Two-Day Trout Fishing Course on the River Wharfe

Spring Trout Fishing course with Chris Hayward & Jonathan Tomlinson

Sportfish Tuition Update

Our 2021 programme of courses and tuition is currently on hold, but we do hope to be able to resume safely soon, and are already busy planning for 2022.

Our bestselling courses are very popular indeed, and do sell out quickly, so if you would like to get ahead of the crowd for next year and receive advance notice of dates, simply email: with your name and telephone number, stating which course(s) you are interested in.

We will then be in touch via email, prior to advertising the course, with dates for your consideration before they go live.

We are delighted to offer another opportunity to join two highly experienced instructors and fishermen: Sportfish instructor and England international, Jonathan Tomlinson and Sportfish senior instructor, Nick Clewlow, on a trip to fish for wild brown trout and grayling fishing on this wonderful fishery in the beautiful Yorkshire Dales.

The cost of the course covers all fishing, two nights’ accommodation, all food (full board) and all instruction for the two days. We will be staying at the lovely Cow and Calf Inn on Ilkley Moor, a ten minute drive from the fishing.

The River Wharfe Beat

2 Day Spring Trout Fishing Course on the River WharfeThe location for the course is a 4 1/2 mile beat of the stunning River Wharfe at Bolton Abbey forming part of the Chatsworth Estate. It is nestled in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales and makes a spectacular backdrop for your fishing.

The Wharfe is a classic freestone river and is an archetypal northern fishery, boasting a very good stock of wild brown trout and grayling.

The River Wharfe Course

The spring River Wharfe courses are a huge favourite and our objective is to provide you with the skills to tackle any river fishing you are likely to encounter. We cover dry fly fishing, upstream and Czech nymphing, north country spiders, duo (klink and dink), trio and French nymphing techniques.

It sounds like a lot - and don’t worry If you haven’t heard of a few of these techniques! A mixture of talks, river craft, entomology and practical fishing techniques, delivered in a very relaxed and enjoyable way, will help you to acquire the skills needed to master these waters.

Once all the methods have been explained and demonstrated you will be off to try those that you want to have a go at, or those that suit the stretch of water you are fishing. Sometimes under instruction and sometimes on your own, feel free to change tactics if you think something will work, so back yourself and trust your instincts! All of the techniques we will be demonstrating are there for you to practice, build confidence using and most importantly to enjoy.


We are staying at the Cow and Calf Inn on Ilkley Moor. The views are stunning, the grouse can regularly be heard in the mornings, there is a great selection of real ales and roaring open fires will be ready for you after your day’s fishing (the gin and whisky selections aren’t too bad either!) The food is great and the staff are first class, you will be very, very well looked after.

We hope that you will join us, learn some new skills, catch a few fish along the way and truly immerse yourself in all that the Wharfe has to offer.

We certainly can’t wait to get back there…


  • Two full days’ fishing on the Bolton Abbey Estate Water, River Wharfe
  • Instruction on both days from Jonathan Tomlinson and Nick Clewlow
  • Two days’ full board and accommodation at the Cow and Calf Inn
  • Two riverside lunches
  • FREE casting lesson prior to trip
  • Sportfish will also offer 15% OFF* any purchase made prior to the course at either Sportfish, Reading or Farlows, London

You are required by law to have a current EA rod licence; one can be purchased online here »

Price does not include: Gratuities, evening drinks, travel costs or EA rod licence. Please ensure you read our course terms and conditions prior to booking. * This offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer.

Previous Course Testimonials

David Lynch - 2019 Course

"My son Oli and I had singularly the best time, learning so much about the things we have overlooked in our quest to become successful at fly fishing. It’s insane how amazing Johnathan and Nick were, their knowledge, influence and enthusiasm transcends all boundaries. We couldn’t have hoped for better instructors, hosts or barroom buddies, they were awesome. We will never look at a river in the same way again. I caught my first wild brown (13in) and the satisfaction was only bettered by seeing it swim away. I also hooked up with a large grayling after following JT’s advice on watching ducks feeding on hatching March Brown Dunns. I quickly changed from fishing a duo to a dry fly and bang…..unfortunately the fish didn’t like my landing net, but the grin on my face was enough…..I now know how to do it again! It feels like I have just gone through a barrier, now I am really fired up for the trip to Wales for your sea trout course."

"I can’t thank you enough, Chris."