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Old 07-02-2012, 08:37 PM
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Default A good day; The River Test, UK

My wife and I recently traveled over to Europe and made stops in Rome, Venice, and London. Naturally, as any trout junkie would do, I snuck in a day of fishing on the river in County Hampshire where fly fishing was born; The River Test.

Given British Law, all the rivers in England are privately owned and there is very limited to no public access. Needless to say, I was a little hesitant on paying to fish the river, but it turned out to be a good decision leading to a good day.

The water on the River Test usually runs gin clear, but given the amount of rain they have been having over the past month, it was a little stained which led to a lot of action. I have never seen so many trout and grayling in a single mile of river as I did here. My guide estimates approximately 6,000 fish per mile, conservatively.

At least one side of the bank was mowed so no wading was necessary. The river keepers take great pride in the resource they have at hand, and it certainly showed in this world-class chalk stream. We fished a hairs ear nymph in the morning and a CDC in the afternoon when the weather warmed a bit...same exact flies that we see in the states!

It was definitely an experience of a lifetime and at the end of the day, I was told that if I had entered the 1 fly challenge they have each year on the river, I would have been a strong contender to win. The River is that good and gave up a lot of fish. I'll quit boring everyone with the details, so here is the fish porn from the trip...

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Old 07-02-2012, 08:42 PM
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Default Re: A good day; The River Test, UK

Wicked!! The pay to play thing is a little weird but I didn't see any trash or line dangling in those trees so I reckon it makes sense. I'm envious!
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Old 07-02-2012, 10:14 PM
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Default Re: A good day; The River Test, UK

Lordie, you did hit the Jackpot! I can just hear the Guide at the Pub that evening ......

'And a Bloody Yank no less.'
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Old 07-03-2012, 04:29 AM
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Default Re: A good day; The River Test, UK

You just add an important datapoint on the whole debate about whether bright clothing scares the trout away . The coloration on the Browns is absolutely splendid.

Sounds like you had a terrific experience, fishing the Test is on my wish list. Will have to plan a trip there the next time I am in Europe.
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Old 07-03-2012, 08:38 AM
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Default Re: A good day; The River Test, UK

Lucky you to fish such a famous riverthanks for sharing your experience with us...it IS a wonderful chalkstream!
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