This is Durham: Durham’s Reservoirs
Get back to nature at the water’s edge; learn to fish and catch your own supper while taking in the stunning scenery
Friday 08 March 2013
Grassholme Reservoir, in the lovely undulating pastures of Upper Teesdale in the Durham Dales, is the perfect spot for a day out. There is something there for all the family: a four-mile path around the water’s edge, a nature reserve, picnic area, a shop selling ice creams and snacks, and thousands of trout, just waiting to be hooked out of the water.
Anyone can learn to fish – as many of the visitors to Grassholme, and Durham’s other fishing reservoirs, Derwent and Hury, can testify.
Everything an angler could need, from rods and bait to waders, is available from a shop in the fishing lodge at each location; complete beginners can buy a starter pack which provides all the necessary paraphernalia, including a permit for a free day’s fishing. This would normally cost £23 for an adult, and it also allows two under-18s to fish for free. Rangers are on hand at each reservoir to give tips and advice, and to pass on their experience. It is usually not just the fish that get hooked – the angling bug is an infectious one, and first-timers are often surprised at how easily they can become proficient.
All the reservoirs are well-stocked, and with more than 135,000 fish of the highest quality available across Durham this year, most anglers can expect to go home with a good haul – and the prospect of a fresh, locally-sourced supper. But fish is not the only form of wildlife in and around the water, so any family members who can’t be persuaded to try angling can enjoy a gentle walk exploring the meadows and trees near the water. Among the best of these trails is the two-mile loop around Tunstall Reservoir, a scenic mix of woodland, pasture and nature reserve. An astonishing variety of birds, butterflies and small animals can be found here, as well as countless species of plants and trees. There’s more than enough on offer here, and at the other reservoirs in the region, to ensure everyone can have an enjoyable day in the fresh air.
Learn to fish
For those who have no idea how to attach a bait to a hook, three-hour try-it sessions are available at Derwent Reservoir and other fisheries in the area.
Pay £30 (£15 for children, a reduction of £5 on last year’s price) and you will receive tuition from an expert who will teach you everything you need to know in order to tempt a trout on to your dinner plate. Courses run on Tuesdays and Saturdays.
Where to stay in Durham
Durham has a host of accommodation options which provide facilities for cyclists and walkers. Click here are a few highlights.
To discover more of Durham’s great outdoors, visit thisisdurham.com/outdoors
The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations
- 1 Rules on 5p plastic bags likely to lead to arguments at the check-out
- 2 Hulk Hogan wants to be Donald Trump's running mate in the US Presidential election
Natural wonders in the UK: From Giant's Causeway to Durdle Door
Flight from Britain to Turkey delayed by 7 hours after champagne cork damages ceiling
Exclusive Escapes: Upmarket holiday company goes bust on the eve of bank holiday weekend
The 10 Best lightweight luggage
The most powerful passports in the world
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
Tony Blair attacks Jeremy Corbyn's 'Alice In Wonderland' politics
Theresa May says migrants should be banned from entering the UK unless they have jobs lined up
£26000 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Product Development departm...
£23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Visitor Fundraising Team is responsi...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...
£30000 - £34000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Estates Team of this group ...