Change of Plan

4.4On Wednesday it pretty much rained all day which meant I knew that the rivers around here would be close to the top of the banks.  I spent all that day and the following day keeping tabs on the levels on the EA website.  Up and up they kept coming which meant that it would be almost impossible to fish for Perch.  I’d planned on fishing with Mr C and after a few text messages we decided to fish a small stillwater on the outskirts of Chesterfield.  We’ve had fish from there in the past but nothing along the lines of the fish that can be caught in the rivers.

We drove to the fishery and on arrival at 6:30am were dismayed to find two carp anglers setting up in the spots where we wanted to fish.  How’s that for luck?  Andy said he’d rather take his chance on a swollen river than be annoyed by the constant beeping of bite alarms and it’s fair to say I didn’t need much persuading and within ten seconds we were back in the cars and on our way.

The river had dropped quite a bit overnight and realistically we both knew it was still a touch too high but decided to fish anyway.  I settled into a swim that had produced a couple of 3’s for me recently and Andy fished a swim that had produced a few different 4’s for both of us in the past.  Straight away I got snagged and lost my end tackle and proceeded to do so another two times.  The recent floods had obviously brought something unseen down into that spot as i’d never had a problem there before.

An hour or so later I looked to my left to see Andy into a fish.  Judging by the way the rod was jagging I thought it had to be a Perch and it was.  It was a good one too coming in at 3.9.

We stuck it out for another hour and I just wasn’t feeling the love where I was fishing.  The constant snagging and the rubbish coming down with the flow with really starting to get on my wick.  I suggested to Andy that we tried a different area so we packed up and jumped into the cars and fished a different stretch.

The new swims weren’t ideal but they were a lot better than the previous one’s.  It wasn’t long before Andy was into a fish that turned out to be a Chub over the 4lb mark and then it went back to being quiet before I managed an immaculate Bream in the 4-5lb bracket.  The Bream in the river are certainly in mint condition, as are most of the fish because you never see anyone fishing for them.

Lunchtime came and went along with copious amounts of coffee but no more bites came.  The hours between 10 and 2 always seem quiet.  Maybe the fish are having a midday siesta.

Andy then had a bite which he had to let develop for quite a while before striking.  This turned out to be another immaculate Perch that was slightly bigger at 3.12.  We took a couple of photo’s and then returned the fish before I muttered the immortal words “right, time for a celebratory p**s!”  Just as I was mid-flow I saw my right hand rod arch over.  What perfect timing and I’ll save you from the finer details of what happened when trying to reach for your fishing rod while mid-flow but I struck into a solid lump.  The scrap was ace as the fish stayed deep and I said to Andy that I thought it was a decent Chub, in fact we both did so imagine my delight when a dinner plate sized Perch popped up.  I shouted at Andy to make sure he got it in the net which he did in an expertly manner and he said “it’s a 4”.  What a fat thing it was and was in tip-top condition.  We weighed it and the scales went 4.4.  What a result and what a season it’s been and i’ve still got another trip planned for the last day.

We took some pictures with my new camera and they turned out really good.  I returned the fish and was on a high expecting the rod to go again any minute.  Andy managed a nice Tench and we stuck it out to the bitter end but sadly no more Perch obliged but it didn’t matter as we’d both had a super day.


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