Just a quick entry tonight to log a short stint on the canal.
My daughter had a ballet class at 5:30pm so, as we were walking past the shed to the car I grabbed my drop-shotting rod and reel and my pre-prepared lure holdall. I wanted to hit a shoal of perch I’d seen lurking under a road bridge a few times whilst passing over the previous weeks.
Sadly the perch were absent in numbers tonight, but I did pick up one in the 20 minutes or so I had to fish, plus a bonus jack pike that I really wasn’t expecting.
Both were taken on a 2.5″ silvery and olive natural shad twitched across the weed flanks close in, though I did have a few taps on the far bank. The bridge, which I specifically wanted to target, was dead.
Lots of ducks and gulls around tonight as the canal was covered in bread. Other than that it was surprisingly clean!
Ok, maybe not everything beginning with ‘C’, but only because there aren’t any catfish, cod or conger in the lake. Lots of carp and chub though!
So, I was sat with wifey, have a coffee and watching a leaf cutter bee that we have nesting in the outhouse door make runs back and forth with nesting material. As we were soaking up the afternoon sun, I noticed a few clouds rolling in and made some subtle noises about popping down to the lake to see if the drop in temperature might increase my chances of a decent haul.
A few sighs later and I was in the car, with just a few maggots, around 20 dendrobena, a quarter of a bag of groundbait and a few slices of mouldy bread. Yay.
By the time I reached the lake it was getting on for 4:00pm. I’d been watching the England match and decided to just take the one rod and bag because I wanted to keep half an eye on the football on my phone. I crumbled up the few rounds of bread I had into the groundbait and set about baiting up an area just a rodlength out and dead centre on peg 30. 30 isn’t a peg I usually fish as there’s no structure or pads, but it was the shadiest so, there I went.
Hook-wise I went for a wide gape 14, good for a single worm or double / triple maggot and minimum hassle. On went a worm tipped with a red maggot and unceremoniously plopped they were into the muddy depths (well, I say depths but it’s around 2.5ft in the margins).
I started by getting a few decent carp around the 4-5lb mark and pretty much for the rest of the evening it went carp, chub, carp, chub until all told I’d landed around 20 fish altogether. Nothing massive, just a fun few hours until 6:45pm with pretty much non-stop bites.
Just the one tiny bream tonight as I mopped up with my remaining maggots. I did have one pearler of a fish on that I fought for around 5 minutes, but sadly the little hook pulled and I didn’t even get to see it. I’m starting to recognise the feel of carp now before I see them, and by the struggle it was putting up I suspect it was one of the big commons.
Lovely to see the baby moorhens out having a practice swim this evening too. I find it fascinating how they dive in unison whenever something flies over! The place was so busy with ducks coming and going today that I think they spent more time under the water than on the surface!
So having used up the remaining maggots I decided to wend my merry way home. Not a single perch again today – not giving up though. I did wonder whether the aggressive chub (and boy were they aggressive today) were nosing them out. Possible I suppose. I did get chance to speak to one of the wardens and he said that they had been stocked recently as I suspected in an earlier blog entry.
Righty ho, I’m off for an early one. If you’re out this weekend, good luck to you!
It’s been a hectic few months, and in all honestly I feel pretty guilty about neglecting the blog. It’s been six months since my last trip and I had every intention of getting at least a few trips in over the winter, but life has a habit of dictating things and in my case it wasn’t telling me to go fishing.
I took the bull by the horns this morning, on Fathers Day (lol) and ran to the tackle shop to renew my club membership. Our lakes are now gated and require a key, so all told I was out of pocket by almost £70 by the time I’d bought bait and paid the deposit for the key. Hrrrmph.
As I hadn’t been to the lake for a while I wasn’t sure whether there was a match on at my favourite one, and lo and behold there was, albeit a diddler which meant I was fishing between two people wherever I went. The match was already in full swing and all the bait was being flung out to the far bank, groundbait clouds everywhere and catapults twanging willy nilly. I knew it was going to be difficult, but I stayed. I wanted to get my net wet.
I started about a rodlength out using halibut method mix, slowly trickled red and white maggots and a small waggler and picked up a few roach and a few eels. The carp were fairly absent today, no doubt gorging themselves on the underwater mountains of corn and boilies on the far bank.
It wasn’t them I was after. I needed a perch fix.
It was approaching 1:30pm and I was getting a little chilly, tired and hungry by now. I hadn’t brought any food and the rain was increasing; I didn’t want my first proper trip of 2018 to be a damp, miserable one so I thought I’d pack in whilst I was relatively dry.
I threw the remainder of my groundbait out around four yards and opted to fish the last half an hour close in. Bump, bump went the float as the eels and roach chewed on the triple and quadruple maggot offering – no runs ensued. Glancing around at the match anglers revealed they weren’t doing much better, with the guy next to me having had just the one F1 all session.
I noticed the float bobbling side to side and assumed it was an eel, so as soon as it dipped slightly I struck into it. Something with some weight at last.
Out came a nice 1lb 8oz fish. Not a monster by any means but a handsome looking stripy and a very welcome one too. Sorry for the blurry pic, not sure what happened there.
Fingers crossed the next outing will be a little warmer!
1.2lb and 2.4lb today both on the feeder on lob. Pellet waggler died unfortunately but wanted a shorter margin rod anyway so, thanks fate, I guess!
Deadbait float rigged roach produced a few runs from jacks but nothing big enough to get itself hooked. Will be downsizing to size 8 trebles next trip as I’m sure some big perch were lunging for the deadbaits.
No time for all the gear, no idea today. One birthday party to taxi for and another one going away for the weekend tonight. I decided to try and winkle out a few perch from the abandoned locks at the local canal instead, for an hour.
Now they say you should never revisit places you fished as a kid as you’ll come away disappointed… and they’re not wrong. The locks were choked with rubbish and weed and the surrounding stretches of canal were silted almost to the roof.
There were fish about though. I’d caught them before, last year in fact, but the canal at least in this area seems to have taken a header. It’s pretty shameful that you’re charged to fish here and doubly so considering the area is supposed to have been ‘regenerated’.
I made one pass down the locks, bombing through the duckweed with a relax Kopyto shad. Just a small 2″ silver one. No takes.
I saw some roach rising in one of the turning ponds and, conscious that I only had an hour I decided to pop the only float I’d brought on and try and get a maggot in a weedless spot. Sadly the roach were super wary and small but I did pick up this one on the drop.
By now time was getting on so I popped the little knobbly shad on that I found a week or so ago and tried bombing through the duckweed again with better results.
Just a small one but a perch all the same!
Before I left I thought I’d topwater a shad across the turning pool above the weed. First cast I spotted a pike of around 5lb following, so I threw it again and after 2 misses he picked it up. Sadly when I got him to the bank he bit me off.
Having dug the borders out this morning and collected a fair amount of lobworm, I thought it would be rude not to use them…plus I wanted to check I still knew how to fish with them, having had poor luck recently.
I got to the lake amidst drizzly and misty conditions around 12:30pm. Thankfully it was fairly warm, but not particularly being fond of wet weather I headed up the ‘wrong’ side of the doughnut lake to peg 12 where a large tree offers some cover.
I took everything, but only ended up using the float rod as I had half a pint of mixed red and white that I wanted to use up. I fed maggots tight to the lilies on the left of the swim and baited up with a whole lob, then downsized to double tails or double reds as the small bites became irritating. I soon started picking up small F1s and roach.
No perch showed themselves all day, but about 2:00pm I had a smashing bite which ran headlong for the lilies and promptly tied itself up. I waited for a few minutes for it to swim out and commenced playing it properly for all of 5 minutes. It gave me a hell of a run.
In the net she was just under 9lb, having snaffled a whole lob.
Nothing much special for the rest of the session other than a common of around 3lb, more roach and an eel. I packed in around 3:30pm.
An enjoyable few hours nevertheless, even if it was a damp one.
This morning the wife and I set off on a grand adventure, namely to buy a new electric stove. We probably did around 80 miles all told, and ended up buying it in our home town.
With most of the day wasted I was in two minds whether to pop down to the lake or not. It was getting on for 2:00pm, rather chilly and quite overcast, but with tomorrow already fully booked I thought I’d better grab the carp by the barbules, as it were.
I pulled up around 2:30pm to find my happy place full of kids, so I opted for the hawthorn peg as it usually produces close in. I had lob and red & white maggot, and again throughout the session the lob did absolutely nothing. The fish are either getting wise to it, or it’s my presentation. As nothing has changed with the latter, I can only assume the former coupled with the copious amounts of 1 – 2″ fry that are present.
First cast with the float rod (all I took) with triple red maggot, I picked up this 2lb 7oz bruiser of a perch, replete with battle scars.
Ok, I could now go home happy.
The action was pretty steady all afternoon, with everything landed on maggot. Several F1’s and a nice 4lb common, plus a string of small perch and roach. Bream have been noticably absent of late, as have eels, though I did pick up a bootlace on my previous trip.
Throught the session I had what I thought was a jack crashing the party, right next to the reeds. I’ve seen jack pike caught there before. In fact just a few weeks ago I was chatting to a lure angler about the perch he’d been picking up when he caught a small jack from the very same peg. After he left I noticed he’d dropped one of his knobbly shads so I popped it in the bag in case I ever bumped into him again.
As I was packing up I thought I’d pop the shad on to see if I could pick up the jack. Out went the jig and within a few minutes I’d landed not a jack, but a rather handsome 1lb 10oz perch.
I’m not a lure angler, but this has certainly inspired me to take the drop shot rod with me next time I go.