Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Fishing Republic Theseus Carp Cradle and Weigh Sling Review....

Hello and and welcome to this product review of the Theseus Carp Cradle and Carp weigh sling currently on sale from Fishing Republic.   These products where sent to me a few weeks ago for me to use and review on the blog.  After extensive period of use across many different types of fishing please find the review below of both products and a review video i have posted on the blogs you tube channel.

Youtube video review:

Theseus Carp Cradle and Carp Sling Review..

Product info:
Name: Theseus Carp Cradle
Dimensions: 115cm long x 55cm Wide x 26cm high
Price: £25.00

Product Info:
Name: Theseus Carp Sling
Dimensions: 125cm Long x 60cm Deep x 45cm Wide
Price £25.00


The Carp Cradle -

When the carp cradle first dropped on my doorstep and i opened it up i was genuinely shocked at two aspects of this product from the outset, one was how light the carp cradle was and two i was really impressed with how neatly it was all packed away.  My expectations all week had been for a large heavy and quite bulky product.

The actual cradle comes in two parts, a padded base and then the cradle with a mesh bottom and both fold in half and are held securely in place by two straps at either end which wrap completely round both produces when placed side by side to hold them securely.  I will go more into this feature later as this i found hugely beneficial when transporting both products together.

The water i chose to put this item through its paces was a local pool with a good head of small carp and a few bigger originals into double figures.  This pool i had fished for the past few years and i had used a small cheap unhooking mat during that time and i had found it really difficult from a blogging point of view to "process" the carp from catching them to unhooking them and then keeping them under control on a slippery mat with no side. at times it certainly made for a frustrating experience.

"From a Blogging point of View the Cradle has been a God send"

The biggest compliment i can pay this product is how it has revolutionised my experience on the bank fishing for carp and blogging.  The fact the fish can be placed inside this padded cradle and i feel confident the fish can come to no harm encased inside its sides.  The fish has plenty of space to move and the well padded bottom and sides ensure no damage to the fish.  As a blogger it makes the process of unhooking the fish and holding it up for a photo a very smooth process.

As regular blog readers will know i am not a angler who is going to catch a 20 to 30lb carp any time soon but i wanted to also show how this sling can be used in other ways and with that i went down the road of using it as a piece of apparatus that has its uses in match fishing.  On a recent session on Cheshire Fishery i knew i was in for a decent net of carp so i brought the cradle along for the final net shots to show the catch.

"My fishing might not see me put a 6olb carp in the cradle so i filled it with 60lb of carp"

Again from a blogging point of view this kit came up trumps again for me.  Many times when i have large nets and a good days fishing i can find dealing with the net at the end very hard work and the true scale of how good a session i have had can be hard to capture.  On this session i had over 60lb of carp and the cradle and the sling made light but quick work of the final nets.

The matt had more than enough room to fit all the carp and its high sides and fish friendly material ensured no damage to the carp when i took this quick photo.  This certainly could have benefits for those anglers looking for good shots at the end of their commercial fishing sessions.

The final good point i found with this kit was the material it was made from.  We all get it in the ear when our kit comes home smelling of fishing but this material meant a quick trip to the hose in the garden when i got home and it was easily cleaned and did dry quite quickly.

The Carp Sling -

This piece of kit i feel completes the package and I do feel to get the most out of them you do require them both.  The sling fits perfectly into the cradle so when i had a fish i knew i wanted to weigh the sling sat nicely over the edges of the cradle and the recess in the middle was created for the carp to sit in the middle.

The material inside the sling felt of a high quality and the mixture of mesh and material with holes in ensured the water drained quickly when you wanted to weight the fish and also the holes and mesh meant that water could completely fill the sling and allow a flow of water through the sling when it was submerged with the fish in the margin.

"With Plenty of Holes and mesh it allowed for the free movement of water through the sling for resting the fish"

A complete wrap round zip ensured the fish could not escape and although i never night fish so did not ever need the rest a fish in the sling for any amount of time to get pictures i did testing and the floatation tops on the sling ensured the sling held in place.  A huge amount of space in the compartment to hold any size fish you are likely to encounter i tested the sling with weights up to 60lb and straps coped with it easily.

Again as a package the sling slides in between the base of the cradle and the cradle to make the package easy to carp and transport to the bank.  I like to be mobile when fishing and these two going together so easily made it easy to move around swims and never felt like i was over burdened and not wanting to move with a view of the gear being a problem.

Final thoughts

All in all two products that really surprised me, i am not going to lie it presented some real challenges to incorporate it into my fishing but with a little thought and imagination i found products that dovetailed nicely and will certainly be a piece of kit that will feature in many more of my photos and sessions for both carp and pike.  Being a blogger i saw huge benefits in me dealing with fish on the bank and having more control of the fish when on the Matt, the camera set pics where obtained or video pieces recorded in quick time.  One bloggers life made a lot easier, now to catch a carp to fill them both :-)

Check out the video review for more info.

Monday, 3 April 2017

Cheshire Particle, Bailiff Role and Some Pond Fishing :-)

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update i hope find you all well and your nets wet.  Two blogs in short succession it finally feels like i am getting stuck into this routine and finding the time to fit it all in.  I am on top of the extra additional duties and sticking to my promise to be more proactive in my fishing this year.

Recent trips out on the bank have seen me bump into loads of people who read the blog, like buses you don't have many people mention it then all of a sudden you get people coming over for a chat everywhere you go.  I love this side of the blog and if you do ever see me on the bank please do come over and have a chat its great to hear your fishing stories.

The past two weekends has seen me targeting carp for a product review i have got coming up for a carp sling and it was great to bump into a regular blog reader on the bank and share a moment that saw him catch his first ever chub! A keen predator angler it was good to hear his stories from the same canal we fish, share some of my hot spots i have come across for perch and then sat back and waited for a run whilst watching his roach swim get stalked by a small jack pike.  We spend all winter chasing them on dedicated gear and how typical if fishing when you set up a roach rod and leave the pike gear at home, mr esox then finds you.  Who would be a fishermen eh?

I can honestly say i am loving my fishing at the moment and in that i mean all aspects of it.  The challenge of the fishing, different challenges with the writing and then the extreme challenge that is the youtube channel.  Challenge is good in any part of life not just fishing it keeps you on your toes and makes the journey one to remember.

Cheshire Particle...

Cheshire Particle is a North West bait company run by Mark.  Working from home to produce his own blends and mixes of particles he, in a short space of time, has gained a reputation for producing quality baits.  The 2016 sponsor of the wales carp fishing is a testament to the hard work put in by mark and his team of anglers.

link to cheshire particle: https://cheshireparticle.com/

The range of products on offer is fantastic ranging from parti-mixes, pellets, nut mixes to his new range of snail boilies and of course his particle mixes with hemp tares and maize, it is a range where anyone can find a bait that fits into their fishing.  I always like it when i come across anglers with an obvious passion for their sport and products and even more so when they are local, long term blog readers will remember me working with Beechwood baits a few years ago.

Of course this blog does stray into the world of carp fishing from time to time but when i was asked to work with Cheshire Particle i wanted to of course use items that compliment my fishing and dovetail nicely into my methods and ideas.  The stand out was of course hemp seed and i was also very interested in the hemp oil the company produced and the different ways i could incorporate that into my fishing.  A review of these two products will bin the coming blogs but here is a little taste of what this hemp and hemp oil can be used to catch.

Lymm Anglers Bailiff Role...

The world of fishing can be at times a world of gripes and discontent, certainly if you frequent facebook groups a lot you will certainly be open to this world.  I, at times, have also been guilty of having a lot to say on certain subjects but offering little in the way of a solution to the problem but like i said earlier 2017 i made a resolution to be more positive and more proactive in my angling,  April is fast approaching and i think i have been true to that word.

In the past 2 years i have seen the banks of my local canal, the bridge water, (Northern One) become a place i dont like, a place where you worry about its long term future and the effects certain types of behavior are having on the water.  In the past two years i have seen the pike fishing be reduced to a shadow of its former self and increasingly in that time i was catching pike with large sea hooks in their mouths and trailing tackle where the angler had been snapped on really light lines with no traces.

More and more i was seeing anglers mistreating fish when handling them and after getting chatting to  few anglers an ever increasing number of anglers with no licence.  This year i got chatting to another bailiff and i decided to put my name down to join a team of dedicated bailiffs and as a group we are now completing checks on the canal and in only a short amount of time have i think got a message that the canal is now in safe hands and being well bailiffed.

For me a bailiff role does not just confine to the boundary of checking cards and i want it to become the canal i remember as a kid, i want to see anglers back on the banks fishing the canal,  The lads and dads getting out and about to wet a line and create memories together on the local cut.    To achieve this is going to take time and a lot of effort and hard work.  I will certainly be covering in detail my sessions on there in the form of my youtube videos and on here and if you are local to the Cheshire area come and give this canal a go, you will not be disappointed.

You can acquire a licence here: https://www.lymmanglingclub.com/join-us

On to the Fishing:

Welcome to my...Pond Life...

So with a few product reviews in the past few weeks my fishing for once has been mainly dictated by the blog, not my normal way of doing things but some times it has to be done and carp fishing has been the area i have been spending most of mt time in recently.

As with all aspect of life it is always good to break away and  spend a few hours doing something completely different, an evening on a local small pond with my uncle offered such an opportunity and it was away with the carp rods and out with the maggotts and hemp.

A small secluded pond situated in the ruins of an old monastery it holds a wealth of history and the pond itself is part of that with it being a stock pond for the monks when they inhabited the local area.  How times change now someone taking carp from this pond for the pot would be seen in such a different light.

This pond is also quite sentimental to myself as both me and my dad helped to create the fishing pegs many years ago and s reward we where both granted with a fishing licence for life to fish the pond, a reward we drop in on from time to time, but in all honesty a place i fish quite infrequently.  A place, like the local canal, that holds so many special memories of mine and my dads fishing trips.

So with only a few hours in the evening we decided to give this little pond a go. The margins lined with toads in quite a amorous mood it was one of those typical early spring evenings, a warm breeze and intermittent sun and cloud, i was interested to see how the fishing had changed.

Feeding red maggot via the catty over the top of my light pole float soon saw some roach coming on the drop.  A decent pouch of hemp from the off would guarantee some feed on the bottom when the maggot arrived.  A deep swim for a pond at 10ft i fished a rig full depth with little shot to catch in all the layers as the bait fell.  Roach where soon coming steady on the drop.

As with all truly wild fish that need not our baits to sustain their existence their natural instincts soon kick in and caution outweighs the need to feed.  Changing feed and depths can fool the stranglers but keeping the fish coming can really be a game of cat and mouse.  My uncle was also getting steady bites and had actually landed a few small carp, distant ancestors of the very fish this pond was created for, the history of this place as i have said makes it so special.

A solemn silence soon came over my peg and it all felt very atmospheric as the float sat lazily dancing to the ponds tune as the slight ripple lapped up against the float.  A rhythm soon interrupted by the slightest of line bites, a fish moving on the bottom was the obvious culprit and when the float finally gave in the ever excited angler on the other end of the pole and sunk into to depths i knew little of what was going to be on the other end.

A hard fight seeing the drennan aqua elastic oozing from the end of the pole it was a good while before the fishes identity was certified especially with the severe depth of this pond.  Eventually through the surface came the shimmer of dark olive green and that most iconic of spring fish was slid into the landing net.  A teddy bear eye and a paint brush tail she was by far the fish of the session and a sign spring had finally sprung.

As the session wore on to its end and we reached that most mysterious time in any session, the last hour, the witching hour, a hour when you know those wise old fish are starting their hunt for food and if you get lucky maybe they will slip up and allow you to admire their beauty.

The last hour as the oily sun dropped below the horizon my palm was graced with bars of gold time and time again as some lovely crucian carp moved in over the bed of hemp seed.  A sight that brought those childhood memories flooding straight back.

A session end came in just as fast as the darkness began to fall and a cool mist began to creed over the pond, many say the morning mist is the ghost of anglers past then surely this mist rolling in just had the be the ghosts of the monks moving in to protect their pool through the hours of darkness.

Two nets that held so many memories.

Till next time enjoy you fishing and creating those special memories that will last a lifetime.


Wednesday, 22 March 2017

River Season End, Cheshire Fishery and Xchange Landing Net Review

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update i hope i find you all well and your nets wet.  Its safe to say that spring is well and truly here now and its fantastic to see all the little changes i spotted a week or two ago no bursting into full life and all around it seems like the world is coming to life.

Recent trips to the bank have seen the ducks starting to pair of and "do their thing" if you get me and a recent trip for an evening session on a a pond i was greeted to the margins alive with toads all preparing to spawn.  The morning commute to work is now done to the back drop of bird song and i know i always say that i love winter as the best time of year for myself enjoying my time on the bank but i think the reality is i love all the seasons for the little bits of magic they bring.

It is at this time of the year i find myself just heading out with just my camera on my phone to take some shots of nature and leave the rods tucked away at home.  The venues are always water related in some way but its just good to be out in the fresh air.  The Monday to Friday job as i have always said is simply just a means to an end to putting food on the table and pay the bills.  Its 4 walls and 5 windows do get you down so time is needed alone out in the wilderness with your thoughts or just by a river to wash away those stagnating days in the dungeon.

There have been some good changes recently in work and one of them has been the introduction of a late shift every week till 6.30pm.  The late is not great news but with a late finish comes a late start so it has meant i can take my time and after dropping the kids off at nursery i have a hour or two to burn.  This week i am writing this piece for my main blog but last week i took a leisurely walk along the local canal.

The walk was on a warm Wednesday morning the sun on my back and my camera in my hand it was a great start to my day.  Daffodils lines the path and fish where topping on the end of the wind i was heading into work in the next half hour but that was firmly at the back of my mind.

A lovely spring day

On to the update...

Time To Spring Into Life....

This week my next article for my role at Warrington Angling Centre went live.  I always try to keep these articles in a different style to this blog with them being more about the how i fish than the fishing as such.  I have always tried to keep this written blog about the experience of my fishing and not so much about the diameter of the line used.

In this latest blog i look at how i prepare away from actually fishing a session as spring arrives.  How and why i travel to the venues before i even wet a lone and the best times i have found for visiting that water you are looking forward to fishing in the coming weeks.

Here is a link the the article: http://www.warringtonangling.com/time-to-spring-into-life/

There are links at the bottom of the article to rate it out of 5 stars and to share it on your social media platforms.  It would be great if you could suport the articles in any way.

Xchange Landing Net Review

Product Info:
Price: £20.00
Link to product: https://www.tincafishing.co.uk/xchange--interchangeable-landing-net

Product description:
The XChange Interchangeable Landing Net Head is a landing net with a difference because you can change between different mesh sizes, depths and materials with ease.  It comes supplied with a set of 3 different varieties of mesh, and two more can be purchased separately.  Not only does this provide you with an all-round net, that is more cost effective, but it also means that if one mesh was to break or get a hole in it, you could easily put on a new one without having to buy a whole new frame!

A few weeks ago i was contacted by a company asking if i was interested in reviewing one of their products.  A landing net that allowed you to change the mesh to either a deeper one or a rubber one depending on the size or species you where fishing for.  It looked a really exciting product so i agreed to take a look.  What came really did capture myself as i think it is a fantastic bit of thinking outside the box and innovation.

Like with all things the best ideas are almost always the most simple and this one i no different.  A cut in the metal allows you to slide off the widget on the landing net mesh and pull it completely off the metal rim.  Attaching the new net is a simple as sliding the next net onto the gap into the metal.

I found this net really useful on a a recent session on Cheshire Fishery where i knew the carp had woken up so i wanted a deeper net in case some of the carp showed.  Luckily i  did as in the last hour 27lb of carp appeared under my feet.

The net offers fantastic versatility whilst only carrying the one net.  The rubber net will certainly come into its own for predator anglers fishing for perch who want a lightweight net with some depth in case an esox makes an appearance.

All in all a great product and below is it up close on the bank with my first ever video review.

Cheshire Fishery Silvers On Pole...

The river season in truth came to a drab and wet conclusion with most of the rivers carrying a good amount of water as we moved into the closed season.  At times like this it can be hard to decide what to do as the natural still waters are still slowly waking from their winter hibernation.  It can mean we are left with a period of quite hard fishing and this is when i firmly turn my attention to the commercials for some action.

A fishery we headed to last year was Cheshire Fishing in Tattenhall and it served us well for both silvers and the odd rod bending carp.  We decided to again head there again in search of the fantastic roach that reside in this venue please check out the session below.

The plan for the session was to fish two lines, one on caster and hemp for the silvers and the other for carp on a heavier elastic and bigger bait in corn.  The first few hours we sat in a cold corner of the complex struggling for bites and we soon decided to have a move onto one of the other pools on the lake.  It was a move that would remind me just how mad fishing can be.  Two pools on the same complex with the same conditions and same water depth yet one was dead and the other was alive.

With only 3 hours of the session left it did feel like it was only a case of hoping to get a few bites if we moves.  I set up on pool 5 and literally went down to one line on castor and Cheshire Particle Hempseed.  My plan was to try and make the most of the time we had left and just enjoy getting a few bites.

The rig was a simple light float that took 3 number 8 weights and i spread them evenly down the line to allow me to target fish in all the water layers as the bait fell.  The bait was introduced via a Preston soft pot. 

The fish where soon coming regular to the hemp and caster and with this type of fishing you really do get into a rythm.  I find each session is different with how the fish want you to feed, sometimes it is better to lay your rig in and feed over the top and others its best to feed and then follow it in with your rig.  On this session feeding first was certainly better.

The fish in the swim in good numbers i knew competition for the bait would son see the fish coming up in the water to the castors so i quickly set my rig to half depth and i certainly saw the quality of the silvers improve.  Testament to the competition i started to even get the odd skimmer on the drop.

Why is it with this type of fishing that when its good the time flies bye.  As the session came to an end the fishing went from strength to strength as the swim built up and the dusk set in.  I knew i had caught well but i was not ready for the final net to go over the 20lb mark!!

My first session out with the Cheshire particle hem seed and hemp oil, more on that in the coming weeks blogs but as first outing s go, well 20lb of roach in 3 hours speaks for itself!

Just a quick update this one really but there is some exciting news coming in the next update along with the regular videos on youtube.

Till next time

Tight Lines


Monday, 6 March 2017

End February Update - Chub Session and Simple Pike Rig

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update i hope i find you all well and your nets are wet.  Talking of wet just how wet has the passed two weeks been in the UK it has made fishing very very difficult indeed.  Old Dorris swept through causing endless chaos on the roads and no doubt on the rivers as well as i am sure she will have created a few more snags for those chub to hide from us anglers in.

Looking Forward To March 2017.....

so i thought with this new way of blogging it would be good for the last blog of each month to have a little look at my plans, as always weather permitting , for the upcoming month.  March is always a month of mixed emotions as we say good bye to the rivers and normally the pike fishing as well fades away during this month also.

"As One Door Closes So Another Opens"

In life i always refer to the saying "as one door closes so another opens" and it is never more true than in fishing.  The river and piking doors close and it opens up opportunities on the canals and lakes for some silver, tench and carp fishing.  Planning is always essential of course so with bad weather this weekend i spent most of Sunday driving round some waters just getting a feel for them for future trips.

So March, i have been lucky enough to be invited to fish a pike match towards the middle of march so i am looking forward to that and even if i dont catch it will be an experience to remember i am sure.  The first two weeks of march i am hoping to get out on the rivers for at least one session for roach and dace and of course some more chub fishing


If the weather continues as the rivers are high and coloured then my attention will turn to a bit of piking or carp fishing to see if we can winkle out one or two fish but all being well i am remaining positive and expecting to be out on the river.

My Simple Pike Rig...

So it has been around 3 years since the term deadbaiting appeared in my blogs and over that time i have had so many adventures chasing these beautiful creatures.  It has been hard going this season for them but asking around it seems to have been hard for all with pike being quite absent from their normal haunts.

Over that time i have tried many rigs for pike and although the choice of rig is determined by the venue m ore than anything else there is one rig that i would take anywhere.  In my recent article for Warrington Angling Centre i share my simple but effective float rig, a rig you can use for dead baiting and live baiting and a rig that offers no end of versatility in presentation on and off the bottom.

link to article: http://www.warringtonangling.com/deadbait-pencils-the-stealth-item-in-your-box/

On To The Fishing..

Chub Fishing - Effort Equals Success....

As mentioned above it has been a typically wet February and with it it has meant the rivers have generally been up above their fishable levels and for some of the bigger rivers in the fields.  When the weather is like this we look to the spate rivers and tributaries as these will generally fall and drop quite quickly.

When fishing a river you do need to spend time learning the river and how she behaves, most rivers you can work out how long they will take to drop and more importantly at what level they will be fishable.  It is also important not to be too put off by colour in the river as most river fish will be hard on the feed in the coloured water looking for insects and grubs washed in and often the only factor to consider is the pace of the river as to whether or not to fish it.

When you get to grips with your river you can then travel to their banks with confidence rather than hope and can actually make the most of small windows of opportunity where the river is fishable.  This window might only be a few hours before the next rain in the hills sends the river back into spate but for that window you can at least get a pull oin your string.

On this session i spotted the river was dropping fast and was fishable in the morning on the EA, i knew i might only have a hour and the fishing would be hard but if i located a shoal i would have a chance.  I traveled a good mile of river before i landed in a swim that held some chub and the action was frantic with chub and a rogue trout coming thick and fast

The second week was a complete write off with rain pouring down all week and flooded rivers meeting us at the weekend.  I decided to make the most of this gap and go for a look around some waters i fancy fishing in the coming weeks and it was certainly time well spent.

pic flowers

till next time i wish you all 

tight lines


Friday, 17 February 2017

New Blog Format and Mid February Update....

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update i hope i find you all well and your nets wet.  Well what can i say a week of work has come to an end and i find myself back at my desk.  Again writing this blog offers me a place of solace and, if only for an hour, a place to relax and enjoy updating the blog.

In this update i am going to cover a new format for the blog going forward and More importantly the reasons for this and will also have a look forward at what adventures are to come over the next month or so.  Grab a brew and lets get into it.

New Written Blog Format...

So we now move into another year of blogging and i think it is 6 years now since i started writing this blog and it has been fantastic to see it develop from a few paragraphs viewed by 10 people in a month to the almost feature length updates it now has on here attracting hundreds of views.

Over that time the blog has changed and like the very rivers i love to fish it has twisted and turned over time and now i feel we have come to the middle reaches, waters are calm and comfortable and the pace easy.    

"Easy, Calm and Comfortable are not a good place to be..."

Easy calm and comfortable is not a good place to be with anything you are passionate about.  you should be always looking at producing the best content you can and always be pushing some sort of boundary with your fishing whether that's going out of your comfort zone on projects or developing new ways of keeping your content interesting and due to this i feel the time is now for the blog to again develop and continue to allow me to produce the best blogs i can.

So going forward, regualr readers of this blog will be pleased to know the written blogs are going nowhere at all and i am more dedicated than ever to blogging on this media.  What will be changing is the regularity and the content of the blogs.   From march the blogs will go to fortnightly updates so there will be an update half way through the month and then another update on or around the end or start of the month.

The reason for these changes is simple,  my blog has now developed onto many formats and now is not just confined to the written format you see on here.  The social media side has grown to a pint where we have 2k followers on Twitter, close to 1k on Facebook and a growing popularity on Instagram.  As you will know recently i set up a Youtube channel for the blog and now regularly produce videos of my fishing sessions and have also undertaken a Consultant role at a local tackle shop.

all these commitments do take time out of my week and i am someone who puts my heart and soul into everything and to do all of these to the best of my ability there has to be balance so i am hoping updating this blog every 2 weeks, a video every Friday on Youtube and completing my consult role at the shop will all slide in nicely for me to do the best i can on all these avenues.

That is the fishing side of things but please do remember this is a hobby for me and there is no blog without the actual getting out on the bank fishing, all this is time out of my week.  I also work a 9-5 job and I am also a father to 2 kids and have a very understanding partner who quite frankly will always come first before all this so i really am doing my best to find some balance.

Lets see how it goes...

Looking Forward....

So February, a time of real change,  always a time tinged with mixed emotions for me as the daffodils coming up signal change is happening and for the river angler and pike angler in me i know the good times are now but it will all so quickly be over and another winter will have passed us by.

This time of year i really do start to think about the exciting fishing to come after the rivers close and my mind right now is ticking over with a few ideas of trips to come.  I am thinking of spending the two weeks after the rivers close on a commercial chasing silvers and carp and from march starting to get on the canal for silvers and chasing those carp again on floating crust.

One species that will be getting some attention from me this season will be the tench.  I have run into these red eyed teddy bears a few times over the past years on the canal and i think a targeted attack on them is well overdue, as is some dawn raids on bigger waters for them.  

All in all im looking forward to the new exciting adventures to come with spring even if i am a little sad to be leaving the pike, chub and dace fishing behind.

On to the Fishing..

So with a week off work it has been a case of having a back log of content to work through, never a bad thing i have learnt over the years.  The two fishing sessions released so far are a session on cheshire fisheries and a Chub fishing session on the river and here they are:

Cheshire Fisheries - A cold Winters Day

Monday morning and i headed in my car to meet my mate Gary for a days fishing on Cheshire fisheries near tattenhall.  The barometer recorded a barmy -3 and already before we left there was a wind howling through the trees outside Gary's house, experience over the years had taught me to expect a rough day as a wind before first light is always a bad omen for the rest of the day.

Heading onto the Cheshire plains i knew we would be exposed to the elements so we set up on a pool down the embankment hoping the wind would blow over our heads and miss us.  It surely was a lot calmer down the bank out of the wind and with a few fish topping it all looked well.

setting up either side of a overhanging tree i had high hopes for the session ahead and i set out a all pole plan to fish ground bait and maggot on one line and hemp and caster on the other.  Cutting the first few hours short it was a very very slow start that saw us catch the odd fish and i also lost a carp but when the fish started coming like the one below i knew it was time for a move.

A move onto the top pools put is right in the weather but straight away i was into roach and of a nice stamp.  All on maggot at first and i did try to put in a caster line but no bites where forthcoming on it.  As the session wore on the bites slowed and i managed to latch into a carp, the peg dying was a sure sign of their arrival.

The wind howling now and icy cold rain coming down i moved over to castor shallow and it proved to be a good call with roach coming at regular intervals. The wind and rain made it hard to get pictures never mind blog so it was a grueller but enjoyable in a mad type of way.

Garry was also fishing a pole with a waggler rod out the side and was also picking up regular roach and had also snared a nice carp, a good reward for suffering the weather.  The roach continued to come as well as two more carp that had been attracted onto the castor line.

At 3pm we decided to call it a day and weigh out nets.  A combined net of over 23lb of fish and some quality silvers did warm the soul, even for a few minutes.

As the weather warms i am looking forward to getting back on this exciting fishery.

Chub Fishing Session - Deadly Tactics For Catching Chub 

In river fishing it always pays to spend as much time on your rivers and learn their moods.  How quick they rise, how quick they fall and how the colour varies with their depths after rain fall.  Each river is different and learning them means you can pretty much always have a river to try.

Sometimes after the levels of rain recently the river might only be right for a few hours before the next load of rain sends them back into flood so you really do have to make the most of small windows of opportunity.  Last Friday was one of those windows so after dropping the kids off at school i set of in search of chub.

With Rain due in the afternoon i knew it was going to be a whirlwind session of only a hour or two.  In this video i cover that short session and a deadly tactic i use when chub fishing to get a few quick bites from wary chub.

Please like and subscribe to the channel to be updated when new videos go live:

That concludes another angling blog update.  I hope you have a fantastic session on the bank and till next time i wish you all.

tight lines


Thursday, 2 February 2017

Fishing the Whip Using Mole Hill Soil and Free Kids Fishing!!

A warm welcome to this weeks angling blog i hope i find you all well and your nets wet.  So we are now a few weeks into the year and i have to say i am feeling confident and optimistic for the year ahead.  The piking is still dreadful but i guess thats where being an all rounder adds strings to your bow as the roach fishing on the rivers has been fantastic and if i am honest has drew my attention more than the piking.

A nice update this week to the written blog where i will cover a session recently using mole hill soil ground bait for the fish and of course i am as busy as ever trying to keep all angles covered there is a video to go with the session as well.  So if you like a read you can read the blog and if you like to see it in action and on film then there is the youtube arm of the blog.

Thats it from myself point of view as the only thing i need to add is the fact my profile has gone live now on the Warrington Angling Centre website on the links below and there is one or two articles already on there.

link: http://www.warringtonangling.com/about-us/our-team/danny-bellfield/

Free Fishing For Under 16's!!

I was recently contacted by a club and asked if i would share some information on their club via the blog and social media.  As you all know i am all for getting the next generation out on the banks of the rivers, lakes and ponds so i was more than happy to help the club out.

"Free Fishing for kids under 16 at Twyford & District Fishing Club"
The Club is called Twyford and District Fishing club and is based just outside reading.  They have several stretches of the rivers Loddon, Thames and St Patricks Stream which offer fantastic barbel,chub, pike and silver sport.  The club also has lakes containing bream and carp as well as some beautiful ponds on the card.  

A Junior ticket last year cost £15.00 but in a fantastic move for angling the club has wavered this cost this year and with the fact the EA has also wavered the licence costs for children from April 1st it means youngsters under 16 can now fish this clubs waters for FREE!! 

If you are local follow this link and fill in the form: www.tdfc.org.uk. 
On to this weeks fishing:

River Fishing on The Whip using Mole Hill soil Ground Bait..
A video of the following session is available here:

After 2 weekends over time i was chewing at the bit to get out on the bank and wet a line so when the opportunity of two days came up on the leave i hastily booked the Thursday and the Friday off work.  The 3 days in work seemed to pass by in a second and i was soon getting the fishing gear into the hall on the evening of the session and preparing some rigs.

The next day was due to see a drop in temperature so i made the decision there and then not to go with the stick float and decided to fish a small whip.  The huge advantage here would be speed of course and also if we had a freeze over night then i knew there would be no issue with the rod rings freezing.

The night before i prepped one rig using my favourite 2lb 10z line and a nice fine hook length.  A simple light float was all that was needed as i knew with not much rain about i expected a low and clear river.

The whip was made up in seconds and put away in the holdall and i was all set for the session the next morning.  I have to say i was really excited as the 2 weeks exile had me itching to get out on the bank, if only to wisp away the cobwebs from 2 weeks at a desk.

I awoke the next morning to the ground glistening white and opening the front door i was met with a icy blast of cold refreshing air.  Not ideal but not exactly a disaster.  As an angler who fishes all year round i am more than accustomed to the bad weather this country can produce and to be honest opening the door to a hard frost fills me with more excitement than opening the door to it blowing a hooilie and raining.

The layer of ice removed from the car i set about my normal Thursday routine of dropping the kids off at school.  A few funny looks later from the teaches who seemed a little surprised to see me in thermal boots and fishing gear and not my normal work shirt and pants i was on my way to the bank.

The luxury i have of a weekend was evident straight away as i fought through rush hour traffic to get to the river, never an issue at 5am on a Sunday morning!

"With the Ground bait my whole aim was attracting the fish
and not feeding them so reducing feed content was essential"

I arrived at the bank and first job was to mix the ground bait.  The temperature was just above freezing cold so i knew feeding the swim was going to be a balancing act and this had to show in my ground bait.  My whole aim here is to attract the roach into the swim and not feed them. My mix on the day was Dynamite baits silver x ground bait, a fantastic silver fish ground bait all year round but like all ground baits it does contain a lot of feed like hemp and maize in i so the first job was to riddle the ground bait straight from the bag.

As you can see below just a quarter of a bag contains quite a lot of bulk feed

So the extra feed removed and up the bank i mixed the ground bait as normal and then passed the mix through a riddle to give me a nice fluffy ground bait base.  I then added the mole hill soil, i add here i had riddled the soil when it was harvested.  

The aim here is to bulk out the ground bait so you have a lot more to work with and also to reduce the feed content of the mix.  The mole hill soil is neutral and contains no feed at all so it means that every time i mix a ball up that ball contains a mixture of mole hill and ground bait so its not all ground bait going in the swim.  The mole hill soil will add colour and the ground bait adds the smell and attraction with little or no actual feed when the fish arrive.

The most important component when whip fishing is feeding.  You only have a certain arc and range in which you can catch fish so you need to feed in a way so the feed is on the bottom of going through the water in front of you.  Keeping the fish where you want them is key and you control this by feeding the swim correctly.

Too much feed will see the fish come up the peg and in the water and make them hard to catch while too little can see not enough fish attracted to the swim and can see the fish back off out of range where they know its safe.

In an ideal world you feed just enough to keep the fish in the swim and to attract more but still only enough to keep the fish in your swim competing for the food.  Once the roach are competing the formula is complete and the fishing really does become easy.

The feeding established i soon got into a rhythm,  cast in, feed, hold back, hold back and then strike.  Doing this i was soon putting fish in the net at a good rate and although the fish where not of any size i knew through sheer numbers a weight was possible.

It was literally a bite a chuck all session and by the end i had the fish right off the end of the whip.  When you get the feeding right and prepare your baits correctly you can have a really good and cheap days fishing.

The final net went 19lb and the only thing that saw me leave was the coldness on my hands from holding so many freezing cold roach.  I left the bank a little sad i didn't stay a but longer for the magical 20lb net but happy with the session and the footage i had put together.

Thank you for reading and please like and subscibe on the youtube channel to be alerted when videos go live.

till next time

tight lines


Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Warrington Angling Centre Consultant Role and Heatholder product review..

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update i hope i find you all well and you nets wet.  We are now well into January and for me it has been more of a case of whats going on away from the actual fishing than time on the bank.  If i am honest time on the bank has been hard to come by what with overtime and other commitments and even then when i have had a window of opportunity mother nature has either dealt me a flooded river of a gin clear canal.

That is fishing and if blogging for over 5 years has taught me anything it is to take the rough with the smooth in the knowledge that all will come good in the end.  In this update i talk a little on a exciting role i have accepted, a product review and then a brutally honest look at the disaster that has been my post November pike fishing.  The fishing is a session on the River Weaver where it didnt go all to plan.

Angling Consuultant Role Warrington Anngling Centre..

I am excited and over the moon to announce that i have been asked to become an Angling Consultant working with Warrington Angling Centre.  Its a role i saw advertised over Christmas and thought on for a day or two as it is a huge commitment to take on especially with this blog being already quite time consuming as it expands onto Youtube but it was an opportunity that both excited me and one i just had a good feeling about.

I will be joining a small team of Angling Consultants of which there are two i know and have spoke to over facebook from time to time and are both fantastic anglers.  The team will give us all opportunities i feel to learn from each other in aspects of fishing that we might not try a lot.  For myself i am looking forward to the challenge of producing different content to this blog and trying to produce content for them that is more tactics and tackle i use based as opposed to the blog writing that is more about how i perceive the fishing and how it was on the day.

I will post links to any content that goes live on their page in these updates i would really appreciate any support you can  give them with  likes and shares.

Thermal Sock Product Review...

Product info

Price: £4.99
Link to Site: https://heatholders.co.uk/products/socks
Tog: 2.3

"A fit for purpose product to be proud of. 

It swiftly became our single-minded mission to make the warmest thermal sock on the planet.
What followed was two long years of experimentation and innovation, re-tooling equipment 
and routinely discarding yarn mixes until unique 3 stage knitting process was perfected.

Due to specially developed construction and our intense brushing process,
trap more warm air close to the skin keeping you warmer for longer!
Whether pursuing outdoor activities, working in a cold climate or simply for that extra confidence
and comfort in those cold winter months will help ensure NO MORE COLD FEET!"

On the Bank Review:

The morning of the review and it was away with my trusty Skee Tex Thermal boots and in came the thermal socks and to give them a thorough test i wore a pair of normal every day boots with them.  The day of the  test was quite mild compared to the recent snow flurries and frosts we have had but ti was still in low single figures, so it would be a test.

Adding to the test was the fact that i was pike fishing which by its nature is very much cast in and sit and wait for the pike to make the next move.  The session passed by without much activity on the pike floats but whilst i whittled away the hours hoping the float would move my feet remained OK.  I don't judge how well a thermal piece of kit does in keeping me warm by how warm my body is kept or saying "yes these thermals where amazing i was sweating buckets all morning"  I always judge them by one simple test and that is:

"Was i sat there thinking my feet are cold? And the answer
to that question was a solid No"

Not once during the session did i think my feet where cold so they certainly passed the test for me.  As a product they did the job they where asked too on the conditions provided.

The price of this sock i think is reasonable and i was impressed with how thick they where which made walking in the boots easier.  They will be fitting into my fishing come that period as we move into spring where its too warm for the skee tex but you still feel you cannot risk a trip out with a pair of boots with normal socks on.

All in all a solid product that does the job its asked to do in keeping your feet warm, they certainly have worked while i have typed this piece in my cold kitchen ;-)

Piking Hard Spell

For those keeping up with the pike videos on youtube you will have seen the video around the blanks coming to an end with a nice pike.  I thought this would be a line in the sand but quite frankly the piking has been really really tough.  In the few years i have been piking i can honestly say December to date has been some of the hardest pike fishing to date.  It has been a huge challenge to get a bite and when takes have come they have been tiny jack pike that have either come off or been of the micro variety.

The only consolation at the moment, small consolation at that, is that everyone is struggling so you can kind of not beat your self up as much about it.  It seems the pike, for one reason or another, are just not in  the normal spots.  I do believe they are still in the vicinity of the normal winter haunts but are not as yet tightly packed in and i think it has to do with the weather.

Extreme cold is certainly a factor in why fish shoal in deeper or sheltered areas and i believe the reason we are not getting numbers of pike is the fact the shoals of prey fish are still so spread out with the mild temps.  A few days of freezing and snow is soon replaced with barmy 10 degree temps.

Eventually the big girls will have to show up for spawning reasons but if that is the case its looking like a short frantic sprint towards the end of the pike season.

On to the fishing

Tough Session on The River weaver....

video of the following session is here to view: 

A freezing cold morning with all the puddles carrying a thick lid of ice as i loaded the car for a days fishing.  Sat in the drivers seat i began thinking of where to go on such a cold day.  It had to be a river as there was no chance the local canal and ponds would not be encased in a icy tomb.

The river Dee and River weaver where my two choices and knowing the circus that goes with the river Dee at this time of year i opted for a quiet day on the banks of the River Weaver.  I say quiet i knew the match stretch i was heading too would be far form quiet given its close vicinity to the main road.

 The gritters had certainly been slacking the night before as i made my way slowly to the venue, some of the roads completely iced white with the ice it made for a event full slow trundle to the river.

Arriving it was complete day light and i began walking the stretch looking at the pegs.  It was already noticeable there was little topping.  Fish topping was not a disaster in my opinion as i was fishing the bolo which by the very method you want the fish down deep to catch them.  The abundant predatory bird life gave away enough of a clue to the shoals below for me to get excited.

I had already fished a few swims on this beat so i decided to try a swim i had never tried before.  It was a swim where the river narrowed slightly so in theory i was thinking i was closer to the deeper water down the middle which would make for easier line control and an enjoyable days fishing, how wrong i was.

A 3gram bolo and my 17ft float rod set up i began to plumb up and found a deep run just this side of the middle with the river shallowing up along the far bank with also a deep channel under my feet where i had already spotted a pike grabbing its breakfast.

Feeding caster and hemp and with a red maggot on the hook  i began and the first run through brought a small roach to the net with the second run through bringing a slightly bigger roach in what was a great start to the session.

Unfortunately that is where the good news story ended as form that point till 1 pm i hit snag after snag after snag.  I tried a bit closer in on the middle line, a bit further out, down the far side and literally off the rod tip and every time i would trot through get a fish and then hit a snag.

This is river fishing of course so days like this do come along but i have to say days where you can not find a line at all are rare and i pitied anyone who got this peg in a match.

i thought about moving but you learn nothing by moving from a peg and was determined to learn the swim for future session and it paid off as around 1pm i found a line i could trot about a foot down stream of the Rod tip and it was clear.  I put together the final net of fish in between 1pm and 2.30pm where a pike marauding through the swim killed it.  I knew i had no where else to try in the swim so it was the killer to the swim that was impossible to remedy.

Not the greatest days fishing i have ever had but time spent after the session thinking it over saw me draw the positives and i knew in future to one try and avoid that swim and two if i have to fish it i know know a piece of the jigsaw as to where i can at least fish a line.


Monday, 9 January 2017

Happy New Year And Upper River Weaver Stickfloat Session

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update i hope you are all well and your nets wet.  A few days left till i go back to work and i can honestly say i am dreading the thought of being confined 8 hours a day really doesn't fill me with the joys of spring.  A few trips to the bank before then hopefully will give me enough stored energy to survive till the next fishing trip.

On With This Weeks Update..

Happy New Year...

I would just like to take this opportunity to wish all the people who read my blog and follow my adventures online a Happy new year and the tightest of lines for 2017.  It has been quite a good 2016 for myself fishing wise.  I ended the pike season with a nice pike then launched a mini series on fishing the local canal which has been well received and then spent some magical trips on the bank with my little daughter catching her first few fish.  Summer days chasing carp on bread and corn and then autumn roach sessions on the river have all made a fantastic years fishing.

From the fishing blog point of view it has been a year of steady increase with numbers of views each month on the blog rising to record levels, facebook and twitter continue to be increasing and more importantly is becoming a place to share your adventures more and more which is the reason i set it up and then towards the end of the year the launch of the blogs youtube channel which has added a whole new dimension to the angling blogs.

It has been great over the year to work along side some fantastic companies such as Octoplus and Stinky Stuff to name ones that really stood out and i cant wait to work with these again in the coming months. 

Looking to the future and what it holds for the blog and my fishing i can honestly say i am as excited as ever for the adventures to come.  This year has been far from easy on the new cards we are on but in the coming year it has give us a huge bed to build on from.  There are a few irons in the coals with little product reviews and possible opportunities and i am excited to see where these lead but the plan for this year is to be a lot more proactive with the blog and maybe tweak the updates to be more informative as to how i fish.

Any feedback on if you like it how it is now or changes you would like to see let me know via email of private messages it really is appreciated.

Upper Weaver Silvers Session...

A few weeks earlier we had visited this venue and been met with a hard overnight frost.  If i remember rightly the temperature was minus 4 when we arrived and did not get over that all session.  The fish where still there on the feed but with line freezing on the reel never mind the rod rings it meant once the fish moved out of pole range i was a little stuck with chasing them.

A video of the session is here:

In keeping with this mad winter we are having it was only a week or two later we where again on the same pegs and where met with temperatures more like spring that early December.  Basking in the early morning warmth we set about sorting the gear out and the river looked in fine fettle after rain a day or two ago she was carrying plenty on colour but more importantly the flow was steady.

A six number four stick float fished shirt button style down to a Bayer Perlon hooklength of 1lb.7oz line to a size 20 hook was my set up for the day and it was a test for my new drennan acolyte.  When people say test you automatically think about if the rod can haul big chub out of rivers, that is all to come, but for me i wanted to test how light the tip and action was for small species like roach.  This for me is as important as the power the rod has and will be more so when i try it out on the canals in weeks to come.

The swim was an even depth along its length and the key here is to feed the swim right to keep the fish where you want them down the swim.  The last thing you want on the stick float is the fish coming right up to the feed in front of you.

Hemp seed as a holding bait and red maggot on the hook was my plan of attack and that all important first run through the swim of the day thankfully brought a fish, always the result you want on any session!

My confidence in this rod was increased in two casts with the small roach not being bumped and the second fish being a few year sizes larger also being well hooked and played on the rods forgiving tip action, but with the power to keep it from the safety of the reeds.  It was starting to become a rod i was loving using.

My previous rod a 4 piece korum float rod had also been a rod i had enjoyed using and still do from time to time but this drennan acolyte was i have to say starting to show its extra worth when balanced with my shimano reel.  Trotting where you cant feel anything in your hands is a weird sensation indeed.

As with all fishing the swim builds over time and picking up steady bites from small roach soon turned into steady bites from better roach as they bullied in on the action.  As with all fishing its all down to the way they want it on the day and on this session it was held back just after the hemp seed, let the line go and boom under the float went.  The 6lb net from a few weeks ago was surely going to be beat today as the stamp was so much better.

As the session went on the fish did back off and i had to chase them down the swim but in my heart of hearts i knew better roach where around so i decided to give hemp seed on the hook a go and was pleasantly surprised as after a few trots down i was rewarded with a cracking roach, my first ever on hemp seed.

After this fish the fishing went from strength to strength and it was good fishing until we packed in. We normally call it a day around 3pm and start the pack up but it was well on to getting dark when we eventually packed up and although we had no scales we both had  double figure nets and a great day was had all round.

A video of this session is now live on the blogs youtube channel here:

Till next time i wish you all

tight lines


There was an error in this gadget