River Wharfe

The River Wharfe at Ilkley is a classic Yorkshire freestone river, offering a mixture of pools, glides and riffles over approximately 1 ½ miles of double bank fishing. Access is excellent, with paths running along both banks, plenty of parking, 3 bridges, and a set of stepping stones at the downstream limit.

Wading is relatively easy over fine gravel and sand, becoming more challenging where the bed consists of cobbles and larger boulders. An 8-10 foot 3-4 weight rod is ideal and fish respond well to nymphs, dry flies, or sparse spiders fished in the locally developed North Country style. Fly-fishing is best when river levels are below 0.40 m on the Environment Agency gauge.

Heavy rain on the moors can bring the river up quickly, but levels fall and clear almost as fast.

Please check with the Ilkley web site before fishing to make sure there is no match on that day