Wednesday, 21 December 2016

River Dee Bolo Session and The Little Daley Angler...

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update i hope i find you all well and your nets wet.  Settling back into a routine with the blog and other commitments now on Youtube and it does seem to be knitting in nicely.  I have found as long as i get the videos out of the way and scheduled early in the week then it leaves the rest of the week to put together the corresponding blog update,

That said this week has been a week where the Internet in my house has been down so the distraction of other peoples content so time will tell in the coming weeks if there is still scope for this routine.  One thing i can say is look out this Friday for a special capture in a pike video!  Its a video for me that i think shows what pike fishing is like for most people around the country, hard work, blanks and moments of joy as you come out the other side.

On to the update..

Trip Down Memory Lane....

This week i snagged on bottom whilst wobbling a roach on the river which involved me pulling hard to straighten the hooks out but after only moderate pressure on the line the line just exploded.  Doing some tests on the line i noticed the line was fragile in places and must have literally gone all of a sudden as i certainly had no issues in previous weeks.  A trip to my dads was in order to pick up a new spool of braid to replace the reel with.

While i was there my dad pulled out a box he had found at the bottom of the cupboard during a recent clear out, what it contained saw memories come flooding back form my youth.  Firstly the two lures in the picture tell quite a different story, with the rainbow one being, as i remember it, absolutely useless  on the local cut.  On the opposite side of the coin the Abu Garcia "Terminator" was a killer lure as the scars down its flank are testament to.  Shallow diving and flashes of silver i remember it being the best lure for the canal as it did not dive deep and kept out of the way of the trolleys, bikes, dead bodies and traffic cones in the local cut.

Now this picture of the pike bobber brings back memories of my teenage years fishing with my dad.  Pike had just started to appear on the canal and where becoming a regular appearance on our trips for roach and bream.  My dad always had a cantilever tackle box and in one of the compartments was this old school pike bobber float and some may remember when pike traces came in a see through bag with a yellow that i think where made by kamasan.  How pike fishing has taken off from these days when a live bait was presented under a float that was held in position only by the tension form the stick through the middle.

I always remember me getting one pike on a live perch, quite a funny story and one maybe for another blog.  In my head it was certainly a double but at the time it was my PB pike and with no pictures back then when we went fishing i have the best image of the pike you can have, in my memory.

A Little Angler Called Camie...

From my memories of  my childhood to a father and son creating their own memories right now, a journey that will create moments in time that, like mine with my dad, will last a lifetime and will need no pictures to recreate the magic.  I have had the pleasure over the past 2 years to have met a polite young gentleman called Cam he is a cracking little lad who already has developed a love for catching the fishy's that live beneath the water.

Under the wing of his dad Ste he has been placed firmly on the right path to becoming a cracking little angler, learning his trade on the local canal and ponds this summer it was not long before he had bagged his first silver fish on the whip and moved up to tackling some carp later on in the warmer months.

Winter has come and after seeing his dad catching some "sharks!!" as Cam calls them he decided himself the time had come for him to catch one for himself.  In what is a cracking feat for an angler so young he hooked and played from start to finish his first pike.  Not happy with catching one he then went on to catch another with his PB now standing at 8lb6oz!!.   Showing the grace of a gentleman he let his dad have the last run of the day having fed his appetite for shark catching for another week :-)

A side bet of a quid with Ste has me betting he has his first 20lb pike by the time he is 12 :-)  At this rate it will before his next birthday! Well done Cammy!!!

Forget Me Knots....

A quick final piece before we get into this fishing is a cracking little diagram a company sent me this week and asked me to share on the blog.  Noticing how great this little picture is i quickly agreed and below is a collection of fantastic knots for all your fishing needs i know i certainly have saved it for my own personal use.

River Dee Session on the Bolo...

A video of the session below is available here on the youtube channel:

Early evening and with hemp seed cooking on the stove myself and my uncle discussed out plans for the following day.  A weekend where weather conditions in the week meant all of our venues where in prime fettle to wet a line on and to be honest all would have produced the goods on the day.

We had spend a good amount of time on one or two venues this season but one that had not saw our foot prints was the banks of the muddy river Dee.  A big decision for us to visit at this time of year as it involves a very early start to get there in time to get a peg so its a venue we love to fish but the jaunt of going there is a little off putting to say the least.

Arriving under the cover of darkness we where met with the familiar sight of a number of pegs already taken so we both settled on pegs we knew would be an awkward fish but we could catch from.  Not wasting the hour before first light i got to work using the car light to tie up a few hook lengths.

First light revealed a river in fine fettle with not a breathe of wind and a cracking pace to her, it looked bob on for a few bites.  

The video explains this a little better but the swim was situated to the Right of a tree that over hanged the water causing a big slack behind and the flow coming off the end of its branches.  This tress over the years had diverted the flow as such that a deep hole had been created behind the tree so for about 10 to 15 metres of the run it was deep and then of course it shallowed up slightly as the normal bank side depth was found further down the run.

It left me with two options. 1, feed heavy with hemp and castor on the tree and try and control my feed to catch in the deep water or 2, feed downstream on the shallow run and completely miss out the deep water. On the day i felt fishing the deep water would be the best as i felt this is where the fish would be and also striking up i did not have to worry about my 17ft rod becoming a 12ft rod on the tree to my left. 

A 3 gram bolo fished with a bulk shot and two number 8 droppers to a size 20 hook on 2lb 1oz bayer perlon was the set up for the day and  feeding castor but fishing maggot on the hook i was soon catching dace of all sizes steadily.

The bites where coming right on my hemp and with the fish coming in with a mouth full of maggots it also told me i was getting my feeding right and my castors and hemp where both getting down to the bottom. The fish will always tell you if you are feeding right/  The bites go then maybe you are feeding to heavy or too far up the swim and the fish are above where you rig is settling. 

Alternating between maggot and castor saw fish coming all morning and when bites went funny on castor a change to maggot would always give me two bites at the cherry at catching on the trot rather than the one bite and done scenario with the castor.  This is a approach that can work well and when using red maggot you can get away with as they kind of resemble the castors in colour, more so than say a White maggot.  

The castors of course brought better fish like the roach above and i did hope at the time that a shoal of these fish had moved in, a scenario that can turn a good days fishing into an exceptional one.  

Into the afternoon and the bites did start to dry up on the out side line.  Experience had taught me to expect this so i had purposely fed the swim in a way that the feed covered both the outside line and slightly into the slack.  This tactic i knew would mean some maggot would be falling into the slack behind the tree.  

Dropping in here kept the bites coming and remembering to keep feeding the outside line meant i knew fish where building up confidence out there with no line going through.  The fish where of course not as big in the slack but it kept the net ticking over.

After around a hour i moved over to the outside line and it worked a treat as a shoal of small chublets had moved in and although i was travelling now onto the shallows for my bites i was getting a bite every run down.  The final net of 15lb showed how it had been a day of many bites and also that i had not really attracted caster stamp sized fish into my swim.

I left the banks happy with a days fishing that saw me only use the one hook link all day and have an bite packed session on the bank.

Till next time i wish you all a very merry Xmas and a safe and prosperous new year

Tight Lines 


Sunday, 11 December 2016

Do Seasons Still Exist? And A Stolen Few Hours For Silvers...

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update i hope i find you all well and your nets wet.  Life is slowly getting back to some type of normality with me getting back in work and although there a huge loose ends to tie up there the schedule of 9 to 5 working life is setting back in.  The fishing blog side of things has never been as time consuming as it is now with the written main weekly blog, pike written diary and also the youtube videos arm of the blog now gaining momentum, its great fun to put it all together and really enjoying the video logs but i think next season the piking may have to reside in youtube only format or as part of the weekly written blogs with maybe the videos i do put together linked into the weekly main updates.

We will have to assess that come next year but for now lets get into the update.....

Do Seasons Still Exists..

Now i am nto for one second suggesting here that the 4 seasons we know and love are not there as we quite clearly have summer, autumn, winter and spring, what i am questioning is if those seasons still hold the same identity we assosiate with them.  For example we always link summer with hot temperatures and clear blue skies and for the past few years we have had what seems abut a 2 week period of what we would call a summer period of hot weather but we have also had deluges of rain.

Rivers in summer have been in full blown flood the last two summers as a result of pure heavy downfall.  Last week i recorded my first silver fishing video for the blogs youtube channel and it was done so in minus 2 degree temperatures, we forward to this weeks session and yesterday myself and my uncle where say with no thermals on at all in barmy 12 degree DECEMBER!

Even today while i was doing a spot of piking in 11 degree heat all around be i noticed buds appearing on the trees, of course nature knows nothing of our calendar seasons so naturally they think its coming into spring.  I really do think the defining weather within our seasons is changing and long gone are the days of winter being a prolonged period of cold weather as we will now be looking at mixed weather seasons with severe fluctuations in temperature.

From my fishing point of view i just wish it would settle into a steady 1 or 2 degrees, odd frost here and there and then the fish will move into their winter haunts like they have now but will stay there.

Blog Media Pack...

Safe to say this week the blog took a step and dipped its toes into a serious world of companies.  Over the years i have always been contacted by companies with regard product reviews and other affiliate items.  Normally a few emails and all i sorted and ironed out with regards expectations.  This week a company asked for my "media pack", i was like "A whats??".  Long story short its a A4 piece of paper all about me and the blog.

So we are not very official and have our own "media pack" all sounds too much like blue peter to me when the presenters harped on about press packer packs....never got one of them either, not even a blue peter badge!

Youtube Blog Update...

So this week the first ever silver fishing video went live on the channel, to this point it had just been pike fishing, i have to say i was a little apprehensive as i didn't think the silver fishing would be a popular choice to do over the pike fishing but i was in for a surprise.  The silver video is well on its way to being the channels most popular video and im over the moon as it means i can cover all aspects of my fishing with confidence.

Check out the silver fishing here:

With regards the channel itself it is really doing well and well beyond my expectations.  As of writing the blog it is on 89 subscribers so only a few to go till we reach 100 subs.  As with all aspects of the blog i have no problem in letting the page grow slowly preferring a 100 people to like it because they like the content rather than 300 liking it to win a beanie!

Check out the video and if you like please subscribe..

On to the fishing..

A few Stolen Hours For Silvers...

Writing this i feel i should change the title to be more festive and call it a few Stollen hours but i fear some would not get it and the spelling police would be all over me.  I do digress, this session was around a week before the silvers video above.  Coming out of a period of heavy rain we had blanked big time on the weekend session and it really was not a surprise with the rivers all over in full flood which saw us trying our luck and failing on the upper reaches of the river.  We had hoped this would be the first place the colour would drop but in reality we where on there right on the rise and beginning of the fall.

A few days later and the river was still carrying colour but she had lost her pace and a few feet in depth and looked bang on for some bites.  A simple 6 number 4 stick float down to a hook length of  2lb kamasan perlon line and a size 18 hook.  Bait for the day as always red maggot and hemp.

I literally only had around 3 or 4 hours for this session and setting up i did not really know if the river was right for the fish to feed.  This section always does well with colour but i knew a few days earlier we did not get a bit in 8 hours fishing.  All set up it was time make the first cast and down the swim my float trundled.  Half way down i clipped bottom so a slight adjustment to the float was needed and back to it.  It took a while for the first bite and i did get a little worried but right at the end of the swim i struck into a tiny roach.

I kept the bait going in and this one tiny roach told me i could catch well.  Most would say how do you know from one tiny roach but? In my thinking if one small roach can see my bait then others can and these fish are never alone so i knew it was only time till the next fish.

With this better stamp or roach coming i knew it was going to be a decent session on the bank.  I steadily fed hemp and maggot into the swim and bites where soon coming regular and the bites that where right at the end of the run where soon mid way up on my hemp, where i wanted them.

The swim then died and the fish moved instantly right back to the bottom of the swim, i knew it was not pike as it would have nailed one of the small roach coming through the swim.  A hard hold back on the hemp revealed the culprit, a nice chub had muscled in the swim.

As the session went on this would repeat its self a few times,  Small roach and then it would die and a better roach or chublet would come, all a dream to catch on my drennan acolyte plus rod, i love this rod to bits what a piece of kit and a joy to use.

The final net was one that recharged my batteries for the week ahead and took away the blues form that hard blank earlier on in the week.

well thats another update to the blog rounded off,

till next time i wish you all

tight lines