Lets just stand back a moment and appreciate the fact we are anglers.....what the hell is he on about some may be thinking? well; in my eyes being an angler is a privilege, having a passion for something so simple and accessible is a gift, and the diversity of our sport is simply huge.Think about all the different styles and methods there are in the modern scene, then all the tackle, bait and locations to fish and most importantly the fish themselves. For those willing to travel; potential adventures are limitless. I don't think I could catch all the species I want in ten life-times,unless channel 5 sack off that total twot Robson Green and let me use the thousands of wasted pounds to make a decent fishing show, but some how I cant see that happening any time soon.
I have been mixing my fishing up lately,usually my angling will be what is termed specimen fishing,targeting specific fish can often be a slow affair and with the horrendous easterly winds we,ve been having; playing the waiting game hasn't been pleasant. A trip to a commercial with my pals Dom Garnett and Dan Price was a real refreshing bit of fishing, we set about on a small silver-fish pond with the idea of the most colourful bag wins the match. A light hearted affair it was, also a light tackle occasion as it was a very cold day and bites were finicky.Dom lent me his 15ft match rod coupled with a quality centre pin which made for a lovely outfit, the tackle was as light as I have ever fished in my life. A small pole float down to a 2lb bottom with a size 20 hook seemed like micro tackle compared to the big hooks and rope I'm accustom to.After plumbing the depth and getting the tackle correct I was sat comfortably with all my bait and bits next to me doing what I thought was a pretty good impression of a competent match angler ( looks can be deceiving ).I kept my feeding to a minimal kick starting the session with a nugget of ground bait and a dozon red maggots, I lowered the sensitive rig over the offerings just of the rod tip and it wasn't long before I was playing a plump skimmer to the net. A few more cute skimmers and some small Roach were added to the net before I had a big lift bite seeing me strike into a fish which put a lovely bend in the rod, I played the fish carefully as it felt like a goodun! we laughed when a tench of around a pound broke the surface,this light tackle lark is brilliant I said;I was having a right blast!
The boys were also having a good time of it gettin amongst the action, Dom had been using pole to good effect catching a lovely mixed bag and fish of the day in the shape of a cracking still-water Perch just short of the 3lb mark! Dan caught lots of tench on the waggler including a cracking banana tench of around 2.5lbs
After enjoying that trip so much I went to my local tackle shop to stock up on some micro tackle, pole floats and a selection of hooks to nylon.I then took my new toys along with 2 pints of maggots and a bag of 2mm pellet to a local commercial t see if i could replicate the fun I had enjoyed on my last silver fish session.I tackled up the same as last time but this time on a 12ft match rod with a fixed spool reel loaded with 3lb line, the pond I chose was a tiny water of around an acre at a push. Skimmers were my target and I set about fishing the dam end in the deepest part of the pool (all 4ft of it) after feeding a couple of stingey balls of ground bait my float began to dip and wobble as a shoal of skimmers brushed my line whilst lapping up my feeble offering.I started to catch them and increased the feeding considerably,the skimmers along with some clonking roach to over the pound mark came thick and fast and I finished my quick session with around 20lb of fish.
Back to the waiting game fishing, Perch are still a target before I get the the big bats out for the Cats and Carp. At this time of year the Perch are often at their peek weight and full of spawn, I have done a few sessions on a water I targeted with little success a couple seasons back. Allot can change in two years so a return visit was in order to see if I had been missing trick or two, Prawns are now a commonly used Perch bait and until recently I have always turned my nose up to the big pink buggers in favour of a livey or dead bait.Some big Perch waters are so packed with small prey fish that a Perch only has to breath to fill her belly,it is on these waters where livey fishing doesn't always bring the answers were looking for.Prawns can be a real treat to a Perch that's spoilt for choice when it comes to food fish,a big old lazy fish doesn't have to bother chasing a prawn either.
Prawns fished over a bed of maggots has proved to be deadly for me over the last few sessions, here's the pick of the bunch at 3lb 6oz ad 3lb 8oz.
Til next time