The upper Colne

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RobWooly
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Re: The upper Colne

Post by RobWooly » Tue Nov 07, 2017 11:35 am

Just a heads up for those who fished the Upper Colne in the last few years and struggled, this is due to a pollution incident that didn't get much press which killed in my estimate a good 70-90% of fish, according to my catch records before and after. This was in the summer of 2015. Before that the river from the A41 to the Hospital was always dirty but was full of fish, It was my local 'banker' river especially in winter when it would always fish well and there was less local youth about, the last few times I have struggled but there are signs of a few fish returning but they face the current problems of an urban free stretch of river.

Barbel were stocked but became quite isolated but it was always the chub which were dominant going to 5lb 8oz for me but larger ones were there, roach, dace and perch could also make for a good days fishing when the water was coloured.

Nice photo looks like it could be Oxhey Park where the council dump is now

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Roachtench
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Re: The upper Colne

Post by Roachtench » Sun Dec 10, 2017 11:32 pm

I am privileged in being chairman of Otterspool AC that has controlled the fishing above the A41 and M1 for the past 25 years. We’ve worked hard on the stream every season over that period and though we have desperate levels and flows due to lack of rain and over abstraction, the stream still yields some good fish of many species. This time last year we put a long reach 13-tonne digger to work, funded by an Angling Trust ?EA habitat improvement grant and removed 350 tonnes of silt and over vegetation. We extended the fishery two seasons ago to take in the former Little Munden Fishing Club. So Otterspool AC nurtures and cares for 3.1 miles of Upper Upper Colne across the private Munden Estate , and is the uppermost fishery in the valley. It is private club fishing for 60 plus members from A41 below the M1 to Drop Lane, Bricket Wood, just upstream of the Ver confluence with Colne. The Otterspool Lane side of the river between A41 to M1 and upstream to the lower iron bridge above Otterspool House is controlled by Hemel Hempstead’s Boxmoor & District AS, of which I am also privileged to be Rivers Officer. Officials of both clubs are members of, and work closely with, the Colne Valley Fisheries Consultative. No doubt over the years a number of fish have dropped down to the sections referred to in previous posts. I hope they have provided good sport. The above notwithstanding, the River in the main, and especially across Watford, is a shadow of its former self.

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MGs
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Re: The upper Colne

Post by MGs » Mon May 21, 2018 8:36 pm

Martin H wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 1:27 pm
Mitch300 wrote:
Mon May 01, 2017 6:58 pm
Now there's something we have in common. I too starting fishing as one of a group of scruffy kids on bikes with rods stringed onto crossbars, but on the Colne at Thorney Mill near West Drayton---a stickleback paradise. Fortunately, no-one seemed too bothered by our `fishing' (interspersed with tree climbing, stone skimming, fort building, etc.) as the serious anglers had so many better places to go to in that area. Then we branched out to other free stretches like the Slough arm of the Grand Union and the Thames at Datchet and gradually became real anglers. We should celebrate scruffy kids on bikes having fun outside. There are all too few of them today.

G. B.
Sounds like we have something in common as well, fished there many times as a boy, I know this is an old thread, but if you read this... did you ever cross the road from there, sneak through some fencing and trees to a small mill pond?
I did :Scared: We fished the mill a lot. Graduating from minnows and gudgeon to roach and perch. Occasionally snuck through and wet a line in the pool, never caught anything though. :( Going back a while that must have been late 60's early 70s. Graduated to better venues after that.
Old car owners never die....they just rust away

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MGs
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Re: The upper Colne

Post by MGs » Mon May 21, 2018 9:08 pm

Guessing you spent a while sat on the concrete wall at the side of the mill outflow then.
Old car owners never die....they just rust away

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MGs
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Re: The upper Colne

Post by MGs » Mon May 21, 2018 9:16 pm

Blimey, not been there for years, just found this on the web, looks like a lot of building has happened over the years.
Image
Old car owners never die....they just rust away

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MGs
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Re: The upper Colne

Post by MGs » Wed May 23, 2018 4:00 pm

I fished it all over the place. I used to like the sloping bank opposite this wall. I had some nice perch on worm.
We used to fish the stretch through Little Britain, good mixed fishing, we had all sorts, gudgeon, roach, perch, the occasional small chub, even bream, tench! and pike.

We fished the stretch off Iver lane, upstream of the bridge next to what used to be Cape Boards. Good perch, roach, dace, gudgeon and bleak. Even the odd chub and small pike from under the bridge itself.

Also the stretch below Belmont Road in Uxbridge, mostly full of small pike and decent perch.
Finally, the stretch just above Uxbridge on the way to Harefield. Again small roach, perch and gudgeon.

From 2002 until 2006 I was working back in Northwood and fished lower down towards Heathrow. The fishing was good but almost entirely barbel and chub. I had barbel over 10lb and Chub over 6. The only other fish I caught in 4 years was a single 6lb bream. No sign of roach, perch or anything else.
It was pretty much the same on the Little Britain stretch. I did manage to winkle out a few roach and perch but someone had stocked barbel and chub which seemed to have bullied everything else out of the way. Not unusual to catch a good bag of 4lb chub in a session. There had never been anything like that in the mid 1970s.

Pretty sad that what used to be good mixed fishing had been changed so drastically by stocking. My dad said that the roach fishing on the Little Britain stretch was fantastic when he was young.
Old car owners never die....they just rust away

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MGs
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Re: The upper Colne

Post by MGs » Wed May 23, 2018 7:51 pm

Yes, looks like we learned the lessons in the traditional way. Fishing the Colne and Frays was a good grounding. Not always easy but a great way to learn watercraft. Start at the bottom and work your way up. Any fish of 1lb was a monster. I've run the whole spectrum since then, through the carp and barbel phase and now back to my beloved roach.
Sad to say your video experience is not unusual. I fished a local commercial and have had about a dozen different species. Most of the anglers only target carp. The guys who run it say I'm about the only person who actually knew what all the fish I caught were! Down to years reading everything I could get hold of in the fishing line.
I'd love to see the Colne returning to a real mixed fishery, although with the commercial pressures, I can't see it happening.
Old car owners never die....they just rust away

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Mitch300
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Re: The upper Colne

Post by Mitch300 » Thu May 24, 2018 3:40 am

Wasn't there a Simoniz plant at the left-most end of that rebuilt facade back in the 70's? Or am I confusing it with somewhere else?

G. B.

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Clivey
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Re: The upper Colne

Post by Clivey » Tue Jun 05, 2018 9:48 pm

Nice thread gents!! brings back many memories for me, i used to fish the Colne a lot around Uxbridge,Denham, Harefield, i went back to visit some friends and we fished it last season the far side of Little Britain lake, where it runs next to Farlows lake. I had a mixed bag of dace and chublets but it is very low and clear compared to around 25-30 years ago.
What disappointed me was the amount of Canadian pond weed ( i think thats what it was) literally completely covering the river in some places where we used to run down stick floats when we were teenagers.

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MGs
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Re: The upper Colne

Post by MGs » Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:33 am

Good to see some dace back in that stretch. My last trip to the same stretch in 2006 yielded four 4lb chub and nothing else.
Old car owners never die....they just rust away

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