I mean it, that’s it now.

At the end of my last post I mentioned that after catching my pb Barbel I would move onto something else for the remainder of the river season.  Hmmm, didn’t quite work out unfortunately.

I did a couple of evenings the following week and despite a lost Chub, which actually felt like a decent one until it snagged me on some unseen, immovable object different to the one where the barbel snagged me, I never had a bite or even had a sniff of a Barbel.  I had decided after those two blanks that it really was it for Barbel for this season.  Time to try for that Zander.

Or at least that was the plan until we had all this rain.  I kept checking the river levels and thinking, where I would have my best chance at getting a zed?  I had options but they didn’t appeal to me so I sat at home and deliberated.  The obvious option would be to target the Barbel.  The rivers screamed it but after the last two blanks it was as if that was a sign to leave it be.  I really fancied a zed but as I sat there staring at the river levels I very nearly convinced myself to just stay at home, stick the telly on and drink tea all night.  In the end though I decided to have another crack at the Barbel even though I wasn’t really in the mood.

I arrived at the river with plenty of daylight left and rather than just plonking myself in the first swim that looked tasty, I had a proper Continue reading

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Barbel Bonanza

With the weather being mild and settled for the past week I decided to skip the Roach fishing this weekend and try and get a winter Barbel while they are at their highest weights.  I’ve made no bones about the fact that I want to break my pb that I caught back in 2010.  Getting over that 14lb barrier has become some sort of mental block that I feel that i’m not going to get over in a hurry.  In fairness though most of my Barbel fishing has been done in Summer and I had a break from it for several years only really getting back into it last season.  I’m not making excuses but, well actually I am making excuses.

Friday night saw me head to what has become a bit of a banker swim for me.  It’s nondescript and most people would walk past it but it’s done some of my bigger fish and I keep telling myself this is where i’ll get my pb.  I arrived on the river in glorious sunshine armed with a few pre-made pva bags.  I didn’t make too many because I didn’t want to go mad and put too much bait in.  Just a few little morsels and some paste wrapped around my bait.  I didn’t cast in straight away, preferring to wait until the sun had got lower and then I made Continue reading

Roachy Update

Blimey has it really been nearly a month and a half since my last update?  I must be slacking.  In truth though the fishing has been hard.  Prior to yesterday my last three sessions had all been blanks.  The session prior to the those blanks I managed eight Roach upto 1.2, so like all new things that you are trying to get your head around, you can’t always hit the ground running.  I had been getting bites though so I must be doing something half right.

Yesterday I headed back out full of vim and vigour.  I arrived on the water well before daylight because I wanted to get my spot only to find someone setting up in there.  How? Why?  Mine was the only car in the car park so where the chuff did he come from?  Just like Mr Ben he’d appeared from nowhere and I wanted to ask him where he’d appeared from but I just chuntered a “good morning” to him as I walked past.  Bloody carp anglers in my spot.

I’d decided to fish with the wind at my back for a change which isn’t something I would normally do but with 45mph gusts I didn’t want to sit facing into the teeth of that, particularly with the wind chill factor, and besides I wanted to Continue reading

Ahoy there me Carpy’s!!

Typical isn’t it?  You go Carping and you don’t catch any.  You go Roach fishing and you’re plagued by the scaley buggers.

I’d decided that as soon as the Christmas festivities were out of the way that I was going to start my Roach campaign.  I’ve dabbled a bit with it the past couple of winter’s but it always takes me time to get my act together and not get distracted by other things.  Now though, my focus is firmly fixed and with a bit of luck i’ll be going all out to catch them this winter, conditions permitting.

We’re not blessed with big Roach waters around here but I headed to one of my local pits that has done some pound plus Roach in the past.  Not wanting to potentially overfeed the fish I put out three spombs of bait to start with and fished two rods over the baited area.  Encouragingly there were Roach splashing on the surface at first light, although admittedly further out than where I was fishing.  After an hour or so I had my first bite that was definitely Roachy.  A couple more followed but they didn’t develop into anything though Continue reading

Just call me “El Blanko”

So you could be forgiven for thinking that i’d dropped off the face of the Earth.  I haven’t obviously but my catch rate certainly has.  With the decent weather we’ve been having the past few weeks i’ve been down on the river after a Barbel or three but my last four trips have all been blanks which is really odd.  In fact I haven’t even had a bite.  I haven’t been getting down until after dark and although I don’t have a problem with that it can make picking out likely looking spots tricky.

A couple of trips after the Zander have also resulted in blanks so I decided to have a bit of a change and have another session on The Monument after The Carp.

There was only three of us on M1 with a lot more anglers choosing to fish M2.  As I sat in the car to let people get their tickets and sort themselves out I was dazzled by something coming up the drive.  I know carp anglers like their vans but this thing had spotlights on the front, top and lights all down both sides.  Honestly I thought the venga bus had turned up to take me to Ibiza.  For the rest of the day all I had going around my head was “the venga bus is coming”.

Conditions were perfect.  Mild, overcast and drizzly.  I’d spent quite a bit of time preparing for the trip.  I’d got my methods all sussed out and rigs made to suit.  The guys in the office gave me the low down on which areas to target.  If I do say so myself I fished like a demon.  My casting was pinpoint accurate, so was my baiting and I don’t think I could have fished better if I tried.  Despite a couple of liners the first day went without any action, apart from a coot that picked my bait up and nearly gave me a heart attack.

On the second day I decided to have a cast about a bit more and see if I could land on a fish.  Just before lunch a couple of fish moved towards the middle so I put both rods out where i’d seen them.  It was all very quiet though.

My session passed without a bite but despite this I loved every minute of it.  The sunrise on the first morning was stunning.  It would have been nice to get a pre-Christmas fish.  I’ve got a trip somewhere organised for next week so hopefully that fish will turn into a pre-New Year fish and the year will end on a high.