Tuesday, 22 November 2011

So far away but never too far away!

Canton Tower
Last week I was in Guangzhou, China, on a very enjoyable works trip sourcing new materials to use for next seasons designs, the only thing I hated about the whole trip was being so far away from my little girl, it's the first time I've had to make a trip like this since she was born. Guangzhou is a very big, modern city situated on and around the Pearl river delta and my hotel was situated right on the bank of this river with views across to the canton tower and stadium.
I always enjoy an early morning walk when away from home and on the first morning the attraction of the river drew me to it's banks for a gentle stroll, fishermen never stay too far away from the medium our pray swim in and I always find myself being drawn to any waters edge if only to have a look, I had a look and was amazed at how many anglers were fishing along the walkway next to the Pearl.

Pearl River anglers
There appeared to be two methods of fishing the first being a smallish rod or pole with a small float set-up with around a one foot drop, an Eel like live bait was presented on a sizable hook. There were plenty of fish topping all over the place so I can only presume that this was the method used to catch these fish.

Using a bamboo pole.
The other method being used was a little more macabre, a few anglers appeared to be spinning but with a very heavy looking lure, on closer inspection it was no lure that was being chucked out but something that resembled a large breakaway lead, similar to the ones we would use when beach fishing, the only difference being that the grip wires were replaced with what I can only describe as small meat hooks. I think the intention was to deliberately foul hook anything that swam into the path of the 'claw' and an exaggerated sink and draw action seemed the way to retrieve this weight. 

The exaggerated sink and draw

The claw
I saw this dead catfish floating down with the current, it's belly ripped open, not sure if it had crossed the path of an anglers 'claw'!

A cat that got away!

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Two more!

A quick trip to Barford was called for to try and bag a couple of much needed species for this years competition, an Eel and a Barbel. The trip had originally been planned for next week but had to be brought forward one week due to a work trip to Guangzhou, China, luckily there weren't any matches on this weekend.

Worth every penny.
Barry had got me a guest ticket and we decided to make a day of it, he'd been down the river a couple of times the week before and bagged both Barbel and Eels, with some much needed extra water in the river and a bit of colour, hopes were high, even if I only managed to bank one of the two species then it would be a result.
The first peg he put me in looked good and I flicked out a lump of luncheon meat into the flow and allowed it to trunddle round to where I thought a fish might be lying, I hadn't even got the second rod rigged up when the baitrunner started to give out line, I was on it like a shot and soon had the first of many Eel's in the net, I haven't caught Eel's like this since I was a kid fishing the small river Braint on Anglesey, great fun. 

Biggest Eel of the day was 1lb 8ozs
Barry had hoped to get me onto the oak tree peg at the start of the session but I had to wait until early afternoon before I could get onto what he called a 'banker' of a swim, either that or I miss heard him!
It proved to be an excellent swim with several Eel's taken, then, just as other anglers had predicted the late afternoon saw my rod tip slam forward as a whiskered critter made off with the lump of meat.

A six pound six whiskered critter!
A hard battle was soon won and I had my second target species in the net, a Barbel.

Just sitting there!

I was just sitting there minding my own business when this lump of dead fish landed right next to me, now, it was a Sunday, I knew there would be a few people around with the intent of pulling us out of the water, weighing us and taking a quick snap shot before throwing us back, I have absolutely know idea why they do this but it must be a popular thing that humans do as there's a lot of them that do it at this lake, some day's you just can't get away from them. Anyway, back to this lump of fish, like I said, I was just sitting there and not really in the mood to do much, the sun was out so it was a bit bright and I just fancied a couple of hours minding my own business before going out for a bite to eat later. This lump of fish smelt great and was defrosting nicely but I resisted for nearly an hour then out of nowhere I had to yawn and before I knew it this lump of fish was in my mouth, I wasn't sure what to do but before I had a chance to do anything something started to pull me towards the bank, now I didn't fancy having my picture taken and did try my best to escape but I soon found myself in the bottom of a mesh cage, then on a comfy mattress before being photographed.

This is me on the mattress!
I was let go shortly after but didn't fancy fish for dinner anymore!