The plan today was to concentrate on trotting and looking to be back home around midday as unfortunately there was still a busy Friday in work to attend. Today also gave me a chance to test out a piece of equipment I bought last night from stapley water gardens, a FOX bait waiter and I am impressed with it, it made the feeding and fishing much more comfortable.
Arriving at the bank I quickly set up my 17ft float rod and began trotting a steady glide I had noticed the previous week and instantly the float was going down the swim a dream with no snags to hinder my line and a good even depth. To my amazement the float was going through untouched and it took 4 or 5 trots through to get my first fish which was a nice plump roach followed by another and slowly but surly the swim was getting to the stage where I was getting at least a knock every trot down, with either a nice roach or dace being taken and then I caught a roach of a much better calibre that I knew when I hooked was a better fish and gave a lovely jagged fight as only roach do.
With roach of this calibre around I decided to introduce a few grains of sweetcorn every few casts and continued to catch more roach and dace with the odd rogue salmon par. On my first trot down with sweetcorn I hooked a proper zoo creature and after a tough fight a Pb trout was on its way to the net and with its last dart and turn for freedom the hooked pulled, gutted!! its bad loosing a big fish when you don't see it but to see the prize there and to loose it was even worse, lesson learned from this is make sure the fish is on the bank before you have already caught it and photographed it in your head.
Back in and the roach where still there waiting as was the dace and it was a big dace that was next to have its picture taken and with this being such a large specimen I decided to weigh her, exactly a pound.
Fin perfect silver dart:
At around 10.30 the swim just went dead, I suspected all the commotion of the fish splashing on top had attracted the attention of a hungry pike or had some bigger fish moved in?? in this scenario these two reasons are what all anglers think and usually on the river Dee nine time out of ten its a hungry pike. I still cant explain what made me do this but I decided to just feed corn and stick with it and for the next ten to fifteen minutes the float just went through untouched but just as I was about to reel in at the bottom of my trot the float buried and I struck into something solid that stayed deep and demanded I gave it some line and it made its way into the flow, on four pound line and a stick float rod there was no rushing this fight.
In my head I thought its either a chub or a pike has taken a fish as I have hooked it, slowly but surly I began making ground only for the fish to angrily make an aggressive dart for the middle of the river, eventually the fish began to tire and I got a glimpse of the fish and to my amazement it was a barbel after a few more darts for freedom the fish was mine and I was even more chuffed than last week as this had been caught trotting.
another river Dee Bertie:
After this fish it marked the end of the sport and for the next hour and half I just picked up the odd small roach and I called it a day around 12.30 but not before I took a picture of the net of fish, there must have been at least 20 roach over half a pound. The picture below really doesn't do it justice.
net of fish:
With the River Dee holding some real specimen barbel and with the way they are breeding hopefully in years to come a barbel in a days trotting will be common place they really do fight at any size and with stocks of roach and dace this high the future for the River Dee is bright.
till next time