Bright but breezy afternoon took me to the Yeo which I had not fished for a long time. My previous visits had been relatively unsuccessful. The stream has a lot of cover and large woody debris but suffers from poor water quality. A number of factors contribute including the fish farm at Blagdon and run off from the agricultural land in the valley. I covered well over a mile of the beat fishing likely runs and pools. I was heartened by hooking a few small wild trout from the start however a pervading smell of sewerage was confirmed when I turned a corner. I was faced with a grey water cascade coming from what appeared to be a water treatment wetland that didn't appear to be working effectively.
Upstream of this the water quality improved and the gravel was predominant rather than the black silt. The fish started to show more readily rising to the Klink where the canopy opened and let shafts of light in.
In one medium depth slow run a number of fish were rising and after catching a few palm sized wild fish I was not prepared for what happened next. My klink was engulfed and after a battle in the jungle I netted a Brownie of about 1.5lb. The fish was a fully finned beauty with a kyped jaw.
I went on to net a few more smaller fish and watched a couple more large fish holding station in deep undercuts which were impossible to cast to without spooking. Three years on and I watched perhaps the same Tawny Owl I had seen on my last visit quietly glide up the stream channel only to be harassed by song birds on its landing. The Yeo is not fishing for the faint hearted and requires a commando approach. I returned to the car exhausted and wet but glad I had made a return trip.