Sunday, 30 October 2011

Trotting at Toton

It was a sunny afternoon which seemed too good to waste, with only a few hours of light remaining of these short autumnal evenings I decided to head to the Erewash. Half a loaf of bread was retrieved from the freezer and I grabbed a float rod and centrepin loaded with 4lb line. Cutdown waders and small folding net were flung into the boot of the car and I was soon heading across Nottingham.
  Dropping into the peg nearest the car park, I dabbled a piece of flake beneath a small loafer under the rod tip, testing out the slack water to either side of the flow for a few minutes, before allowing it into the stream and allowing it to trot slowly through, holding back fairly hard by allowing my thumb to drag the drum of the pin. The water was carrying a bit of colour and I could see no sign of any fish, however towards the end of the first trot through the float buried and the first chub of the day was heading for the tree roots which line this stretch of river.

It is uncommon in my experiece to take two chub out of the same swim around here, the commotion puts the fish down for a good while, and today was no different, half an hour later I was regretting not moving sooner & moved towards the top of the section, getting pestered by minnows for 10 mins in one peg before working my way downstream, getting lots of bites but hitting none of them, probably minnows too small to hook up on the size 14 hook.

Eventually a kamakaze minnow managed to chomp the hook well down, and with some blood showing from the gills decided that it was a euthanasia case - I therefore tapped it on the head before extracting the hook, and then hooked the dead fish just behind the dorsal and trotted it through below some overhanding trees. once more the float buried and another chub, smaller this time, was brought to hand.

Satisfied with this result a moved further downstream, typically giving each swim two runs through before moving on. the sun was down by the time a third fish succombed, once more from slack water below overhanging trees. The fish managed to get the line around some submerged twigs as I was slow in burying the rod tip beneath the surface, fortunately I got lucky this time, and the downward pressure fromt he rod and the fish combined to ping the line free and the fish was soon landed. I worked my way back to the first swim eaking out the last of the fading light, but there would be no more bites. All in all a pleasant and relaxing 3 hours of fishing.

Saturday, 22 October 2011

Just cant keep away from the dead horse

There is something about the peg with the plank, appropriately nicknamed "dead horse" by me earlier in the season that keeps pulling me back. Considering that, as far as I know, not a single fish has been caught from it this season there is no rational explanation for me to keep trying it. Now that the lillies have gone and the weed died back it's not even particularly eye catching.
 Knowing that the bottom would be littered with dead and dying plant matter, and working on the basis that this peg would remain fishable if the river suddenly rose I decided to try baiting it for a week. I had formed the opinion that the carp have become preoccupied with the millions of snails which have rampantly multiplied within this years prolific weed growth. I was hoping that this feast may now be beginning to run out, and that providing an alternative could yield results.
 From Sunday to Friday I baited with a mixture of corn and peanuts, about 3/4 of a bucket each day. fished it for about 18 hours from saturday afternoon until sunday morning. apart from a few line bites courtesy of the bloody swans there was no sign of action. The guys who fished the woods on thursday & friday night also blanked. It seems that no-one has really caught much of note on this part of the river all year. Dreadful!

Monday, 17 October 2011

Wet & windy at the weirpool

I popped down to the weir after work, fished from about 19:00 till 21:30 conditions were awful, heavy rain and 40 mph gusts - thankfully I could sit it out in the car, tapping away on my netbook thrashing out a paper for a forthcoming conference. Browsing the internet on my phone I just double checked that the BBC forecast said 10mph winds and light showers... with the car rocking and the trees bent double as the rain hammered into the side of the car I though the least they could do would be to update the website once it was clear that they had got it completely wrong! The alarms remained silent and I got soaked and wind battered tackling down once I finally called it a night. I'm getting used to this blanking lark!

Saturday, 15 October 2011

A night on the willows

Since I cant find the carp anywhere else, I decided to have a stab at a stretch called the willows, upstream of Beeston weir. This section has only been lightly fished for the last decade or so, and the club cut back the pegs at the start of the season, so I thought I'd give it a go. John had sorted me out with a sack of maize, so I had spent most of the preceeding week preparing batch after batch before slinging into the dark and murky depths. It is generally known that there are a few carp around the boats, I was keeping my fingers crossed that they would cross over the 100yds or so to my side for a regular meal.

As afternoon became evening I picked up a large chub on a 20mm boilie fished midriver with a bag of pellets. On its way in it managed to get its head into two deep weedbeds and, though I could steer it easily between the buoys I decided that a tussle with an angry carp might be tricky proposition from this peg. once in the net the big chevin looked like a monster, It was broad across the shoulders and I reckoned it had to be a five. The scales disagreed though, granting me a satisfying, yet disappointing 4lb 13oz.

after the sun set I was subjected to the joys of Beeston Marina's Riverside Bar disco, with Boney M echoing across the river I dont know whether the fish were boogieing on their own silty dance floor or in a corner throwing up. One thing was clear, they weren't up for snacking.

the night was cold cold cold... at first light I was up and pacing to try and get some warmth back into my bones, there was ice on the unhooking mat, probably the first sub zero night of the year. The orange glow of the rising sun heralded yet another carpless session, though the misty river valley looked spectacular, even the steel of the hydropower station had an agreeable industrial aesthetic in the autumn dawn. I stayed into the afternoon, suprised that even the bream were failing to show, before hauling my way back home. The chances of getting a river carp this year are diminishing by the day

Saturday, 8 October 2011

Another bloody blank

Joined John for 24 hours, filling in for Pete who was at a wedding. As ever the company was fine, but the fish are absolutely failing to play ball. It rained, only light, for the first few hours, then I spent the whole time watching a territorial swan chase off a game of about twenty, probably juvenile, others. The charade was repeated at hourly intervals, often moving the leads as they swam over the lines. Occasionally the pursuit would become airborne, and on one occasion I was lucky to lose only the terminal tackle, as an aerialised swan ran/flew through the line, dragging the rod off the rest and almost to the water. That was the closest I got to a run.   Took the opportunity to go over my tactics, methods, rigs etc with John to see if there is any explanation for the lack of success. The only one he could come up with was extremely bad luck - in my opinion its reached the stage of ridiculously bad luck!