Saturday, 2 May 2015

Crucian Heaven...

I finished work at the usual midday and headed for the moat in search of my first crucian of the year. The day had been overcast with the threat of showers, but thus far it had remained dry. I set up in peg 10, a peg I usually tend to overlook, but after the great success Nobby had in there the week previous, it had to be worth a go. The worry in the back of my mind all day was that when we all fished there, it fished well in the morning yet very poorly after lunch and for the rest of the day. Once in position on the platform I sprinkled some pellets and some sweetcorn next to the pads. With the rod set up I began fishing among a mass of bubbles, it looked spot on, it just had to happen.

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Yes, that photo is upside down, but it does make you take a second look doesn't it. The float never did much at all for the first hour, frustration kicked in and I realised once again just how tricky catching these little blighters can be. I switched to a lighter float, a small balsa bodied pencil type float with a cocktail stick stem, and fishing more delicately I began getting half hearted bites. Finally I connected with one and felt as though all my dreams had come true, but although a beautiful tench was the culprit, I was still yearning for that first crucian.

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I had something to eat and fetched the brolly from the car as the rain had started to pepper the surface. When I got back into position the bubbles had stopped and so had the float movements. I introduced a little more bait and went for a wander; peg 14 with its new platform looked very appealing. I returned to 10 and sat for a further five minutes, but all looked very quiet, so within the next ten minutes I had moved all my kit into 14. I sat there a while, watched the water and for some reason it just didn’t jump out at me, so I made another switch next door into 15.

After baiting with some sweetcorn and pellets the bubbles soon appeared and after 10 minutes I was rewarded after a spirited fight with my first crucian of the year, and a real clonker too and 2lbs 6oz. I was thrilled to bits, took a few photos and released the old warrior into the margin. It was only 3oz shy of my personal best, but I was looking for no records, these fish mean so much more to me than numbers, old as the hills and a real delight.

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The next 2 fish to pull the float under were bream, big ones too. I realised there that the further I came away from the pads, the more likely I was to hook a bream so from then on I fished as tight to the emerging green dish like leaves as possible. . What happened next will live with me forever. The makings of a true Red Letter Day.

The float dipped and I thought for a second I'd hooked another tench. As it came closer I realised that it was, in fact, another crucian, and another really good one. I unhooked it in the net and after admiring it for a minute or two I glanced up and saw more tiny pin prick bubbles rising to the surface in the same area. I hadn’t weighed or photographed the fish yet, but it was more than happy and safe in the net for a few minutes more.

With the fish resting in the net I made another cast, the float dipped and I struck into yet another crucian. I guided her into the net and she sat alongside the other, they looked like peas in a pod. I couldn't believe my luck; it looked like another 2lber too. At last I would be able to get the brace shot of 2lb crucians I’d longed for, and proper crucians too. I contemplated getting them ashore and getting the photos and weighing done, but looked at the bubbling spot and thought “Could I?”

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One more cast was made and within seconds the float lifted, hung there a while and then slowly slid out of sight. I knew from the jig jag fight that it was another crucian, and soon I had three resting happily in the net. That was enough, I had to get them out, take a couple of snaps and weight them. They weighed 2lb 6oz, 2lb 4oz and 2lb 1oz. I braced a shot with the two biggest and released them one by one thanking them for making my year.

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One last bite produced another beautiful tench, and with that one swimming back under the pads it was time for me to be packing away. What an afternoon’s fishing, four 2lb crucians, two glorious tench and even a couple of bream. An afternoon I won’t forget in a hurry, I can assure you of that.

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10 comments:

  1. Brilliant - great result. Very jealous, tried to get a ticket for the Moat but was told politely no.

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    1. Thanks buddy.

      Believe me when I say I know how fortune I am to be able to fish the moat.

      Stu

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  2. Great blog Stu, I really love crucians! Definitely going to try and target a few this year, keep up the great work,
    Tom

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    1. Thanks Tom

      Let me know how you get on, no doubt the water you'll fish will be relatively close by.

      Stu

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  3. Well done fella!
    Really must catch up soon :-)

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    1. Cheers guys

      Yes, we really must make the effort to catch up this season.

      Stu

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  4. Lovely looking fish, well jealous

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  5. Very happy for you Stu, they are absolutely stunning specimen's and never seen the likes of them (colour, shape and proportion) they are just exquisite, well done and I hope to see more of those over the coming months. James.

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  6. Crackers. Like James said, really authentic in shape and colour. The tackle you use really compliments some great photography well.

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  7. Much obliged gentlemen, reading through these prompts me to arrange a return visit soon.

    Stu

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