Tuesday, 4 September 2012


Hello to all

First of all let me apologise for the lack of posts lately,

As you may have already noticed I am a bit of a river fishing enthusiast, I enjoy fishing running waterways for a number of reasons regardless weather it be on the banks of my local river Exe or far far away in the jungle territory of  the Amazon.With river fishing there still lye's that degree of uncertainty, not knowing what will take the bait next is an exciting prospect but  rivers also offer us anglers fresh challenges.
Seasonal changes and the weather present us with varied conditions. each  condition or season will have  different effects on all species which changes where, how and what the discerning river angler may do.

The Exe has been doing a few fish for the boys recently including another double figure bream for Ty ( 10lb 8oz) and a couple of rather strange captures, Moxy  caught a 15lb Pike on a halibut pellet whilst fishing for Carp and during another evening session Neil landed a perfect condition 7lb 2oz Grass carp.This again highlights the mystery of fishing Wild waters.

I have been predator fishing for a far ol while now but in that time I have never fished for or caught a Zander I have always found them fascinating so I decided it was time to have a crack for one and planned a trip to the river Severn in Worcester.It was an early start which saw Myself accompanied by Ty and Neil caning our way up an empty M5 in the direction of Allan's fishing tackle so we could grab a few bits and the relevant permits.Once we had acquired the goods and reached the river we made the long slog down stream of Diglis weir to reach an area  noted for producing good catches of Barbel.

What about the Zander you may be thinking? the plan was to try and catch Ty his first barbel and gather some fresh baits during daylight then switch on to the Zeds once darkness arrived.The day was quite sporting producing a mixed bag featuring mainly bream along with perch, roach, bleak, eels a carp and a pike ( bizarrely caught on sweetcorn ).The Barbel were nowhere to be seen but I was sure we would grab one or two during the night or at first light. Any way the evening was drawing to a close and my thoughts turned the Zander whilst Ty continued with the Barbel fishing.

I have done a bit of research into the various methods used in modern day zander fishing, and from what I have gathered one of the most effective ways to catch them is to quiver tip a small freshly killed course fish such as a Bleak or roach ect.The advice I had been given was to hit the rod in the event of a mere rattle or tap.This may sound a bit strange and is a huge contrast to the way we fish for Pike in that we allow a small window of time once the line comes out of the clip or float goes under to allow the Pike to pick up and turn the bait before striking. It was whilst attending a PAC meeting I learnt from Dilip Sakur that Zander feed in a different manner to the pike and are very resistance shy snappy feeders making them rather tricky to catch whilst bait fishing using traditional pike methods.The photo's he showed us of the monster Zeds he had caught using the quiver tip method were enough to convince me that was the way to go.

I set up using a 12ft Fox Barbel rod of 1.75lb tc with a running 3oz feeder to hold bottom,The trace I used was somewhat different to standard snap-tackle. Using a length of the very supple trace that is Wonder wire I tied up a standard knot less knot round a size 2 Fox Arma-point leaving a hair of around 5 inches to which a small semi barbless treble was crimped on to complete the rig.The feeder was filled with chopped Bleak and oily ground bait to add attraction into the deep coloured water of the Severn.

Upon dropping the trap to the bottom of the nearside boat channel I settled down to watch the bright blue night light I had rather crudely taped to the tip of the rod for signs of Zander. after an hour or so the tip started to rattle slightly,I immediately swept the rod back over my shoulder briefly making contact with what felt like a decent fish...dam it!.I quickly re-packed the feeder and put on a fresh bait before recasting to the same spot hoping I had not just fluffed my only chance of a Zed .Not long after I received a positive pull on the tip which saw me connect with a spirited little Zander of around 2.5lbs. Far cry from a monster but I was happy to have caught my first Zed .Meanwhile Ty was up and down like a fiddler's elbow dealing with a shoal of Bream that had taken a liking to the banquet he had layed on for the Barbel.

I stayed up for a while searching for a larger fish but my efforts were not rewarded. After a couple hours of the most uncomfortable sleep I have ever endured We were woken up by a large dog howling at us,I proceeded to fish for Zander and quickly captured another school fish then the rain came turning the bank into an ice rink making it a dangerous prospect to carry on fishing.Unfortunately the Barbel were nowhere to be seen but hey that's fishing.

Til next time

Good luck

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