The York Tradesmen's Angling Association (YTAA) is a long established angling club with records dating back some hundred years or so.
The club operates over five becks and two still waters in North Yorkshire. Although primarily a trout fishing association, coarse fishing
and bait fishing are also available.
The association offers year round sport with grayling and pike fishing in the winter months. The two main fisheries are; the Isle Beck system in N. Yorkshire,
where much of the fishing rights are owned by YTAA and still waters at Stearsby at the foot of the beautiful Hambleton Hills.
Isle Beck offers fine wild trout sport, a mayfly hatch and a good head of naturally recruited wild fish.
Stearsby is a lovely little secluded fishery offering quality still water fly fishing for rainbow trout.
Wild trout fishing is also available on the River Dove at Kirkbymoorside.
If you are interested in joining us we currently have vacancies for 2013. For more details please contact the club secretary: Rob Sawdon at
8th September 2013: Stearsby
The major works on the top lake are now complete. We have some more levelling and grading work to complete after further drying out. PLEASE NOTE THERE ARE LARGE PITS THAT HAVE BEEN FILLED WITH WET MUD. These are closed off with barrier fencing and warning signs are displayed everywhere, please do not go near them. Once the pits are dried out they will be fully covered and reseeded.
This has been a major club project and thanks go to those members who were generous with their time and help, especially our Treasurer. Ian has designed, managed, supervised and controlled the work all to time and budget. He has worked tirelessly and selflessly, being on site morning and night every day for the last three weeks.
The fishery will be open until the end of October as usual.
15th June 2013: Isle Beck
Isle Beck continues to fish very well. Mayflies are everywhere and we are well into duffers' fortnight.. Now's the Time..
Anyone who knows shovel mitts Foster will immediately recognise that this is a big fish. Steve caught it on a brown, white post Klinkerhammer. This wild fish weighed circa one and a half pounds. Well done Foster.
Unfortunately many signal crayfish have been reported right up to Arden bridge, including some large older specimens. Members are requested to report any further sightings to the secretary as this will allow us to better monitor the signal crayfish population in the fishery. If you are unsure what a signal crayfish looks like or want any more information then please visit the Signal Crayfish page.
5th June 2013
The Club Secretary has recently received several reports from members regarding the excellent sport to be had on Isle Beck fishery. The fly life is abundant; black knats, olives, grannom and other sedges all present and the odd mayfly are starting to show. Klinkerhammers are working well but be prepared to experiment. Members are regularly bagging up double figures and even Steve Foster has managed to catch. Make the most of the fair weather and visit Isle Beck soon.
8th May 2013
I visited Isle beck Late afternoon yesterday. Arden bridge down for 200yds, fishing back up to the bridge. I got one 6" Trout on a Klinkhammer, but liitle was moving on the surface. Changing to a size 14 green nymph/ cadis representation that was slightly leaded, I started to get pulls and firm takes whilst retrieving the nymph quickly. I finished with a further seven Trout, four of which were 10 to 12", and two Grayling one which was a good 12". Ten fish landed in total, lots of pulls, and five other fish hooked and lost.
A very enjoyable session, and unexpected on the nymph - I thought with the lovely warm conbditions it would be a dry fly day !! - thank goodness I experimented with the nymph, moving it back quicker than the current was the answer !
Thanks to Richard for the update.
| The Kingfisher Diaries 2013 - Tales from the Riverbank
30th September 2013 The Last Cast
A day off work to make the most of the brown trout season and I head for Isle Beck with the intention of starting five fields down from the A19 bridge and fishing all the way back up. It's a beautiful day but the breeze is gradually picking up which could be a problem later on. I disturb some roe deer on the way down and they go leaping across the fresh ploughed and sown field. Into the first pool and no sign of a rising fish, but my second cast produces an 8 inch brownie a great start if I would like to get a lot of trout as "fix" to last me through the winter. Having taken a quick photo and returned him I cast again and immediately hook and lose a second trout, unfortunately a sign of things to come. I work my way up the Beck fishing where ever I have room to cast. In some places there is good casting room, in others it's a bit cramped and unfortunately in some places with more trees down across the beck it is just impossible.
There are plenty of deep pools so although the stream itself is on the low side there is plenty of water for the fish. It's just that I can't get anything to stay hooked and I lose four more before I land my next fish. In the next pool, a really deep one, I get a gorgeous buttery yellow bellied trout using a Caddis style nymph fished New Zealand Style. My next cast I hook another good fish and promptly lose it. I have to get out to walk round to the next pool as you can't wade through this one even with chest waders. My afternoons frustrations continue, hooking and losing fish and not landing anything. But then things improve and I land what has to be the smallest fly caught fish on record, a minnow barely over an inch long and hooked cleanly under the chin. He is photographed and safely returned but I can't believe he actually tried to take the fly which is almost as big as him! I manage another typical wild brownie on the caddis fly and I am almost at the A19 bridge.
In the big pool below the bridge I hook into something better and can't get it up from the deep water as it just goes round and round deep down. After several minutes of impasse and just when my imagination thinks really huge trout or maybe big chub or maybe sea trout, a very large grayling surfaces and my net is ready - but the frustration continues as the hook slips out literately as I am pulling it over the net and he is gone! Probably the biggest grayling I've ever seen and I've had grayling 17 inches long and this was bigger by several inches!
I realise from my note book that I have now caught exactly the same number of trout as l did last year, I have to try and beat it and fish on above the bridge - I lose a fish in the first big pool and another in the next fast run but eventually I managed to get a trout that stayed on and is safely netted. Not a great fish, probably one of the stocked fish from the start of the season but in good condition so after a quick photo he goes back and that was the last cast.
More pictures on the Kingfisher Gallery
29th September 2013 River Ricall
Decided to head for the Riccall for a few hours as I didn't get any photos of it earlier in the year and I want to fish it again before the end of the season. It's a great day blue skies and I am hopeful of adding to my tally of trout. Almost as soon as I am tackled up I notice that the wind is picking up which is far from ideal when fishing a narrow overgrown river like the Riccall. I've parked at the bridge as I need to make a quick getaway this evening and as I walk down the flood bank to the start of the YTAA water I am surprised to startle a young fox in the long grass - he quickly runs off. Not often you see rural foxes in broad daylight. As I expected the Riccall is well overgrown with major work needed on overhanging trees, and with long grass and reeds casting into the narrow waterway in the breeze is "interesting". The river itself is a good height with lots of deep runs that might mean changing to Goldhead nymphs if I am going to get down to the trout and grayling. After an hour I come across a trout just hanging in shallow water (almost at my feet) he ignores the dry flies I float past him but eventually takes a Goldhead fished NZ style. About 8 inches and I hoped this was a promise of things to come. As I move up the river I can see lots of wild trout but it is almost impossible to cast to them.
After several hours I eventually manage to connect with another small brown just over 5 inches that takes a caddis imitation fished NZ Style beneath a Grey Wulff. I have almost reached the bridge before I get another take and promptly loose a small trout. But next cast I hit into something far more solid and it is only when it leaps from the water that I realise it's a nice grayling. After a bit of a tussle I land it safely. At 12 inches it's about the best grayling I've landed in the Riccall, though I have seen considerably bigger ones in some deep pools. More pictures on the Kingfisher Gallery
23rd September 2013 Cod Beck
Having left my kit in the boot from Sunday's disappointing trip I decided to grab an hour at Cod Beck. I was fishing by 18:45 but there was nothing much showing and casting in the likely places produced nothing. I noticed a fish rising just by the junction with Willow Beck but had to wait to cast while I changed my leader which had got a wind knot in it. Having retied my fly I was just about to cast to the fish which was still rising steadily when there is a rustling sound and large splash right next to me as an otter slid down the bank and into the Beck. The otter clearly hadn't realised I was there standing still up to my waist in the Beck and I am not sure who was more surprised, me or him, anyway he shot off upstream and put an end to any chance of me getting the rising fish. That was it, too dark to see and my first blank of the season!
22nd September 2013 Thirkleby
Got out for a few hours hoping to get in amongst some nice wild trout. A lovely sunny afternoon and the beck looks low clear and very good. But the best laid plans sometimes go astray. I didn't get any takes and there was nothing rising as I made my way up the Beck. The fishing was so poor I even stopped to pick several pounds of Elderberries for hedge row jam stashing the bags near the foot bridge as I fished slowly up to the Weir pool. This usually produces something and I could just make out two fish rising in the growing dusk. A few casts and an 8 inch trout took the Adams Parachute. The other fish had stopped rising so a quick change to add a Goldhead fished New Zealand style and first cast a good solid 10.5 inch fish was hooked and landed. By the time I'd taken a quick snap it was too dark to see my fly and definitely time to head back and collect the Elderberries. More pictures on the Kingfisher Gallery
If you have enjoyed these tales from the riverbank and would like to read the complete diary of the 2013 season then visit the
Kingfisher Diary Page