The new river season gets underway on June 16th and running water expert Dave Harrell reckons it could be the best start for many years. 

Recent rain has resulted in some much needed flow and colour and the former England international can’t wait to get back to the venues he loves most.

“Unlike the past two seasons, this time we’ve got a start that is as near to perfect as we could wish for,” Dave said. “Two years ago we were faced with high coloured water everywhere and last year a long cold dry spell resulted in a situation where fish were only just thinking about spawning when the season got underway. As a result, nowhere really fished to its true potential until mid July.”

So where is Dave heading during the first few weeks and what can be expected in terms of fish species and the best way to fish for them?

“I’ll be driving all over the country for the first few months in pursuit of trying to win a place in this year’s RiverFest 2014 final on the River Wye. That would give me a shot at the £12,000 top prize and a title I would dearly love to win.

For my pleasure fishing outings I’ll be visiting old favourite haunts on the Severn, Avon, Trent and Wye and my diary is already filling up fast!

“I’d recommend anyone living in the West Midlands to invest in a Birmingham Anglers Association membership as it offers incredible value for money. I love going to venues like Arley, Stanley, Quatford, Knowle Sands and Erdington in the summer months. My number one approach for sheer enjoyment is with strong float gear if the river is running clear. If it’s coloured then feeder tackle and halibut pellets are the order of the day.

“The Warwickshire Avon from Warwick down to Evesham is another length I enjoy fishing. It’s very different to the Severn and you’ll generally need to fish much finer for the silver fish but there are some massive barbel in the river which will require strong kit if you’re to stand a chance of landing them!  

“The Trent at Burton is getting better every season and I will be spending time on the Coors AC water in pursuit of roach with waggler gear and maggots.

“The Wye, like the Severn, offers some really exciting early season sport and again it will be a straight choice between float or feeder to put a big weight together. I’d recommend anglers to try the Hereford DAA stretches above and below the town as it’s stuffed with chub and barbel there!”

For more information about how to catch big river weights and the correct gear you’ll need, visit Dave’s website at: