Friday, 2 August 2013

River, Stillwater, thunder and lightning i love fishing!!

A warm welcome to my weekly blog update a few weeks ago I mentioned about me working with a company about getting the blog featured on another format and I am pleased to announce that Dannys Angling Blog will now be featured in the blogs section of the Fishing Uk phone app.  It will involve me finding time to update the blogs onto the App but I am hoping to at least get a few of the most popular blog posts over there in the coming weeks if I can find time but for now I am really pleased to have been approached about this opportunity and look forward to working with Fishing Uk to make this part of the app as good as possible.

As I mention quite often on this blog I receive a lot of emails from readers of the blog and really enjoy spending time replying to all the questions I am asked and reading what people think of the blog I write.  I received one such email this week that made me feel really proud, it was an email from Adam Liversage who wrote to me expressing how much he had enjoyed the blog and how it had inspired him to write his own angling blog.  I have to admit that although the stats clearly show the blog is quite popular I don’t ever imagine people reading my blog as I write it so the fact that someone not only reads my blog but is inspired by what I write to start their own meant a great deal to me.

The blog he writes is well written and is updated very regular with 10 posts in June and 14 in July and I am sure if he keeps that level of posting going along with such detail he will have a really successful blog on his hands in a few months’ time.  I wish him all the luck for the future with his blog and I personally look forward to spending time reading and being inspired to go fishing by his
Angling adventures.

Here is a link to his blog:

News that caught my eye this week was the reported capture of a new British Record Eel at 13lb 8oz from a commercial fishery.  The owner of the fishery and capture of the eel was apparently fishing for carp at the time when he hooked into the fish of a lifetime.  There has been much speculation on the internet forums and facebook as to whether or not this fish is a record fish but I know first-hand with my uncles near record dace last year how a much a picture can be scrutinised and I say if the guy has caught this fish and put it on some scales and that’s what it read then so be it and leave it to the British record rod caught fish panel to either honour or disprove this claimed record eel.   Below is a link to the picture of the eel for those who have not seen it and want to make their own mind up on it.

Later on in this blog update you will read about mine and my uncles trip to the River Dee on Sunday and although I really enjoyed the fishing session there was something else that pleased me more than catching a nice net of fish and that was the variety of species and the size of the fish we caught.   Below is a picture of the final net of fish from the Sunday session.

Now when I say the size of the fish most people automatically think I am talking about a pristine net of 2lb roach and although I would be over the moon with a net like that this net fills me with just as much joy as it contains fish from this year’s fry through to mature fish approaching maybe 10-12 ounces.  This is a great sign that the river is in good condition and year on year is building fish stocks naturally and is in fact now a self-sustained fish population and you know what it is great to see.  Also included in the net are some stonking gudgeon and again a fish that it is great to see as in winter they don’t really get a look in with the big shoals of dace about but encouraging to see them not only surviving but actually thriving in this river and in all it bodes well for the future.  The one thing to remember is to appreciate times like this as we know all too well just how fast things can change and the Dee has first-hand experience of major pollution incidents so fingers crossed lessons have been learned and we don’t see the likes of that again.

On to this weeks fishing

Nice session on Rixton clay pits

  Work has been so busy of late with a new project going live and at times its seemed the systems would never be ready come go live but thankfully all has gone to plan but it has meant many a ling evening in work getting it to this stage and this coupled with being an person who is addicted to angling has meant I have not been spending as much time as I would like with my family so I rectified that with a well-deserved day off work on Friday and boy did it feel god to just take a day away from the hustle and bustle of work and just let my hair down and I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

With Friday out of the way my mind obviously turned towards where I would be wetting a line at the weekend.  My uncle was not available to fish in the Saturday so a cheeky evening session was planned with him for Sunday afternoon and I was torn between Curlston Mere and Rixton Clay Pits.  I made my mind up to fish rixton as I wanted a steady silvers session and had I gone Curlston I knew the carp would move in on me and I was not in the mood for the messing around that goes with targeting silvers and carp.

Arriving at Rixton car park I quickly unloaded the car and made my way to one of the ready made pegs and quickly set about getting ready to start fishing.  I set up in line with the edge of the island in front of me to give me a feature to line up with to make sure I was fishing the same line all day.

I am often asked what makes me decide when to fish the pole and when to fish the float rod and I normally answer that unless one method is more adaptable to the situation i.e I wouldn’t use a float rod if I wanted to fish tight to a far bank margin shelf on a commercial, then I would normally fish the pole on a Stillwater as I spend a lot of my year trotting the river with a float rod so I like to make the most of using my pole at any opportunity during the summer months on the still waters.

The set up for the day was to fish blue hydro elastic in the pole with a 3lb line down to a 1lb 7oz hook length with a size 20 hook.  The bait for the day was a pint of white maggot fished over a bed of Dynamite Baits Silver X ground bait which I hoped would catch me a mixed net of silver fish.  I always find it best when silver fishing to feed the ground bait in the pole cup to get a nice bed of feed tight to the area I am fishing and then use the catapult to feed the maggots as this generally spreads the bait over a wider area and draws the fish in.

As is always the case with silvers fishing its always the small fish that turn up to the parry first and on this session it was a mixture of small skimmer bream and really small perch.  When I have fished this venue before the better fish have always moved in as a bed of feed is built up but on this occasion it took a good few hours of catching small roach, skimmers and perch before the first few better bream started to show.

The swim was building nicely and I was getting some of the better bream every few puts in but then the swim completely died on me and I thought that a tench might have moved in.  Patience is a big part of fishing and if you haven’t got it then you are always going to struggle, luckily it’s a virtue I have been blessed with so once the bites dies I kept plugging away and I thought I had been rewarded when I lifted into a fish that was slid on the bottom and had elastic oozing out of the pole.  I thought for the life of me it was a tench or carp so I dipped the pole tip under the water to increase the pressure on the fish and with that the fish jumped clear out of the water and revealed itself to be a jack pike I guess around 5-7lb and with that it bit through the line.

I reset up and fished over the same line but it was obvious the pike was still about as the bites where lightning quick as if the fish where darting in and out which suggested to me mr pike was still hungry.  I decided for the last hour to move my line closer in and found a nice depth on three sections of pole and fished the last hour of the session on that line.  I ended the session with a nice net of just over 9lb and I thoroughly enjoyed it although it was very weird going fishing on my own after so many trips with my dad and uncle.

                                                            “Electric Roaching on the Dee”

We experienced one of the most surreal feelings in fishing this week as we travelled along the M56 towards wales on a Sunday afternoon to fish the River Dee.  We normally choose to hit the bank in time for first light for our fishing so navigating the queues of traffic was an alien feeling for me but eventually we hit the main road towards the river dee and with that we hit some serious weather that was causing some localised flooding on the road we were travelling down and seeing the drains bubbling over had me worried about what we were traveling too.   Along the road we travelled through two or three storm showers but was absolutely amazed to arrive at our destination to scorching hot and humid conditions which were not helped at all by the suffocating Himalayan balsam lining the swim.

Setting up the heat and humidity was almost unbearable the air was heavy and uncomfortable but eventually I was at a stage where I was ready to make my first cast at a balmy 4pm.  The tactics are will be well known to regular blog readers but I will go over them again for new readers to the blog, I used my trusty 17ft trotting rod with my Diawa open faced reel loaded with 4lb 4oz line and this was fished down to an old school Bayen Perlon 1lb 7oz hooklength tipped with a size 20 micro barb pattern hook, my float was a 10 number four wire stem stick float.

The session started off with some pristine gudgeon, a fish most anglers would turn their nose up at but on the river at this time of the year the fish are really spread out and it can be a good hour or so before you start to see some of the dace and roach show up.

The gudgeon and odd dace where rolling in as quick as the black clouds, the temperature dropped dramatically and you could feel the freshness of a front of rain moving in even before it hit us and the ferocity of what was about to move our way was given away by the loud rumbles of thunder we could hear In the distance.  The inevitable rain shower arrived and with I the thunder and lightning and I was in no hurry to be attached to 17ft of electricity conducting carbon so it was down with the rod and I waited for the storm clouds to pass.

Must be mad eh:

The rain eventually passed but I had been constantly feeding the swim during the rain and it paid dividends as first put in resulted in this lovely redfin.

The fishing after the storm was really surprising as at this time of the year it is very rare to have such a consistent day on the river but I wasn’t complaining as it soon became very apparent I had a good shoal of roach and dace in front of me, not all massive fish but that float was going under every trot down the swim.  Some of the bites where as fast as the lightning that had just been overhead which suggested to me these where the smaller fry just tipping the maggot and in hindsight castor might have been the bait to combat these and get through to the better fish with more regularity.

To be honest with how our river trips have been so far on the dee it was refreshing to be getting a few fish and my only wish on the day was to have had the whole day ahead of us getting these bites as it would have been a very impressive net come the end of the day.   The lull in the rain was short lived as yet another band of rain moved in and with it some really dark clouds.

The low light levels these clouds provided brought the better roach out to play and me and we picked up some better roach as this picture shows below we had some really nice roach during the session.

The rain moved over again and we were again basking in baking how sunshine, the fish where still biting but we decided to take the opportunity of this gap in the weather to make a move for home as we could see some serious weather in the distance heading our way.  The final net was a joy to witness as it contained a variety of species of fish at all levels of development and it was really reassuring to see a net of fish like this.

We closed the car boot just as the rain started again and thankfully the road we travelled along on the way was clear of flood water.  On the way home the talk was all about what a great session we had just experienced and how good it felt to finally get amongst a decent shoal of fish on the river Dee and we both agreed we couldn’t wait to get back.

Till next time, tight lines



  1. You took a picture of a gudgeon!

  2. Yup, amazing what you can catch if you stick with a swim, arriving in the swim that day and catching gudgeon for the first hour you would never have thought it would end with a net of pristine roach. i guess thats the magic of the river. lovely fish gudgeon, up there as one of my favourites.