OK, I know from my recent reports it seems like the Edw is the only river I've been fishing lately but to be honest I really wanted to fish the 3 lower beats while the river was at its best.
The Wye & Usk Foundation manage 4 beats on this river and the only one I've yet to fish is the top beat at Hundred House. The reason I'm in no rush to fish this beat I will explain later.
My latest excursion found the river in prime condition...good height with a fair bit of colour in it. I arrived at 5.30am!!! and headed straight to the beat start, as you go through the gate I would advise applying a fair bit of stealth...the pool immediately in front of you holds a fair number of fish with some 10" and over.
The beat is split into 2 sections comprising of a total of 1 3/4 miles, it flows over a mixture of bedrock & gravel with quite a steep gradient making for some dramatic features with plenty of deep fish holding pools to target.
For anyone thinking about fishing here I would advise you don't leave out fishing the top section of this beat, its a bit of a climb up & down the hill from where you park the car but well worth the effort. I had posted my return voucher in the box before I'd fished this section, initially considering to maybe just have a quick look as I was running short of time. I ended up rushing through most of it taking at least another dozen fish.
End result, well over 30 fish with many in the 10"+ bracket (biggest 13").
My final opinion of the Edw is basically that this river is a little haven for wildlife and has an exceptionally good head of fish. The 2 lower beats (Aberedw, Hergest) I was most impressed with the lower half of the Cregina beat also a pleasure to fish, the problem I found with this beat is that above the bridge it takes on a different appearance, the lack of gradient means it runs slow with fewer target areas that are likely to hold many trout.
The top beat at Hundred House is also described as 'slower' so I think I may have a walk along it before parting with my vouchers.
I'm convinced that the higher water levels and clarity (lack of) helped with my trips to the Edw but because these beats run fast - even in low water they will have plenty of oxygenated water in them with fish eager to open there mouths.
The other point I think is most important is the incredible amount of invertebrate life this river holds sustaining a healthy population of trout.
As a footnote: I am concerned that some of the other Wye tributaries which run through the more mountainous regions are suffering from high acidity levels causing a noticeable lack of invertebrate life with an obvious knock on effect. I know the Wye & Usk foundation are tackling this problem and look forward to some long term results.