I am very lucky to have this area of the fens literally within five minutes from where I live.
It is situated in the middle of the Ouse Washes a wildlife haven in the summer and winter months.
In the summer, it is lush green water meadows and drains. In the winter, the whole area becomes an inland sea which can stretch to Welmore Lake Sluice, which is roughly 10 miles away! Duck shooting and bird watching takes prominence this time of year and I have even seen the odd fisherman. Hard to believe I know.
The flood water crossing the causeway, can be very similar to rapids and gets very deep.
Anyway, back to the fishing. There are three quality fishing spots here. One is a lake, a tidal river and a drain. These are all within five minutes from each other.
I have written about the tidal river and the drain here. As for the lake, I have written about this in more detail in the Fenland Still Waters section of my website.
The Hundred Foot (New Bedford) River
This is a very featureless, tidal river that cuts through the gault. It starts in Earith and runs straight through to Denver Sluice. The fishing here is varied, and can be mad at times. The summer is best; expect to catch rudd, roach skimmers, perch and bream and the odd chub. There also pike, the odd zander. Even flatfish and sea trout can venture this far up, as well as seals!
It fishes best in the summer, although the winter can produce. This does tend to flood like the Old Bedford, so be careful!
Baits And Methods
Both feeder and float methods do well here. The current can be strong depending on the tides, so I do tend to use simple ledger methods. Maggots and worm seem to do very well here.
For the pike and zander, lures and dead baits can produce.
Day Tickets are £5.00 on the bank for the day, or £35.00 for a club book.
Go to www.cfpas.co.uk for more information.
The Old Bedford (River Delph)
The Old Bedford (River Delph) is one of fenlands most famous drains. Very well known for it’s magnificent pike catches.
It is almost unfishable in the winter, due to the flooding of the washes, but if caught at the right time, expect some good results.
In the summer, it is completely different. It represents a lily fringed slow flowing river. You wouldn’t think it was man made.
It can suffer with oxygen problems during the summer months, but always seems to bounce back.
Baits And Methods
Waggler methods seem to do it for me here when fishing for the quality roach and rudd. Although feeder would also be worth a try. Worm and maggot seem to be the most productive baits here. Definitely worth a shot with these baits for the perch, bream and tench.
For the pike, lures can be deadly here in the summer. Dead baits in the winter using float and ledger methods do very well.
Fishing rights on the Old Bedford (River Delph) belong to Cambridge Albion Angling Society.
Click on the link below for more information.
The Counterwash Drain (Old Bedford)
This starts off as a tiny drain near Earith and widens quite dramatically when it gets to Sutton Gault.
When it reaches Welney, it then becomes the Old Bedford. I really have no idea why as the nearby River Delph also gets called the Old Bedford!
The fishing is varied and can be very hard.
During the summer months roach and tench seem to be dominant. It also gets very weedy and can be in some places unfishable. If you fancy a go here, you will definitely need some sort of weed rake or cutter to sort yourself a swim out.
It is the winter months, when it comes into it’s best form and I tend to concentrate on it. There are a lot of jack pike in here and some very big fish. The best method by far is leap frogging tactics, as the fish can be very hard to track down.
Baits And Methods
Float tactics with maggot or worm baits for the tench and roach.
As for the pike, lures and float fished dead baits do very well.