Fly fishing on Wiltshire’s River Nadder is so easy to overlook in favour of the bigger named rivers in the area. It may not be a true chalkstream but it has many of the same great attributes of the nearby chalk rivers including a prolific mayfly hatch.
It is one of the rivers that I particularly like to visit early in the season, both April and May ,as it can produce some terrific early season fly hatches. Despite the fact it runs over greensand, from mid-May onwards it also offers great sight fishing too.
So, why go fly fishing on the River Nadder?
Those yet to experience this stunning river may wonder why they should travel there to go fishing. Here are five reasons why you should try the Nadder.
An Early Season Performer
The chalkstream season is always a late starter, with rivers elsewhere in the UK opening in March yet our southern rivers begin opening in April. So having patiently waited for the season to begin it is of course essential to find somewhere that will fish well.
The River Nadder has always been a good option in April. The waters are often carrying colour from the winter rains but that aside the river always boasts strong hatches of large dark olives and grannom. It is the latter that seem to drive the Nadder trout crazy and can offer a spectacular season opener.
Moving beyond the grannom, the River Nadder is not finished. As the waters continue to clear, the sediment rich bottom begins to come to life as hoards of mayfly make a break for the surface. The mayfly hatches on this Wiltshire river can rival any seen on the River Test and in some cases exceed them.
By travelling just that bit further west you take yourself deep into the gorgeous Wiltshire countryside. The urban sprawl is largely left behind and replaced with broad meadows dotted with wild flowers. The river twists and turns its way through this stunning landscape and it is easy to just sit back and let time peacefully pass by looking out for for that next rising trout.
Not all chalkstream river beats allow wading for numerous reasons but for those that long to wade carefully along casting to rising fish then the River Nadder offers that chance. By wading it allows the bankside vegetation to grow up providing great habitat for fly life and in turn a healthy ecosystem.
More than Brown Trout
Although the fly fishing season on the River Nadder is only open during the trout season that does not mean it is only trout that you can catch. From the 16th June onwards it is possible to target some of the river’s other species on the fly including grayling and roach.
The River Nadder has limited access to day rods but we offer fishing on the stunning Compton Chamberlayne water for day rods, guided trips and group days.
View Spring 2023 availability here and Mayfly 2023 availability here.
For more information about fly fishing the River Nadder please contact Alex Jardine or call our office on +44(0)1980 847389.