Trout Fishing

We extend a warm welcome to all trout anglers. The range of fishing we offer ensures excellent sport for all abilities. Our still water fisheries are among the best in the west and vary in size from around 50 to over 900 acres!

Our fisheries are picturesque and atmospheric lakes, including countless secluded bays, weedy shores and tree line margins to explore. We boast rainbows, browns and a large number of blues of the highest quality. Traditional fly fishing is the rule at our stocked fisheries, although other methods can be used at our free wilderness trout waters. 

Young People and Newcomers

We are working hard to encourage young people and newcomers to take up the sport. Under 12s may fish for free when sharing their parents’ bag limit. For under 18s, there is a two fish child permit available. Throughout the season, we host open days and events where we offer free fly fishing tuition for all.

Boat Fishing

Boats are available at most of our waters which provide an alternative to bank angling. These must be pre-booked, either by calling 01566 771930 (8.30am - 5.00pm 7 days a week) or online by scrolling to the bottom of your chosen lake page.

Access for All

Most of the waters benefit from facilities designed for disabled or wheelchair anglers, either by platforms or Wheelyboats. These boats must be booked at least 48 hours in advance.


A number of the fisheries have associated local clubs. These are a great way to meet fellow anglers, as well as participating in competitions and social events. We run several competitions during the season - more details of each of these are available on our competitions page.

Environment Agency Rod Licence

Anglers on all our waters must have a valid Environment Agency rod licence which are available from post offices or via the Environment Agency. The only exception may be when attending a bona fide course or a coaching session with a qualified coach – please check beforehand.

South West Lakes Trust

South West Lakes Trust is the managing charity of SW Lakes Fishing. The charity is a member of The Angling Trust. In 2014, the South West Lakes fisheries hosted the Commonwealth Fly Fishing Championships; Scotland took gold and England won silver. 

Reporting an Incident:

South West Lakes Trust manages a portfolio of nearly 50 lakes and other natural resources so it is not always possible for our wardens to be on the scene when issues occur. The very remote and rural nature of our estate, the thing that makes them so special, also means that modern mobile communications don’t always cover the areas we would like them to. This makes getting an immediate response to ongoing incidents very challenging.

Please use this form to report any incidents of poaching, illegal fishing or any other form of antisocial behaviour to the management team so that we are able to take appropriate action.

Complete Form

All of the South West Lakes Trust trout fisheries continue to be operated under strict Covid 19 restrictions, in line with the current Angling Trust and Government guidelines. At the time of writing the on-site permit huts are still not yet open, so day tickets, season tickets, and boats should be pre-booked online ( or via the telephone. Water levels are currently about 80% full, with the fish at the brown trout waters generally responding better to the warmer water conditions.


The month proved to be another of very mixed weather, with some very hot bright days, followed by heavy rain and winds – the main overriding feature continued to be one of warm muggy conditions, and water temperatures continuing to gradually rise (to 20ºC), which often meant that the fish were lethargic and seeking the deeper cooler water, with boat anglers and float-tubers often enjoying better results. As the month continued, the fishing became more challenging in spite of plenty of hatches (buzzers and sedges) and rises, and the feeding fish were often out of casting range for bank anglers. A slow retrieve produced the best results, with both floating and sinking lines catching fish; fish were well spread out around the lake, although Clampitts Bay, Oak Tree Point, and Boat Bank did seem to produce the moist consistent sport. A wide selection of patterns caught fish, from Daddies, Black Gnats, Klinkhammers, and Emergers on the surface; Montanas, Damsels, Buzzer patterns, and Diawl Bachs subsurface; Cats Whiskers, Lime Boobies, Black Tadpoles, and Orange or Lime Blobs in deeper water. Brian Sedgebeer (from Ilsington) caught five wild browns using a black and silver muddler skimmed across the surface in an evening session; Robert Boniface (from Exeter) caught four rainbows of 2lb and a 1lb brown on a sinking line; Graham Read (from Christow) caught two 2lb rainbows on  a lime green Booby on the drop using a sinking line.

A stocking of 310 rainbows to 3.5lbs on 12th September.


A very tough month’s fishing at Siblyback produced disappointing results, with few fish rising (although some fish are showing at sunset), and few anglers on the banks. Geoff Cook (from Falmouth) managed to hook three rainbows estimated at 2lb using a small yellow lure fished deep and fast, before losing all three at the net! Sport should pick up as the water temperatures start to drop.


The fishing continued to be challenging this month, with anglers only averaging around one fish per visit, and nothing of any notable size being caught. Occasional buzzer hatches produced sporadic and brief rises, and apart from a few dry Sedges and Daddies, most fish were caught sub-surface on a variety of patterns (including Damsels, Montanas, Buzzers, Diawl Bachs, and Cats Whiskers), with Longstone Bank and West Bank the most productive areas. David Hockin (from Plymouth) caught six rainbows while fishing from a boat using a sink-tip line during a buzzer hatch; Andrew Brown (from Chelmsford) caught a 3lb rainbow, and two more at 2lb; Tim Robinson (from Denmead) caught four wild browns to 1lb using a size 12 Sedegehog.

3lb 2oz Brown Trout, Robert Prout

A stocking of 675 rainbows to 2.5lbs on 14th September


There are plenty of Rudd fry in the margins at Stithians, and this has, on occasions, made for some good fry-bashing. Although surface rises have been slow, dry fly fishing has produced some good sport, with anglers successfully using Daddies, Foam Beetles, Hoppers, Sedges, Adams, and Sedgehogs. Rewarding sub-surface patterns fished on a floating line included Spiders, Hares Ears, Buzzers, Diawl Bachs, and Montanas. Fish were well spread out around the lake, although Pipes Bay, Goonlaze, Hollis Bank, and Mossopps were all regularly mentioned on catch returns. Simon Peters (from Truro) caught two rainbows of 2lb using Fabs fished on a floating line with a long leader; T. Marks caught five fish using a Sedgehog.

Photo: Simon Peters


Another sensational month’s sport at Colliford, with anglers averaging 4.8 fish per rod. Fish were well spread out around the water, and dry patterns fished on a floating line (Red Hoppers, Foam Beetles, Black Gnats, Bobs Bits and Sedge patterns) produced some spectacular catches – Dean Boucher (from Gunnislake) had some excellent sessions (sixteen browns at 1lb 4oz on a Foam Beetle, Red Hopper, and Black Bits in one, ten browns to 1lb 14oz using a Black Tadpole on another, and nineteen browns on another using a Soldier Palmer). Chris Tillyard caught ten fish to 33cm using Black Gnats and dry Hares Ear patterns; Alan Judd caught eleven browns on a Soldier Palmer; Phil Messenger-Roberts caught fourteen and eight browns in two visits, mainly using a Soldier Palmer.

Boulder Bay, Chris Taylor


Brown Trout, Alan Judd                    

1lb 14oz brown trout, Chris Tilyard


Anglers averaged just under three fish per rod, with plenty of fish rising to dry patterns (Daddies, Klinkhammers, Foam Beetles, Bits, Hoppers, and black Gnats); otherwise a selection of subsurface nymphs and traditional patterns fished on a floating line with a variety of retrieval speeds produced results. Again, fish were well distributed around the water, with no particular location standing out. Notable catches included Eric Kuchenbecker’s three browns to 2lb, caught on a Diawl Bach fished on a floating line; Richard Pleydell (from Exeter) caught six browns using a Kate Maclaren and Black Midge; Daniel Price (from Crediton) caught seven browns in one session, while Roy Gill (from Exmouth) caught five using a size 12 Klinkhammer.


The weekly averages ranged dramatically at Roadford, from one week when only small perch were caught, to another week in early September when anglers averaged just under 3.2 browns per rod (when there was some sunshine and a nice ripple on the water, and a few Buzzers and Sedges hatching). Daveys Bank, Wortha Inlet, and Grinnacombe proved to be the best locations, with Black Tadpoles, Soldier Palmers, Hoppers, Bibios, Diawl Bachs, Shipmans Buzzers, and Hares Ears all proving popular patterns. Jamie Gillman (from Plympton) enjoyed some fabulous sport, catching twenty four browns to 3lb, while John McCallum (from Westward Ho!) caught two browns to 2lb using a floating line and fast retrieve.


 Photos: Mark Edwards (L) Dean Boucher (R)

Please visit the South West Lakes Trust website ( for the latest Covid19 updates, as well as details on ticket prices, fishery information, Clubs, competitions, and boat availability.


Chris Hall (September 2021)