THE TOWY, or Tywi, is perhaps the most accessible of the big three Welsh rivers for the visiting angler. There are a number of fishing associations that offer day tickets throughout the length of the river, plus the extremely popular and productive Golden Grove fishery. The Towy is a noted big fish river, with double-figure sea-trout regularly appearing in the catches. It also has a good run of salmon, and brown trout throughout most of its length.
As with most Welsh rivers, the salmon fisherman is best advised to visit in the autumn. The Towy is a spate river and it is the last few months of the season that generally provide a better chance of a dropping river. That said, summer rains will bring grilse into the river as early as July. Many fish are caught on the spinner with Rapalas and Flying C’s most popular.
The Towy offers truly excellent night fishing for seatrout. With day tickets available on prime stretches for as little as £25 it is an ideal river to visit if you live outside Wales but would like to try your hand at fishing for sewin. Most pools on the middle river are relatively open and easy to access so casting is fairly easy, even for the novice night-fisher. A rod of 9½ft -10ft is usually preferred, rated for a 7wt or 8wt line. Fishing big surface lures on the Towy is something of a modern institution, and is an exciting way to fish – though traditional wet-flies fished on floating, sink-tip or intermediate lines will work well also. The wading is quite easy in the middle reaches where the Towy flows through lowland pasture and the best of the sea-trout fishing is to be found. The river bottom is mostly gravel with some deep holes that will hold schools of fish. Look for dark places against the far bank and fish all the way down into the tail of the pool.
The river has plenty of wild browns – some of which grow to a decent size – fish up to 3lb have been caught. They are found throughout the river, but the upper reaches are a good place to start.
The Towy is known for producing seriously big sea-trout up to 20lb every year. Imagine arriving here at dusk…