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  1. #1
    Ron 'The Hat' Clay (ACA) Guest


    Most anglers will agree that rainbow trout are one of the hardest fighting fish to be found in freshwater. Over the years I have had some memorable scraps with them, especially those found in large reservoirs or in remote high altitude lakes (over 5000 feet)fed by feeder streams which in some cases the rainbows actually breed.

    The best of the British rainbow trout fights have come from fish from Thrybergh reservoir between Doncaster and Rotherham, and Grafham Water. When Grafham opened in 1966, stories of the fighting power of the rainbows became legendary. 4 pound fish removing 100 yards of backing became common. And at the end of the blistering run the fish would often jump 10 feet into the air.

    I have had thesame sort of scraps from high altitude farm dams of no more than 10 acres. I remember Jim Gibbinson catching a nice 3 pound rainbow from one such water. After landing it he exclaimed: "My, how these fish fight, I have never had a 3 pound fish pull like that - ever!"

    But often, rainbows can be disappointing, especially some of the bigger ones. Some of the very large pellet fed rainbows fight no better than some bream in my opinion, althoughI think it depends onhow they have been reared.

    Some fish in very cold water can also be a bit sluggish. But in my opinion, once the water temperature has passed through the 10 deg C level, and stays below 15 deg C, the trout will be at their fighting best. This of course coincides with food availability in the water as the insect life starts turning on at these temperatures.

    But what do you think?

  2. Default

    I must admit Ron that I've been really impressed by the fight put up by rainbows on the two trips that I've had to Ranskill trout fishery; however, the best scrap that I've ever had with a trout was a 6lb brownie that I caught from my local stretch of river whilst stick floating with breadflake.

    I hooked it at duskin a weir pool slack and it hurtled down into the shallows below; with a 1.7lb hook length I had no option other than to let it go where it wanted for the first10 minutes or so!

    No acrobatics though (thank god!), netted it and then had to ringAlan, aneighbour of mineand ask him to come and photograph and weigh the fish.

    Alan is your typical pit village lad; salt of the earth and well versed in all thing s to do with ferrets and dogs......first thing he says is, "hit it ont ead lad, its guin int pot!" I told him straight that this old war horse was going back from whence it came, and slipped it back into the river.

  3. #3


    Have to say that in my limited experience the best fights have been with surprise captures while coarse fishing on rivers.

    I have actually been disappointed with my fly caught fish. Glad I am not the only one.

  4. #4


    I love playing rainbows, but the vast majority of the fish I take either large or small are recent introductions their power does seem limmited. One of the recent catches a 12lb plus fish hooked in the dorsal fin to 10' six weigth rod on #12 hook on the point of a six pound leader. Ok it ran around a bit, jumped a bit and had me very deep a long way out. But it eneded up on the bank in less than five minutes. I dont think I would of had the same result with a salmon, sea trout, barble or carp of a similar size. Still a lot of fun

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2005


    Its like you say Ron, Altitude and the abundance of natural fly and fry life stimulates the fight in all Trout, without a doubt!

    You can stock fish into any puddle but to switch them on needs an established sustainable environment, places like Ogston Reservoir, Thryberg Country Park are perfect examples.
    Team C.I.D

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