Most fishermen have heard of the Hampshire Avon River, it’s hailed as one of the most picturesque and cleanest fly and coarse fishing rivers in the UK. Its waters are densely populated with a diverse collection of fish including mighty Chubb and huge Barbel. When fishing the Hampshire Avon You’ll also net pike, good size Roach, Perch, Brown Trout, Dace, Bream and Greyling, and if you’re lucky, a handsome Salmon.
The river’s origins begin as trickling streams in Wiltshire, gradually conjoining near Salisbury before carving it’s way with twists and turns through Hampshire’s New Forest chalk and gravel runs towards Christchurch in Dorset. It then merges with the River Stour before flooding into the sea via Christchurch’s beautiful natural harbour.
Anglers regard the river with great respect and esteem. The Chubb and Barbel’s admirable determination in combat will test the ability and expertise of most anglers. It’s not a simple nor easy river to fish, providing fishermen with herculean rod battles, frustrating sighs and enormous satisfaction in equal measures. Fish feed on a varied food source with an abundance of insect life and bountiful fly hatches of Mayfly, Nymphs, Gnats, Olives and other critters throughout the year.
Along the river are the usual mix of swims, shallows, runs and riffles. Deep pools and protected habitat mean fish can grow to tremendous sizes in isolation, appearing in unexpected locations much to the surprise, glee and excitement of unsuspecting fishermen.
Fishing from Undercastle Cottage
Those first few bubbles, a tweak of the rod, nibbles on the bait…then whoosh! The battle begins.
The habitat along the Hampshire Avon can, it has to be said, be tough to fish from. A stay at Undercastle Cottage with its manicured riverbank lawns and 1100 m of private fishing on platforms and use of a rowboat offer guests all the thrills of being outdoors in the wild without another soul in sight. Yet when the time comes, fishing guests can relax in the comfort of knowing that luxury, a well-equipped kitchen and sun terrace or cosy log fire are within a few minutes’ walk.
The landscape of the Hampshire Avon by Undercastle Cottage is a prolific scene of stunningly pretty and generously sprinkled farmland and wilderness, with a rich display of New Forest wildlife including the famous free roaming ponies, cattle, deer and twirling displays from birds of prey above. The river swags and sways past the cottage flanked on one side by open farmland. On the cottage side is a blended barricade of lofty and low slug trees and shrubs whose roots tumble into this intimate stretch of river, forming a sanctuary and temporary safe haven for the fish to hunker down before continuing their journey.
Whether fished in the glorious long days of summer or crisp sparkling mornings of deepest winter when the weeds have died back, a fishing break at this beautiful cottage awarded 5 stars and prestigious Gold Award by Visit England in the New Forest is something to look forward to, and enjoy time and time again.