With a bit of bait spodded out, cage feeders rigged helicopter style were soon sat on top of the bait - rods still set up from Sunday meaning I was good to go in no time. While I waited for some action I made up some more hooklinks using size 14 Korum S5s. To these I added the obligatory fake red maggot up the shank covering the eye. I decided to change one of the helicopter rigs to my old faithful inline maggot feeder. The right had rod was now fishing said maggot feeder over the bait and I sat down to ring Andy while I waited. Within minutes of our conversation starting the rod was off on a stormer! I shouted to Andy on the phone now on the floor " I'm in" and played the hard fighting fish in gently making sure that the clutch was loosened off enough to avoid and mishaps. It was coming in good as gold nothing to worry about just take your time, I turned the fish again and it dived the clutch giving a little then nothing but slack ! what !! the bloody hook had pulled.
With the rod back out I sat down to contemplate the situation, the fish hadn't been that big I told myself, you can't tell of course but I guessed no bigger than six pound (at least I hoped). The left rod was off soon after and again a fish was gingerly played in. As it headed to my far left trying to get into the reeds along the margin I forced a turn on it, the fish seeing my point of view for a while. Then with a violent headshake it was off, the hook giving out at the bend!
Fish number three came shortly after on the maggot feeder again, this one headed up the margin to my right this time. I managed to get the fish turned and out from under the near bank tree, line sickeningly grating on branches as I did. It was now safely out in front of me just requiring a gentle bit of coaxing into the net, when the hook pulled for no particular reason! Oh bother I said ( or something like that ) these hooks re just not working, just about stopping my self from chucking the rod in. I searched in my bag for a different hook pattern settling on some size 10 ESP raptors instead. The maggot feeder was off again before I had time to finish tying the new hooklink. Right just be very careful I told myself , but the fish was off before I had time to settle into the battle.
That was 4 lost fish in about 40 mins of solid action. The hooks were just that bit too small to have a fake maggot on the shank and cope with the weight of the feeder up the line, these factors must have been responsible for loosening the hook from its hold at any moment.
The maggot feeder was re rigged with the new hook pattern and within no time it was off again. The fish came in steadily and without too much fuss I slid it over the net, easy ! Only a four but it was a relief to get one in finally.
|a plump four|
I kicked myself for not changing the hooks sooner, but on reflection if you get one hook pull you put it down to bad luck, two or three and you start to question your tackle judgement, by the forth !! well I was already in the process of changing the hooks by then.
Funnily enough with both rods fishing maggot feeders now, the feeding spell was over just an hour or so after it had started. And the lesson learnt, well that's plainly obvious now isn't it !