Friday, November 9, 2012

Winter Fishing - Bring it on!!!

For once I was really glad to miss this weekend fishing, although the virus was not welcome the time to reflect certainly was,  this got me to thinking of past captures and future targets, then a realisation set in  that over the past few years I really have wimped out in winter. 

“So what” I hear all the fair weather fisherman say, well for an angler that combines pleasure with a bit of specimen fishing albeit to catch the biggest of the type I am after on the water concerned. Indeed so what. 

In winter it all slows down and catches are worse right….. 

In reflection, no !!! 

So for Tench and bream ok.... I have always targeted them in May onwards thus not focusing on anything else, ok so hard waters have taken catch rates down but a 7lb tench and 7lb bream pb from Blackleach Res, not many can say that (cos not that many can catch there these days).


Carp are associated with summer, but I have rarely gone for these by design, there crucian cousins yes, and taking fish to 2.4lb from Fir Tree Flash which is more of a park type lake  this going back some 5 years ago was  great,  Many crucians and tench albeit smaller than the Blackleach variety. Note to self, i must find the crucian photos in the garage, time before digi cameras.

Barbel and chub, I have targeted far less than I would have liked, down to once a year, 7 years ago on a day ticket stretch in middlewich I would drop in once a week and then do a Sunday session, taking barbs to 7lb in late summer and autumn, and I have had a few good last hours dropping off the m6 on my way home from a meeting to target chub into the dark, best of 4lb. 

A big surprise for me was getting to the bank at 5am on the River Glaze in winter  with Dad to catch his favourite, 5am would get the last peg on the 100m stretch, pole to pole tempting roach to 1lb though I now they went bigger than 2lb and some say upto 3lb, it was a dream 2 years winter fishing, until the new bank work killed the annual route of the silvers. I would get 8-10 lb roach in 2 hours before work, and some locals would say that was bad fishing….. they haven’t been to Blackleach then, again i must find the photos....... 

The cold January day would see an annual trip to the River Ure, piking, where my biggest went to 15.5(main blog photo) In freezing temperatures, not massive and I am sure my local rivers hold a new pb for me this winter, but it was while I went to check on a friend that the Red Letter day thoughts sprang to mind. With me asking whats that in the water near the bushes and him saying, dunno not got my contacts in I thought it was twigs.. In fact they were rows of decent size perch in formation largest at the front, though it was near dark a couple of 2lbers were taken with freelined worm, on return saw my “last hour” fishing this to get a fish at the head of the shoal weighing 3.5oz(this blog opening pic), non were feeding, this was aggressive response to food dancing by.  A few months later that very tree was washed into the river in a storm, moving those perch on to find new habitat, damn...
that’s the only reason to stop me driving for 4 hours roundtrip each week during the winter.

While we all enjoy warm days at the bank dreams can come true in winter

So bring it on!!!


Friday, November 2, 2012

Old River Predator hunt

I think it was Martin Bowler who said he treats a blank as step closer to his next big catch and that he learns more blanking than he ever does when catching....

that said then i should be the most knowledgable angler in Salford.......... 2 more attempts predator fishing at my dads favourite water, and blank...

last weekend, weather ok but bright, peg 5th from the pub, tactics 1 deadbait  and 1 floatfish prawn, worm for the perch, dad was just maggot fishing, nothing between us in 2 hours,
the pole anger on the first peg had a few bits, assume it is getting peggy with the change in temperature,

today out at first light for 3 hours, we managed the first peg, same tactics as above but dad put in a deadbait rod too....

well dad had nothing on the mags, i mean i do not expect him to catch as much as a pole angler, for obvious presentation and catch effectiveness of the pole, but i would have expected a bit or two on the mags...... he was on 2.5lb bottom, so maybe he could go down to 1lb,

then at 10,30, i saw a good double size pike nose out of the water near dads float by some lillypads, "give it 20mins" i said, and sure enough, a take.... the float did not go under as he was fishing on the bottom and fish had maybe moved upwards.... for a few seconds the flost travelled then stop (which i took to be the point where the predator is turning the half of herring), then it moved off again, "go on dad strike" - he did and he was in, but five or six second later it was off..... dad blamed me for telling him to strike and not letting it swallow the bait.. but i would rather take it early and loose it than risk deep hooking.... anyway it could have been a mouth hook up and a good shake of the head could have pulled free from the front treble.

But in terms of general fishing, it was poor......maybe the cold nights have turned the fish off until they get used to the lower temperatures, maybe dads presentation and line diamater wasnt ideal to tease these silvers.... or maybe the fish were frequenting other pegs..... i do not know this water that well so do not know the winter shoaling behavior or if there are other influences like a hot water pipe or some other attractor.

Well Mr Bowler what would you have learnt from todays blank???