide. It is ordered by number and description, starting from the top end of the Fishery at the Severn Trent Pumping Station. This guide is undergoing updating and is not yet completed.

SALMON POOLS AND LIES ARE INDICATED IN BOLD LETTERING. SALMON CAN BE CAUGHT BY SPINNING FROM THE LEGG MEADOW SWIMS (RUDI LIGHERT LANDED A 32 POUNDER IN 2012 FROM 2.FIRST SWIM.)

The Courtfield fishery is packed with swims which have an historic record for big fish amongst the species barbel, chub and pike and even eels. I have no objection to fishermen creating new pegs, provided no spades or cutting tools are used. For example there are good swims amongst the alders in Legg Meadow and there are pegs at the bottom end of the Wood beat which involve approaching by way of ’secret’ paths.

Part 1 Legg Meadow.

All swims fish well on high water in the 3 to 5ft range with colour. Also generally fish well on low warm water. Unless otherwise stated approach the swims from the S T Pumping Station parking spot, where it is also possible to park safely on the wide grass verge.

1. Pumping Station Swim.

Located next to the wire fence. Approach with care through the young stand of grey poplar and other trees. A small fishing area for 1 peg renowned as a big pike spot. A good friend of mine claims a 42lb pike from this spot, witnessed by a friend and pike to mid twenties are possibly annual events. Difficult access down bank, but fishes well when water at 3 to 5ft.

2. First swim.

Located immediately where the path from the road reaches the river. The most popular swim with 2 pegs. Consistent swim for barbel and chub. Easy access. Salmon can be caught here.

3. WUF tree.

An excellent single peg swim for barbel and big pike, the latter lying under the bank. Care needed down bank. Salmon can be caught here.

4.Single alder.

An excellent single peg swim for big barbel and chub, where specimen hunters have caught double figure barbel to 14lbs chub to 7lbs and Ashley’s pike of 36lbs. Care needed down bank

5.New Swim

This swim for one peg was formed following bank collapse a few years ago, resulting from cattle poaching the bank and severe flood damage. It has proved to be one of the best swims with a spectacular catch of big chub and barbel as recently as Saturday 9th July 2011. Fish to far bank near to willows with gaps in them, mid stream and under the near bank. Another big pike spot. Easy access.

6. The Bay

A swim for up to 3 pegs (preferably 2) top end of the big alders which has produced spectacular bags of chub over the years and also eels. Easy access. best approached from the parking at the S T Pumping Station. Salmon can be caught here. (Don Macer-Wright lost a twenty pounder here in 2008, his second twenty lost!)

7. Legg Meadow bottom swim

An excellent and lovely swim to fish for  2 pegs where the chub and barbel fishing is consistent although it can be erratic and sometimes fickle, not always fulfilling its promise. Easily approached from the parking at the beech tree top end of the wood. Barbel and chub found in all sizes. Fish near to bank and to middle and far side.

Part 2 The Wood Beat

This is an important salmon stream with a long history of holding salmon. The beat was formerly fished by boat fishing back into the cribs from the far side. Salmon are usually present and the barbel have moved in in signifiant numbers. The banks are steep due to the outside bend and access to all the pegs requires care. Only fishable from the cribs on low water below 6″ on the Lydbrook gauge.

8. Legg Meadow crib

Fish of the end of the crib for one peg down the stream from where good catches of barbel can be had. There is a large rock downstream from the crib which holds big fish. Big barbel and pike. A formerly prolific salmon catch and in recent years numerous fish have been seen. Also fished for salmon from far bank Home fishery.

9. Legg Meadow crib pool

Walk down the steep path leading into the wood stretch from the big beech tree by the road. Immediately on approaching the bank it is possible to get down the bank to one fishing peg where the pool below the crib can be fished. A low water peg but fishable to 2ft on Lydbrook gauge. A potential salmon catch.

10. Midway swim

Halfway between Legg meadow crib and wood crib there is another decayed salmon crib allowing one peg. This can be a good barbel swim for fishing the main run with swim feeder. Chub and pike also. Take care going down bank which is steep.Fishable to about 2ft 6″, when there is a flatish rock which forms a position to fish from. A Potential salmon catch.

11. Wood crib

An excellent barbel swim for one peg, fishing the main stream down from the crib. Good access down bank with care. Fish of end of crib. Also this can be potentially excellent for trotting and also float fishing for dace. A good salmon catch.

12. The rocks

Another potentially good to excellent barbel and chub swim for one peg, when the water is up a little, situated just down from the wood crib. fishable to 2ft6″. This swim can be approached at low water along the river edge from the wood crib, but it is a very rocky area. Best approached when river up to 2ft6″ from the pathway which winds up and down the bank above. Go down by the big ash tree.A good salmon catch from a boulder under the trees a quarter of the way out. (Don Macer-Wright lost a huge fish here in 2012, upper twenties, his third twenty lost!)

13. Big Willow upstream swim

It is possible to get to the end of the wood along the continuing pathway to find an excellent  swim for one peg just upstream from a big willow tree. Excellent for piking with deadbaits and also some good bags of chub and barbel taken here. Fished best at 2ft to 2ft6″.

14. Big Willow downstream swim

Low water swim with difficult, but short climb down bank. Another good pike swim for one peg and potential for large chub and barbel. This is where the great October catch of barbel was made by Shaun Hodges

Part 3 The Ferry and Boat pools beat

This beat is historically salmon fishing water. The Courtfield netting station used to operate above the island, where one of the Wye 50 pounders was caught. The salmon fishing boats were moored near the metal steps. The whole beat is very good coarse fishing for all species. In recent years, excepting the bottom of the metal steps, this beat has not been fished as hard as Legg meadow or the Wood and has accordingly not produced many up to date fishing catches. However it has huge potential and historically has produced magnificent bags of chub and dace and some superb barbel.

15. Quay crib

OUT OF BOUNDS – This crib is now part of Craig y Heul fishery

16. Boat pool

2 pegs can fish from bank just upriver from base of steps. Good pike water. Shallow on the inside then deepens rapidly in the channel and off the end of the boat moorings. Barbel and chub to all sizes caught here. Very good salmon catch and holding pool

17. No Name

Half way down metal steps duck under railing and walk along bank to an angled descent to river edge. At the bottom is what can be an excellent float and trotting run for 1 peg, when river is between 2ft and 1ft above summer level, for chub and dace, the latter providing some very good float fishing. Top of willow run excellent salmon lies at low water.

18. Above willow bush

A good ledgering swim for chub, when below 1ft 6″.  willow run excellent salmon lies at low water.

19. Below willow bush

This swim for 1 peg has on its day  produced double figure barbel to 13lbs. Located just downstream of the willow bush, fishing beyond the marginal weed beds can produce very good catches of barbel. Bottom end of willow run excellent salmon lies at low water.

20. Bottom end of bank

As far as you can get along the bank allows for ledgering and trotting for chub, barbel and dace. This part is rarely fished and can therefore repay the effort. It is now possible to get down the bank directly from the pavement. Potentially good salmon catch a 25 pounder here in 2012 to Clive Peglar’s rod.

21. The trees

A swim for 1 peg which can be very good and has been enjoyed by the local fishermen. Approach from the roadside pavement, following the pavement downriver from the top end near metal steps. When reaching a stand of mature sycamores you will see pathways down to river to an old decayed crib. Good for all species

22. Ferry pool 2

Go down the bank from the roadside pavement, further downstream from 21. Another excellent swim with 1 peg for all species gathering in the start of the ferry pool. Good potential salmon catch.

23. Ferry pool 1

Downstream from 21 is one of the best pools on the river for all species of fish. A swim for 1 peg which can fish a bit erratically but which on its day can be fantastic, particularly when there is a bit of height and colour. It is a potential collecting point above the island rapids for fish which drop back here into shoals. Goes without saying it can be full of pike. Good potential salmon catch.