Grayling Masters

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Grayling Masters 2018

4 November 2018


Back in November 2014 the Weather Gods were having a get together and one of them noticed that Dan had organised a grayling competition in Wales and in November. This caused such merriment that they fell about laughing and on 6 o'clock on the morning of the competition the river was six feet up and a roaring torrent. It was a nobrainer to cancel it and it was held again in December of that year.


This year they decided to see how far we would go before we cancelled. To make it trickier they only let the heavy rain fall in the Irfon catchment so the Wye was almost unaffected. Being Weather Gods they judged it to perfection and the Irfon peaked at 8 am. Dan called everyone together and the consensus was that we gave it a go.


I was in my usual role of making up the numbers. (We fish in pairs and mark the other angler's card so we need an even number of anglers). I took one look at the river and started praying for an even number but the Weather Gods were waiting for that one - I've said some nasty things about them at times - and Dan popped up to give me the fateful news.


I have caught grayling on the Irfon at that height but only when it was running high and clear after a flood. This day it was carrying a very dense suspension, like a smog in Leeds in the '60s which stopped the buses running for three days, and I don't think the grayling could see anything through it. I think only one angler hooked a fish on the Irfon and that promptly got off.


The Wye diluted the effects of the colour in the Wye and Daniel Hall managed to catch 4 in the thin water at the head of the Power House Pool. The top beat above the Irfon was unaffected by the colour of course and perhaps significantly produced the largest grayling.


Last year's winner, Daniel Hall, was not only here to defend his title but also to sponsor the competition giving prizes of specialist grayling tackle sold by his firm Esoteric Tackle. First Prize includied his firms unique nymph rod, the 4-in-1 which can be extended to 12 feet and Zero weight nymph fly-line. All the anglers placed in the top six received Esoteric Tackle caps and Esoteric Tackle branded items of fishing tackle. Daniel came in second but distributed the tackle he had won to those in the positions below him.


History was made on this day as this year's Grayling Masters winner was the only angler in history to have won the title TWICE - having won the inaugural competition in 2014. Our congratulations to LEE TATTON for achieving this feat against such stiff opposition.

























Several anglers caught the same number of fish but Dan separated them using an agreed method of priority.


  2. Daniel Hall 4 fish
  3. Hugh Weir 4 fish
  4. Terry Evans 3 fish
  5. Nigel Welburn 3 fish
  6. Simon Barton 3 fish
  7. Neil Ashman 3 fish
  8. SIMON CADDY 2 fish LARGEST FISH 39 cm
  9. James Rice 1 fish
  10. Neill Matson 1 fish
  11. Peter Byers 1 fish
  12. Sam Western 1 fish
  13. Lee Hoard 1 fish
  14. Lance Burton 1 fish


When I see the names on this list of those who didn't land a sizeable grayling in a whole days fishing I feel humble and realise how lucky I was to land one :-

Dan Graham, Gavin Jehu, Nigel James, Malf Thomas, Phil Price, Laurence Kelly,Paul Fairhurst, Kyle Cheshire, Ben Evans and Jeff Holcombe.


24 anglers caught a total of 32 grayling.



Many thanks to Dan for organising the event again; to our Sponsor Daniel Hall of Esoteric Tackle who so nearly held on to his Grayling Masters title, who gave so generously, and presented the prizes; to the Groe Park and Irfon Angling Club and Committee for permitting us to give us exclusive use of the water for the day; and to all the competitors who tried so hard and remained cheerful to the end in the face of adversity.





Runner-up and defending champion our sponsor Daniel Hall of Esoteric Tackle

Winner Lee Tatton with the Grayling Masters Shield, Esoteric Tackle 4-in-1 rod and other goodies

Third place Hugh Weir who was Runner-up in '14 and '15, 5th in '16 and 4th last year.