Worms, I take it all back

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.

Wet nets.

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Oh, hello lure!

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.

Wet nets.

The Magic Maggot

I haven’t been fishing for a good while but, whilst I had the chance between shifts this afternoon, I headed to the lake.

I picked up a small amount of bait on the way home, namely a small tub of lobworm and half a pint of red maggots. I wasn’t planning on spending a long time bankside today after a 24hr shift.

I arrived around 1:00 and was greeted with a relatively quiet scene. A few match lads were practicing on the walk in pegs and one pleasure angler was seated half way up the right side. I positioned myself between the two, rigged up the float rod with lob and a wide gape 12 and settled in.

The action in the first two hours was regular but slow. I landed four carp and lost a largish one due to a hooklink break. Two small F1s, a 2lb common and a 3lb mirror.

After the lost fish it slowed down for around an hour, so I switched to maggot and a size 14 hook. I picked up another F1 and a small perch plus lots of small roach. Sadly the big perch didn’t want to know.

Around 3:30pm I noticed the float running sideways and sidestruck into a lump. Reeling in gingerly due to the small hook size I was pleased to see a fair perch break the surface. 2lb 4oz all told.

All in all a fun afternoon. So much for expensive lobworm, eh?!

Wet nets.

September Update

It’s been a while (for me) since I posted an update. I’ve had a couple of uneventful sessions over the past week, both short and one somewhat disastrous… which I’ll expand on shortly.

Last Tuesday I popped out for a few hours, catching nothing noteworthy except 2-3lb carp each cast and the usual small perch. Really small.

Again maggot seemed to be king. One upside is that of late the eels seem to be noticably absent.

Yesterday I put out both the quiver and float for a lunchtime session, having managed to procure a decent quantity of lob from the local tackle shop.

The action was steady all day, but only two perch made an appearance. One on float and one on quiver and both around the 1.5lb mark.

Around 4pm I turned to pick something up off the floor and in the few seconds it took to look back at the rods the quiver setup you see in the top picture had vanished.

20 yards out into the lake, a stream of bubbles told me that my rod had indeed been taken. Silently, stealthily stolen, most likely by a very big carp.

I was pretty annoyed, seeing no way of getting it back, but I had to try. I stripped the float gear off my pellet waggler and put on a snap tackle trace and a bomb and proceeded to drag the lake. After about an hour and a half I picked up the line and got the rod and reel in, quiver first with my feeder and the fish still attached. I didn’t see the fish, just a large black shape. As I cluctched the line the fish swung its huge head and snapped my 8lb mono straight through.

At least I got the rod back. If I’d set some drag it wouldn’t have happened.

Lesson learned.

Wet nets.

Back on dry land

I’m back at work tomorrow but felt a little guilty about indulging in a lake escape today. Thankfully wifey was cool with it, so I headed off for bait.

I arrived at a very sunny and relatively busy lake around 1:30pm and selected a shady peg under a large hawthorn. This was for two reasons, firstly the peg looked fishy and I’d done well there in the past. More importantly my sunburned neck wasn’t going to put up with any more warmth.

I set up the quiver and the float but just used the latter for the first two hours and enjoyed slow but regular takes from small carp and one small perch. I couldn’t get lob today so opted for dendrobena. Sadly worm wasn’t on the menu so all initial catches, around the stamp below, were on maggot.

As the sun dipped the bites started increasing in frequency, so I popped the quiver along the right hand reed bed with a small cage feeder and a bunch of worms. After picking up some reasonable carp I managed to snag a decent 2lb 8oz perch.

Shortly thereafter I picked up a lovely golden common of around 4lb on worm and float.

Then just before 6:00pm I managed to haul in a 2lb 4oz perch on a bunch of maggots, again on the float.

All in all a really pleasing evening. Not hectic in terms of bites, but it’s nice to be home.

Wet nets!

Monday’s a no-go

So this morning it was. Just a few chucks at the large lake for an hour or two before work. Peg 29, a reedy and weedy spot at the back end of the lake with around 2.5ft of water close in.

Just the float rod today and a few small brandlings and red maggot as bait. I didn’t intend for this session to be a lengthy one as I had a shift at 3pm.

Picked up the usual mixed bag of small perch, roach and a handful of F1s and a small common of probably 2.5lb.

Also bought myself a supply of replacement favourite ‘lucky floats’. I love Middy’s Carp Baggin’ Machine wagglers, especially the small 1.0g and 1.5g versions.

Wet nets.

A tale of two sessions…

Update: Thought I’d start adding some info re. gear used to each post as a memory jogger.

  • Shakespeare Sigma 10′ Pellet Waggler
  • Shakespeare Sigma 2500 small BR reel (Baitrunner for float fishing? Handy when fishing off the rod tip!)
  • 1.5g loaded Drennan Crystal Waggler
  • 6lb Maxima Chamaeleon
  • Size 12 WG Drennan Super Specialist
  • Red Maggot (loose) Double Dendrobena (hook / one halved)
  • Halibut Method Mix

Last night was a bit of a washout, between the dropping temperatures and misty, clinging rain I’d had enough by 7.30pm having started at 6.00pm. My cat, Ernie, had gone missing too and my mind wasn’t on the job. I snagged a few carp but it was all pretty miserable. Ernie is home safe now, by the way!

I made a note of the peg number (5) as, considering I wasn’t ‘trying’ the fishing was consistent and the fish were of a good stamp. Tonight I decided to try peg 6, another one I hadn’t tried before.

Both pegs are pretty bland, featurless and open. 6 looked better due to a few reeds out to the left. What I did notice immediately was the proliferation of Elodea close in. It made fishing off the rod tip difficult with varying depths and regular snags, which was annoying as the carp were fizzing around like mad. I managed to bag an eel, a few small F1s and a nice 4lb common however, then shortly before switching swims I picked up a perch of 2lb 3oz.

Shortly after picking up the ragged perch above, I switched to the left hand side of the swim and found it to be much clearer. Sadly the bites were slower in coming, with the eels moving in quickly, then some bream and a little later a lovely common just touching 5lb.

With the weather being warm and the sun shining I was loathed to leave, but pack away I did, leaving my float next to the bank while I cleaned out the groudbait bucket. Out of the corner of my eye I saw the float dip and travel to the edge of the boards. I picked the rod up and the tip arced over. On the other end, a large perch of 2lb 7oz had picked up my scrappy worm.

What a nice way to end the night! More fuel for the argument that often the big ones really are at your feet.

This was further evidenced when I washed the net out and inadvertently netted these beautiful fry. No wonder the perch are big, and not as inclined to pick up baits at the moment.

Wet nets!