Monday, 28 September 2015

Stick float & Caster for river chub

I fancied a change from pike fishing (I find this keeps my fishing fresh!). There's a long stretch of river that I keep going back to year on year as it offers a brilliant variety of fishing, some fantastic chub shoals and one or two very nice pike.

A bit of research with the locals told me where the chub were likely hiding, and I turned up with the 14ft drennan acolyte plus, stick float and casters. Turning up on the first swim, I was struggling to get a bite other than off a kamikaze trout, despite steady feeding. I was then rudely interrupted when i looked behind me to find a big herd of cows wondering why an intruder had come between them and the water hole. Time to move....

Next swim looked inviting, though was not the easiest to trot the float through, and required an accurate cast and careful float control to trot through, avoiding the bushes and weed growth underwater. I soon hooked the first chub, which took me straight in the bushes and I pulled only to open out the hook. Increasing the hook gauge and line strength, the next trot through and a chub was hooked, the fight lasted long this time, only for the hook to pull at the last minute - damn. A couple of trots later, and i hooked into another solid lump. This time I had to react quickly to lower the rod angle and pull away from the tree roots, the acolyte worked nicely to carefully prize the fish away and into the net. A few casts later, and same result, this time a bigger 4lb+ chub. Despite trying more, I must have spooked the swim, and no more bites were forthcoming. A wander downstream and I could see the shoal had dropped downstream near the bridge, however unfortunately I had to leave. A nice morning

Prior to this, I had an evening session into dark in search of barbel, without success. I did, however, take a couple of pics of the night sky, one showing the movement of a satellite....why not!

Friday, 18 September 2015

River piking with Big Lures

After attending a recent PAC talk by Eric Edwards, I was very interested in his way of fishing his local spate rivers with big lures, jerk bait rods and Abu multipliers. His record speaks for itself, and the style of fishing suits my general roving approach big time. I decided to purchase a little more kit, including 100lb Power Pro braid, and giving it a good try; generally my pike fishing is centred around either float fished deadbaits, and roving about or using a couple of rods and concentrating on ledgered deads in a couple of swims.

I had a few hours spare, and decided to give it a go on a stretch of my local river. As usual, the path was difficult and a fair bit of walking was required, but that doesn't both me. The first swim has fenced off to keep the livestock away, and I foolishly argued that it wouldn't be electrified - how wrong was I (ouch). Different to how I have previously lure fished (which is a rare event), and on the advice of Eric, I was covering each swim for longer periods, trying different lures, with different actions and at different depths. On my third or fourth swim, after flogging away with a lure for a while, I was thinking that there probably wasn't a pike there. A change of lure to a spinner bait brought an instant response in water i'd covered a few times (just goes to show!). The rod slammed over, all hell broke loose, and the small rod and multiplier outfit performed admirably.

This one weighed 8lb 15oz.

After a few more swims on the spinner bait, but without success, a change to a rapala max-rap brought an instant response. I'd decided to try and make the lure seem like a dying fish, stopping at times, and it was when I stopped retrieving that a pike smashed the lure and then swam towards me at a rate of knots, causing me to quickly reel. It was netted quickly, and this weight 7lb 8oz.

Happy with that, hopefully many more to follow....

Saturday, 12 September 2015

River piking

As previous blog, I'd decided to get the pike gear out. After a grueller of a roving session last sunday which resulted in a blank (4 miles of cutting through vegetation!!). I was out again this morning in the rain, again roving about with deadbaits, and eventually the float sailed away and this tail walking pike graced my net.

This brings me to something I've been thinking about recently, that of nets. I was getting sick of a 42" triangular net with standard mesh, the hooks get caught, the shape of the net is wrong, etc etc. I've decided on a 32" round greys free flow, which is nice and deep. The pike today was 33" long and the net was brilliant, I think it would have no problem with a much bigger pike. However, I have now ordered some new mesh, 3" salmon mesh, which is very deep and should prevent hooks getting caught up. Just waiting on delivery of it, and i'll do a bit of a review once  I use it. The ideal pike  river net is, in my opinion, found by buying it in bits. A nice big round net, a long telescopic handle (drennan twist lock) and large mesh / deep net.