Lake Vyrnwy - Updates and Discussion

mike_hayes

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Hi All


Went out from Whitegates yesterday for what was a much harder day's fishing than three weeks ago. The water level is up from last outing and I estimate the lake is about 1 - 2 ft from being full.

The Met office forecast late on Thursday was suggesting sunshine for the whole day with cooler temperatures. They got the cold bit right, this was going to be a proper fisherman's spa day and cheaper than a half days pampering at the hotel's spa too. Eager to get fishing I loaded up the boat and then it started to rain so waited for that to pass and set off. About 100 yards up the lake to Rhiwargor, the first of four hail storms arrived with what sounded like the odd rumble of thunder. Apart from during these storms there was hardly any breeze in the morning session and when it was blowing it was straight into the banks so drifting was frustrating. After three hours of water and lumps of ice falling from the sky along with the odd tug I caught my first fish which was about three inches long. Then I had power issues. I think I got the dodgy outboard that grayling4 mentions in his recent post as the one I chose was on the verge of packing up after lunch. Either that or both batteries were duds. As it was still early I threw everything in the car, went back to the hotel and swapped the batteries and engine for fresh ones and feeling a bit drier and warmer and a lot more optimistic I set off again. A good west north west breeze developed in the afternoon accompanied by some much welcome sunshine and although it was still quite cold, the fish started feeding. I ended the day with 13 browns to 3/4 lb most of which were caught 5 - 15 yards away from the bank. Some fish:

Capture20190510_01.JPG


Black Dabbler, Connemara Black and Soldier Palmer on the DI3 were the best combination of flies and the Snatchers on the floating line also accounted for a few in the afternoon. Best drifts were Chapel and Fynnant to Mrs Morriss's Beach. Late afternoon and into the evening I ventured into Eunant Bay where on two occasions I lost fish that seemed quite big fishing close to the bottom. This was in roughly the same area as where I had caught my biggest Vyrnwy trout four years back:

20190510_194600.jpg

South side of Eunant, 40 yards to the left of where the curved line of lighter trees meets the water. Keeping 20 - 40 yards out from the bank, work your way back to the line of trees and across in a NNW direction to the other side of the bay or vice versa if you can. It's not that deep although I think the course of the old Eunant river bed runs parallel to the bank and there is an old road and other underwater features across the bay. Works for me and I'm going to give this drift more attention when next there. Until then . . . . . . .
 

mike_hayes

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The tower:

20190510_202806.jpg

Just had to post the mandatory tower photo. Looking the other way:

20190510_203042.jpg

Bit of a contrast to the morning's weather.
 
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mike_hayes

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The boats at Vyrnwy have been upgraded this season although you will need to bring your own toilet paper:

20190510_084648.jpg

Doubles up as quite a useful bailer.
 

mike_hayes

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Went out from Whitegates yesterday in cool and cloudy weather conditions with the lake being two - three foot down from full.

Things started well with a fish on my third cast just down from the boat station on a Dunkeld. Then followed a fishless four hours. I went across to Eunant Bay to focus on the drift mentioned in a previous post along with other areas in this bay hoping to find some bigger fish. There was not the slightest tug or fish to be seen although later in the morning I noticed a couple of rather large fish circling around with their tails and fins out of the water feeding on something in the middle of Eunant. I am not sure if they were big chub or rainbows (or small sharks!!). Any ideas? They were not interested in anything that I threw at them although I did consider trying dry flies. At lunchtime I switched to the opposite side for a long drift from Fynnant to Mrs Morris's beach with the odd shy tug and a few lost fish. I even tried a Mrs Simpson lure and again lost a few fish including one that unhooked itself and jumped out of the net before getting to the boat. Eventually I did have a fish to the boat on a Red Snatcher. I was seriously debating whether to call it a day at this point but I decided to go back across the lake to fish off the rocky point at Llwyn Rhiw where I had caught a big brown some years back. I set up the DI 3, with a Claret Bumble (top), Dunkeld (middle) and Black Dabbler (point) combination and the idea was to drift past the point at thirty yards from shore and into the bay. First cast a fish was lost and I was beginning to think it really was one of those days. Next cast there was another fish on and at the same time there was a big swirl where I had hooked this. After a bit of a fight I was snagged around one of the rocks. As I was freeing the line whatever was on the end decided to run again and after a chaotic ten minutes I somehow netted these two:

Capture20190524_01.JPG

I think the smaller fish was keen to part company with his net mate which I estimate was around the 1.5 to 2 lb mark. It had a hook shaped bottom lip and was in fabulous fighting condition. Hoping to see it again in a few years from now. I'm not sure if the bigger fish actually went for the other one or if it intended to take the Black Dabbler but a few casts later and there was another fish to the dabbler. I then headed back to Eunant Bay to try that drift again. It was late afternoon and that was the time that I had always fished this spot. The fish were feeding well and I had ten more to the boat in approx 90 minutes and lost five or six more. Most of these took a Claret Bumble on the top dropper and were in a really good condition; with lovely varied markings and colours, big tails and above the usual average size. At one point I was just about to net a fish that had taken the top dropper when another fish latches on to the middle dropper and then immediately followed by a larger one that batters and swallows the point fly. Then the original fish gets away; chaos.

As the sun was shining temptingly over on the opposite side and as it was getting a bit cold I headed over to the Fynnant drift to warm up and had another eight fish on the DI 3, Claret Bumble, Dunkeld and Black Dabbler combination. A most enjoyable afternoon and evening fishing after a very slow morning session, but finally ending the day with 23 brown (all returned) and possibly almost as many lost. Some more fish:

Capture20190524_02.JPG

I can't believe that I covered that much water in one day using the supplied two black batteries and only swapping to the second one for the return to the boat station. Until next time . . .
 
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bobnudd

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Redditch
Well Mike this thread has convinced me to get out on Vyrnwy again. So we're going to give it ago Monday which end do you think would be best
 

mike_hayes

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I'm going out next Wednesday and will be booking the Whitegates end with every intention of fishing the same spots as my previous visit. I had planned to go out today but when I saw the forecast a few days back I decided to wait. The weather looks a bit better next week but the forecast wind direction on Monday and Wednesday is NE or NNE so establishing a decent drift will be interesting.
 

bobnudd

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We've nether done that well from that end.Do you think there will be fish up in the water or will we be looking a bit deeper
 

mike_hayes

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We've nether done that well from that end.Do you think there will be fish up in the water or will we be looking a bit deeper

I sort of plan my visits with the intention of starting deep and fishing higher as the days goes on hence why I normally take three rods armed with the DI3, Intermediate and Floating lines. However conditions play a big part on the day. I always take a look at the latest catch returns at the hotel on arrival to see whats worked for others in the past week and have even changed boat station before based on that info.

One thing I've noticed about Whitegates is that the top bay Rhiwargor can be a bit quiet at the beginning of the week. My theory is this happens when there's been a lot of boats out fishing over the weekend. Whenever I visit other boats just seem to go up there and fish it for most of the day. However if like me you're brave enough to use the batteries and travel further down the lake you will most likely find fish using the methods I've posted in the past. One bit of equipment that I've now added to my kit is a battery tester.

On my last two visits the fishing was much better in the afternoons and evening and the mornings were slow, so I may just book a half day on Wednesday. As ever I will probably start using what worked best last outing and this was black dabbler, dunkeld and claret bumble on the DI3.

Your post inspired me to add this. Kept me busy whilst waiting for dinner to cook:

Vyrnwy Drifts.jpg

1 - Whitegates Boat Station
2 - Where I nearly always catch my first fish. There's an old building under here. Fish where you can hear running water
3 - The Fynnant to Mrs Morriss's drift which has been productive this year and last
4 - My Llwyn Rhiw approach. The 3 "little" bays before the point can fish really well. Can be pretty wild and choppy in high winds
5 - That Eunant drift which seems to work late afternoon evenings

I could add more to this but these are my current hotspots.

Hope this is helpful!!
 
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reservoirobert

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May 20, 2010
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You are very generous with your help mike.
I visit Vyrnwy once a year in the spring and usually fish whitegates and find I have good years and not so good years , but just love it and look forward to it every year.
It's refreshing to see that you are so helpful especially to occasional visitors like myself.
I find every year different which is part of the appeal.
 

mike_hayes

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Shropshire
You are very generous with your help mike.
I visit Vyrnwy once a year in the spring and usually fish whitegates and find I have good years and not so good years , but just love it and look forward to it every year.
It's refreshing to see that you are so helpful especially to occasional visitors like myself.
I find every year different which is part of the appeal.

Robert

I'm glad this post is helpful to others, I sort of write it for my own reference for future visits but am more than happy to share. How right you are in saying that every year up there is different, from what I've heard the dam is currently overflowing whereas last year the level had already dropped considerably.

Vyrnwy is a very special place to my family and we are fortunate to live within 40 miles. I have now lived in North Shropshire for 14 years and we've often taken trips out there even before I started fishing again. However my first memory of the place was in the very early 1980s when my late father took us there on a day trip whilst we were holidaying in mid Wales (same year we fished the Teifi Pools). I clearly remember him saying how beautiful the place was and whispering to me "Wished we'd brought the rods". From that moment I vowed that one day I would return and fish there. A month after he died I was inspired to do this as a sort of remembrance thing and have been going whenever I can since. Special.
 
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bobnudd

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Mar 12, 2017
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Thanks again for the information :thumbs: We did most of the drifts on the map you posted and some others. When we got out on the lake it was flat calm with some fish rising, just up from where you get the boat. Number 2 on your list. So we put on small dries and rose fish straight away. Only on the water a few minutes and both had fish in the boatDSC00100.jpg Then the wind got up and the dries stopped working. so a quick change to to wets and a motor up to the lake to number 3 on your map. We took fish all along the drift all the way back to were we started. Then the wind swung round and started to blow across the lakeDSC00103.jpg. So we headed to the over side and carried on taking fish. Around about 4pm the wind really got up and coming up the lake towards the hotel. We took shelter in the big bay and fished fished down the right hand side of it. There I got broke by one of blue Trout they but in . It stripped me down to the backing before I got it back to boat. Where it went for one last run under the boat a round the motor and off :eek:hno: Never saw it but but it felt like a good fish. After that we made our way back past white gates and had a last drift up to the boats still taking fish. By then it was raining and turning cold. We were off the lake at 6:30 Finishing With over 30 Brown TroutDSC00105.jpg and 2 Rainbows which my mate had,one of which was 1 1/2 lb. We fished with floating lines all day. Most successful fly was the Pen Y Gareth but anything black worked,but we did take some on silver invicta
 
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mike_hayes

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Didn't get to go today but my wife sent me this picture from the car park at the Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury earlier:

IMG-20190614-WA0001[1].jpg

I'll assume Lake Vyrnwy is full for my rescheduled trip next week.
 

mike_hayes

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My latest update. I finally got to go last week however I took my daughter fishing. She had 14 and I had 6 browns. My pride is destroyed hence posting late and no pictures as all her fish were bigger than mine (and she will always remind me). She can tie her own knots next time and be in control of the boat.

Anyway, Kate Maclaren and Claret Bumble on DI 3 along drift 4 were best. Flat calm at first with a decent breeze arriving mid afternoon. First dry day in probably two weeks. Lake was full.

Hoping for a trip next week
 

bobnudd

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Don't worry Mike my eldest daughter use to come with me. she always got the best fish of the day or on one occasion the only fish of the day. Eventually she discovered boys and lost interest in fishing. Now her children want to come with me fishing and she threatening to come as well.Its all going to start again.
 

Ephemera

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May 18, 2006
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N.Wales
Fished Vyrnwy weekend before last in fairly good conditions although would have liked more wind, best fish of the day being a pound and a half which is always nice. Didnt quite
hit double figures but I put that down to the very high water. You can get as close as you like to the bushes but when the foliage spread is 20ft from the bank and you cant get under them it reduces the amount of takes IMO. No problems with the motors or batteries again (well done to the management) and as always its a beautiful place to fish even on a bad day. Did have a nice chub of about a pound and a half which is not unusual other than that it fought very well.
Jonesy
 

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