The Napoleon of the Wye

fixedspool

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Rightangle is quiet right Pashley had everything in his favour and I suggest that many of you in his position then could have done the same. He had access to a private beat ideal for early season fish, he had all the time in the world. He had a full time gillie and boatman. He know the beat like the back of his hand and most of all he had a river so full of fish to the extent that it is hard to imagine now just how good it was back then.
As suggested what he did have which perhaps most of us do not was the desired and obsession to catch as many fish as he could day in day out/
I understand he fished the prawn rather more than is suggested. I used to speak to some of the old guys fishing back then and they would tell you if conditions were right it was not a question of IF you would catch but just how many and how big!
Masses more fish were caught than were every recorded and they were a valuable source of cash and food back then.
I had a small taste of how good it could be in the last good season of 1988 when I fished a beat mostly on my own when my employer was ill. I have to say that I questioned myself just why I was killing so many fish just to be sold for someone who didn;'t need the money. I told myself that if I didn't those above me would and they were so numerous did it really make a difference. The spawning redds were still packed with fish back then even after the poachers had their fill.
I would say he did well to land those big fish on the tackle he had then but had the salmon any brains they would have just turned downstream and kept going never to be seen again. As for flies. Most of you know the pattern makes very little difference once you can show it to a salmon in a taking mood.
 

OURTREV

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All of those folk were men of ‘means’, AH Wood, Percy Lamming etc. Working men were too busy working and couldn’t afford it anyway.

I thought Pashley is usually referred to as ‘The Wizard of the Wye’, not sure where ‘napoleon’ came from.
Certainly would not have allowed rif raf like you and I (the undeserving poor) on the bank! They had gillies and gamekeepers to deal with the likes of us..:ROFLMAO:
 

Andrew B

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No doubt a great fisherman, albeit even the best cannot catch was is not there? Seeing ten salmon flop in a pool, which will no doubt be resident spring or summer fish is vastly different to covering numbers of running fish, which I might add, managed to get past the daily sweep of nets.
The Wye was mentioned today on radio 2 Jeremy Vine re sewage problems
 

peterchilton

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Pashley did some good work for the river too being chairman of the Wye conservators for 9 years.

Surely “Napoleon”, is a tad french and a bit EU for an English gentleman. I propose - Wizard of the Wye, which is more appropriate and less political ;-)
 

peterchilton

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Doesn’t seem to long ago when the Wye and Usk Foundation was being touted as the new standard for managing a salmon river? Fancy going on about providing the habitat and neglecting the actual water.

and the habitat ;)

it seems reasonable to say that the water is the habitat. They claim -

The Wye and Usk Foundation is a rivers trust that improves the ecology,
habitat and water quality of the rivers Wye and Usk.​

 
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