Before we get into this weeks blog there is a special person who I need to wish a big happy birthday to and that is my brother who turns 21 this week, Happy birthday bro, we have been through so much these last few years together and I have so many great memories of the past 21 years, you’re are the best brother anyone could wish for and mum would be so proud of you. You will make a great uncle later this year and here is to the good times to come mate!!!
It really saddens me to beginning a new blog entry talking about pollution but yet again I find myself reading a fellow anglers blog to find him not talking about a glorious catch of trout or chub from his local river but instead posting pictures of pollution running downstream as he crossed a bridge which runs over his local river. I post a weekly blog and I can remember talking about a river a while ago covered in foam and not too long ago another fellow angler was fishing a stretch that had suffered a pollution incident in 2009. This for me is 3 times too many in a year and although some pollution incidents are unavoidable from scenarios like accidents where a spillage is the result but more and more these pollution incidents are a result of big companies just seeing the local waterway as a place to discharge their waste and hopefully the culprits from this last incident will be traced and prosecuted for their actions!!.
The river this time was the River Irwell and the incident was posted on both Mike Duddy’s blog (http://manchesterfishingfiend.blogspot.co.uk ) and also the Salford Friendly Anglers Society blog (http://salfordfriendlyanglers.blogspot.co.uk) both these blogs I follow and have long admired the fish mike catches and I am constantly admiring the efforts the anglers in Salford put into local ponds and their relentless efforts to restore and promote fishing around the Manchester area. These are people who put so much back into our sport and should not have to be in the situation where they are posting pollution incidents on their blog it is high time something was done to stop this, whether that be harsher financial penalties or educating these companies what damage they are doing but one thing is for sure in this day and age it should not be happening and enough is enough!! Let’s hope there are no reports of fish fatalities from this recent incident.
With that off my chest I will move onto what I was going to talk about on this week’s blog and that was just how being on the bank allows you to witness the subtle changes as we move slowly into spring. This weekend on the bank we visited a local commercial and as a matured fishery the wildlife was all around us, we had field mice scuttling around in the field behind us, frogs frolicking in the shallows while we also saw our first pair of buzzards of the year riding up high in the mid-day warmth being on the bank this weekend was a real treat to be on the bank and the fishing wasn’t too bad either.
On to the fishing…….
This week marked the first weekend of the rivers being closed and with so many venues to choose from it was hard to decide where to try but in the end we decided to try a local commercial to give us a much needed confidence boost with our pole fishing as after so many weeks fishing a 17ft rod trotting the river we were understandably rusty. The fishery we chose to visit was Flushing Meadows where we knew we had a fair chance of a few bites due to its high stocking density.
Like two kids, me and my uncle texted our plans of attack throughout the week in work from castors for the silvers to the secret bigger baits we were going to unleash on the carp population and by Friday afternoon I know I was itching to get on the bank to wet a line. Friday evening was a really strange experience as well without the pungent smell of hemp cooking on the stove it didn’t feel like the evening before a fishing trip at all and by 7pm I had made a few pole rigs and was all set for the next day’s fishing, full of anticipation.
The alarm clock going off at 6am instead of 3.30am was again another sign the closed season had arrived, although my body didn’t seem to mind the extra few hours in bed, this will of course slowly change week on week as the sunrise gets earlier and earlier and we begin to leave for the bank earlier and earlier to chase those early morning tench in the summer mist.
We arrived on the fishery around 7am and decided to fish the snake lake, a lake my uncle was yet to try, but one I had fished last year and has a lot of success on catching carp, roach, perch, ide and golden orfe. I chose the swim above and my plan of attack was to fish tight to the point on the far side feeding castor and corn mix up on the top of the shelf. We honestly had no idea what to expect and how the place fished at this time of year having only fished the place in the height of summer and done really well for all species, today would give us an idea of just how the place fished at this time of year.
My first foray over to the far side saw the float sit there for a while before shooting under and I lifted into my first fish of the closed season, a small roach.
My plan for the day was to feed the swim lightly and try and build the swim up and hopefully attract one or two bigger fish into the swim and if I was really lucky maybe even catch my first carp of the year.
I introduced a sprinkling of castor via my Cad pot after every fish and every other fish I introduced a few grains of corn into the peg and this saw me picking up a bite every put in with decent roach coming with great regularity.
After around a hour of catching I decided to try corn on the hook and this instantly saw me picking up better quality fish and also some of the skimmer bream that had obviously moved in to hoover up the casters that had made it to the bottom through the hungry pack of roach.
The bites continued to come consistently for both me and my uncle and it was great fishing and by 10am we were already looking at each to thinking just how many fish we had caught, it was crazy fishing if you like silver fishing that is. It was inevitable that all the food going in was eventually going to attract some better fish and one the day it came in the form of what I call “proper bream” and it is ages since I last caught a “proper bream”. They of course are not known for their fighting abilities but are a great fish to catch none the less.
As I said the signs of spring where all around us on Saturday and that even showed on the fish with this mature bream being covered in spawning tubercles, a sure fire sign the water is getting to a warm enough level for the fish to begin contemplating spawning.
After this fish i continued to catch fish over the far side while my uncle decided to feed a line closer in and was straight away into roach and skimmers right under his feet on literally his top 2 section on a day that showed me just how many fish these commercial fisheries hold and just how people can win matches on just silver fish alone.
The video below shows just how quick my uncle was catching these fish and this went on for the whole afternoon and this is what you call one a chuck fishing, great fishing.
Not being a person who is slow in coming forward I moved closer in and decided to fish a 2 and 2 line right in front of me bit fed it a little different to my uncle and this saw me picking up less fish than my uncle but when I did catch it was always a decent size fish with the biggest being the bronze bream below.
The afternoon carried on with us both catching fish consistently and the quality of the fish went from strength to strength with quality roach, skimmers, ide and crucian carp all making an appearance.
All in all we packed in at 4.30pm two very happy anglers and I only wish you were allowed to have keep net on this fishery as it would be a monumental sight to see all the fish from that session at the end, my prediction is you would struggle to lift the net come the end of the day and I suppose policing such a rule is difficult for the bailiff of the water as you will always get some people who would put big carp in them but I sure will be enquiring next time we visit to the possibility of being allowed to do so.
I would again like to thank you all for your support in reading the blog and the wonderful emails I receive from people about the blog, thank you so much.
Till next week