Category Archives: Fishing 2014

Stile to Paradise

A quick hop over the well worn wooden stile, and I arrive at my favourite lake which is very pleasingly deserted, I have the whole place to myself.

Fishing two rod lengths out, between large patches of water lillies, sitting watching my float for some time until they arrive!……. bubbles everywhere! indicating feeding fish all over my swim.

I am now focused on my float like never before, in glorious anticipation of it darting under the surface and making contact with one of the monsters of the deep.

My float starts to sway and quiver now and then, this signifies there are now fish feeding very close to my hook bait. But it never goes under? Just then, a car rolls nonchalantly down the farm track and a good friend hails a wave. He comes round for a chat along with a guest he has brought for the day. Both grand chaps, they deliver some jovial banter as to why I am not catching then depart to the lower lake that they will have all to themselves.

I sit back down on my creel and recast. It really is only a matter of time I tell myself, surely I will get one today.

I did not have to wait much longer as the float rocketed under the surface.  A  great cloud of mud rose up from the lake bed like an underwater nuclear explosion.  My Edgar Sealey ‘Octofloat‘ rod bending violently, I clearly was into a Tench.  With only a 5lb b.s hook length, I would have to be ultra careful guiding this fish to the waiting net. With all the water lillies around I anticipated being cut the moment the fish reached any cover. I need not have worried, the fish was easily guided and what a cracking Tinca, no record fish, but an absolute joy to catch.

I went on that day to land six Tench in total, what a lovely day. I packed up towards 6pm, made my way to the bottom lake to bid farewell to my friends who were having great sport with Crucian’s, and ended the day at a  local pub with a well deserved beer.

The Net’s Too Small

Another trip to my local lake today. I fished only maybe2-3 rod lengths out but nothing was happening. One of those times when you know you need to move swims.

Moving down two swims I recast a single grain of corn a short distance, just beyond some aging rushes, scattered a handful of corn on top of my float, poured another cup of tea from my flask and sat back to relax.

With no signs of a fish feeding, my rod bucked violently in the rod rest, followed immediately by the reel screaming! At first I thought that I had hooked a really big Tench. However, when I saw it roll on the surface it was evident it was a Mirror Carp. It did fight like a Tench though, making many powerful surges towards every snag in the area. First it dived left, straight underneath all the rushes which I thought that would be it, as I was only using 5lb breaking strain hook length. Luckily for me, it swam straight out the other side and I was able to guide it back in  front of me and get some sort of control. Making yet more powerful runs toward the rushes a number of swims to my right, I was just able to stop it. Trying to constantly gain line, it would be off again. Soon I got it close, but then it saw the small patch of Lillie’s to my right which it made a direct beeline for, and found. Drat! stuck. I let the line go slack and it freed itself, again out into the middle of the lake only to dive straight back into the Lillie’s when I got it closer. This battle of too-ing and fro-ing went on for some time until I eventually got my net under it. I could not believe when I tried to lift it, it was a really good double , at least 15lb’s. Infact, it was so big, I could not take a proper picture of it in the net. I tried to capture its huge paddle-like tail, but simply could not get it in the picture. Furthermore, it was quite lively on the bank, so after a quick snap, I returned it straight away.

 

Is Autumn Round The corner?

Well, is Autumn around the corner? I was out fishing yesterday in what felt like a force 9 gale, normally very difficult using a centre pin reel. Non-the-less, I was there at the lake. I had four cracking runs, three of which I am sure were Tench, loosing every single one with bent hooks. Finally I landed a Bream. It would be fair to say that I won’t be using those hooks again, and I made a trip to my tackle shop to purchase more suitable hooks for the fish I am looking for.

This morning the wind was still high, but it was a warm morning, so I had to go fishing. Armed with my new hooks I was determined not to be broken today. Unusually, I had left the centre pin at home and had filled my old Hardy Altex with 6lb monofilament and my Sealey ‘Heavy Ledger’ rod. I have never used a fixed spool for years so it took a little getting used to again. However, it proved the right choice for the day as it was much easier casting into a wind.

Fishing as usual the ‘lift method’ with corn as bait. I fished relatively close in again but did not have any action until around 10:30 when the float bobbed and shot away. Lifting the rod gently I had a scrap of a good five minutes to reveal a lovely Tench, they might be small but fantastic sport. Quickly unhooked and a snap taken I returned this cracking fish in order that it may enjoy the rest of its Sunday morning in peace.

About an hour later, again the float shot away. Again I was sure I was into another Tench but when I got it nearer it revealed to be a mirror Carp. Again, what a scrap. It must have only been around 4lb’s but it took me ages to get it in and net it. I didn’t photograph this chap as it was as lively on the bank as it was in the water so after unhooking it I returned it immediately and it shot off in an explosion of spray discussed at being disturbed on such a nice morning.

As the sun grew even warmer the dragon flies put in an appearance, I watched in amazement at their aggressive aerial battles, each defending their own territory. I was also treated to the aerial displays of the House Martin’s that swoop down to the lake from the farmers dilapidated farm buildings close by. It always puzzles me how they never crash into one another?

Bringing in the ‘Dough’

Just when I got back to my car after another great fishing trip to my lake I was fortunate to be able to get a snap of the farmer bringing in his crops for the year.

It is very evident just how short this crop of wheat is. I presume this has been modified in order to stop so much wind damage and the fact that hay is not made anymore, produces less ‘stalk’. Not a poppy to be seen, producing the highest ‘yield’ possible.

One of my favourite things watching a combine at work. Many years ago they also used to burn the stubble following the crop but that now never happens and it is simply ploughed in.

Fields of Gold

Another glorious, unscheduled trip to Wessex.

Hurriedly packed the car on a Monday morning and I was off. Arrived late Monday night in order to fish my lake early Tuesday morning.

Woke up at 05:30 to leaden sky’s and torrential rain. Needless to say I did not rush out too the lake. Instead I had a spot of breakfast with a pot of tea. Around 09:00 the sky’s cleared enough for me to gain enthusiasm again to get fishing. Had a lovely morning and fished until lunch catching 4 cracking Roach in the process. And I saw a Kingfisher this morning

That evening I was kindly invited by friends to fish a small commercial fishery that I know well now.  My intention was to catch my first Carp from the surface of the season.

I had brought along with me on this trip a surprise for everyone as I had packed a pot of my ‘July Jam’ and a couple of bottles of Elderflower Champagne. I had also bought some fresh scones and a pot of the finest clotted cream, so we had a proper cream tea before the fishing began in earnest

I was very fortunate to land this double figure mirror, not the prettiest of fish but it went like fury. We fished on until after midnight and saw many shooting stars as it was very clear sky that night.

The following day saw me back at my lake.  It was amazing the amount of ‘champagne’ bubbles round my float, classic Tench, but all I kept hooking were Roach.  Although I have never experienced a Roach that ‘ran’ great fights they put up in shallow water. By lunchtime I had caught 5 in total, what a great morning.

That evening I took up the kind offer by some friends to join them at a free stretch of river to go Barbel hunting. We had a great time although non of us caught, maybe next time…

 

What A Scorcher!

 

Parked up at my local lake around 06:20 and after a ten minute walk across a couple of farmers fields I was at the waterside, where I was greeted by a mirror like, flat calm pool. There were no signs of any fish feeding at all. Normally as I trudge along the bankside, I will sometimes ‘spook’ the odd fish, but nothing today.

Presented with an azure blue sky, punctuated only by a perfectly formed cotton wool like, thick, small cloud that drifted nonchalantly towards the horizon, then out of sight.

Nobody else was present at the pond, I had it all to myself. Armed with my Edgar Sealey ‘Octofloat‘ rod today and the usual 3.5″ Aerial, I quietly tackled up and threw a handful of sweetcorn close to overhanging grasses. Fishing lay-on style, using the classic ‘lift method’, I cast a single grain of corn on top of the free offerings, sat down on my creel, and opened my flask.

Almost immediately the float lifted and I hooked a Roach.

By now it was around 07:00 and the day was getting very warm indeed. After about an hour the float lifted once more and I thought I had hooked into one of the small Carp in the lake but after a 5 second fight I knew what my prize was as a Bream came to the net like a wet cloth after a spirited 5 second battle.

Cleaning the slime of the hook link, I recast to a different area and again baited with a handful of corn.

I was joined after an hour by 2 local lads, who although they said they fished the lake, were definitely not members, non-the-less, I unusually made time for them as they were knowledgeable about their fishing. Out of the corner of my eye I saw my float ‘zipp’ away and I was in to a small carp. When I got it closer one of the lads, who was standing higher up the bank watching the action, said it was a Crucian, just then it rolled and I too could see what it was. No doubt, it was a Crucian. I could not believe it. I had no idea all the time I had fished this lake that there were Crucians’ present. I was absolutely over-the-moon with the catch.

The sun was still blazing down when I left the lake around 12:30, what a day!

Red Letter Day

Today, “working from home” ,I snuck away to my lake this morning, arriving around 08:30 armed with 2 tins of Sweetcorn and my old Mark IV. Amazingly there were 2 people at the lake which I did not expect, but thankfully no one else.  Neither were fishing near my favourite swim.

I fished close in and landed yet more Tench. After years of not catching any, I have caught more this season since I started fishing many years ago. I also stopped counting at 15 the Roach I caught today.

What a day, warm, over-cast, with a little rain in the air. There are not many days like this-magical. O, and I also saw a Kingfisher today!