Fishing on the Knarsdale Estate

Located on the upper reaches of the South Tyne in the open wooded valley, the 2.5 miles of double bank fishing is quite the hidden gem.  Most of the pools are easily accessible and wading is not required.  It’s predominantly a spate river and can actually be fished in very high water as long as the colour has dropped out.  Fly fishing is the preferred method of fishing, however, in high coloured water spinning is acceptable.

Tackle wise all the pools can be covered by a 10ft single handed rod.  Although some prefer an 11ft switch rod, which covers water beautifully in normal height to +2 feet.  After that a 13/14ft double handed rod comes into play. Loaded with normal spey lines there is no long casts on the pools; 30ft being as long a line as you need to throw.

However, be warned the delicate approach ends there.  Sink tips of varied weights are a must as are flies of different weights.   There are deep holding pots and fast runs in high water, so you need to get down deep quickly; some tails and glides fish better with lighter tips and smaller flies.  In good conditions with fish running, it’s advisable to go down with two rods set up to cover the options.   As for leaders go strong; the South Tyne salmon run big.  A fish under 10lb is rare and fish over 20lb are encountered every year.  So, with big fish and rocky runs over hanging trees, you need to bully the fish at times!

Fly wise anything you like as long as it’s red or pink, is the old Tyne saying; with a selection of tubes, doubles trebles, all have their place.

Also, please don’t forget about the sea trout.  Average fish is in the 3-7lb class with double figures in most fish runs.  These are excellent sport and seen to arrive in the littlest lift of water.  Swinging a stoats tail over the tail of a run on an evening, can be heart stopping fun.  Trout fishing is also very over looked, with traditional north country wet flies swung through, it’s a great sport.  Wild Brownies weighing ½-¾lb are fairly abundant, with fish of 2lb plus to test the purists nymph.  Dry flies fished up stream on a 10ft #4 is absolutely fantastic sport.  The best times for fishing is late March to June trout : July to October salmon and sea trout (given water salmon have been landed in May).

Price : £70 per rod per day.

Please note, fishing days are always subject to availability, must be booked in advance, and can be restricted during August-October.  We can provide a ghillie, again which must be booked in advance.  The cost of the ghillie is between £100-£200 per day, the precise amount will be confirmed at the time the booking is made.