Beat 5: Castle Hill Estate
River Bray – River Taw
Beat 5: Castle Hill Estate – River Bray
SS 67514 27780 – SS 67529 256592 2km double bank
The River Bray derives its headwaters from the slopes of Exmoor; as such the water quality is good and benefits from fast flows. The beat is easily accessible from South Molton and Barnstaple and comprises a number of pools and glides interspersed by riffled sections. It has a good head of brown trout up to 16” and provides the chance of salmon and sea trout given adequate water. 2016 was even more lightly fished than 2015, however it still produced 79 brown trout to 11” often to a beaded nymph.
Directions & Access:
From South Molton, take the B3226 north out of town then, after approximately 2km take the left turn signed Filleigh, Swimbridge. Continue on this road for 2.5km to Stags Head and then turn right signed East Buckland, West Buckland. The car park is 50m on the left. The beat is accessed by walking back to the main road, crossing over it and entering through the field gate located east of Filleigh Bridge. Both car park and gate have signs. Once on the beat walk downstream on the left hand bank crossing the river via the footbridges provide. Please do not use any foot bridge signed ‘no access’. The token box is on the fence at the gateway at the end of the first field down from the road bridge.
Info & Restrictions:
Fly only, single barbless hooks to be used at all times when fishing catch and release. All trout under 8” must be returned. 1 brown trout of over 8” or 1 sea trout of over 10” may be retained per day. 1 salmon may be retained per day subject to national and local byelaws. Voluntary catch and release of all species strongly encouraged. Sorry, no dogs.
The gardens of the Estate are open to the public from 1 April to 30 September from 11am to 5pm, last admission 4.30pm. Autumn colour walks take place every Sunday in October from 11am to 4pm. Further information can be found at www.castlehilldevon.co.uk/pages/garden_open.aspx.
iGhillie Fishing Guide
The iGhillie guides provide some invaluable insider tips to some of the beats available on our Westcountry Angling Passport scheme. In this episode Derrek Jones gives a masterclass guide to fishing the Castle Hill Estate Fishery on the River Bray.