Arundell Arms – Devon Fly Fishing Breaks

Charming sporting hotel on the Devon, Cornwall border

The Arundell Arms is one of Devon’s best loved rural, country sports hotels and sits on the Cornwall, Devon border on the edge of Dartmoor. It’s a super spot to stay to enjoy fly fishing, walking, wonderful food and exploring the local area.

wonderful variety of water

The Arundell Arms has 22 miles of wild fly fishing to offer its guests, including stretches on the Tamar and five of its tributaries which are perfect for wild brown trout, sea trout and salmon. The Tamar holds good numbers of brown trout, sea trout and the occasional salmon. Flowing through lowland farming areas with a backdrop of the rolling Devon countryside it forms the county boundary between Devon and Cornwall. The water comprises classic large, slow and deep holding pools, long gravel floored flats and riffles. It is an easy river to fish and access, and the wading is generally fairly straightforward. The river is suitable for both beginners and experienced anglers, with the latter able to seek out more adventurous stretches which are not frequently fished and see relatively little fly.

The River Lyd is one of the Tamar’s main tributaries and with its source on the moors it runs fast and clear. The water levels rise and fall quickly on this incredibly attractive spate stream and it’s perfect for salmon and sea trout in the days after the peak spate. During the summer the Lyd is an excellent sea trout river and is where most of the Arundell Arms’ night fishing takes place. Smaller than the Tamar, its polls are still easily fishable for the novice given the shallow wading. Experienced anglers will enjoy the pots, riffles and rocky runs which provide exciting sport.

The Thrushel, and its tributary the Wolf, is a pretty lowland river offering excellent trout fishing. The Thrushel is small to medium sized with a good number of open pools in which to target brown trout. The Wolf is smaller and slightly trickier. Both are characterised by short gravelly runs with trout holding pockets that flow into rock formed pools. The water levels on the Wolf are controlled by an output from the Roadford reservoir ensuring that it is often fishable when other rivers are running too high after rainfall.

The Ottery is a gem of a river and the Arundell’s only trout fishing in Cornwall. This small lowland river flows through unspoilt land at the top of the Tamar catchment and offers excellent trout fishing. In general, it is well maintained and the wading and access is easy. With relatively confined casting space it’s a river best suited to those who can cast proficiently. The river provides some early season sport with a good grannom hatch and has one of the best mayfly hatches in the west country.

The stretches of the Upper Lyd and Lew represent some fine wild fishing and are very lightly kept to provide sport for the small stream purist. Stealth, guile, tactical wading and adaptable casting are required for both rivers. For those who enjoy a challenge there’s not a better spot to fish for wily brown trout.

The hotel also has its own lake which is a great teaching venue as well as holding rainbow and brown trout. This flooded limestone quarry benefits from spring fed and crystal clear waters. It’s stocked regularly with rainbow trout so that beginners have a good chance to catch a fish.

The onsite fly fishing school offers tuition right through from the absolute beginner to the advanced angler. Experienced guides can accompany you to the river offering advice on the lies, techniques and presentation required.

Fully guided packages

The Arundell Arms comprises 21 rooms and a self catering cottage. Its welcoming, home from home atmosphere ensures a wonderfully relaxed stay whether you are fishing or simply exploring the local rea. The bar serves lunches and casual dinners while the restaurant is slightly more formal – both serve food made from fresh, local and seasonal ingredients prepared to an exacting standard. The heated wader room looks after waders, wet coats, boots and even wetsuits. There is a lovely library with plenty of books on fishing and field sports.

Easily accessible

The Arundell Arms is an old coaching inn in the village of Lifton in the heart of Devon’s rolling countryside. Just over a mile from the A30 it’s in a convenient and accessible location, and approximately a three and a half hour drive from London or three hours from Heathrow Airport.

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