Sunday, 22 June 2014

At last a 5lb chub!

Decided to give the river a try today. When I got there I could see that the river was down to its bare bones and gravel bars were above the water line - the lowest I'd seen this particular stretch. I knew it wasn't going to be easy. 

I decided to set up with the drennan acolyte plus, 5lb drennan supplex, and a size 18 kamasan animal (in the hope of an animal!). I waded to one of the gravel bars and trotted maggot and caster against a tree lined bank. I'd brought 2 pints of each. It didn take long to get the first bite - a minnow. And about 20 more followed before something a little better in the shape of a dace.

A few more dace followed before I hooked a kamikaze trout, which went wild and destroyed everything before dislodging itself - time to move on. On the next swim, I could see the odd decent shape moving in the flow and thought to myself - chub. The problem was, they weren't interested in my crude tackle but took the freebies. I ended up stepping down my gear to 2lb drennan supplex and a size 20 kamasan b911F1 - this could be interesting I thought!

First trot through, a chub took the double maggot and the fight begun. I often find that fish respond like for like with the pressure being exerted - if that makes sense? Ie, if you pike the pressure on, they do the same. So I played it very softly, and for a couple of minutes it just sat in the flow. It then got bored and went for the far bank trees, making it underneath so I sunk the rod tip and hoped. It came back out, then dashed for my bank, near snagging me twice, before eventually netted. A good 4 I thought, and put it in the keepnet. It wasn't until I packed up and emptied the net, that I weighed it at 5lb 1oz, a new pb and my first 5. Happy!! It had a hollow belly, in prime winter condition I think 5 and a half at least.

A few more dace followed, and I went home with a smile. 

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

The river is open! A day on the stick float

The alarm was set for 3.30am- but I was awake from 3.00am. I had a bit of a journey ahead of me, with the walk to the peg being more than a mile away from the nearest parking spot, I could more or less guarantee I wouldn't see anybody else on the river. 

Usually on opening day, I get all excited, lob a big pellet in knowing that I'm guaranteed a tees barbel, and end up blanking. So this season, I decided to guarantee some sort of success by fishing the stick. Tackle was a drennan acolyte, Preston pxr 3000 reel, and 4.9lb supplex (as I was hoping to hook to decent chub), to a size 18 kamasan b911x. I had brought 3 pints of maggots and 2 of caster. 

It didn't take long to start catching roach and dace, and this seemed to be all I was catching for an hour or two. I decided to step up the feed, feeding a dozen maggots before, during and at the end of each trot. This had the desired effect, and a nice 1lb grayling was soon in the net. This was released back into the river rather than kept in the net...

This was followed by more dace and roach, and the odd decent perch. 

I wanted some chub, and the maggot didn't seem to be working. I decided to stop casting for half an hour and trickle in a pint of casters gradually. First cast through, and the plan clearly worked as I struck into something solid and determined. A 4lb 3oz chub...

No more chub were forthcoming, so a switch back to maggot soon had grayling, trout, perch, dace and roach in the net. 

A switch back to caster again, after half an hour of baiting, brought 2 more chub, one of them 4lb 3oz the other about 2lb. Fought brilliantly on the float rod. 

And after more dace, perch and roach, I decided to call it a day at about 2pm. I finished off with 22lb 4oz of fish, which to me is a good river weight. Really enjoyed being back on the river. 

The long walk home.....

Sunday, 8 June 2014

Traditional tench tactics - Lift Method and Centrepin

This is my last Stillwater report of the season (maybe!)

I decided to make it crabtree-esque today with centrepin, lift method and worm, and tench (hopefully!). It's a very sensitive method, as soon as that fish slurps up the worm, the float is rising and laying flat. Perfect time to strike!

After a scout around, I found some bubblers and sat down, rod already set up the night before, and fed maggots and casters.

It wasnt long until the float lifted slightly showing something brushing the line. Minutes later, it lifted and laid flat, and I was in! Unfortunately the centrepin didn't sing it's tune, and I soon landed a little baby tench.

Another hour wait, and a couple of tench started feeding again. This time the float just shot up and laid flat out of the blue, and I hooked into something bigger, the centrepin sung and I was a happy man. Can't beat fishing with the pin sometimes!

A nice male tench

I didn't get anymore, a couple of missed bites and a few greedy perch. Went home smiling though!

Friday, 6 June 2014

An evening on a local pond

Had a nice few hours at Turlwick. Set up with the drennan acolyte plus, 3.8lb supplex line and double maggot to a size 18 kamasan X strong hook. 

It took an hour or so to get them going, but then I started bagging up on small ide, roach and Rudd. I kept stepping up the feed, as I had a feeling something different would move in eventually. It took a while but eventually at around 9pm the usual rhythm of swinging in small roach was interrupted with a solid fish, which tore off for a sunken branch, and made it. It went solid, so I put the float rod down, poured a cuppa and waited. Eventually the rod nodded. And he came free allowing me to play him to the net. The rod performed beautifully and I felt in control, even with light line. 

Nowt big but a decent end to a nice day.