Markle Fisheries has gained a deserved reputation for its fly fishing. The Markle (5acres) and Monastery (2.5 acres) Lochs provide some of the best small stillwater sport available. Both of these lochs are stocked weekly with the best quality trout from the locally situated Belhaven Trout Company. A cage management system is also in place to supplement stock on a daily basis. The trout are stocked at a minimum of 2lbs and go to over 20lbs. The average fish is 3lbs, however, all size categories are represented and therefore we ask that you tackle up accordingly. Please also bring a large and strong landing net! We do allow catch and release but only if it is carried out to a competent standard using debarbed flies - advice will be given by our staff.
Rainbow trout are the predominant species to be encountered and they live up to their aggressive reputation often being taken on brighter, larger lures - Fritz flies of all colours, lead heads too, zonkers and rabbits, and of course the local favourite; the Yellow Dancer! However, the resident population have wised up and are not always so easy to deceive - this is where the angler using a more natural approach will score. Buzzers, Pheasant Tail Nymphs, Gold Ribbed Hare's Ears and the ubiquitous Damsel Nymph (in all its many guises) are the ones to choose if the fish are selective. Of course, being in the countryside means that we have a wealth of evening "rises" and terrestrials too and in the summer months dry flies can be deadly. Patterns to choose then would be Hawthorn, Black Gnat, Bibio, up-winged Olives, CDC'S, Hoppers, and the best big fish dry of them all - the Daddy.
The big brown trout in our lochs (and we mean fish to 18lbs plus) are true to their colours. They do not normally go for the flashy flies and definitely prefer the more natural approach - although a large natural zonker will catch the cannibals! Interestingly enough we find that the largest browns are caught in the winter months when they are in perfect condition because they are triploid. Please note all brown trout are catch and release only.
We are also renowned for our blue trout, a strain of rainbow but without the spots and pink stripe - they look like fresh run grilse and fight like them too. These can go to double figures and can be caught using the same flies as for rainbows.
Markle Fisheries also stocks brook trout and tiger trout (cross between a brook and a brown trout).
Floating lines predominate at this fishery and rods in the 7/8 AFTM 9-10.5ft range are the usual choice. An intermediate line, or better still a sink-tip, is useful on windier days and sinking lines are really only used for pulling lures at speed. Concentrate more on fly choice and presentation and you will be rewarded.
[A special note: we do not stock "super trout" ie. those of 25lb+ proportions because they are very rare. Also, they are so artificial that if you try to release them after capture they then have a heart attack and die. Considering their availability and extreme cost it is not economically viable to try to buy the very few that exist without charging very high prices. Just ask yourself, "how many pictures of really big fish have I seen?" Only one fishfarmer has bred more than three rainbows over 30lb and he does not sell them on.]