Friday, 10 January 2014

A Welcome Surprise...

I was hoping to get out angling for a couple of hours this afternoon, especially when my friend Roy told me of some carp and tench he’d caught at Carron Row. The thought of catching a tench whilst float fishing in January was very appealing. The forecast was for a dry morning with rain coming in later in the day, I finished work at midday when it was apparent that the sunny morning was starting to merge into an overcast afternoon, it was just a case of when the rains would come.

I arrived at the pond with only one other angler there, and he was fishing on the opposite bank to where I wanted to pitch up. Initially I set up in the Bramble swim, but the water was coming through the inflow quite strong which was playing havoc with my float, so I moved next door into the rhododendron swim. Once plumbed up I scattered a few maggots over the spot and began fishing with three red maggots on a size 16 hook tied to 4lb line.

It only took a few minutes to start getting bites, and the fish ashore was a pristine rudd of around 6oz. I think these are the most beautiful fish we have and although I don’t target them half as much as I should, when I do bump into them it’s a very special day indeed. The fins on this fish were blood red, classic colours and more akin to summer fishing than January.

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Zoom in (real dimensions: 450 x 800)Image

More rudd came to shore, some were quite good sizes too and they varied in colour from greeny golds to more metallic silvers. Even a couple of small roach made an appearance too. One bite resulted in a fish taking line from the pin, obviously something far more substantial than a rudd or roach, perhaps a tench or small carp, but before I saw it the hook slipped.

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The rain came and with a vengeance too, I put up the brolly which shielded me nicely, with everything dry I could concentrate on catching that tench, but during and after the showers and downpours all that was brought to hand or netted were more of these rudd, not that I was complaining, they were stunning and each and every one brought a smile.

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Zoom in (real dimensions: 800 x 544)Image

With the rain falling and the light fading fast at around 4:30pm I struck into the last bite of the day and felt a resistance which made my heart flutter. The jagged fight was reminiscent to that of a crucian, but it felt too heavy to be one of those. I held out the net in preparation to scoop as soon as I saw my prize, I left nothing to chance. When it did roll it went in first time and to my delight was indeed a tench.

The fish was stunning, a lovely shade of green with gorgeous red eyes, the epitome of summer days on lily covered lakes, but in winter. I guess it must have weighed somewhere around 3lbs, not that the weight mattered at all. I was just so pleased to have captured my target fish.

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I think next time I’ll try for a 2lb perch....

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