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Fishing the River Test in Dave's Garden - 31/10/17

Some years ago I was involved in recording Dave Steuart for Angling Heritage and ever since then, Dave has allowed me to fish the River Test that runs through his garden every year.

This year I decided to try for the roach so armed with bread, maggot and worm, I was confident I would get some.  I started trotting flake right in front of the conservatory; a brave thing to do as Dave takes the micky mercilessly if you mess up like I do.  The sport was slow initially on the flake catching the usual trout and batch of grayling to just over half a pound or so. 

I then switched to maggot and the bites came faster although the average size dropped, some grayling being as small as 4", but beautiful to look at before moving on downstream. here I followed the same procedure with the same results except I did manage a perch of around 12ozs before moving on again down into the mill pool.

I watched two moorhens fighting and it was truly to the death as one grabbed the others neck and climbed on top of it, forcing the other under the water trying to drown it before it managed to wriggle free and fly off.  I guess the warm snap has aroused mating instincts.

I fished the mill pool with similar results until I switched to worm, then I got a fish every run through and the size increased. I had several trout to over 3lbs, one I caught twice in successive casts, plus a chub of just under 4lbs, a couple of dace, another perch and finally some better grayling to over 1.5 lbs but no matter what I did I couldn't tempt a roach. 

I finished at dusk at the bottom ot the stretch, trotting under a bridge catching even more grayling. So no roach, but I can have no complaints catching so many fish, and I'm delighted to say they were all in pristine condition.  Thanks once again Dave, and it is good to see one of the great anglers of the twentieth century still looking so well.