Monday, 28 May 2012

A mirror in the sunshine.

At last weekend’s work party I asked if I could tag along with Pete and Jan on their weekly Friday night jaunt to one of the local ponds. They agreed and we arranged to meet at The Barns at midday on Friday, the plan was to fish through the afternoon and night and leave early to get to the work party, we didn’t want to miss the last one, one final push to have the water ready for the June 16th start. I hoped that there might be a chance of something from the surface during the afternoon but worried it might be too hot for them. Perhaps the night, once things started to cool down would be the best time, but a social with a few buddies was sounding better and better by the minute, and fish would be a bonus really.

I got to the layby and found Pete’s car already there, I walked down to the ponds and found him having a look around. We spoke about swims and decided on the left hand bank where the three of us could set up stall and command the majority of that side of the lake. We got back to the cars to load the barrows just as Jan arrived. The short trek to the pond was fairly tiring work in the midday sun but as excitement was high it didn’t seem too bad. Jan opted for the bottom dam corner by the overhangs, I went in the middle and Pete chose the top weedy end of the pond. Everyone set about getting things ready, houses built, rod out, but I just fired out a few mixers and watched the water in no rush to get rods out of put up the brolly.

Sunday, 27 May 2012

A day's floater fishing with Chris Ball

Last week I received a message from my friend Chris Ball. I asked when he was fishing next and he told me he’d planned a day’s floater fishing at the Linear complex near Oxford the following day and that I was welcome to join him. I cleared it at work and with the Mrs and replied back that I’d meet him there at around 9:30am. 

I arrived on time but Chris beat me to it and was already walking around searching for signs that the fish would be in a good mood. I found his car before I found him, it was parked in front of Brasenose One, and the carp were heavily spawning in the reeds right in front of the car-park. Not a great sign but when I eventually caught up with Chris walking around Hardwick he assured me that there was no spawning activity, I think due to the deeper nature of the lake. After saying hello and having a quick chat we got the essentials from the cars and headed to the lake. We spotted a few fish in an early swim and fired out some bait. The fish here didn’t seem too interested but I decided to give it a try whilst Chris moved further up the lake. I made a few casts and had one enquiry to the hook-bait but after half an hour or so I moved on. 

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Return to the Barns

Sunny, that’s not something that had been branded about for a while, but that was the outlook for most of the week. “Floater weather” I thought whilst trying to persuade the Mrs to let me get a few hours in after work. As Saturday afternoon proved successful I opted for the same venue and the same tactics, I arrived just after 4pm and found only one angler on the top pond, but he was in the spot I had the fish from on Saturday. It didn’t matter too much, there was evidence of fish cruising and topping around most of the pool, but the wind was on the other guy’s back and that always helps when floater fishing with fine gear. I browsed various spots and set up in the corner furthest away from the weedy swim, a large tree hangs over the water to which I saw a group of fish swim under and back out again. As soon as they’d swam out and into open water I made a cast just a few inches from where the lowest branches almost touch the water, the wind was swirling but this corner was sheltered so it had little effect on my free-lined crust.

Sunday, 20 May 2012

A weekend of ups and downs...


On Friday I’d planned to fish for a few hours and after finding that my chosen venue was too busy I opted for Carron Row Farm. I managed one tench but lost a very special fish. I had been told that pond three held a linear but hadn’t seen it or even a picture, but a few anglers assured me that such a fish existed. Well on Friday afternoon I was float fishing alongside an island when I noticed the float slide away, I struck and was connected to a carp that hadn’t quite realised it was hooked. As it rolled just out from netting distance I spotted that tell tale row of linear scales along it’s flank, I couldn’t believe it, after all this time, maybe five seasons, I’d finally found her and she was drawing closer to the net. She looked a decent size, not massive but I’d estimate around 18lbs, but she’d started to wake up a bit and started trying to bore deep into the pads. I got really close with the net a few times but one time just as I was reaching out the rod tip sprang back and the hook had slipped. That loss really hurt, but I vowed to make amends the following day.

Monday, 14 May 2012

A day at Vale Farm

The weekend after returning from France is never a good time to ask the wife if I can go fishing, but when she says she’s busy on Sunday and I just as well go, well, I’m not one to pass on such an opportunity. But where to go? A day session means I need to find somewhere I can catch some fish but to enjoy the day if that doesn't happen, it’s carp season and that usually means one of the local day tickets fisheries, although with such weather forecast they were all sure to be full. So the plan was to visit Vale Farm Fishery, a delightful spot at Longparish near Andover in north Hampshire. There are three ponds, all containing very pretty, hard fighting carp which can be caught right under the rod tip, meaning that surface tactics with light river rod and centrepin were worthy of a trial run.


Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Moulicent, Normandy 28th April 2012

The time had come to start thinking about what to take, the ferry was booked, the venue secured and the bait was either prepared or ordered. Two of us in my Passat estate was going to be a squeeze but with a kind gentleman lending me a roof box we had more than enough room to store our gear, enough gear for a week’s fishing at Moulicent, a secluded, quiet and very pretty 4 acre lake in Normandy set in a deep valley surrounded by forest, deer, wild boar and countless song birds. The lake itself holds a few real gems, our job was to get there, enjoy ourselves and hope that the wonderful fish that lived there would make an appearance.