Saturday, 31 December 2011

Last of the year.

The last session of the year was a week ago on Christmas eve, it was a session for Zander on the canal in one of our usual spots, Longitch. We'd had very heavy rain the day before and a touch of frost over night, I was suspecting things would be rather slow to start with but we were fishing one of the deeper spots so should see some action.
After an hour, Barry's rod was the first to see some interest with the line pulling tight and slackening off but nothing developed, I returned to my rod and noticed one of the bobbins start to move, I thought it might have been a shoal of Zed's moving through our swims as it looked like a classic Zander take. As soon as the line pulled tight again I reeled into the fish, if this was a Zander, it was going to be a good one. The large fishy shape rose to the surface quickly but there was no head shake, it wasn't a Zander, it was a Pike and a fairly good one. Anticipating a session with only small Zed's I'd only brought my large river net, this wasn't going to be big enough, Barry had a couple of stabs at the beast and almost got it in the mesh but it was too lively, as Barry ran down the bank to get his bigger net I got the opportunity to chin it out.

Thirteen and a half
We'd both had Jacks out of this stretch but I'd not had a Pike this big from here before, it pulled the scales round to thirteen and a half pounds.
I think this Pike might have scarred off all the Zed's, I didn't get any more takes for the rest of the session.

Barry on the other hand

Dog walkers, an alternative bait?
despite using the freshest 'dead' baits

Can't get any fresher than this!

and plenty of 'skulduggery', he couldn't get a take.

He even tried an offering to the fishing god!
His swim remained 'lifeless' all day.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Birthday Double.

Every year around my birthday I always struggle to get a line in the water, we either have family visiting or the big day falls mid week making any kind of session impossible. This year was a little different, the family aren't going to visit till the week before Christmas, the shopping and days out were taken care of over the weekend leaving me with a bit of time on Monday to get a bait in the water. It wasn't going to be any kind of fancy trip to chase any more species for the challenge, I've pretty much decided to put that to bed and make do with what I've caught through the year, I think I'm currently in tenth place which will do me. It was a simple trip to Ryton fishing dead baits for Pike, Barry accompanied me and after a quick look around we made do with the first two pegs along the road bank, Barry dropped down onto the information desk and I settled on peg two, it might be the last time we fish these pegs in their current state!!!!!
We'd met Paul earlier on fishing the corner at the back of the point, he was fishing for Perch and wasn't having much luck, the frost might have put them down in the deeper water but it was sunny so there was always a chance, another angler was roving around the lake trying his luck at spinning for the Perch.
We'd been fishing for about an hour and Paul wandered down towards the car park with his gear, he'd had enough but stopped for a chat when a stutter of bleeps came from the direction of my right hand alarm, the back bobbin hadn't released the line but something was showing an interest. I picked up the rod and waited a few moments for the line to tighten before reeling into the fish, it felt good and came straight to the top and rolled a few times, Barry was on net duty and we soon had the fish under control and in the net. With my tool kit to hand I gave Paul a demonstration in gloveless Pike unhooking and after some light dentistry the hooks were out and I was able to hold the fish up for a quick photo......... the camera batteries were flat!
The toothy one had to rest in the margins whilst the batteries were swapped over in the old box brownie and it remained well behaved for the snap before swimming off.

Ten pound and twelve ounces, a birthday double.
Barry made a concerned comment about the condition of some of the Pike he'd caught recently at the pool, they were all good sized fish and should be weighing much more than they were and I must admit, this fish and the last one I caught at Ryton were very long and lean with big heads and would have looked better had they eaten a few more pies, might be something to keep an eye on!

The rest of the session remained fishless but I was happy to have caught something on my Birthday.