Sunday, 4 December 2011

A lake chub and a river pike

Saturday afternoon on the lake

With the bloggers challenge heading swiftly to it's conclusion (just four week to go now) I was out again yesterday to try and get my Carp points at a local commercial. Any carp would do, but a double would be pretty satisfying. Unfortunately the carp were not in the mood for responding.  Serves me right for leaving it so late I suppose, I should have bagged one in the spring or summer when I had plenty of time and the carp were well on the feed!

With a rod out to my left fishing meat or soft pellets, I hoped it would fish for its self leaving me to concentrate on my float rod, with only the task of picking it up when it went off.  If this was last month, then that probably would have still been the case, but as the temperature has now dropped off considerably in the last week or so the carp are probably lying up lethargically and only feeding occasionally. 
I fished the float rod out to my right under a bush with a juicy lobworm to see if there were any Perch about, I only managed this lake chub however.

Later, and despite a series of missed takes on the ledger rod as dusk drew in,  I just couldn't connect up to any of them. I suspect they were from smaller fish trying to take the hair rigged pellets but not able to get the hook into their mouths too giving me those dreaded false takes and missed runs.

Sunday morning on the river

This morning I headed out to the river for a bit of a pleasure session.  I only had a couple of hours to play with so I just chucked out a pike float off the rod tip with a hair-rigged bait (a skimmer) laid on the bottom down the shelf.   The perch float rig that was still set up from yesterday, was duly trotted down stream under an overhanging tree. The pike float was the first to show any signs however, after about 40 minutes I noticed it twitching, then lift, and then finally plop under. Winding down to a satisfying bend in the rod as it hooped over, the fish powered off towards a fallen tree opposite me, and as I tried to turn it I felt the sudden jolt of a hook coming free !

99% foolproof !

The hook had pulled cleanly so was just a bad down t a bad hook hold which is the first time that's happened to me since I switched over to using hair-rigged single hooks.  I guess you've just got to take it on the chin sometimes, no method can be guaranteed a 100% foolproof.

 Next came a bite on the trotted lobworm just as the float was at its further limit downstream.  I saw it bury and I certainly hooked into something but the line went slack for a second or two.  It was one of those occasions when your not quite sure what's going on, I couldn't feel anything.  Then winding the reel I caught up with a fish that was heading upstream steadily towards me. The fish felt pretty big and hugged the bottom like most large fish do.  I'd only had proper contact with it for a few seconds, but long enough to know it was a 'goodun' and as I tried to apply a little pressure to steer away from the snags opposite me the second hook pull of the day reared its ugly head !  Damn, that was definitely a good fish what ever it was? I was either a very good chub, a barbel or maybe even a pike - they do love worms.  Of course I'll never know, which is probably best as it would most likely make the agony worse.  Another dozen more trots down to the very spot failed to produce even the sniff of another bite.

So that would have been it, a blank session had it not been for a snap decision to re-position the pike float inthe front of the snag across the river. I started packing away all the other gear and only had the pike rod left to do. As I was folding down my chair, I did another quick every 30 seconds float check, and noticed there was line falling from the spool as I turned my head, with the float nowhere to be seen, I wound the rod down into this nice little jack to save me from being a billy blanko ! A nice way to end a couple of hours out on the river, and it made up a bit for the earlier lost chances.