Upper Benhall at the upstream end of our waters consists of a deeper section just above the A40 Bridstow Bridge with mainly shallow runs and smaller pools above it. The stretch runs mainly in a north to south direction so anglers fishing downstream have the sun in their eyes from about 10am until perhaps 3pm. In salmon terms the most productive catch is The Wall which has produced the most salmon over the past few years. I’ve counted 24 salmon from the Wall in the years 2015 to 2021. Tom Rigby had a hen fish of 28lb in 2015.
Katie’s, Kingfisher, Benhall Hut, The Oak and AC/DC have all produced fish during this period. I had my personal best salmon from Benhall hut, a fish of 26lb and Jon Daniels had his reel emptied of line when he hooked something very large and which he could not stop in 2015, the hut was taken down in 2010. My favourite stretch on Upper Benhall is the stretch from the bend at Logie down to the rapids above AC/DC, a very pleasant place to spend an evening in spring as the River is shaded by willows on the west bank which cuts out the evening sun. Strangely it’s not very productive for me as I’ve only had one fish from this stretch which came off at my feet, others have been more successful. The whole stretch can be waded once the River level is down to 0.5 metres or less. AC/DC is always worth a cast with 3 fish taken in the last 4 years. I’ve always thought that AC/DC has the potential to be a great catch but best I think to fish AC/DC early and late certainly in the last few years, the landowner on the other bank saw fit to clear the bushes and small trees from the high bank on that side and as it is also a busy public footpath the constant traffic and dogs etc must have an effect on the fishing. As the vegetation grows back the effects of the footpath will I think diminish.
Upper Benhall can be fished for the most part with either fly or spinner. The water is relatively shallow with lovely streamy sections with a depth of between about a metre to perhaps 2 metres. Stretches such as the Wall are deeper with average depth of 2 metres with holes rather deeper than that where the currents have swept out the gravel.
Spoons and spinners that have scored in recent seasons have been, Toby, Mors, Mepps and Devon minnow with occasional fish to Rapala and other plugs.
Successful flies where I have records are Bann Special, Usk Grub, Tyne Toucan, Tummel Monkey, Willy Gunn, Monroe Killer. Mainly fished with floating lines but sinking or sink tip lines can be an advantage in The Wall and AC/DC.