What a difference a year makes.  This time last year the chalkstream rivers of Hampshire were at their lowest flow levels in living memory following two years of drought.  The rain started in mid-April and now, after a year of record rainfall, they are at their highest flow levels in over forty years.  Drought conditions are bad news for the health of the river and its Trout and Grayling but high flow levels are very good news.  The spawning gravels are glistening clean after all the accumulated silt has been washed away, the fish are fitter, the water oxygen content is higher and this will also lead to stronger, more healthy weed growth in 2013.  The water weed is the habitat for the aquatic insects and shrimp that are the food of the fish, so the fish should grow well and be healthier.

The water table in the chalk hills is brim full and this should keep river levels ideal for the spring and summer months.  The prospects for the coming Trout season are excellent.

Expect river banks to be soft and wet in places so even if you are fishing off the bank a pair of Wellington boots may be required.