On to this weeks blog update
Splitting the Hemp...
So my hemp order came in a week or so ago and coming home to a huge 20kg sack of dry hemp seed i knew the daunting but ever so therapeutic task of splitting it down into 1 pint session bags was on the horizon. I still had one or two bags left from last years batch so i put this task off for a week or so, last weeks session saw the last bag boiled and used so there was no option. It was out with the sack of hemp and with the early morning sun warming the patio it was time to set up the production line.
My little girl was at the front of the Queue her job to pass the bags to Lucy, her job to keep the bag open while i scooped and poured in a pint of seeds. This worked a treat and in no time at all we had a pile of sealed food bags covering the floor. These orders come in a hessian type sack and then the actual seeds inside are held in a card type bag and this is fantastic as you can literally use each bag to split the order, one for me one for you and we soon had them bagged up and over my uncles for him to use.
Pike Dead Bait The Order Of The Day....
So the start of the pike season is literally a few days away now and i can almost see that pike float gently moving to the rhythmic motion of the water as it waits to be ignited into life by a passing esox. Like last year Garry was very generous in asking us if we wanted to be put in on his bait order on line as the bulk buy saves on shipping and also you can get some cracking discounts on bulk buy popular baits. I was very selective this year in my bait choice and went for baits i caught well on last year in Smelts, joey mackerel, sardines jacks and roach. These baits should be fine for the start of the campaign and see me right for the first month or so depending on how many times i get out and how many pike i catch of course.
I am sure Ste will join me here in thanking Garry for putting this order together and splitting it down for us, cheers mate.
On to this weeks fishing...
With all the weeks of trying to work out the River Dane we had probably seen enough of this river to last us both a lifetime so we made a decision on the Friday that no matter what we would be fishing a different river the next day. A quick stop in the tackle shop revealed my rod replacement section still being mark as awaiting delivery, a quick phone call by the shop owner and hopefully it will be here next week.
To say it rained on Friday was an understatement and when this down pour continued into the evening i knew we would have a decision to make the next morning. This time of year is great for that as we meet up around 5am and the EA chart for that morning are normally posted on their site to give us an idea of the levels of the local rivers. All the charts showed no rises in the rivers, very odd we thought given the rain, but we knew the rise was to come for sure, there had been too much rain for it not too.
We sat for a second and thought about aborting the river session and going a local pond but we decided to go the river and the reason was this. Fish go on a big feed when i river begins to rise as all food washed into the river comes down, we both knew the fishing would be good but also knew once the colour came things would change and the fishing on the float would subside. At max we thought we had from first light till around 9am, 10am max, before the river would be unfishable.
Arriving on the banks of the river she was gin clear and running low with no signs of any extra water or colour in the system. We quickly set up in our swims as we knew time was of the essence and i quickly fed maggots into the swim while i set up as i knew there was a chance of a chub in this area and where as other sessions where i was happy to wait for them to edge onto the feed i felt today i needed to enforce the message that free food was coming in upstream and almost push the fish into moving up. The first few trots down brought no action at all as the float trundled through the swim time and time again.
Incidentally the float i used was a 6 number 4 stick float with 6lb line down to a 2.1lb bottom and a size 20 hook. This set up seems light but you will be surprised just how much strain you can put on a chub with this set up. I do hasten to add that the river is not really snaggy and in most swims its a case of keeping the fish out of the brambles on the surface and under the water than and severe sunken trees of even trolleys you find on other rivers.
Around a hour and half into the session and still i plugged away with nothing to show as reward for my efforts. It was during the next hour though things changed. I began to notice a lot of debris coming down the river, grass cuttings at first and as time went on the off twig and branch and there was one big swell in the eddy to my right that confirmed a rise in the river was happening for sure. A tinge of colour at this point, nothing more, and the first bite came with this cracking dace below.
As predicted the rise in river had triggered the fish to come on the feed and another dace followed shortly after. This next half hour to forty minutes the swim went mad with fish solid on the feed right on my hemp. I knew this would not last but with dace of this quality i knew we had made the right decision.
A hour into the rise and the colour was starting to show really bad. I could no longer see the bottom at all on any part of the river and the colour was beginning to look more like milky hot chocolate than the weak tea of an hour or so ago. The bites where also tailing off now as the fish sensed the rise in the river was too great and i think moved into the slacks out of the main flow.
I decided to abandon my torrent down the middle that was once a gently glide and began to fish the slack to my right. A few minnows at first but the fact i was getting bites was the main thing and then i struck into something a bit more substantial that went straight into the flow. My line was perilously down the middle of the river and with logs coming down it was more a case of dodging the snags than the fish finding one as a game of line tetris was played out, oh how kids of today will never know the joys of a game boy :-)
The fish was the best fish of the day and although not big was the chub i was after.
Not long after this i saw the shape of my uncle coming down the field. His swim was just a glide with no slack so i knew the game was up with regards fishing the river. We both going fishing together and as a team we fish all manner of rivers and lakes but we also do work as a team if the fishing is good for one and not the other. My uncle had caught well taking a few nice dace and a chub to boot he had a cracking net of fish that showed how valuable it is to know the rivers you fish. We both knew we would catch and catch well but not for a long duration and i think i speak for us both when i say it was good to finally get some bend in the carbon.
Till next time