WELCOME to our Friday blog. Every Friday we hand over to Carl and Alex Smith – known online as simply Carl & Alex.

These super keen youngsters have a passion for making a variety of fishing videos, and provide a youth dimension to our new blogging mix. Read their tips each week in Angler’s Mail magazine’s unbeatable All The Answers section.

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A COUPLE of weeks ago we were lucky enough to be invited up to Farnham to fish with Angler’s Mail magazine contributor Duncan Charman on the River Wey. And boy did we learn loads!

Duncan, who has fished this river since he was a child, obviously knows it well, so well in fact that by the time we had arrived he already had a chub and plenty of good sized dace.

Carl & Alex had a successful day out with Duncan Charman – and learned loads!

Duncan was using an alloy stick float and an open faced reel, and was feeding good old red maggots and just double red maggot on a size 16 hook. He started off fishing in the middle of town on a deeper bend on the river, where he was getting bites almost every trot down, mostly from minnows and occasionally from a decent dace. We stayed on that same stretch for another hour but the minnows were taking over the swim so it was time for a move!

We walked upstream for about 15 minutes and looked for another spot to try. There was a nice looking run in between two weirs that was about 2ft deep and looked good for dace and maybe a chub. Duncan explained that it was all about trying a spot about a dozen trots through and then moving on. This is because the fish just spook when you catch a few. He managed about 5 nice dace out of this swim and then it was time for another move.

As we walked downstream we could see how shallow the water was. It was only a foot deep but Duncan said it was still worth a try. We then spotted 2 chub of a couple of pounds and were very excited but couldn’t persuade them to take the maggots. They just sat comfortably near the far bank where there were snags.

Duncan then showed us a spot downstream which is good for chub and dace. We tied our rod up with a simple stick float rig with a size 18 hook and single or double maggot. I trotted it under an overhanging tree and instantly had a nice dace but the next trot I hooked into something a bit better.

It wouldn’t come in quickly; it kept thumping its head. Eventually I reeled down as I walked downstream to the fish and managed to get it to the surface. It was a quality chub so we had to get it in. It slowly calmed down and we got it in the net. A stunning fish from a stunning river!

Both Carl and I had more dace and could even see them snatching the maggots.

Sadly the session came to an end as mum and dad wanted us to be back not too late as we had school the next day. It had been a brilliant session which we would like to thank Duncan for! We had had some lovely dace and even a quality chub!


Click below to watch our video of him and his tips – it’s really helpful advice.





A repeat visit to the Rivery Wey was in order

We managed to return the next weekend in an attempt to end our season on a high note, the river did not disappoint.

We were using trotting tactics just as before and had bronze and a few red maggots as bait. We walked from the The Maltings car park in Farnham where we had been dropped off, to the swim we had in mind. However as we neared we could see three other anglers already there so we went upstream to one of the spots we had a result in previously. We found the river to be a few inches higher than last time with a bit of colour as well.

We started feeding then set up the rod. After a few trots down we found the right depth and then we were properly fishing, and with a strung out shotting pattern, the two maggots on the size 18 hook would sink slowly without getting tangled.

The bites came fast with the first few dace coming from further down the swim but soon, with regular feeding the fish were drawn upstream and I was getting bites soon after the bait sunk down. Then I hooked something better, with line pulling of the reel and bending my float rod right round; it must be a chub. I could see the far bank snags moving as the fish darted around however with constant pressure the tired fish came out. I excitedly managed to slip it into the net. It was a chub of about 1lb. Soon after catching another few dace I had another chub, this one being a bit smaller.

We rested the swim while we walked downstream a bit and had a few trots through. I had a perfectly marked trout and a small salmon parr but didn’t manage anymore dace or chub. However, when we returned upstream I lost a chub on the first trot and on the second I hooked and landed a good-sized chub. It pulled like a horse and didn’t give up fast. When it did finally come in we could see it was bigger than the others we had caught. It weighed in at 3lbs 14oz. By this point I was so happy about how the last session on the rivers was going.

A nice looking chub for Alex

After catching this chub I think it spooked the swim because no bites came on the last dozen trots. Carl then had a go and it wasn’t long before the fish were back. Carl was bringing in a dace every cast and then he had a chub!

To finish off the day we returned to the swim that we had started in as we had been feeding and leaving it for the last 2 hours. As soon as I cast out dace were coming in thick and fast; the resting of the swim appeared to have helped.

The day spent at the River Wey in Farnham had been a lovely way to end the season. We had caught three stunning looking species and caught them on an exciting tactic! Many thanks to Duncan for inspiring us.


Click below for Carl & Alex’s video of their return to the Wey…





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