River Cray

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Re: River Cray

Post by PerchBasher » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:17 am

Lovely pictures Craycane and thanks for sharing them.

A few years ago when ledgering a worm on the Darent at Horton Kirby (the stretch that runs parallel to the Dartford and District APS lakes), I caught a lovely looking trout of around a pound and half which I assumed had migrated downstream from your club’s stretch?

My thoughts turned to a nice grilled trout for supper accompanied by a green salad, buttery new potatoes and washed down with a glass or two of crisp white, but a mother and her young son were standing behind me and had seen me land the fish, so you’ll be pleased to hear I did the decent thing and released it!

Stuart Whiting

Re: River Cray

Post by Stuart Whiting » Sun Feb 07, 2016 9:00 am

PerchBasher wrote:Not the most scenic fishing, nor arguably the best, but never the less, a rare example of a small stream on the outskirts of London where the fishing ahs radically improved over the years. http://www.londonslostrivers.com/river-cray.html

The Cray rises in Orpington and flows into the Darent, upstream of Dartford. I first fished it as a boy in the late 1960’s and the fishing was poor with only gudgeon and small roach to be had. Over the years, the industries that once lined its banks have now gone, with them the pollution and as one of perhaps the only benefits of the de-industrialisation of Britain, the fishing is better.

I fish it both up and downstream of Crayford and there are roach, dace, chub, perch, and the occasional escapee small carp. Its shallow so free lining or light ledgering are a better option than trotting. It’s not a “stay in one swim all day” type of river so a roving approach with the minimum of tackle is recommended.

The Cray is not an easy river, but if the area, do give it a try. Local angler en route to the gravel pits in the Darent Valley turn their noses up but I’ve had roach to a pound, chub to three pounds and dace to a stonking 7 ounces!
Hi pb,

I'm very pleased to say that in the last few years the cray has done fairly well with it's fish stocks, the size of the fish you mention are now a lot bigger, this is my main local river, fishing it religiously for the last few years,

I've now had my pb roach from there at dead on 2lb and and also my pb dace at a very good 12 oz :secret:
There's also chub in there between 5-6lb and I've had em to a respectable 4lb.

There is sadly the odd bit of rubbish about but isn't necessarily from anglers as this river doesn't realy get fished that much ,

Michael who lives locally and who is the head voluntary organiser for Thames 21 of the cray region do have small working parties of river clean ups every few months, which is obviously a good thing and I've definitely seen an improvement as a whole in the last few years :Thumb:

Happy days and Cray ways :fishing2:


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Peter Wilde
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Re: River Cray

Post by Peter Wilde » Sat Aug 05, 2017 5:08 pm

I was pleased to stumble on this thread.

Grew up in Bexley (nearly Dartford) in the 1950s and the Cray was my local river. Poor water quality in those days and few fish, as far as I could see; just remember catching a few tiddlers and tadpoles with a net (proper fishing came later, and not on the Cray).

Very heartening to hear from the above posts how much better the situation is now. Was inspired to visit my old haunts at Footscray Meadows for a walk, and the river though low was looking great; lots of weedbeds, insects and some nice chub and roach to be seen in places. Pity about the No Fishing notices on this stretch though.

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