Sunday, 20 April 2014

Tench Fishing Little Billinge, Carp Quest Blues and Summer Arrivals....

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update.  Well where do I start with this weeks update I really do not know at all,  from a fishing point of view I feel about as low in confidence as I ever have in the whole of my angling life, this carp quest really has taken it out of me both mentally and physically.  I am putting in the hours, too many in fact, resulting in more time away from the house and less time spent on the fishing I normally do like tench and silver fishing.  All time away from this water and the quest not only feels like time wasted but I am not actually enjoying the fishing I am doing when I go for silvers as my mind it locked into this one venue and cracking it.

It begs the question should fishing really be this almost obsessive? I am putting in the time on the lake and leaving each time learning a little bit more about the place but not really feeling any closer to the end goal, not at this moment at least leading into the bank holiday weekend.  Some people will say how can fishing be tiring all you do is sit there all day well I would agree with them a few weeks ago but just try sitting there expectant of a bite all day, I guess some can switch off but I cant and one thing carp fishing gives you in abundance is time to think over your plans and problems time and time and time again and as that time goes on so the hours without a bite rise and with it the puzzles grows.  Like all things I do new on this blog I never do the easy option and yet again have jumped in the deep end starting on a really hard water where most bites come in the night and at the moment at least seem to come from one or two spots that always are taken.  I will of course cover these session on the mini carp quest blog but as this blog is about me and my fishing i thought i would get down in the blog just how I am feeling.

I also can say 100 percent I was not prepared for the nature of some of the people I have had the displeasure to share a lake with on this quest, don't get me wrong I have met some really genuine guys on the lake but as in all cases the minority can leave a place tinged and non more so than a session I did on Saturday.  I arrived at the lake just before first light and as there was two guys night fishing on the main bank i set up on the far bank putting one rod just before half way to a gravel bar and a rod down my left hand margin about 20 yard up the bank.  Anyhow my rods set i settle in to my first brew of the day and with that two guys I met the week before arrive on the other bank on the other side of the lake.  I thought nothing else of it till one of the guys bait in hand walks round the whole lake to drop his bait in my margin just 10 yards up my bank!  I politely said i have got a bait in the margin there mate and you will be over my line.  To this the guy walked round the bank telling his mate I had bait in the margin to which a barrage of "i don't give a "£$% ill cast over his lines" "I'm facing his bank i can fish in a straight line to that bank" and so for the rest of the bay the "whispering" continued (there not the quietest).

Now I see myself as a genuine, nice mannered and decent guy and after years fishing empty banks with my uncle I must say I am not used to feelings of anger and down right frustration on the bank when fishing, especially to other, I was going to say anglers, but i could teach our little girl to walk a bait round the other side of a lake and wait for a bite to be frank.  I must say its left a bad tinge and has really effected my fishing and i know it should not but it does and I am not alone one guy passed me this week who packed in not long after their arrival saying I cant be doing with the noise and constant shouting and he packed in!!.  Anyhow back to the problem I am a fond believer in if you want to fish a certain area so badly or peg then you dam right make sure you get on the bank before anyone else does, I wanted the far bank to discover a new area so I got out of bed and got my back side to the lake.  Any how rant over ha-ha.

I am making this carp quest sound a right doom and gloom but I guess the events above and me knowing i was documenting them in this blog have tinged the introduction with a tinge of upset and well to be frank disappointment. The reality is that a lot of the time spent on this water has been during the change from winter to full on spring and I have to say for the wildlife alone this place is a real mecca.  There are currently a family of grebes on the lake that this week have brought their young out of the nest and onto the main lake, boy do they consume a lot of fish a day!  There is also three families of coots that are constantly at war with one that has a nest right in the bank margin and I know for a fact she is currently on eggs.  To the skies and the recent warm weather has seen the buzzards out soaring above the pit and this week I even saw a kingfisher flash across my swim.  The sad news this week is that the family of swans I wanted to document as they courted, nested and brought up a family have sadly moved on and I think it may have to do with a local predator as there is the skeletal remains of a swan in the wooded part of the pit from a while ago, i fear these swans may have been spooked off by this predator.   Great fun is never to far away and the three bulls in the field behind me brighten up long bite less day on the bank so charismatic and some of the faces they pull crack me up.

Away from angling this time of year has become synonymous with one bird for me and that is the osprey and to be more direct about it the known birds that return each year from Africa to the Dyfi project in Wales.  Long term readers of my blog will remember i covered this project last year and I was really made up recently when Glensi and then Monty returned back to the nest.  Things have quietened down of late as for the passed week or so there has been a monumental battle between Glensi and Blue24 for the rights to the nest which is prime real estate in these parts for sure.  A link is attached below to the Dyfi site so if your interested in Wildlife i am sure you will love this little slice of wildlife bliss that's documented every year.

Dyfi Project website:

Closer to home I have also seen a few migrants arriving of late arriving in the local area, now i know the lapwing is not so much an immigrant more a gypsy traveller in winter to mainly coastal areas but the arrival of them back in the local fields around the area is a sure sign the weather is set to drastically improve and become more stable and warm.  Along with these arrivals come the long haul travellers in my first swallows skimming the water late in the evening for a lat minute drink and to mop up the first of the fly hatches of this year.  The seasons changing, wildlife and the coming and going of species and being a part of the seasons as they are changing is a magical part of my time on the bank and for me the fishing can be as good or as bad as it wants the wildlife and experiencing nature up close and witnessing such beauties as the first frost or an early morning low lying fog burn from the water or seeing a pair of grebes cautiously coaxing their young from the reeds for the very first time are moments that will live with me forever, truly magical experiences.

And with that its on to this weeks fishing...

Tench Fishing:  Little Billinge the home of Teddy bear eyed monsters???

Another session completed on the carp quest and sat behind silent bite alarms it was time for a change and during the drive home I began to think if what it was I wanted to do so.  Last year I had been quite good at catching tench instead of carp so with that I decided to have a few hours on the Monday afternoon chasing my first tinca of the year.  Sunday evening I began thinking of a plan of attack and rummaging through my old bait in the bait cupboard I cam across two items that had done me well in the passed in a unopened gag of Crab and Garlic monster boilies and a glug pot of the same bait that had been marinating in a glug of hemp oil, korda goo and a secret additive that will remain secret.....forever!.

That night I began making up a few specialised tench rigs for the session ahead, smaller hooks and lighter hook lengths were needed and as I was tying them I began to remember those rod bending runs I was getting on last years carp quest and quite how my results using the same materials could be so different and it was then it struck me something in my set up for the carp water was not right and I needed to begin tweaking in stead of casting out the same set up, any how that is another story.

My tactic for the session was a two pronged approach with a different bait on each rod,  my first rod would of course be on the monster crab and mussel boilie fished with a pva bag of crushed boilie and whole boilies in the bag and the second would be fished with a marine halibut pellet with again a pva bag approach filled with mini pellets hoping to pick up a tench or one of the big bream that live in this lake.

Arriving at the pit around noon I was hoping to sneak in around 6 hours of fishing as I knew I had to be off around 6.30pm to do a few jobs, not exactly the best times for picking up a tench but if i managed to pick up just one fish I would be a happy man.  I set up in a quiet swim towards the far end of the lake presenting one bait along a snaggy margin and the other one into open water to my right

My hope this summer is to get around a document as many waters on the Northwich card as possible to try and get them added to the venues I fish area of the blog, with them being all within a 30 mile radius it should not be a hard task, finding time to fish them may take a little longer though.   The baits set it was time to chill out and relax.

Little billinge sits in the shadow of its bigger brother big billinge, both separated by a road these two pits i believe at one time where connected as one body of water.  Speaking to a number of anglers on the bank over the past weeks it has been common for a few people to repeat the the same story that any tench and big bream the carp anglers catch in big billinge are put into little billinge and given how close these lakes are you can see it happening.  As wrong and i think against the law this is it has left quite a small water in size to be populated with some really special fish with bream to up around double figures and tench again to the same its a place that could really throw up the odd surprise.  The water contains a number of pegs on both banks with the ones as you walk on looking really inviting for the pole angler as the far bank reeds are easily accessible by pole for at least the first 3 pegs after which it becomes wider.

It turned out to be an unplanned social fishing session as Gary and his mate turned up and not long after blog follower scott turned up as well to fish.  Scott had a decent session on the pole taking a few big bream and tench,  Gary and his mate had a steady day on the close in margin line taking countless roach and perch and gudgeon and Gary ended the day with two fantastic tench on the feeder.

I had a few liners giving the presence of fish in the swim away and after around 2 hours the rod screamed away, not used to activity of my new bite alarms panic set in which saw me striking the wrong rod to the amusement of the baying crowd (cant believe i am admitting to this).  Anyhow after realising my comical error I struck to second rod and was into a hard fighting fish that I must admit a played lightly being the first decent fish in ages I had hooked into.  A prolonged battle later the fish was in the net waiting to be unhooked.

This gave me a chance to get some practise in for when I eventually connect with these carp so it was out with the unhooking mat and the weight sling.  I was also using my 42inch landing net which I thought was great as it kept the fish quiet ans secure in the margin and allowed me to unhook and place the tench in the weigh sling in the water.

Like most of my purchases of late they will cross over into my winter pike fishing and I can see the weigh sling being a great bit of kit next season and the large landing net has also got me thinking of picking up a large rubber net for the piking as well.

The tench went exactly 5lb on the scales and being a male bodes well for the possibility the females could go to double figures.

Well packing away at 6.30 i certainly felt like i was leaving at the wrong time of day but needs must and getting out as much as I do I can't really complain.

till next time i wish you all

tight lines


1 comment:

  1. Danny.
    I know this is an old post but the dilemma you face is one I crossed. When fishing for carp, you have to have the time and blanking is not constructive. Your situation with work and family is suited to the river and small ponds, where you can turn up spend a few hours and catch some fish. It makes you feel good about life. Carp fishing can and does get you down, especially when you have commitments, and know you should be fishing early and late in the day.
    I can only say once I stopped chasing big fish, I started to enjoy my fishing again. All fish came my way, small and some bigger, and I honestly don't feel I'm missing out, not one bit. Running a weekly blog you also have to have something to talk about, viewers will not read all about how close you came.
    I eventfully put my carp fishing into a special box, that I only take out when I know there is a good chance of catching, like when they are on the floaters. I get a few big fish on April/May off the top and that's my fix.
    Keep going the blog and videos are cracking mate.