Sunday, 17 July 2016

It's peeing down!


A blank day on the Trent last week. 
I have to say a river with a bit on and some colour appeals to me far more than what I encountered.
So to start off a session somewhat unhappy with conditions doesn't put me in the right frame of mind to fish, but I did for around 5 hours.
I put in a good pile of hemp and maggots via the big bait dropper, and had some good takes earlier on, of which one I had a connect, but was very quickly into a bottom snag, and left me without my end tackle probably a rock. 
After that it all went quiet, and once again I left the fishery without going into the dusk time.If the mood is not right, no point lingering in hope
I need to go down later in the day, I think.

The Lake District
And, so Saturday and we're off to Braithwaite our base in The Lake's for a week of touring around the sites and waterways.
We booked a small cottage in the village, close to the pub.
Our welcome was cold wet and windy and for the whole week, save for Thursday, it stayed that way.
Never the less we did two long boat trips, one on Windermere the other on Ullswater,  and basically we enjoyed the cruises and the scenery. 
Of the two, I think we preferred the views from Ullswater, in fact my camera didn't really get much action on Windermere, the worse weather of the two trips.
The rest of the week we took in Morecombe was closed, Whitehaven, much the same, and generally a good tour around the back lanes of the lakes via Keswick, Kendal and Cockermouth etc.
No Jenning's brewery tour as we were too early in the year, they wait for the kids to have the school break!
Whilst I took a liking to some of the beers available, the local was a Jennings pub and I'm not too impressed with the four they had on offer,so stuck to the guest beer a Ringwood brew Old Thumper. 
Thwaites and Robinsons were not too bad, but as I was driving, only one or two passed my lips.
I have to say apart from the weather we enjoyed our stay, the cottage was just the right size, although the staircase ceiling up to the bedroom probably had a coating of scalp by the time the week was out. Going up was ok, but coming down my lean to the left was often just not enough on many occasions!
Cosy Cottage
The countryside was beautiful despite the rain, or perhaps because of the rain. 
All in all a fine trip also some good local food in the local restaurants.

The White Hart LUDFORD
Although the local grape vine had passed the news around about a fortnight ago, my membership email has just confirmed that my local has just been awarded Lincolnshire pub of the year by CAMRA. Mick and Jenny are justifiably proud of the achievement.

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Don't talk to me!

An evening spoiled

I rushed out at 4:30 pm last night to get some fishing in, and headed down into the valley.
In my rush I forgot my worms, fortunately I had a pot of Mistral paste and my plastics in the bag, and a bucket of hemp..
Having set myself up, I suddenly remembered that the England v Iceland game was on a 8 pm. 
So I decided that I see how it went, fishing wise, in the three hours before kick off.
I set myself up on Goose lake, I'll call it that from now on, because there are hoards of canada and greylag's at the far end.

Tonight was to be a carp night, with them coming from the off.
They were all about the same size, and gave me quite a tussle on the light tackle.

At 7:30, I decided that I'd had enough and packed for the short drive home and the football match. 
All I'm saying about that is, I wished I had stayed fishing!

Meanwhile back at home, in the garden
The hedges are getting in a bit of a mess and need a good trim, but every time I go to have a hack I find that another bird has decided to nest. 
We have three linnet nests in various stages of development. Our regular wren has now encouraged a mate to his nest, and we have eggs . Dunnock's are nesting again, as are the robin.
On top of that out two resident blackbirds have nested again and I haven't, yet, found another song thrush in residence, but they are about.
The garden generally is full of young sparrow (and our nestbox family fledged last week), blackbirds and wood pigeon.
Never mind at least I can cut the grass, when it's not raining!

Friday, 17 June 2016


June 16th

Arrangements were made with FlyFisherman, Richard to meet on the Trent at 10 am on the first day of the new season.
I had been reading reports on the internet of the river rising, and the usual flotsam rushing through, but the river level tables indicated the river was only about two foot up on normal conditions. 
I was tempted to contact Richard to postpone our meeting, but thought a trip down anyway would assist the decision making on the spot, so to speak.
Having made myself a full breakfast, I made my way down to the west of Newark on the A46, and arrived at the fishery gates at just after 10 am.
Nearly chopped my finger off in the gate mechanism, and drove bloodily down the bank side track along  the long straight and up to the big bend.
The river was certainly shifting through and bales of hay and bits of tree were speeding along in the current as I arrived.

As I rounded the bend I noticed 3 vehicles, none of which was Richard's, so I parked up and wandered over to the first angler for a chat. 
The first question I asked was is the river still rising, he wasn't certain but his pal in the next swim said it was, but slowly.
At that time one barbel of about 6lb and a small bream, were all that had been caught by the six anglers present.
Still no sign of Richard, so I decided to set myself up on the very first swim off the bend and immediately dumped a good few large bait dropper's full of hemp and maggots in the margins.
By 11 o'clock I was tackled up, some difficulty experienced though in knot tying, I couldn't get a proper grip with the slice out of my left hand finger (next to the thumb) giving me problems.
Blood seeping  everywhere again, so I decided to superglue the skin flap down, it stung a bit but sealed the skin in place. Only needing the occasional further dab of glue to stop the wound catching on everything.
So, I sat back with a quarter tin of garlic spam affixed to a Partridge size six weighted Czech Nymph, no other weight. 
I was going to fish with maggot but changed my mind.
My decision to use only one rod probably was the safest option as the current, just over two rod tips out, was hurtling through. 
The last thing I wanted was tangled tackle!
A few tentative tugs kept me concentrating, as did the occasional recast, being not certain if the meat had come off.
Anyway after almost three hours and thinking the England v Wales football match was probably on the radio, I was tempted to sit in the car and listen to the commentary, and perhaps fish on into the late evening.
Meadow crane's-bill

As it turned out, another few twitches of the rod top developed into a solid take, and I was soon into a tough fight with a fish as yet unseen.
I couldn't understand why my reel drag on the 5010 wasn't working, and was having quite a bit of trouble gaining line on the fish. I eventually got control with a pumping action, and caught sight of the barbel as it reached the surface, it looked at least a double.
I was very relieved as the fish slipped across the rim of the landing net safe and sound.
Anyway whilst trying to unhook the fish, and not being able to loosen the tension I then found the problem. 
I hadn't threaded the line through the first eye properly, and as the fish gave tension the line just tightened across the rod between the reel and the eye!
I really must take more care a lost fish because of pure carelessness would have bugged me for the rest of the day.
Duly rested after the rigmarole of trying to unhook the fish, I zero'd my scales  and weighed the barbel at 9lb 8ozs.

Not a bad start. 

As it tuned out apart from a few twitches, that was it for another three hours, so I packed up my gear and headed off home. The river level was going down.
Fortunately for me,and in particular my continued well being, there was a fella cutting the grass at front of the entrance, and he kindly opened and closed the gate for me.
No sign of Richard!
Is my mojo back? 
We shall see, but it did feel good!