Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Stickfloat Fishing the River Dane: New Area Explored

A warm welcome to a midweek blog update on the second session of the season.  The rivers have been in fine fettle and i hope they have been as kind to you as they have to me.  Lets get straight into it.

The River Dane: 17th June: New But Challenging Swim Produces

With the excitement of the opening session on the Monday behind me I woke up a little later than usual on Tuesday. for most it would be a normal  time to go fishing but for me 8am in the morning feels like I have missed out on the best bit and quite often if i wake this late i don't even bother going.

I arrived on the river and checked in on a mate i knew was on her banks from first light to see how he was getting on.  He was in the swim i had fished the previous day and by all accounts had got of to a great start but the swim had died a bit like mine had the previous day and when i arrived was going through a bit of a lull.  As always i spent far too much time gassing in the swim and it was gone 10am by the time i got back in the car and headed to find a swim. 

I always say on my blog that there is no substitute for preparation and having walked the banks a number of times in the closed season I had a fair idea of what swims where available.  There were no end of easy to fish and simple end of rod tip trotting swims to choose from but since seeing the river all those weeks ago i had my heart set on trying a swim that in all senses of the word was a feeder swim but i knew given the right set up had the potential to be exceptional on the float.

The swim coming of a straight onto a wide bend has a massive slack on the inside and a slack on the far bank with the main flow keeping much to the far side and the trot sweeps round the outside of the bend and down into a tree.  It had all the features to say it would hold some fish and the cover to hold some better chub in my opinion.  Most of the dane you will get away with a 6 to 10 number 4 float and a 13ft rod but in this swim i knew my 17ft float rod would come into its own and my main priority would be to keep any line from the inside slack as this would drag the float in and ruin the presentation.

Float choice was also important and it may seem silly to some my choice in float but i went with a 4 gram bolo float as i knew the extra weight this provides would help me keep the float and bait going down what was quite a narrow line on the far side.  My bait for the day was 2 pints of maggot and pint of hemp seed.  The gear ready i was all set to make a start.

The first few trots down the float was riding high in the water giving away a shallow depth change which saw me altering the depth accordingly.  You then always get that one trot where the float goes down proper and about 10-15 yards down the trot the float went from being up in the water to settling nicely and within seconds it buried and the first fish was on its way in, a nice roach to start off.

It became obvious as the session went on that there were two deep holes along the run as the float would ride up in the water and then settle for 5-10 yards then back up again before settling into another deep hole and in each of these i had a chance of a bite, getting the float down the line at this point was a bit hit and miss though and feeding as well with the catapult made it just that little bit more difficult.

With all days trotting a swim on the float you learn so much more about the swim than on the feeder after a few trots down you can almost map the bottom and as time progresses the amount of times you get it right increases, it really is all about practise and years of fishing the River Dee had put me in good stead for fishing this swim and it wasn't long before i was into a rhythm of casting into the far slack, feeding and then pulling the float back into the float, bite a chuck at some points with some nice dace mixed in with the roach.

As the session progressed the quality of fish increased with the odd skimmer and better Chublet showing.  I get asked quite a lot on emails about how much to feed when trotting and it is always a tough one to answer as it all hangs on that swim on that day and how the fish are feeding.  I was always taught little and often to begin with as you are not there to feed the fish but to catch them so you put in just enough to keep them lined up, unless you think their having it.  I guess that is where the skill in stick float fishing comes in, not only being able to control a float through a swim but also feeding the swim correctly.

The swim at this point i was feeding a pouch of maggots every other trot down and a pouch of hemp every few trots down and it was evident that there was a decent head of fish in the swim as the bites here instant over the hemp and deep holes. Chublets spewing up mouth fulls of maggots got me thinking just how much bait was getting down so i began to up the feed to see it it brought on the better fish, a pouch of mag every put in was now my feeding pattern.

Around this time i was visited by Scott who had packed in and was off for an evening session on a local pond, he spent a good hour at the peg during the period where i was getting to grips with the swim and began to put together fish with regularity, i have no idea on weights but while he was at peg i was getting fish most trots down, roach and dace.

It was after he left they really came on and the introducing more feed certainly was the right call as the better roach like the one above and a better stamp of chublet started coming to the net.  The session culminated in a cracking bite right down the swim when in the final hole the float buried and i was into a fish that in the flow put up a great fight making hard runs for the far bank cover, a good 40 years down the swim it was a great fight and i was more than made up when i slid the net under a nice chub around 1lb to 1.5lb, certainly the best chub so far and proof the better boys are around.

As the session grew to a close it was only the fact i ran out of bait that saw me pack in as the fish were still having it as i packed in, i did manage to get three chublets on my last maggot haha. The final net weighed just under 16lb and considering it was caught in the middle of the day is testament to how well this river is fishing.

In all it was a session that gave me so much joy as i had picked a swim and gone at it with a plan, had confidence to go heavier and in my choice of feeding and end tackle and had put together a decent net of fish from such a small river.  I was soon on the phone to my uncle letting him know how the session had gone and ho happy i was in my own efforts on the day.

till next time

tight lines


Friday, 20 June 2014

The Glorious 16th And The River Dane Delivers....

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update.  Anyone who follows my blog on twitter of facebook will already know how excited i have been for this season to arrive.  The trips into the unknown, exploration and then the chance to develop my pike fishing further come winter are all things that have got me really excited for the season ahead.  Its safe to say the past three months have not gone to plan as far as my fishing goes and its been a real slog at times not only with the fishing but with the people who frequent the water i had singled out being so backhand and rude made for a really unpleasant experience and how funny that the weekend their big carp water opened the water they have hogged and been so secretive about was desolate and empty.

So the closed season slowly has come to an end and as it does your mind turns to the season ahead and what your plans are for it.  This year i have not so much as set out a set plan as such more to discover the hidden gems that the River Dane holds.  Most of the river is wild and over grown and looks like it does not see many anglers once you leave the hustle and bustle of the streets behind and get into the miles of river in farmers fields and down untrodden tracks.  The river dee is never far from our thoughts and I am hoping that this year this river provides us with the odd special trip away and becomes a treat for us to visit her rather than the norm it has been in past years, we have spent many hours exploring her banks, walked two or three farmers fields to blank big time, fought bulls and found out of this world dace fishing past their hooves and horns and I have enjoyed every minute of it.  What it does do, now we have got out there and put the hours in, is put us in a fortunate position where we know the good spots to go for some dace fishing at almost any time of year in any conditions and although nothing is ever guaranteed in fishing i would feel confident of a fish or two.

The River Weaver is a river that all being well and us getting no silly floods like yesteryear's is a river i wont be on till winter when the pike season starts when i plan to take on board lessons taught to me last winter with Gary and take them onto a river and hopefully catch my first River Weaver Pike.  The only other place i hope to visit this year is the River Wye, it is a river i have wanted to fish for a number of years and hopefully this year i will get a chance to stand on the banks of this river.

This weeks blog update is going to be slightly different as i did manage to get out Saturday on Curlston mere, Monday on the Dane and again on the Dane Tuesday.  The dane pictures alone when i sorted them out equated to 28 pictures and the two sessions onthe river where such different sessions with regards to methods and approach that I am going to cover Saturdays session on curlston mere and Mondays session on the dane in this update and then do another blog update just covering the second session on the Tuesday.

Away from fishing we decided on visiting the Blue Planet Aquarium on Sunday, my choice as it was fathers day and it was either this or a walk along a river bank haha.  It is a place i have never visited before and was eager to see what it had to offer.  Entering the car park i have to say i was a bit taken back by the fact you had to pay £2.50 to just park your car in their car park, we thought nothing of it and parked up and began to queue to get in.  A glance at the price list left me a little shocked at the £16.00 per adult price tag and i must say to all looking to take their children there is a  board measuring height next to the queue that allows free entry if below the sign, our little girl is not even two yet and she was close to having to pay, although this wont be a problem from now on as we wont be returning.

We decided to pay as it was fathers day and also i thought it would be something she would enjoy as she loves feeding and watching the fish in our tank at home.  I must say i personally enjoyed the first room as it was UK course fish so it had all manner of fish from roach, dace, carp to tench.  To most a fish is a fish but after looking at the tank for a few minutes it was rammed with trout, signs said tench and i was glad it wasn't plural as there was literally only one 4 inch long tench, 2 chub and 3 dace and the same of bream and carp the rest was literally stuffed with trout, hardly a show of the true diversity of a river, but maybe that's me being picky haha.  Our little girl loved seeing the fish but in seconds she was drawn to some of those rides you see in the arcades, pepper pig, postman pat you know the ones, well we let her have a go as she really likes them and slowly moved onto the next room.  She was again drawn to the fish but then soon spotted another ride put right in open view her attention was then on this ride and not being one to let their kids get their own way we said no and like any youngster she got a little upset, we again slowly moved onto the other room and this theme of rides (thank god she doesn't know what sweet machines are) in every room,, in short it turned what should be a nice educational place where children can see up close all manner of fish from perch to sharks into a nightmare, i personally thought it was sly and a very obvious and silly way to get more money from an already over priced destination. 

In review i struggled to find anything good to say about the place apart from you can get close to some lovely fish in some big tanks from all around the globe.  The actual place is quite small and even taking our time we were round the walk in around 30-40 minutes max, you can go round again and we did 3 times, but for 16 quid each when you think you can pay that to go Chester Zoo and spend nearly all day there is a bit extortionate.  Their lust for dragging every last penny from visitors was reflected not only in the rides and sweet machines as you went round but the fact you come out of the tunnel under the sea aquarium to an open canteen area bigger than any of the aquariums you visit and are then funnelled into a shop before you are allowed to exit, all in all i left with little good to say about this place and will not be going back again.

Before we get into this weeks blog i received the news a few weeks ago of the passing of Gordon Munro, he was a avid reader of my blog regularly commenting on Facebook posts about his fishing and of course was an avid angler.  Gordon was a man i first met on the banks of the River Dee, i had just stopped of to see how he was catching and he was thigh deep stood out in the river catching well.  His nice friendly nature was evident from the off and what was me just dropping in on someone for a brief chat soon saw me still chatting 2 hours later and as he left i always remember him popping over and saying here you go mate i am not out tomorrow here is what is left of my bait, a true gentleman.  I went on to bump into Gordon on the bank a number of times after that and always enjoyed out chats and this weeks posting the start of the river season on facebook i noticed more just how you miss his comments.  This weeks blog is for you mate and thank you for having a word with those angling gods as this first week has been fantastic!!!.

On to this weeks

Saturday 14th June - Curlston Mere - 5am to 11am.

An early start saw us pulling up at a small pond we call curlston mere to find it at least a foot or so lower than it had been in winter and the makeshift pallet pegs a lot more accessible. The pool itself contains a massive number of roach from small fry up to and just over a pound, some nice perch and a sprinkling of carp from around 2lb to around 10lb from what we have seen.

Setting up in swims close enough to have a bit of a natter we both fished the pole on maggot and ground bait.  The presence of the carp was evident early on by the amount of bubbles erupting from the bottom all over the pool.  My bait for the day was Silver X ground bait fished with lose fed maggot over the top, experience has taught me on this venue that if the carp are up for it they will come to maggot and you also have the bonus of plenty of bites on maggot while you wait, elastic wise i went with a tightened blue hydro elastic through my match top.

As predicted the bites where frantic from the off with roach coming regular both on the drop and when the bait settled.  Periodically streams off bubbles from feeding carp would erupt through the swim but frustratingly even when the float was almost over run with bubbles it did not go under.  A quick change over to double maggot saw the bait resting long enough on the bottom for the carp to have a chance and barring a few more roach it was not long till i struck into a solid fish that had elastic shooting out of the pole tip.  The elastic set tight i felt in control even when it headed for a sunken tree, dipping the tip under the water turned the fish and kept the fish in front of me where i could wait for my opportunity to net it, as you can see below these carp are the jewels in a days fishing.

The first carp caught the second was literally minutes away as another soda stream of bubbles erupted in the swim, connected with this fish i did feel i could be in for a few of them but alas the carp above was the second and last visitor of the day.  As the sun rose above the trees and began to warm us the shallows the carp moved away into the shallow end of the pool to catch some rays leaving us to catch some more roach. 

By 11am we had caught our fill and knowing we were due out on the River on the Monday we decided to call it quiets there and take a drive out to the area we planned to visit on the 16th to scope out some swims and possibly find some signs of areas where the fish might be, it was a choice that proved to be a good one.

Monday 16th June - The Glorious 16th Trotting a Float on the River Dane

The evening before the opening day of the river season is always an exciting time and for someone who still gets excited the night before Christmas i can only liken it to this feeling.  The hemp was cooked and split nicely, which is always reassuring when dealing with a new supplier, maggots where chilling in the fridge and I was busy tying up some hook lengths for the session the next day.  11pm and all my gear was ready to go and be loaded into the car and i spent the next hour reading stories on Facebook of other anglers epic adventures into the night to cast in right on midnight, i have to say that had it not been for the fact we trot the rivers and need the light to see the float i would have joined them.

With a few hours to burn till i was due to meet up with my uncle and no chance of me getting a wink of sleep, too excited, i passed the time watching a few of the fantastic videos on You tube, Dave Harrell River wye and the Shakespeare stick float videos to name a few.  Eventually the time came and I loaded the car and set off into the night the voyage of discovery had begun.

Arriving on the banks we already had an idea of the swims we wanted too fish on this opening session so in the pitch black with bats scooting above our heads and all the creatures of the night wondering what the hell was going on we began to flatten out and uncover the peg from 3 months worth of vegetation growth.  The pegs sorted it was still pitch black and earlily silent, so quiet you could actually hear the buzzing of electricity from the near by building, very surreal to experience and obviously a noise that is there all along but it lost in the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Fishing is often referred to as a past time that can take adults back to their your, make them a child again as such and sometimes to the point an angler can question their sanity, a feeling we both had on Monday morning as at the ages of 29 and 50 myself and my uncle where threading line through our rods in the light provided by a small street lamp, fantastic stuff!!!.

We had a fair idea of depths to expect and what line to fish from our winter exploits so while waiting for first light i began to trickle feed maggots down i line i was going to fish, first light was quite a while off at this point so much so i couldn't really see where the maggots where landing on the river but hey ho i thought some going in is better than none.  First light approaching as a Robin broke the silence and began the dawn chorus closely followed by what i think was a blackbird, either way it signalled that the first cast was not long off.  03.54am marked the first trot down of the season and i have to say i could barely make out my float and only the thud of a bite down the rod saw me striking into a chublet, my first fish of the season, so dark it was that i cant use the picture haha but i did catch a number of chublets during the day which were similar like the one below.

The fishing in winter saw us ending with nice nets of dace, roach and chublets for around 10-16lb nets of fish but this was summer time and rivers can be such that fish really can migrate from one part of a river to another based on the seasons so we had little knowledge as to what to expect fishing wise form this session.  We need not had worried as in the first exchanges fish came with great regularity, small roach at first and the odd chublet of a similar size but as time went on the swim built and it was literally a bite a chuck at some points with some instances me not being able to let line of the reel before the float had buried, great stuff.

The fishing was so good i was getting them right under my feet so after the first hour or so i felt like i had amassed a decent weight of roach and chublets.  The swim from this point built both with size of fish and variety as small perch and the most surreal fight ever from a small skimmer bream made an appearance.

Around 3 or 4 hours into the session i had a cracking bite right over my hemp that i struck into and felt resistance so solid i thought i had hit a snag, this was until i felt the kick of a tail and the fish held in the middle of the river.  My hook length being only 1lb7oz i knew i had to be careful and i also knew from winter that there was a snag under my feet about rod tip so i could not let it have an inch in the fight.  After a battle in the flow eventually i netted a bream of around a 1.5lb still a skimmer but just starting to get the slightest hint of bronze.

To be honest before this fish the swim died completely, little knocks on the flat as it went down ceased and the float trundled down a few times without response, in my mind i thought better fish and after this bream i thought i could be on for a really good net as these fish are not a species that usually travel alone so a shoal of these moving in could mean a very special day.

This failed to be the case and after this fish the action began to decline and bites had to be really worked for.  This lack of activity though did allow the diversity of species in this river to be found as gudgeon and even a eel made an appearance.

By 12 the sun was right up in the sky over the river and the culmination of this bright light on the river seemed to make the fishing harder as bites would come in flurry's before returning to a hard trot again and right on last knockings before we packed in a possible culprit for the lack of action showed itself in this lovely marked perch.

The session came to a close and i felt like i had done OK with the early hours making up the majority of what i thought would be a respectable net of fish.  My uncle had fished a session that almost mirrored mine action wise with a steady start and show middle but he did get them going again towards the end.  The final nets weights showed just how healthy this river is with mine weighing 13lb and my uncles 10.5lb, two nets separated in reality by that nice skimmer and perch. 

my net and weight

uncle net and weight

In reflection we could not argue, we are going to be exploring this river over the coming months and these nets were more than we could have asked for as they showed a great variety of species present including roach, perch, dace, bream, skimmers, gudgeon and chub and all in great healthy numbers.  The better fish showing also gives you that excitement of not knowing what fish will be next and you could have a session where you draw some quality fish in and have an exceptional net over 20lb.   In all we could not have asked for more and it filled us with hope for the season  of exploration ahead.

till next time, look out for Tuesday trip later on this week,

and tight lines


Sunday, 15 June 2014

Carp Fishing: Flushing Meadows Storming Session

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update and this week we move into the last few days before the start of the River season.  I am just about there and apart from a few bits and pieces from the bait shop on Fathers Day I am all set to hit the bank on the opening day.  Myself and my uncle walked the banks of the River Dane last Saturday scouting out swims and likely looking areas and I have to say we found a few spots that look to have the potential to throw up a few fish.

The river fishing arm of my angling life is one that i have most confidence in and an area i feel we are spoilt for choice and that only comes from the amount of hard work we have put into it the past few years.  We have travelled to out of the way swims, suffered the emotions of a blank and the excitement that comes when you find a new area of river or even a completely new river and it all comes together and you uncover a gem.  I guess all the fishing I involves a huge sense of adventure into the unknown.

The season just within touching distance its a good time to reflect on last years river season and I must admit writing this blog doesn't half give you a wealth of information to look back on, I mean how many people out there can at any moment look back over the venue they fished, time of year, picture of the final net and in most cases the conditions during that session,  I may not earn any money from writing this blog but what it offers me back as an angler is priceless.

Looking back to this time last year our journey started travelling down the disgraceful track down to the Warrington Anglers River Dee water at Worthenbury, this trip threw up a few dace for myself and my uncle but the journey was not worth the effort it took navigating the lunar like track. The next day i headed to the River Dane and was rewarded with a chub and a hard fighting grayling, a proper way to open the season.

Moving into summer we began to discover a brand new river, clear conditions provided us with proof of its barbel and chub stocks and the motivation to keep going when sessions got tough.  We visited this venue a few times and even spent my first night session on its banks, an interesting session to say the least and not for the fishing, well worth a read. Link: http://www.satonmyperch.blogspot.co.uk/2013/07/my-first-night-session-night-to-remember.html

In keeping with the discovery theme we continued to travel the length and breadth of the River Dee and found some quality Dace shoals and some very good pike spots on our travels.  Autumn into winter saw us travel to the river dee where we expected to spend the next months prowling her banks and like bears waiting for the salmon run we waited for the cold to arrive and the mighty dace shoals to move in.

Little did we know that on the last week of November would we be travelling to the River Dee for the last time if the season, three months of rain and flooded rivers saw me go on the pike hunt but river wise it was two weeks before the end of the season we got back on a river.  Two sessions on the River Dane and one on the Weaver is where we left our story in march and three months on west stand on the eve on the adventure continuing, i cant wait......

The past few Fridays i have gone out on a long walk with the dog with my work friend Ian and last week it was a a joy to witness some sublime scenes on Appleton Res as the sun sunk behind the trees we got a chance to spot some of the carp moving into the shallows and it was amazing to see people carp fishing with no activity around them and the fact if they had just walked round the lake there was a huge group of fish waiting to be caught.

Appleton res, a beautiful evening water.

on to this weeks fishing.....

Carp Fishing: Flushing Meadows Storming Session

Speaking to my uncle late on Friday night we decided on visiting Flushing Meadows for our fishing this weekend , at this time the sun was beating down and the temperature was really pushing that mercury and you could have been fooled into thinking we were in for a day relaxing in the sun the net day but a quick glance at the weather.revealed heavy rain and thunder storms for  the next day.  Waking up the next morning the air was stifling and very close and it was so warm that whilst walking back to the pool after parking the car up the noise of carp sucking in the margin of the disabled pool could be heard.

We decided on Flushing meadows fishery on the day as one of their pools is quite secluded with trees on one side giving protection from the wind and also with it being down a hill you get some protection from the wind in the other direction as well.  These trees offer protection but through the gaps we could quite clearly see the clouds of change approaching and had the gaps not been there the rumbles of thunder closing in would have let us know.

The arrival of the thunder and lightning brought with it a coolness that was more than welcome and not only from a comfort point if view as the arrival of the cold weather saw me and my uncle into the odd small carp.

 Fishing in a thunder storm is not a good idea at all and to fair when the storm was over head we did pack in for a few minutes while it passed over.  The early exchanges where hard going with none of the proper carp showing for either myself or my uncle and what carp where about seemed to be up the other end of the pool.   This fishery has 5 pools on it and all have a good head of carp and are absolutely stuffed with silver fish to the point it makes a mockery of silver fishing for them so when we go now we just go with the mindset of targeting the bigger carp.  The video below taken at the end of the session showing just how many silvers are in this venue and this does not take into account the fact there are some really big roach and rudd in there and the countless skimmers if you fish on the bottom, it does make you wonder how they all get enough food to survive.

It does get to the point where you have to say catching silvers on venues as heavily stocked as this teaches anyone learning the art of angling nothing but how to unhook fish and bait a hook, ridiculous really.  The morning moved on and as it did so the better fish moved in on my swim, first a rogue tench and then the better carp.

We continued to plug away and in keeping with the conditions our success levels where changeable from hour to hour with flurry's of bites coming and going as quick as the rain showers.  My new umbrella up it was great fun playing the carp on the rod and centre pin.

The result of this video was one of the most stunning carp I have ever caught, beautiful markings with a full linear line down its flank.

My uncle was also into his fair share of carp on the opposite side of the pool but with the heavy rain it was hard to get some pictures, this one below one of many he caught on the day.

All in all it was a session we both enjoyed with a few carp on the bank.

Till next time

tight lines


Sunday, 8 June 2014

Two Trips to the Pond and Springwatch Fever

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update and i have to admit to having a wee bit of trouble putting together last weeks blog update.  I walked the dogs with my good friend Ian on Friday evening and full of inspiration after seeing some spectacular wildlife in the form of Pheasants, rabbits, herons, finches and even some early evening bats i departed for home and loaded laptop, could i write a word? No, not a single paragraph I sat there till midnight with a blank document in front of me and despite getting out the notepad and jotting down some notes I could not get it down on paper right.

The time was 1am and I was due to meet my uncle at 4am maybe a days fishing would wet my appetite and the blog would come easy Saturday evening.  I went fishing, had a cracking laugh and a good session in fact but sitting down on Saturday evening i was still looking at the blank screen.  This continued all this week until today in work, sat at my desk on my dinner a light bulb came on and said stick to what you know and be honest and get it all down on paper and the rest will come, well here's the honesty down on paper I am now praying the rest will come..

The past few weeks you will have noticed that i have not really mentioned the carp quest and to be brutally honest it is because I am waiting for June the 16th, not for the rivers, but for the waters that have a closed season to open so the idiots on the water i am currently fishing move on to bigger and better things.  My time this year on a proper carp water has in all honestly has thrown up some of the most shocking experiences in my fishing life.  The only way to describe some of these people i have met is childish and down right rude, basic simple manners seem to be missing and my past drop in was the nail in the coffin a simple "hi mate much doing?" being met with "F$$K Off, does it look like" was enough for me to give this place a miss till later on, i am not saying all are like this and there is good and bad in all branches but it seems this water attracts i higher proportion  of these people, I have said it before on here and i stand by it, I am yet to meet an angler on the banks of the river that has been rude and unapproachable.   So keep an eye out for more updates on the carp quest in the coming weeks.

The past two weeks the upcoming river season has been at the forefront of my mind and you will remember i mentioned about the financial benefits of bulk purchasing hemp seed.  This week i took delivery of 20kg of hemp seed and 20kg of brown crumb and a long evening was spent splitting the 20kg of hemp seed down into session sized pint bags.  All said and done it split into 66 pints of hemp seed so 33 pints each and considering the whole bag cost us 30 quid with delivery we both saved a pretty penny when you consider that the local bait shop is selling it at £1.50 a pint.  The cooking of hemp is seen by many as a difficult process that involves standing over a pan for hours, in reality is is not and i will be covering how i cook mine in an upcoming update.

The past two weeks i have loved watching this years Springwatch.  I must say the improvements in technology with the crispness of the images and some of the positioning of the cameras is amazing.  It was great to see the legend that is Bill Oddie back as well for a cameo role in this series and hopefully we will see more of him in future years as he really did offer a unique way of presenting to this program, maybe coming back to replace the packman who i think has gone a bit too far with his Bitten obsession this year.  I must also say to be slightly shocked at some of the footage shown in this years springwatch with scenes of crows taking and attacking rabbits and then the jackdaws and magpies raiding the rabbits nest in the hay stack.  I personally am OK with this viewing as it is nature in its rawest form and in a way nature as i see it when i am out on the bank, my shock come from the fact the BBC shown in at 8.30pm slot on television, I bet their complaints line was bust the next day.

The series for me though has been so awe inspiring and thought provoking this year with such a wide variety of species and so far i have to say seeing the Eagle in relation to the buzzards i see week in week out just made me sit and think how big these birds must be as they dwarfed the buzzards then we had the urban foxes living under the boarding in someone's back yard and who could forget the story about the introduction of beavers to Scotland and on this one i can't wait for the report to be published in a years time to see if the Scottish government approve their reintroduction or decide they cause too  much damage and remove them from their habitat, a big decision and one that could effect the introduction of this species across the UK.

On to the fishing:

Saturday 24th April -Local Pond - Uncle Returns

With both my uncle and myself still to purchase our Warrington Anglers licence and the fact we both liking to include our keepnets in our fishing where possible we decided to save some money on petrol and not visit a Northwich water but to head back to a pond I had fished and had good results for silvers on in previous weeks.

My uncle having been missing from the bank for a good month or so was dying to wet a line and i must say i was glad to have him back in the fold.  I don't mind fishing alone but when you have fished for every weekend for the past 3 years with someone you do realise when their not there, banter on the way to the bank and someone to have a laugh with and compare tactics with through the day, so to have him back again was great although the plant life behind my peg may think different with the extra watering they are about to get.

There is not really much i can put up on here that hasn't been said about this pond before, it is small, weedy and holds an incredible head of silvers and some top quality Roach and Rudd.  It also holds a great deal of mystery with no one really knowing the stock and species present in the pond.  In the past we have caught orange tench, green tench, nice perch, bream and crucian carp but rumours of other species are rife when you bump into the odd person you see on this derelict pool.

We both set up on the same bank utilising a big gap in the weed to present maggot and corn and despite a small amount of raking before hand to move some big clumps out of the swims it did not take long for the first roach to move into our swim.  I got of to a brilliant start catching a good number of roach on the drop on both corn and maggot while my uncle waited it out on the bottom for a chance at a better fish.  After a hour or so i was catching the odd fish on the drop and my uncle had moved over to the pole where he could present a bait easier than on the rod.

As the morning wore on the fish seemed to spook off my area to the solitude of the weed cover and this lull in both swims also saw us both snapped by bigger fish on a number of occasions.  The scenario is a hard one to work out as if you go big line big bait, which you would need to single out the better fish and also have a chance of stopping them before they reach the weed , you then cut out all the action on the silvers line so it is a tough one to work out.  Removing all the weed on the pool is also not the answer as this is thick cover is the reason these roach and rudd thrive here, removing this would open this place up to cormorants in a big way.

In the summer our sessions normally run from first light till around 2pm and this session was no different.  The nets where photographed and weight and i was more than made up with my 13.5lb net and some decent sized roach.  My uncle also took a fantastic mixed net of fish weighing 10.5lb which also included some lovely crucian carp.  All in all it was an average session on this fantastic little pond.

my net:

uncles net:

Saturday 31st - Second Visit to Pond

Friday night and i found myself at the side of the pond rake in hand and a pile of pond weed piled up next to me as i attempted to clear a small swim for the next mornings session.  The rake was not the best but it did the job and in 30 minutes i was bringing the rake through the now cloudy water with no weed on the other end and in my eyes it was job done.

While i was doing this my mate turned up who i go walking my dog with on Friday evenings and he said there is no way any fish would be on this side of the pond after all that commotion and he laughed as i said that i reckon you would catch a fish from there within 30 minutes and we would catch the next morning.

The next morning and we both settled into our swims, me in the swim we both fished last weekend and my uncle in the newly created swim made the previous evening.  The weather on the day was a lot different to the previous weekend and the bright sunshine had been replaced with a overcast cooler day.  The plan for the day for me was to feed ground bait laced with the maggots left from the previous week that now contained a fair number of caster and also i popped in a few grains of corn hoping to attract in some better fish.

The roach were showing in my swim from the off and the swim was building nicely before it completely died, after a few minutes the float shot under and in one hard run i was snapped by a better fish, it was frustrating to say the least but i had tried to combat this by using my stronger white hydro elastic but it proved to still be not power full enough.  My uncle was also picking up roach and the odd rudd but was also experiencing the same lulls and tussles with better fish but he was getting his in with two tench in the net one green and one golden.

As the afternoon went on we both caught fish but the action was no where near as good as the previous week.  I was made up with a nice perch and my first few crucians from this pool while my uncle had also picked up the odd crucian and some lovely roach.

The final nets we were both made up with considering it is a mere pond.

final nets

till net time i wish you all tight lines