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The Game Fishers Diary

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Rae Borras has been fishing since he was a small boy and in this series he travels the world indulging his passion for fly fishing. From the Hampshire Avon - where his love affair with the salmon began - to the tropical waters of the Maldives, by way of Iceland, and a host of other British rivers, Rae explores the different challenges that the fly fisher might meet and the techniques that might help to overcome them.

Rae's love of fishing is undeniable, while his sense of humour and keen interest in the cultural and social history of the waters he fishes bring something extra to the shows.
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It’s opening day on Leicestershire’s mighty Rutland Water, so Rae Borras heads out for a spot of loch-style fly fishing for Trout with Bob Church, Craig Barr and friends for another episode of The Game Fishers Diary. With over 3000 acres of water and 25 miles of coastline, Rutland is one of the biggest reservoirs in Europe. For that reason, and the quality and quantity of its hard fighting trout reaching 15 pounds, it has earned its reputation as the Wembley Stadium of UK fly fishing. After a history lesson from fishery manager John Marshall and fly fishing fanatic Craig Barr, Rae heads out on the water with the legendary Bob Church to get hooked into some feisty, fresh Trout. This is British trouting at its finest.
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Rae Borras tries something new in this episode of The Game Fishers Diary, as he heads for the Norfolk Broads to chase big winter Pike on the fly. The cold winter months of the salmon and trout close season can leave many game anglers chomping at the bit, including Rae. So he's heading to the Norfolk Broads to try his hand at some winter fishing that's growing in popularity; pike on the fly. The system of rivers, canals and dykes that make of the Broads are known nationwide for their big predators and cracking stocks, but being a novice, Rae enlists the help of local girl and pike fishing specialist Jo Stephenson to show him the ropes. It’s no easy work, but with a bit of perseverance, Rae gets into some feisty Pike before long.
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It’s opening day on Leicestershire’s mighty Rutland Water, so Rae Borras heads out for a spot of loch-style fly fishing for Trout with Bob Church, Craig Barr and friends for another episode of The Game Fishers Diary. With over 3000 acres of water and 25 miles of coastline, Rutland is one of the biggest reservoirs in Europe. For that reason, and the quality and quantity of its hard fighting trout reaching 15 pounds, it has earned its reputation as the Wembley Stadium of UK fly fishing. After a history lesson from fishery manager John Marshall and fly fishing fanatic Craig Barr, Rae heads out on the water with the legendary Bob Church to get hooked into some feisty, fresh Trout. This is British trouting at its finest.
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It’s opening day on Leicestershire’s mighty Rutland Water, so Rae Borras heads out for a spot of loch-style fly fishing for Trout with Bob Church, Craig Barr and friends for another episode of The Game Fishers Diary. With over 3000 acres of water and 25 miles of coastline, Rutland is one of the biggest reservoirs in Europe. For that reason, and the quality and quantity of its hard fighting trout reaching 15 pounds, it has earned its reputation as the Wembley Stadium of UK fly fishing. After a history lesson from fishery manager John Marshall and fly fishing fanatic Craig Barr, Rae heads out on the water with the legendary Bob Church to get hooked into some feisty, fresh Trout. This is British trouting at its finest.
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Rae Borras tries something new in this episode of The Game Fishers Diary, as he heads for the Norfolk Broads to chase big winter Pike on the fly. The cold winter months of the salmon and trout close season can leave many game anglers chomping at the bit, including Rae. So he's heading to the Norfolk Broads to try his hand at some winter fishing that's growing in popularity; pike on the fly. The system of rivers, canals and dykes that make of the Broads are known nationwide for their big predators and cracking stocks, but being a novice, Rae enlists the help of local girl and pike fishing specialist Jo Stephenson to show him the ropes. It’s no easy work, but with a bit of perseverance, Rae gets into some feisty Pike before long.
video
Rae Borras tries something new in this episode of The Game Fishers Diary, as he heads for the Norfolk Broads to chase big winter Pike on the fly. The cold winter months of the salmon and trout close season can leave many game anglers chomping at the bit, including Rae. So he's heading to the Norfolk Broads to try his hand at some winter fishing that's growing in popularity; pike on the fly. The system of rivers, canals and dykes that make of the Broads are known nationwide for their big predators and cracking stocks, but being a novice, Rae enlists the help of local girl and pike fishing specialist Jo Stephenson to show him the ropes. It’s no easy work, but with a bit of perseverance, Rae gets into some feisty Pike before long.
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Rae Borras enjoys some good old-fashioned river fly fishing on Yorkshire’s River Ure near Ripon, in this episode of The Game Fishers Diary. It wouldn’t be the Ure without its local characters; veteran bailiff Ken Mason and guide Fred Bainbridge, who offer to show Rae the ropes on this picturesque little stream. The water is low, so the team opt for the approach of drifting nymphs through the faster channels. After countless beautiful little Trout and Grayling, Rae hears a shout from upriver, where Fred has spotted some absolute monsters in a tiny backwater. When all is said and done, Rae retires to the bank to exploit ken’s 50 years of experience for a fisherman’s tale or two.
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Rae Borras pays his dues to the most quintessential of all British Chalk Streams, Hampshire’s River Test, in this special episode of The Game Fishers Diary. Widely regarded as the cultural home of fly fishing as we know it, the Test to this day offers the best river fishing for Brown Trout in the country. The filtration qualities of the chalk beds make for gin-clear water, abundance of aquatic life, and idealistic Trout fishing. Rae begins by paying tribute to the three wise men of the sport; Halford, Skues and Sawyer, before putting their respective techniques to work on some pristine chalk stream brownies. A day on this river should be considered a pilgrimage for every serious British fly fisher.
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In this very special episode of The Game Fishers Diary, Rae returns to The River Test in Hampshire for the infamous and star-studded One-Fly Competition. Rae’s team are in good company this year, rivalled by ‘The Dream Team’ of fishing legends Chris Sandford, Bob James and Chris Tarrant of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. The rules are simple, each competitor starts with a single fly and can use no other throughout the day, keeping it classical in the name of Test tradition. With great company, beautiful surroundings and brownies of several pounds, a pint in the pub afterwards is enough an award for Rae.
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Rae Borras jumps over to Eastern Iceland for this episode of The Game Fishers Diary, to have a crack at his very first Icelandic Atlantic Salmon. Albeit a regular on Scottish Salmon rivers, Rae is a stranger to the immense scale of rivers, mountains and active volcanoes that make up Iceland. King among these rivers is the Breiddalsa, known especially for the well above average size of its Salmon, making it perhaps one of the greatest places in the world for the species. With the help of his witty guide Jonas, after hours of trekking and exploration, Rae gets a chance to land his very first Icelandic Atlantic Salmon. Rae then joins fisherman and conservationist Throstur for an afternoon session, and an education on the farming programmes trying to introduce even bigger salmon to the Breiddalsa. This episode shows exactly why Iceland is considered so magical among game fishers.
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In part two of his Icelandic fishing adventure, Rae Borras is taken to the River Jorkla on the east coast of the island. It's a spectacular corner of the planet that is guaranteed to set the pulses of any game angler racing with its salmon, sea trout and Arctic char. Rae’s targeting the river’s char on the fly first of all in the company of an expert guide, and the pair are soon catching fresh-run fish in the fresh, crystal clear waters. But Rae has salmon on the brain, and needs ladders, ropes and the bottle of a mountain goat to reach the his next destination, where he's greeted with the incredible sight of dozens of big salmon that are easy to see, but not so easy to catch… He's up with the larks the following morning determined to break his duck and finally catch an Icelandic salmon on the fly. He finds himself at a picture postcard a pool that has not been fished in living memory, and finally Rae has his prize salmon in the net… and his mojo back!  
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Rae Borras takes an impromptu trip overseas in this episode of The Game Fishers Diary, chasing Trout and Char in the Auvergne region of central France. Days of running away from bad weather across France and England have placed Rae by chance in the hands of local guide Steve and English fanatic for French fly fishing, Caddy. The team explore the beautiful, tree-lined Lac De Malague near the historic town of Allegra, where the variety of game species draw anglers from all over Europe. After brushing with Rainbow Trout, Brown Trout and even Lake Char, Rae follows Steve to the upper River Loire, in which they spot a surprise Gold Trout. Vive la France!
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Rae Borras is right at home in this episode of The Game Fishers Diary, as he heads north to his cottage on the banks of the River Tweed to fish the autumn run of Atlantic Salmon. This yearly getaway is a real privilege for Rae, situated casting distance from the bank. As Salmon anglers around the UK will tell you, it just doesn’t get any better than the hallowed Tweed when it comes to Salmon. It’s the most desirable week of the year, the first of October, and despite rising water, the Salmon are present in massive numbers. Top gillie Dougie Tate has no problem putting Rae onto the fish, and he enjoys a session anyone would aspire to have.
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Rae Borras hosts another Game Fisher's Diary and takes a journey along the magnificent Hampshire Avon, the river that began his love affair with the elusive salmon. The Avon is rightly regarded as a premium chalk stream in its upper reaches, the home of Sawyer and a fantastic habitat for trout and grayling, but the bulk of the salmon fishing occurs in the lower reaches. Hampshire Avon salmon aren't as plentiful as in other rivers but they are reknowned for their above average size with at one time, salmon averaging over 20lbs. Rae visits the famous Royalty fishery meeting a local fishing historian to recount some of the tales of this fantastic river. To watch this episode, just login or register
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The destination for this episode of The Game Fishers Diary could not be much more charming, as Rae Borras samples the array of fishing available in County Derry, on the south west coast of Ireland. The history and landscape of the area are synonymous with fly fishing, going back hundreds of years. Rae begins on Lough Currane, guided by local gillie Dennis, where they implement boat drifting tactics, similar to those used on UK Trout reservoirs, to target the Sea Trout that migrate through to spawn. After a quick visit to the neighbouring Lough Derriana for some wild brownies, local Tom O’Shea takes Rae to the coast for a rare opportunity for cliffside Pollack fishing on the fly. County Derry offers a chance unlike anywhere else to fish in surroundings unchanged for hundreds of years.
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In this episode of the Game Fisher's Diary, Rae is salmon fishing on the River Deveron in north east Scotland for the very first time. Its May and Rae is looking for an elusive spring salmon and is being hosted by the Deveron, Bogie and Isla River Trust. With strong winds around and cool water, Rae decides to start fishing lower in the water column with a Blue and Black Conehead.  Also called the country's 'forgotten river' and Scotland's 'hidden jewel, salmon fishing on the Deveron can be fantastic and is in fact the fifth most prolific river in Britain, so can Rae hook into a Deveron Springer? To watch this show, just login or register now
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Rae Borras is up against the elements in this episode of The Game Fishers Diary, as he samples the fly fishing on offer in the Ythan River in Scotland. The wind is howling, the tides are furious and the fish aren't playing ball, but Rae is keen to get his hook into a fresh run Ythan Sea Trout. The Ythan flows through lush green countryside to the north sea near Newborough just north of Aberdeen. It’s been known to produce regular bags of over 20 fish for the local anglers, but Rae needs to try a little harder. He begins spinning from the shore in the estuary, then at a break in the tides, the locals give Rae a tour of the history of this beautiful area. Rae has one last crack from the shore before he heads home, and things finally start to pick up.
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Rae Borras gets treated to a well-deserved holiday in this episode of The Game Fishers Diary, as he enjoys fishing for Wahoo and Giant Trevally in the sunny islands of the Maldives. The snow-white beaches and emerald water of the Indian Ocean look more akin to a a honeymoon destination than a fishing trip, but this salt of the earth Salmon fisherman from the UK is in heaven. Top local guide Sharif is on hand to pick up the slack, fist taking our host to the shallow beaches and sand bars to target Trevally and Bonefish on the fly. The afternoon session turn up the heat a little, and shortly into battling the huge native Wahoo and GT, Rae gets a lesson in why the Maldivians use such heavy tackle!
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Rae Borras indulges himself on some of the best beats of perhaps the best Salmon river in Scotland, the River Tay, in this episode of The Game Fishers Diary. The longest river in Scotland, the Tay flows through picturesque Perthshire countryside to the east coast. Known for having the biggest Salmon in the UK, it’s no surprise the Tay was home to miss Balentine’s British record of 64 pounds back in 1922. Rae fishes the first beat as a guest of husband and wife team Gary and Rona, who educate Rae on the simplicity of tactics that pay off on the river. After some quality fisherman’s natter with the locals on the banks, Rae jumps on the boat with third generation youngster gillie, Daniel, and soon feels the pull of a strong, fresh Atlantic Salmon on the end of his fly line.
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In this episode of The Game Fishers Diary, Rae fishes one of the few Salmon rivers in Scotland he’s never cast a line on, the historic River Doon in Ayrshire. The Doon really is one of Scotland's hidden fishing gems, better known for Robert Burns famous Brig O’Doon poem, which coincidentally is Rae’s starting point for this trip. It’s mid-august and the water is up, setting the scene for a perfect session. Rae begins with friend and Salmon veteran Dave to watch the fresh fish leaping the dam, before joining prominent gillie Freddy Taylor. After days of frustration, Rae finally hooks into the fish of a lifetime.
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Rae Borras takes a jaunt to Geordie land in this episode of The Game Fishers Diary, as he visits the River Tyne in Northumbria for some quality Atlantic Salmon fishing. You would be forgiven for thinking the Tyne was a dirty and polluted hub of industrial chaos, but that would be the Tyne of old. Over the last few decades, cleaning efforts and removal of industry in Newcastle has brought the Tyne back to its former glory and it now stands as undoubtedly the best Salmon river in England. Rae is in luck today. Andrew Jackson of Wardens Fishing has brought him to perhaps the best pool on the whole system. Known by the locals as the Junction Pool, this I where the north and south strands of the Tyne converge, known to hold massive amounts of fresh, above average Salmon on their way up stream. After a lesson in local watercraft, Rae joins fishing advocate Anne Woodcock a little downstream. As every Salmon historian knows, something about the sport just seems to require a women's touch, and Anne quickly puts Rae on to some fighting fit, big Tyne Salmon.
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Bug Life
23:56
In this episode of The Game Fishers Diary, Rae gets a lesson in bugs on the rivers Wylye and Itchen, as he enjoys a couple of days fly fishing for Brown Trout and Grayling. The show begins on the delightful Wilton Estate on Wiltshire’s River Wylye in early June, prime time for the absolute epitome of the sport; the Mayfly hatch. Rae joins Peter Hayes, one of the best minds fly fishing has to offer to work up the river. Peter explains his invaluable theories on how to fish these rivers and local entomology (bugs) that he’s garnered through years of research and observation. A few weeks later, Rae joins John Slader on an even more prestigious river, the Itchen. After some informative kick-sampling and discussion of that old fisherman gospel; ‘matching the hatch’, Rae and John get their hands on some stunning chalk stream Brown Trout and Grayling.

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