Fishing in Devon
The charm of our rivers is that they are wild. We control the fishing rights on seven different rivers, the Tamar and six tributaries, all natural spate rivers draining the moors and high ground of the westcountry. With private fishing on a total of 20 miles of river bank, anglers can have up to a mile of water to themselves for the day.
We have two full-time instructors, David Pilkington and Tim Smith. You will find one or both of them in the Cockpit, the ancient former cock-fighting pit, in the hotel garden every morning at 9am and they are also available every evening at 6.30pm. They issue rod licences, directions and maps of the beats, and give freely of their advice. If you do not have your own tackle you can hire everything you need from them, including waders. We also have a well-stocked tackle shop with the latest fishing equipment and a comprehensive selection of local flies. If you get drenched we also have a very efficient drying room.
We teach fishing. We run courses for beginners. We sell tackle, give advice and provide maps of our fishing. It is all this and more which makes The Arundell Arms a real fisherman’s hotel.
Day tickets are available for non-residents of the hotel.
“From the very beginning of the fishing season I’ve always felt that I’ve been talking to knowledgeable friends rather than instructors”.
Brown trout on the Tamar system are true wild fish, beautifully coloured and hard-fighting. They breed naturally as they have done for millennia. The size limit is eight inches - a fish of this size will be three years old and fully mature. Any trout over 10 inches is a good fish, with one of a pound (around 14 inches) being exceptional.
The trout respond well to a variety of fly fishing techniques, including the classic across-and-downstream style of wet fly fishing. The prime months for trout are May, June and September, when daily catches of up to 20 or 30 trout can be expected for any competent angler.
£35 per rod per day, March 15th - September 30th.
Our salmon run is in the Tamar and the Lyd, and we also have access to beats on the Lower Tamar water some 10 to 15 miles away, where the river is wider and fish can be found as early as March. We also have salmon fishing at Endsleigh. On the lower reaches, Endsleigh offers arguably the finest salmon fly water on the whole river system. Our rivers are true spate rivers and therefore catches are highly dependent on rainfall. While there is the chance of a springer from mid-May onwards, salmon fishing is at its best from August to the end of the season, October 14th.
Price, Arundell Arms beats:
£35 per rod per day, March 1st - June 15th.
£40 per rod per day, June 16th - August 31st.
£45 per rod per day, September 1st - October 14th.
Price, Endsleigh beats:
£50 per rod per day, June 19th - July 2nd.
£60 per rod per day, August 14th - August 20th.
£70 per rod per day, September 25th - October 1st.
Night fly fishing for sea trout - migratory brown trout - is arguably the most exciting fishing available in the British Isles, and is something for which The Arundell Arms is justly famous. From mid-June to the end of the season in September, sea trout offer the absolute pinnacle of the fly fisher’s art. The main July run of fish averages 3/4lb to 1 1/2lb, but there are a good number of larger fish to 8lb. The best time to come sea trout fishing is from late June to mid-August.
£35 per rod per day/night, March 3rd - September 30th.
The Tamar system boasts the most westerly population of grayling in Britain, and can offer sport after the trout fishing has closed at the end of September. Grayling numbers do not match the huge densities encountered on the chalkstreams, although fish of over 2lb are caught each season. Grayling are present on most of our beats, although the Tamar, Lyd and Thrushel tend to be the favoured rivers. Winter spates can often put the river out of order for long periods, so it is best to phone at short notice.
£20 per rod per day, October 1st - March 14th.
The three-acre Tinhay lake, which belongs to the hotel, is at the bottom of the village. It was formerly a limestone quarry that flooded a century ago. It has gin-clear water and a maximum depth of 90 feet. It is fished from a level grassy bank along the southern shore, and is also used for teaching casting and stillwater techniques on our courses. The lake provides exciting clear-water sight fishing for browns and rainbows. The fish, stocked as pounders, grow to over 10lb and are in superb condition. The water remains clear throughout the season, so if the rivers are in spate, Tinhay Lake is always fishable.
£45 per rod per day (four-fish bag limit), open all year.
£22.50 per rod per half-day (two-fish bag limit), open all year.
Saltwater Fly Fishing
Fly fishing is not just about the pursuit of trout and salmon in rivers or lakes and, by taking to the coast, a whole new world is opened up to the angler. Being just 30 minutes from the north Cornwall and Devon coastline, we regularly take individuals and groups saltwater fly fishing. The hard-fighting bass is the usual target, but pollack, mackerel and garfish also regularly feature in catches, all set under the stunning backdrop of the atlantic coast. Guided days saltwater fly fishing are best suited to people who can cast competently and walk a mile.
£150 for 1-3 persons, full day, inc. guide.
When lowland rivers are in spate, the River Dart high on the moors may be clear. We can issue permits at the hotel.
Reservoir fishermen will find excellent trout fishing, from bank or boat, at nearby Roadford Lake, or on Bodmin Moor at Colliford Lake and Siblyback Lake.
There are also many ‘put and take’ fisheries in the region. Exciting sea fishing by boat can be arranged for parties up to eight people. Fish for many different species from plaice to blue sharks (with bass being a speciality) aboard a superb charter boat based near Falmouth.
To make a reservation please contact us by email at email@example.com