Yep, you’ve guessed it.

I really didn’t fancy it last night.  The weather was due to change around 7pm with a mild southerly turning to a cold northerly and temperatures plummeting bringing rain with it.  I never feel confident with a sudden change of conditions but I was hoping I had a small window of opportunity.  Besides, I wanted to try out my new Drennan umbrella.  I’ve made a few purchases recently.   First impressions on the umbrella are reasonably good.  What I like about it is the fact that you can tilt it without unscrewing the pole and then screwing it back in again.  When i’m on the river the last thing I need is faff and this thing is simple.  It comes with a guy rope and a couple of tent pegs and has the ability to use storm poles with it if needs be.  The pole feels a bit flimsy though (hence the storm pole attachments I guess but more faff) and the fabric is a bit thin.  So not perfect, but better than the two i’ve just had.  I do wish I could find a good sturdy umbrella that can stands the winter elements though.  They just don’t make them like they used to.  It’s all about them being lightweight these days.  Balls to that though, give me something heavy duty any day of the week.

Another recent purchase was the Drennan Mega Carp net pole.  It sounds like i’m an advocate for Drennan but i’m not.  They do some things very well and i’ve always liked their landing net handles.  This thing is sturdy and has a 30cm detachable Continue reading


Legs 11 again – aaaaarggghhhh!!!!!

As previously mentioned I had plans to try a new area of river for my next Barbel trip and that’s exactly what I did last night.  Christ, it was a long walk though.  What made it worse is that every swim I looked at just didn’t seem right so I kept walking, knowing that I was getting further and further from the car and hotter and hotter in the process.  Eventually I found a spot that looked just about right.  The flow was on my near side for a change and with the river narrowing up in this area I didn’t really need to chuck very far.  A couple of underarm flicks and that was it.  The right hand rod was placed in the flow under an overhanging tree and the the left hand rod was placed just past the flow in the slacker water which is my favourite kind of area when targetting big Barbel.

Time was ticking on by the time I made my first cast, in fact it was almost dark.  Expectations were high and a Chub splashed just downstream of the left hand rod which is a sure fire indication that a bite would come in the next half an hour as the fish homed in on the bait.  Sure enough that’s exactly what happened although to be fair it fought more like a Barbel than a Chub.  It’s the first time that I can remember that Continue reading

Keep your eyes on the prize.

My Barbel head is well and truly on.  I can’t see me fishing for anything else now until the beginning of December, possibly later if the weather is mild.

After dealing with the M1 rush hour on Wednesday night I managed to get to the river at a reasonable time after a detour home to pick my stuff up.  The river was still falling which meant I could target an area that i’d got my eye on.  I lost a big fish from that spot last year and I really wanted to give it another go.

Putting one rod to the far bank and another upstream of me mid-river I sat back and waited for dark.  My cheese sarnies tasted particularly good that night for some reason.  I don’t know if it was the high expectations or that i’d got the thickness of the cheese just right but either way it felt good to be alive.  The good thing about this time of year is you have a good length of time fishing in the dark as the nights draw in.  It’s not like in the height of Summer when you’re waiting until after 10pm before it’s fully dark.

It was eerily quiet with the odd little fish splashing about in the edge but nothing of any note.  There wasn’t a breath of wind and I was regretting putting my bib and brace on as it was so warm.

I didn’t have to wait that long until I got a bite on the upstream rod which turned out to be a Chub.  Not a big one so I didn’t weigh it but it looked about four pounds.  I put the rod out again with another pva bag on and sat back and poured a coffee.  With my head back looking at the stars I spotted something I hadn’t seen before.  A bright light moving very quickly across the night sky followed by another light.   It was too high and fast for a plane Continue reading

It’s getting tougher out there

So, since I last updated my blog I’ve had mixed success on the fishing front.  I haven’t been out as much as I would have like due to being away with work.  I did a Zander trip to one of my little spots which only resulted in one bite from a fish of 8.14.  It was another stunning fish although it looked like something had been clamped onto it’s side looking at the marks on it.  The average size of fish is good from this stretch of the river and there is plenty of water to go at.  What’s troubling me though is that I would have expected a double from there.  It has everything going for it but the fact I haven’t had one is making me come to the conclusion that there aren’t any.  It will probably be my last time in that spot for a while.  If conditions dictate then I will give it another few goes in Winter if i’m not tied up fishing for other stuff.

8.14 – Another good Zed.

A couple of days later I headed back to the river in search of a double figure Zed from another stretch.  This is a much harder area and I was under no illusions that the chances of blanking are much higher than catching but if I did get a bite then it would probably be from the size of fish that i’m after.  I couldn’t stay too late as I had a train to catch early the next morning.  I stuck it out until midnight before heading home biteless.

It’s at this time of year that my thoughts start to turn from Zander to Barbel.  I’m desperate to catch my PB Barbel now, although not desperate Continue reading

This weeks entertainment

So Tuesday night saw me head out in search of Barbel after the boy had gone back to his mum’s.  I went to a lightly fished stretch of the river that held some good fish.  I knew exactly where I wanted to fish but couldn’t get to it still because of the balsam and nettles.  I was rather hoping it was dying back as on another stretch I fish there is hardly any now.  Mind you I think the sheep have eaten most of it.  Desperate to get to the swim I wanted I gingerly tried to make my way through the vegetation.  Anyway, to cut a long story short I went over on my ankle.  Thinking I really don’t want any busted bones in the middle of nowhere I abandoned that idea and walked a bit further downstream to a more suitable area.  Suitable to fish from I should say but all night I could hear fish crashing out in the swim that I wanted to be in.  This is the area where my pb is going to come from if I ever get the conditions right.  Needless to say I blanked and never had a bite.  Frustration at it’s finest i’d say.  That area will be avoided Continue reading