Fishing the River Test

5.5lb River Test Chub

5.5lb River Test Chub

Bob Church and I recently made the journey down to Romsey in Hampshire as guests of Dave Steuart – famous all-round angler for many decades, captor of some amazingly large salmon from the Hampshire Avon and Dorset Stour, and surviving member of a legendary husband/wife partnership. Dave and his late wife Kaye between them caught specimen fish of many varieties and all over the world, and in fact fished with my first wife Lesley and her husband Roy in Christmas Island, long before I ever met him myself!

Anyway, as a friend of Bob, I have been fortunate to have fished Dave’s lovely stretch of the River Test for a few years now, and it’s a visit I very much look forward to. On my very first outing there I was delighted to catch my first ever 2lb roach, and the next time another beauty of 2lbs 5oz, so, as you may imagine, it is a pretty special place! [It’s worth mentioning that Lesley caught a two pounder and a THREE pounder from the Kennet before we were married!]

Immaculate 2lb River Test roach

Immaculate 2lb River Test roach

Other than the roach, the beat heaves with large brown trout, quite a number of salmon, and the ever-present and beautiful grayling. As a special treat this time, Bob was allowed to fish in the 50-yard ‘sanctuary’ in front of Dave’s house, where he regularly feeds lots of very large brownies plus some lovely roach. This suited me well because it gave me exclusive access to the rest of the 500 yards of his ‘garden’. It was a sheer joy! Trotting with red maggots I caught 25 grayling to 2lbs 4oz, three or four chub to 5lbs 8oz, another 2lb-plus roach, and 15 or so brown trout averaging 4lbs (and up to 6lbs)!

2lbs-plus River Test Grayling

2lbs-plus River Test Grayling

6lb River Test Brownie

6lb River Test Brownie

What a treat to be able to enjoy such a day! I get very little chance to use a centre-pin reel in this way, and you can imagine how those big brownies go on a 3lb breaking-strain line and what amounts to a match rod!

Dave ghillied for Bob who had many big brownies as well as some roach up to 1lb 6oz, and the day was rounded off with an excellent meal at the local village pub, enjoyed by all!

Lucky Green? You bet!!!!!

Mike Green About Mike Green

Although a bit of a pike fanatic, Mike Green has been fishing in the UK and abroad for most of his life, catching coarse, sea and game fish in the UK, Canada, Alaska, New Zealand, Asia and Americas.

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