The Avon is one of the best Pike rivers in the south of England; the Trout also are very fine. It rises in Wiltshire, passes by Amesbury and through Salisbury, near which town there is some first-rate Pike fishing. It enters Hampshire between Down ton and Fordingbridge, at which latter place the Pike are on the increase. By taking up his quarters at the Star Inn, Fordingbridge, where the accommodation is excellent, the angler will have good fishing in the Avon, as well as in some other waters near, Itingwood - is a noted station for large fish. At Sopley, the river for some distance is under the management of a Clubhand Pike of twenty pounds and upwards are not uncommon. There are some pools near the Southampton waters, where Salmon are taken in fair numbers by the members of a club who preserve the fishery; and above these pools, in some waters belonging to Sir H. Fane and Mr. Mills, Pike are sometimes taken as heavy as thirty pounds weight each; all under six pounds are returned to the water. At Christchurch, also, there is excellent Pike fishing, and below here the Avon enters the English Channel, after flowing through the New Forest, with a beauty that must be seen to be appreciated.
The Stour rises near Stourton, in Wiltshire, passing Gil lingham Forest, it runs to Sturminster, in Dorsetshire. At Wimborne it is joined by the Allan, and passing into Hampshire, enters the Avon near Christchurch. In some parts of this river the Trout are rather numerous, and the Perch are said to be large The Pike-fishing near Christchurch is very good.
The Itchen rises in Hampshire, near Alresford, and passes Winchester and Bishopstoke, where about four miles of it are preserved. In this part of the water there is some good Trout and Grayling fishing, and the Pike are also very fine. It then runs past Swathling, into the Southampton water.
The Test is a noted river in Hampshire; Whitchurch and Stockbridgc are the most noted stations. Extremely fine tackle is required, and a very light hand in throwing the fly.
The Warwickshire Avon rises near Naseby, in Northamptonshire, which county it divides from Leicestershire, and entering Warwickshire near Itugby, winds through Stoneleigh Park, where the river widens into a lake, runs past Guy's Cliff, to Warwick Castle, thence past Charlcote, through a beautiful country to Stratford-on-Avon. It then enters Worcestershire, near Evesham, and passing Pershore and Strensham, joins the Severn at Tewkesbury, where there is good fishing, the Avon being preserved for some distance above here.
The Severn rises in Montgomeryshire, and joining the Vyrmvy, enters Shropshire, and almost encircles Shrewsbury, where Salmon are occasionally taken. It then runs by Colebrook Due, and enters Worcestershire at Bewdley, thence past Stourport and Worcester, below which place it is joined by the Teme, enters Gloucestershire near Tewkesbury, where it is joined by the Avon, and passing Gloucester, is joined by the Stroudwater canal, which is a continuation of the Thames and Severn Canal. The Severn then falls into the Bristol Channel.
The Wye, Lug, and Teme are the chief rivers of Herefordshire. The first is noted for its Salmon, Trout, Grayling; Ac.; and the Teme, especially, in the neighbourhood of Ludlow, being famous for its Grayling.
The Axe rises near Beaminster, in Dorsetshire, and flows past Axminster and Crewkerne, into the Channel, on the coast of Devonshire.
There are many good Trout-streams in Devonshire, such as the Tamer, Plym, Dart, &c., all requiring fine tackle and rather small flies.
The Ouse rises in the south of Northamptonshire, near Brackley, enters Buckinghamshire, and passing the town of Buckingham, which it nearly surrounds, runs by Stony Stratford. Haversham, Newport Pagnel and Olnoy, into Bed fordshire, near Harrold Hall. From Bromham Hall to Kenipston there is first-rate Pike, Perch, and Bream fishing. The Ouse then runs by the town of Bedford, and at Carding ton and Willington good Jack-fishing is to be had, the stream here being, in parts very slow, the live bait may be used with advantage. Passing Roxton, where it is joined by the Ivel, it runs into Huntingdonshire, near St. Neots, then past the town of Huntingdon and St. Ives into Cambridgeshire by Ely, falling into the sea at King's Lynn, in Norfolk.
The Nene rises in Northamptonshire, and flows by the town of Northampton; from Weston Favell to Doddington it is preserved by a club, and good Pike are occasionally taken. It then runs by Thrapston, Oundle, Elton, and Peterborough, and crossing Cambridgeshire, flows into the sea to the west of Lynn. The Nene is noted for large Roach and Eels.
The Cam has two sources, one rising near Ashwell, and the other bearing the name of Cranta, rising near Newport, in Essex; the latter flows through Linton, Audley End, and Shelford, where there are some good Pike and Perch, and unites with the Cam near Cambridge, above and below which place there is some good trolling, the river being preserved by the Cam Angling Society. About six miles from Cambridge, at Waterbeach, the river is again under the care of a club, and good fishing may occasionally be had, as also at Grantchester; near Harrimere it joins the Ouse, and the united streams pass Donnham in Norfolk to King's Lynn, where they fail into the sea.
The Trent rises on the borders of Cheshire, in the north west part of Staffordshire, which it crosses in a south east direction through Stoke-on-Trent and Trentham Park; at Trentham Hall, there is a painting of a large Pike that was found dead in a canal in the park; it hail seized a swan by the head, and their mutual struggles resulted in the death of
both. The Trent then flows past Rugeley, to the verge of Derbyshire and Leicestershire, where it is joined by the rivers Tame and Meest; passing Burton-on-Trent, it is joined by the Dove; it then crosses Derbyshire, passing through Donington Park to Sawley, w here it is joined by the Derwent and by the Soar, nearer Nottingham; the river about this town is too much fished to afford any amount of sport; it then crosses the county of Nottingham in a north-east direction to Newark, whence it flows through part of Lincolnshire, past Gainsborough, and joining the Yorkshire Ouse, the united streams become the Humber.
The Dove, from its rise in the north-western part of Derbyshire to where it falls into the Trent, forms the boundary between that county and Staffordshire. The Trout and Grayling are of fair size, but require very fine fishing.
The Derwent takes its course past Chatworth, Matlock, and Derby, falling into the Trent, The whole course of this river is about sixty miles.
The Manifold is also a good Derbyshire river, in which a fair amount of sport may be had with the fly.
The Yorkshire Ouse rises in the North Riding, and passes Masham, Ripon, Aldborough to Benningbrough, where it is joined by the Nidd; thence past York, where it receives the river Ure to Cawood, where it is joined by the Wharf; near Howden, it is joined by the Aire, and below this by the Trent, when it becomes the Humber, and flows into the North Sea.
The Coquet, North Tyne, Aln and Till are noted rivers in Northumberland; the three first are good fly-fishing streams but the last is more suitable for spinning.
The Eden is the principal river in Cumberland and contains some fine Salmon, Trout, &c.
The Tame rises in the southern part of Staffordshire, and flows near Walsall, past Drayton Bassett and Tamworth, joining the Trent between Alrewas and Walton-on-Trent. There are few- better rivers than this for Pike-fishing; both Pike and Perch are numerous and large.
The Stour rises in Kent, flows past Ashford, Canterbury, Minster, and Fordwich, to Sandwich, between which place and Ramsgate it falls into the sea.
The Medway rises on the borders of Sussex, and runs through Penshurst past Tunbridge, where there is good fishing, to Rochester and Chatham, joining the mouth of the Thames at the Nore.
The Chelmer, which rises in the North of Essex, has some very good Jack and Perch-fishing; it flows by Thaxsted and Dunmow to Chelmsford, thence to in aid On, where it joins the Blackwater.
The Blackwater also rises in the north of Essex, and runs by Braintree, Coggeshall and Witliam, where it is joined by the river Brain, and has its exit to the east of Maldon.
The Stort rises in the north-west of Essex, flows past Stan stead, Bishop Stortford and Roydon, where the angler will find some good sport, joining the Lea, between Broxboume and the Rye House.
The Arun rises near Horsham, in Sussex, and is joined in its course by the Arun and Wey Canal, and by the river Rother (from Hampshire), near Pulborough. Passing Arundel, it falls into the sea at Little Hampton. This river is especially noted for its Mullets.
The Ouse rises in the Wealds, passes by Maresfield, Brixted, Isfield, and Lewes, falling into the sea at Newhaven.
The Rother rises in Sussex, near Rotherfield, and flows near Etchingham, Bodiham, Newenden, and Rye; at Winchelsea, it is joined by the Breke, and the united streams falling into the great basin to the east of the port of Rye, form Ryeliaven.
The Exe rises in the west of Somerset, at Exmoor, and falls into the sea at Exmouth. There are three associations on this liver for preserving the fishing. The water belonging to the Exeter Society is noted for its large fish.
The Dee rises in Merionethshire, runs by Bala, and entering Denbighshire, passes Llangollen and Wrexham to Chester, and thence to the Irish Sea. This river is noted as much for the beauty of its scenery as for the abundance of its fish, there being plenty of Trout, Pike, Perch, &c., as well as Salmon.