Land Drains

Land drains are dotted all other the fens and can hold some surprises. They are very mysterious and moody. I really enjoy the challenge of these. I tend to fish these more in the winter for the pike, although they can produce some lovely tench and roach in the summer.

Most land drains are free, but there are a few that belong to angling clubs

They range in depth and sizes. Some can only be a few inches deep, and some can be three to four foot. Even the tiniest of drains can hold some surprises.


Because a lot of land drains are out in the middle of nowhere, you have to be very careful, as some banks can be very steep.

Another thing, always abide by the key rules below:

  • Always make sure you check with the farmer whose land they run through first, before fishing them.
  • If you find any that have public footpaths and bridleways running along side them, keep to them, don’t venture off them.
  • Some land drains can be extremely private, and don’t allow fishing at all. Please don’t ignore any signs that highlight this.

If you break these rules, expect a visit from an angry farmer, or even a police officer.

Now the safety bit is done, now to the exciting fishing tips!

Baits And Methods

For the bream and tench, waggler tactics will do with maggots and hemp.

Going After The Pike

When trying for the pike, I tend to stick with leap frogging tactics. I usually start at the pump basin and work my way down. I only tend to fish for a max of half hour per swim. They tend to do best when there is a bit of flow and some colour caused by the running pumps.

Baits And Methods

If there is a bit of colour, use smelly, oily baits like sardines,herring and mackeral.

As for tackle, I use a standard pike float setup. Sliding ledger tactics can also produce.





7 Responses to Land Drains

  1. Jack says:

    Do you know if the land drain at the Little Ouse Bridge in Lakenheath is free or part of a club?

    • admin says:

      Hi Jack,
      I have no idea, as not fished that drain before.
      Sorry this isn’t much help!

  2. Ray says:

    Hi I am thinking of fishing the land drains in your area but looking at numerous reports in media I am really put off as it seems that the fishing has been ruined by mass poaching and eating of fish stocks! Although most of reports date back several years I am wondering if I’m wasting my time travelling and booking accommodation.
    Can you reassure me all is not lost/or correct.
    I was thinking of booking next week but will await your advice!

    • admin says:

      Hi Ray,
      There is plenty of waterways in the fens, so plenty to explore. Yes it has it’s problems, but not as bad as everyone says.

      I would recommend the KLAA waters and WAA waters, as these are regularly bailiffed, and always produce when I visit them.

      I am actually heading to a WAA water this weekend, so keep an eye on my catch reports.

      Hope this helps!

  3. john alan tombs says:

    Could you please tell me if gravel bank drain is run by a club or is it free .and whot kind of fish are in it has it got a closed season thanks a lot john a tombs

    • admin says:

      Hi John,
      Sorry for late reply, as website has been down and I have just got round to fixing it. Not fished gravel bank and is on my to-do list this year, so need to find out more about it myself.
      All the drains in the fens, are covered by a close season, including gravel bank.
      As for fish, I would think you would get the usual stuff like/roach, rudd, pike and perch, so worth a shot.

  4. ian hanson says:

    hi ray i have caravan on a site near skegness i would like to fish for zander . i have never caught one , any suggestions ian hanson

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