Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Fishings been a bit 'Ruff'

Fishing has been a bit quiet lately, I've been away in China again with work so I have missed a couple of weekends fishing opportunities but do hope to get out this week.
I've had a couple of Zandering trips with Barry and he's doing a grand job of looking after the little yellow fella! (Quack quack!!)
I have just found a picture of a fish I caught earlier in the year and thought I'd post it for a reaction!
This is the 'Daddy'!
What is the British record weight for a Ruff as I've never seen one this big before?

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Junior Masterclass at Jubilee Pools - 9th August

Hi Everyone
Just to remind you all that the following is happening at Jubilee this weekend (9th August)
I will be on Pegs 18 and 19 with fly fishing for Carp demo and 'have a go!'

Friday, 25 July 2014

Boney but lush!

You can't beat the taste of fresh Sea Bass, it was the final afternoon of this year’s Devon adventure, it was the last couple of hours of the rising tide and I'd already tried the spot where I'd caught a few Black Bream last year and there were no bites. I'd moved back onto the beach where the girls were and the tide was already filling the shallow gully in front of our beach camp.
Breakers were crashing onto the sand bar on the far side of the gully and it was Sharon that first noticed some fish in the waves, she was right, there were indeed silver flashes in these waves, I put a cast just onto the back of these waves with humble lugworm as bait, it was hit straight away and the first Bass was shortly on the beach. this was a reasonable fish and bigger than you would pay good money for at the local supermarket so I asked the question "Do you want it for tea?" there was a "Yes" from the girls and the fish was quickly dispatched for the pot. I'm no longer a fan of doing this but I am from a sea fishing background and regularly used to bring fish home when I was younger, Cod, Plaice, Pollack and Coalie were all regularly seen in the frying pan at our house.
I was getting at least one fish a chuck but I found that if I waited for a second pull the two hook flapper rig was doing its job and bagging two Bass at a time.
Bass, two at a time.

A second fish was kept for the pot as it had swallowed the hook but it was a good sized fish.
Ready for the pot.
When it comes to cooking there’s nothing fancy here, the fish were head, tailed and cleaned, smothered in butter and lemon juice, sealed into individual foil parcels and into a hot oven for twenty minutes. The fresher they are the better they taste and these were only a couple of hours out of the sea.
Boney but lush!

Sharky Shakes!

Fishing’s been quiet again and I still have the duck!
Just had the first of my annual jollies, North Devon again and a spot of Smoothhound terrorising was first on the cards.
It was an early start to catch the last couple of hours of the dropping tide, I think I got it just right as shortly after casting out the first of my soft crab baits, I was busy trying to unravel my second trace to bait up ready for the next cast, the rod ripped off to the music of a screaming ratchet. The tip was bouncing all over the place as I made a lunge for the rest, grabbing the rod before it took off. I switched off the music, flipped the reel into gear and braced myself as the weight of the fish pulled a very healthy curve into the rod and it continued to pull very hard in its bid to reach the far side of the bay. When you only fish for a particular species once a year you forget how good it feels to hook one and this first fish fought all the way to the rocks, every twist, turn and rapid beat of it's tail had left me shaking after lifting the sharky shape onto the rocks, it's fins lit up by the rising sun.
All lit up.
This was a good fish as well, must have been close to ten pound and definitely the biggest I've had from this spot.
A scrap and a half from this one.
I had another common smoothy half an hour later and a smaller Starry Smoothhound at around low tide.
I was back at the caravan for eight thirty, all smiles and had breakfast ready on the table for when the girls got up.
What an excellent start to the day.

Thursday, 19 June 2014

First Fishing Trip

I have a little assistant that helps me with my boilie making and general sorting out of fishing gear and for weeks, when I've said that I'm going fishing, I've heard the little words "Can I come too". Normally I say no because your still too small or it's too cold or too wet but at the weekend I planned a short trip for us both to enjoy. It wasn't anything to adventurous, just a fun trip to catch a fish so armed with a pole and a selection of baits (Bread and worm) we headed to Ryton and the first peg on the concrete bank.

All set up and ready to catch
First fish was a small Perch and I allowed Cerys to stroke the fish and feel it's spiky dorsal fin, time for a quick photo and I was so surprised to see her pick the Perch out of the net to pose for a picture.
My only excuse for the slow session was crap bait, the lack of maggots means that the fishing was a little slow, short attention spans drifted into colouring in pictures and seeing if stones floated! A handful of wrigglers were acquired and bites increased but I couldn't keep the fish on the hook, bit out of practise with a pole and kept bumping them off! Amazingly, Cerys wasn't scared of handling maggot's "They tickle" she said holding them in her hand.
A roach was next to the net and she held this in her open hands before returning it, the fish survived.
Sharon was horrified to hear that I'd allowed Cerys to handle worms and maggots but we both had fun and at the age she is, that's what counts.

Monday, 26 May 2014

Getting down to it!

Well, it's that time of year when the water temperatures have increased and the fish have started to get down to what they only get to do once a year, spawn. The warmer weather also means that taking a few fish off the top is becoming a bit more reliable, lately the temperatures have been a bit erratic but Barry has had some great success already catching a few on the fly earlier on this year.

We were at Jubilee last Friday and I met Barry just as he was leaving the pool, he was on his way home to pick up a spare rod after standing on his favourite, not a good start. I had a fairly productive session with five fish on the bank and Barry and a couple of doubles, one close to twenty. Bad luck comes in three's, Barry also snapped the elastic on his catapult and locked his keys in the car!
Sunday afternoon/evening was spent at a rather busy college pool. It took a good couple of hours to find some fish willing to take a few snacks off the top and after tempting them with a hook bait they proceeded to smash me up, they are 'animals' in this pool. I was broken off four times when using a controller close to some snags, even 15lb straight through to the hook was snapped like sewing thread. the wind was drifting my free offerings down the pool and I found a few fish that had braved the open water so the fly rod was deployed and it didn't take to long to get a couple of nice mirror's on the bank.

Hard fighting beasty.
One Slice!

They fight like stink in the deep water and kept pulling for the snags, I don't know how that little fly rod copes with the punishment it gets from the Carp it catches but it works brilliantly and they soon give in.
Barry caught three fish which means the Duck is back in my hands, quack quack!

Nick Nick!

The local constabulary were interested in a recent capture from Ryton. Shame it was the same fish, from the same swim and as many weeks.

Police approved twenty!

Canal Lump.

I've never really thought of fishing the canal's for Carp but it's really starting to appeal to me. There are some very good fish in these little waters but you do have to put the time and effort into finding them and it's not easy.
The particular spot I fished last week is one I've fished a few times and had smaller Carp from but after speaking to local passers by the bigger ones are often seen.
I currently have real confidence in my Ryton3 baits and spread a good quantity along the far margin which is where the Carp tend to hang out along this stretch. My usual 'Donkey Choker's' were the bait and all I could do was sit back and wait for a take. I waited for around an hour before I got the only run of the day, but it was well worth the effort.
Almost as deep as the swim it came from.
It's my first canal twenty.

Those Dirty Rat's!

I did an evening session at Ryton last Friday, lovely and sunny and the Carp were all over the place basking in the late afternoon sunshine, some were looking rather 'frisky' in the warmer sheltered corners so it won't be long till they start to spawn.
I only managed the one Carp as well as one very good Tench. I had loads of takes, they were probably smaller Tench but I'm using proper 'donkey choker' sized boilies as hook baits to try and deter them and it seems to be working as I've had hardly any Tench this year.

Hard fight in the shallows.
The Rat population appears to be on the rise around the lake and I must warn everyone that they are stealing baits. Midway through the session, I went to my rucksack to get my boilie bag out to re-bait my spots with a couple of dozen boilies, but, ended up turning everything over looking for the baits, they weren't there? I walked up and down the bank thinking I'd left them where I'd been sitting earlier but nothing, I even thought that Barry had pulled a stunt and hidden them but just as was about to shout out to him I caught a glimpse of one corner of the bag right in amongst the brambles at the back of the peg, the little boilie munching ba****ds had only lifted it out of my bag and dragged it under the bushes, chewed holes in the mesh and devoured about half a kilo of my Ryton three's.
I will be hanging the bag up from now on!

Monday, 14 April 2014

A quacker of a slow take.

Back at Ryton again with some freshly rolled baits. Cerys is now old enough to help me make my boiled fish food. It's a bit like making playdoh just a bit smellier. She helps to measure out the dry ingredients before we add it to the 'stinky' liquid, the fun comes when we squeeze out and roll into baits.

Stirring the stinky stuff
I was back in the same swim as last week but didn't mess about moving around this time, one bait was on the lucky spot and the other just off to my right. All was quiet around the pool, I'd been given the heads up on what was happening on the main part of the lake via an exchange of texts with Dan and there were a few fish coming out.
The chilly wind was blowing straight into my swim and I felt it was having an impact on when the fish would move into the area. It wasn't until after midday, when the sun had moved around far enough, that I saw the first hint of something fishy being in the vicinity of my bait. The clues were there to indicate that something was indeed right over my bait so I got myself ready for a take, sure enough the bobbin began to move very slowly. It crept up towards the rod in a series of short twitchy movement's, my eye's flicked back and forth between the bobbins and the slowly tightening line before I made the decision to pick up the rod and lean into whatever was on the end. My rod took on an alarming bend as the fish tried desperately to get into the sanctuary of the tree roots, I kept the pressure on and it eventually gave in and started to move towards me, twisting and turning in protest all the way. With six foot of water under the rod tip I was able to back off the clutch and allow it a little freedom as I sorted out the net, this felt a good fish and as it rolled over the cord I noticed it was indeed a large mirror, I began to wander if it was one I knew?

Twenty pounds and four ounces.
Ryton always throws up a few surprises and this was one, I've never seen this fish before so it's another new one for me. It's an incredible fish, long and lean and full of fight and I think it's one of the best looking mirror's in the pool.
The other side
The rest of the day was spent messing with the new reels, don't like them, can't get on with them and gave up on the session, I was more than happy with what I'd caught anyway.
The Duck was passed back to Barry!

At last!

At last, some time on the bank. I deliberated for ages over where to go as I'd heard of a few Carpy tales which I've been meaning to chase up but not had a chance to and I was pretty desperate to wet a line, Barry was off on his annual (crazy) walk around the Coventry way so there was no 'Duck' pressure and in the end I settled on a session at Ryton, the monster hunting can wait a bit!
The usual spots were taken so I headed off to one of the quieter corners to try a swim that's been good for me in the past, traps were set but after an uneventful hour I noticed some fishy activity to my right, too far right to get a cast to so the gear was packed up and I made a quick move. It wasn't until I moved for a second time that I felt happy with where my cast was landing and the lay of the line leading to it, it was a bit of a tricky one because I've found that if your cast wasn't bang on this particular spot you didn't get any takes. It took a few chucks to get everything spot on and it didn't take too long to get the first take, it was only a Tench but at least I knew that everything was working.
A good couple of hours passed and I had a bit of a Jerky take that excelarated into the rod tip pulled round in the direction of the fleeing fish, I quickly leaned back into it but wasn't quick enough, all I could feel was a grating sensation with the odd thump in between. The line had gone round something and I could see the fish boiling below on the surface with the line running at right angles to it through a snag. The fish shook the hook loose and I ended up losing the hook in the snag, it felt like a fairly good sized Carp.
The rig was back on the spot and it was one of those cast's that you know was going to go!
After an hour, I again had another slow 'jerky' take but this time I was on it straight away with the clutch locked down tight. The fish eventualy kited out of the swim and I was able to back off the clutch to give it a little false freedom. The fight was very satisfying and it's been a while since I had a nice Carp on the line.

Reel christened but I'm not happy with them!

The fish weighed in at sixteen and a half pounds and was the only Carp of the session.
My new reels, not happy with them so I may be parting with them soon.

Monday, 31 March 2014

Five weeks!

Five weeks, Five weeks since I last wet a line!
Can't seem to find the time to get on the bank and bag a few, I've had birthday trips, driving test's, fishing shows to attend and a kitchen to fit. But, I can now see some light at the end of the tunnel and hopefully I'll be able to get out next weekend and attempt to christen my new reels.
In the mean time, here's something to appeal to those 'Fishing Tarts' out there who think they have everything for a weekend on the bank.

So you think you have everything!

Found an arse wipe with a lovely fish scale pattern all over!

Monday, 3 February 2014

First Fish - At Last!

I've been out a few times this year but things have been a little scarce to blog about, I could blog about how mild it is and how the Carp are still being caught at Ryton, normally unheard of for this time of year but I haven't spent much time there. We did fish the pool last weekend but both blanked and I earned the duck back two weeks previous after a session after Zander, Barry caught one Pike and handed the duck over!
Last Sundays session was another for Pike and when we arrived at our chosen venue there was one other person there dead baiting and a couple of people spinning, no one had caught so things didn't look too clever but we set up on the far bank and tossed out the sea baits. The sun was warming but we still had to wrap up in the bitter wind, the sun glasses were a must in the bright sunshine. A couple of swans seemed to have made this pool their home and I watched them as they moved around feeding, some spots they were only sticking their necks beneath the surface and in others they were up ending to reach the bottom, a mental note was made of these spots for later in the year!! Whilst watching one Swan we both noticed it rear up quickly after dipping under for a quick snack, something down there had spooked this bird and I could only think it would be one thing.
Rods were quickly recast into the new area and withing fifteen minutes the float slid away as something made off with my sardine. I lifted into a very good and heavy weight that plodded around, the Pike showed it's head once before making a B line for my other float, to try and avoid a tangle I put a little too much side pressure on the Pike and pulled the hook, I was understandably not very happy with my performance!
I carried on and after only a short time I managed to loose another small Pike at the net, it was only a jack but it would have been a good consolation. Things took a turn for the worse as I lost a third Pike when it tail walked in front of me throwing the hook out at the same time.
Three lost fish, I was at a loss.
I tied a new trace and just to ensure that the hooks were sharp I gave them a quick lick with the sharpening stone. I didn't think I was going to get a fourth chance at catching a pike on this session but fate dealt me the best hand I could hope for as I watched my float bob a few times before sliding off. I lifted into another heavy fish that proceeded to plod around in front of me with the odd charging run, the net was ready and as soon as it hit the surface and made sure it was in the mesh first time, this was a good fish.
Down on what it should be.
The scales confirmed this at eighteen pounds and two ounces, not bad for my first fish this year, bloody hard work catching it and what a session it could have been if I'd landed all of them!