Sunday, 25 August 2013

Fishing in Willy Wonker's Chocolate River.....

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update and i have to say its been a week that has made me see the real bad side of the angling club of which i am a member.  Many of the regular followers of this blog will have remembered that when this blog first started my dad used to come fishing with us quite a lot and of late he has not been coming with us as much.  The reality of this is that my dad came out of work this year and this coupled with one or two other side issues has meant he has not felt the urge to come fishing with us and as such has not renewed his Warrington Anglers Licence.

I arrived at my dads last Friday evening to the news he had received a letter from Warrington Anglers informing him that he had not renewed his licence.  Initially i thought how thoughtful it was on WAA to contact my dad to inform him he hadn't renewed and that if the licence lapsed till Christmas it would mean he would have to pay the joining fee again but no as i read on it became increasing disturbed by the letter which went on to say that under rule he was obliged to pay the fees this year as he had not informed the club he was not renewing and the club have paid rents on waters based on the fact they expected him to renew and the letter also went on to ask him to contact the club to discuss.

My dad rang the club and explained he had come out of work and had no interest in renewing his licence to which he got the reply "the club have paid rents based on us EXPECTING you to join this year and that he has till November to pay the £40.00" needless to say my dad said he could not pay.  I checked the licence and there is a rule in the book saying about informing the club you are not renewing but in reality how many people inform the club they are in they are not renewing? well i was intrigued so i decided to pop the question on a popular forum i visit, needless to say the comments where far from complimentary to the club with the following quotes taken from the site:

"I too have had issues with this club and have been appalled by their ethics, so much so it has been 30 years since I have been a member."

"This is not a legal contract so tell them to stick it."

"???? What a way to run a club... I help run a club (Chairman) and we aim to "help" our members, not screw them over.... We run the club (and matches) for the members benefit and try to listen to their points of view and change / adapt were possible.. As stated above a polite letter saying thanks but no thanks should suffice, and let this be a warning to us all on how NOT to run a club.... even if I was a member of this club I think I'd tell them to poke it on principle.. What a disgusting way to treat members / ex-members..."

"if it is the club i think it is, run by mr L, tell them where to stick it, like i said for £40 they aren't taking him to court.
I think they have a cheek asking for anything other than membership card and key.

As you can see the actions of the club on this where not seen favourably by members on this forum and one member went on to ask a very sensible question in what would have happened if this was a Widow who's partner had passed away? it is not a very nice letter to receive is it and would the club still ask them for the £40.00?  So in effect the club are now asking my dad for 40 pounds to fish the club waters for what is soon to be 3 months which i think is utterly disgusting.  It does also beg the question that when i receive my licence next year if i don't pay for it and go fishing in the clubs waters and by some out of the blue reason i am eventually asked for my licence (not been asked in three years so far and i do a fair bit of fishing as this blog shows) can i just say "well the club have already paid the rents for me to fish here so i will save my £40.00 and pay it when the letter comes in September", 

I know quite a few people have let the licence lapse this year, mainly due to the loss of Almere and others down to the way the club is run and they have all received this very letter this week and since me speaking to them and explaining what its all about, all have no intention of paying so what a waste of time it is for the club to try and bully this money out of people it calls valued members.  All i can say is my dad will not be paying the £40.00 and i suggest if you want to take it further you put something official in writing and in the event it does go to court and they settle in the clubs favour, as my dad is on a means tested benefit you will most likely be paid back a pound a fortnight if the court rules that it is feasible for my dad to pay the money, the clue is in means tested, i.e what they are already paying him is what it is deemed the lowest amount of money it is he can live on, i.e no money spare to pay you back!  Just as a side note maybe the money wasted on this scheme could be better spent on improving waters on the card that have fell well below the standard you would expect for an angling club such as The moat in frodsham, finishing the paths on rixton, finishing the paths on cicily mill, fishing the road to the river dee at Worthenbury, actually building the road at dog kennel farm on the river dee which is written in the club book as agreed to be built X years ago, actually bailiffing the sankey canal in widnes that is a free for all and the list really does go on and on. 

I am really sorry that i again find myself wasting my introduction on this club but as you can no doubt tell from the above i am really annoyed with these actions my dad has been through a tough few years and for what is basically an angling club to try and bully and basically con money out of my dad who is a honest as the days long is bang out of order and really annoys me and the fact this rule  is even in the card sums up the ethics of this club.  

Moving on away from that to the more light hearted story that really captured my attention this week in the fact a dolphin had made its way up the River Dee as far as Chester! The dolphin was soon given the name Dave and was seen by many people who lined the river to catch a glimpse of this rare visitor to the estuary of the River Dee.  The officials at the environment agency monitored the situation all week as the "dave" fed in the river and travelled between Queensferry and Chester Weir.  The officials stating that they thought the high spring tides where behind the dolphin finding its was so far inland and that their worry was that a really high tide could see the dolphin travelling above the weir in Chester.

The Environment agency and the RNLI became increasingly worried about the situation as the dolphin began to get stranded momentarily on the sandbanks as he tides receded and on a number of occasions had to be helped along.  It was hoped the dolphin, which was only 4 miles from the sea at one point, would just go back out to sea but its thought strong tides again pushed it back into the river and today (Thursday 23/08/13) the RNLI decided not to help the dolphin back into the water in the river Dee when it became stranded but to capture the dolphin in a safe manor and they released the dolphin off the coast at Rhyl. In a last minute twist the dolphin named Dave turned out to be a female and was quickly renamed Davina! 


On to this weeks fishing:
 "Fishing in Willy Wonkas Chocolate River"

This week both me and my uncle where united in the fact we wanted to fish a river although the exact water cause we would fish remained up in the air as late as us joining the motorway.  We just could not decide wether we wanted to fish the River dee for Dace or another River where out quarry would be Chub and barbel , in all honesty both options where as appealing as each other but both had their downsides in that the river dee would no doubt provide us with plenty of bites but its open nature would see us fishing into gale force winds while the barbel river would not give us the volume of bites but would mean we were more protected due to the rivers secluded location.

We decided to go with the barbel river and leave the dace fishing for this coming weeks trip and it wasn't long before we were in our swims setting up waiting for first light to make that magical first exploratory cast of the session.  My uncle chose to trot a swim feeding white maggot and hemp while i chose a more robust approach in fishing a straight lead down to a fluorocarbon hook link tipped off with a size 8 korda wide gape hook with two halibut pellets as bait, i also attached a tightly packed PVA bag with 4ml pellets and a few of my hook bait pellets and tied this to the lead hoping for it to hold before finally releasing its contents down the flow towards my baited hook.

As you can see from the above picture the river was still running off from the recent rainfall the day before and although it had run off most of its excess water it was still carrying a fair amount of colour so much so it at times felt like i was fishing a river of chocolate.  i am the first to admit i am far from the most competent barbel angler as i am still learning but one thing i have picked up from reading up is that this is supposed to be a "tasty" looking river for barbel.

My uncle had a few dace early on trotting a swim upstream of me but they turned out to be just a flurry of early bites as the swim died after the last of the dace and although this can be a sign bigger fish have moved in nothing was forthcoming for the rest of the morning.  I set up downstream and was confident after receiving a few quite violent rattles on the tip so i was optimistic of a fish of some kind before we left.

The rattles on the tip continued but eventually the tip wrapped round and i was soon battling a fish that from the way it was fighting could only be a chub, it just didn't have the power that the barbel possesses.  The extra flow on the river probably gave the chub more power than it would have usually and it did give me a bit of trouble with a near margin snag that it went to great lengths to get me in but thankfully the chub slid into the net.

The chub in reality was not breaking any records  but was more than welcome to steer of the thoughts of the dreaded blank.  We came with a plan on the day to fish the river till midday and then drop back onto Curlston mere on the way home for a bit of fun catching some silvers and hopefully the odd carp and we stuck to that plan and broke camp around 11.30 and headed off.

Arriving at curlston mere it was bowing a right hoolie and it was straight into my face and it was far from comfortable fishing but after fishing this place quite a lot over the past few months i have learnt they really do follow the wind on here.  The one thing that really does amaze me is the quality of fish in this pond as it not only contains a lovely strain of carp but some of the best silvers fishing i have experienced on a still water of this size.

Both myself and my uncle where mirrored in out approach with us both fishing the float in the margins.  The main thing with fishing ponds i have found is to target the margins as this is normally where most of the fish are  and my thinking behind this is simple, margins are where the food comes into the pond from as bugs and insects fall into the water from the overhanging trees.  The swim was primed with some Dynamite Baits Silver X ground bait laced with white maggot and i really fed the swim as in summer on this place you can be really aggressive with your feeding and it only improves the fishing.

The fishing for us both was frantic with both of us getting a bite a chuck from perch and roach coming with great regularity.   As with all our fishing we always have a plan and we both had a few worms to try as a large hook bait for the last hour and it did not disappoint us with my uncle taking a better stamp of perch and losing two carp and myself landing the carp shown bellow and having the hook pull on two others.

All in all it was a very enjoyable few hours on Curlston and really tipped of a mixed days fishing with the combined net paying testament to how good the fishing was.

till next week its tight lines,


1 comment:

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