LAST week was a week of extremes with high temperatures culminating in a 31.9C high for the year on Thursday and 72mm of rain falling up to Sunday evening.

Even so, the ground was so dry that virtually all of the rain must have soaked in, for by the beginning of this week, the level of the River Aire had risen by only about 250mm, scarcely enough to re-oxygenate the water after the latest drought.

Prior to the rain, reports from the Aire suggest that the bigger fish have all moved downstream judging from what is being caught.

From Skipton upstream, catches are mainly of trout and grayling but this season a 900g fish is a specimen.

On the Keighley water, anglers are making do with trout, perch, ruffe and plenty of small chub up to about 200mm in length and are wondering where all the bigger fish have gone.

From Bingley downstream there is a good selection of fish being caught including barbel, bream and roach some of which are of specimen size.

A particularly good fish landed recently at Leeds was a 2,300g perch which was caught on a dace livebait.

Nearer home, the canal down Broughton Road has been fishing well with plenty of roach and perch coming to the net.

Small fish are so numerous that it is difficult getting baits down past them in the water.

Success in doing so means that any fish caught will be of a bigger size up to around the 450g mark.

With the Skipton AA Whinnygill Sunset Series halfway through, Russell Heaton has moved into a good position from which to defend the trophy that he won last year.

The warm weather has continued to improve the sport on the reservoir with quality roach, perch, bream, ide and carp being landed.

The leading competitors for the sunset trophy are: 1 Russell Heaton 8 points; 2 John Leatt 13; 3 Simon Chenier 14; 4 Malcolm Mawson 15 and Ernest Ramsbotham 26.

The next match for the Peter Hart Memorial Trophy will be fished on Embsay reservoir on Sunday, August 11, with the draw at 8am.