Friday, 31 July 2009

Quiet session on the sluice

Not much to report from today's session, No Pike and No Tench. I did catch a lot of fish on the tip, mostly Skimmers and Roach, most of which were caught on single red maggot.

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Surprise Catch on the tip

Rather than have an early start I decided to saunter down to the Sluice today, as last week for all my efforts at turning out early I didn't catch a fish of any kind until gone 11am. With this in mind then - I was rods in by around 10 ish. Once again I had to wait for the bites to come, seemingly it's taking a while for the fish to find my offerings. Once again i fished my favoured method of Tip fishing. With tip fishing it is almost possible to tell what is attached to the hook before you land it, you get used to the way the fish reacts when fighting, a Perch for example with shake it's head from side to side, trying violently to shed the hook, and this action will transmit to the top of the rod, an Eel is easily identifiable by the tip constantly shaking, obviously when you strike into a Tench you feel a good lump on the end, anyway my point is that when I struck into this particular take - it felt different , something I hadn't felt before, and I was right. To my surprise, the fish that had taken a liking to my single red maggot, on an 18's hook was in fact a Pike. I was a little shocked to say the least, I was on 4lb bottom so I gave it plenty of line, and I didn't bully it as I didn't want it to bite me off. After a minute or so I managed to lure it into my net, a Jack Pike of around 2 and a half pounds was swiftly unhooked and returned to the water, not before stopping to have it's photograph taken with it's shocked captor.

The fish were plentiful today, and I had a proper net full of Perch, not that I kept them in a net of course. I'm speaking metaphorically. I also chucked a Pike rod out, I kept a watchful eye on the float, and after around 2 hours it was away. I was into a decent fish too, what a fight it gave me, tail walking all over the place, at one point it was nearly in the swim of the chap that was fishing next to me. She tipped the scales at....... Hang on! A little point I'd like to make here, the guy that was fishing next to me said that "she was around 9lb's" "Nonsense!" I replied she weighs 11lb, and with that and a point to prove I decided to weigh her, the needle showed that she weighed exactly 11lb. I've caught a fair few Pike out of this water, and can pretty much put a weight on any Pike out of there within an ounce or three. I was a bit lazy on today's session and I didn't bother to set up a designated Tench rod. I did however catch a decent sized Tench of 3lb 12oz on a worm.

The maggot muncher

11lb Tail Walker
3lb 12oz Bonus Tench

Monday, 27 July 2009

No Tench at Sluice farm

I fished at Sluice farm tonight, in a word the fishing was dreadful. I had a couple of small fish on my tip rod, my Tench rod, screamed off once but there was no fish on the end. Darkness was fast approaching, and I was slowly packing up, when I noticed my Pike float was travelling towards me. I was in! A hard fighting Pike of around 9 to 10lb's was the result. A good end to what might have otherwise been a terrible session.

Saturday, 25 July 2009

Upper Rivington and a trip to the Ribble

Myself and Alan had spoken of a change of scenery, so instead of heading for the Sluice we had a day at Upper Rivington reservoir. I fished on the tip and I also baited up my other rod on double sweetcorn. It was pretty much a fish a chuck on the tip, I caught a lot of skimmer Bream, and the odd Roach and Perch. My sweetcorn rod produced a couple of decent Roach of around 6 to 8oz. A good session, but no fish of any size. I'll be heading back to this water to target Pike in the next month or so.

A trip to the Ribble.....
Justify Full
Ben, Alan and I arranged a night session on the Ribble, our target species was to be Barbel. Ben was the first to catch, a decent sized hard fighting Barbel of 8 and a half pounds, I was getting ready to land it for him, when Al's bait runner was clicking away signalling another take, it would seem that I was to be playing ghillie as I also netted Al's first ever Barbel, weighing in at bang on 6lb, a good start to Al's Barbel career. I though was to be kept waiting for around 4 hours for my fish, it was nearly half two in the morning and we were on the verge of packing up when thankfully my left hand rod was away, justice was done as I too landed a nice Barbel of 6 lb. This is also my new Barbel PB, beating my previous PB by 4oz. A good days fishing then, although a rather long one, as I'd been up for 23 hours before I got to bed. Now is that dedication or stupidity? I'll let you decide!

Ben looking pleased with his 8lb 8oz fish
Alan's first ever Barbel at 6lbI had to wait a while for this 6lb beauty

Friday, 24 July 2009

Pretty quiet session on the Sluice

Not the most productive of sessions for me tonight. I fished on the match length on the Sluice, and I struggled to get a bite, I did have a few Perch, and more interestingly I caught my first Ruff of the season, in fact it's been a couple of years since I have caught a Ruff, certainly the first I have caught since I have been writing my blog. My recent fish producing ledgered sweetcorn rod was very quiet tonight, although I did have 3 fish within the space of half an hour of packing up, 2 Hybrids of around a pound each and a Tench of around 2lb's saved my blushes for the session.

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Esox Calling and a trip to the Yarrow

As the weather today was more akin to autumnal day and with the Pike that attacked my fish the other day still well on my mind, I just couldn't resist in taking my Pike rod down to the Sluice. I fished from around 7.30am until 3.00pm. I had a decent take on Pike rod, I struck into the fish and felt a hefty weight, when damn it! I ended up pulling out of it. Upon inspection my bait had gotten tangled around the rotten bottom thus not enabling to set the hooks. I had better luck on my tip rod, a few skimmers, Perch and some tiny Roach kept me entertained. I also had two Tench, the second of which put up such a good fight that I thought perhaps I was into a Carp.

Sneaky trip to the River Yarrow..............

I had a couple of hours spare this afternoon, so I put them to good use by heading down to the River Yarrow. I made my way to a swim which I fished a couple of times last year, the swim was very overgrown, and if I was a betting man, I'd wager that I was the last person to fish there. I hacked my way through the foliage with my bank stick, and made good an area to fish. I fished on the tip and used worm as bait. I had a Chublet of around 8 oz on my first cast, aside from a few nibbles here and there, this was to be the only fish of my quick session.

Monday, 20 July 2009

A night of if's, but's, maybe's, and finally's

A rather interesting nights fishing, I guess that's how you could describe it. I met Alan at the Sluice and once again we were to target Tench. I fished worm and hair rigged corn. The worm unsurprisingly produced quite a few Perch and also a Tench of around 2 and a half pounds, not the hardest fighting of fish, I was actually surprised to see it was Tench. Soon enough Alan was into a good fish, I caught a glimpse of it as it flashed near the surface, a decent Tench easy 4lb + and for sure this was going to be Al's new Tench PB. When disaster happened, his hook length snapped. He was gutted! The air went blue and I can still see his rod flying through the air as he struggled to contain his emotion. I had a decent take on my worm rod, I struck into it, not a big fish, and I went about my business in bringing it to the net, when Whammo! A Pike had seen my fish struggling and hit it with some serious force. Let me tell you that it is a fantastic feeling playing a Pike on a 2oz tip. I had it on for a couple of minutes, I didn't have much hope of landing it as I knew that it would be only a matter of time before the Pike would realise that if it let go of my fish then it would be free, My heart was pounding for ages afterwards, what an adrenaline rush. Dark was fast appraoching and packing up was on my mind when something had taken a liking to my hair rigged double sweetcorn, I was into a decent fish and I had to give it line as it was making it's way quick smart to the other reed bed. A lovely coloured Tench and a new PB for the season, and at bang on 4lb I'd just about broken the 4lb barrier for the first time this season.

First 4lb Tench of the season, look at the size of it's tail

Monday, 13 July 2009

Thunder,Tench, and Lightning!

The heavens opened as I arrived at the Sluice tonight. "All this for a fish!" I proclaimed. I set my rod up when the weather was at it's worst. There was even the odd crack of thunder, not an ideal time to be holding 12 foot of carbon. I fished hair rigged corn and also fished maggot on the tip. I had one Tench on corn and a few bits on maggot. I think I may becoming a little unpopular with Alan, as moments after he caught a Tench I caught a bigger and better one, thats two sessions on the trot that I've done this :)

Sunday, 12 July 2009

Just the one fish at Heapy

Late Friday night you'd have found me setting up my Carp rods and making base at Heapy reservoir. I arrived at near midnight not ideal I'd finished work late and I'd arranged to meet Ben there. I had my one and only run of the weekend at 5.15am. A screaming run and a stubborn hard fishing Mirror Carp of around 9 to 10lb's was the result. Ben faired a little better, having four fish on the bank, the biggest weighing in at over 13lb's. I plan to return to Heapy and to fish a different peg :)

Hard fighting Carp, around 9 to 10lb's
Wild plants at Heapy

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Where are the 4lb + Tench hiding?

I decided to take advantage of the drop in temperature that we were having this week by heading to the Sluice and targeting Tench. I was rods in by around 6pm I fished on 2 rods and used hair rigged sweetcorn as bait. I had my first fish after around an hour, a decent Tench of 3lb 10oz. I had to wait until after sunset for my next fish. I had another 3 Tench in total, the biggest of the bunch was 3lb 12oz. So the elusive 4lb barrier has yet to be broken for me so far this season, I've had a good stamp of 3lb + and since June 16th I've landed 14 Tench in total, not a bad tally. Alan caught his PB Tench tonight a good fighting fish of 3lb 9oz. Well done mate!

Good fish but not quite a 4lb
Al's Tench PB 3lb 9oz

Monday, 6 July 2009

Time to give old Esox a well earned rest

Following on from the recent pollution on the Three Pools, I have decided to hang up my Pike rods until the beginning of September. The decision behind this is simple, I am well aware of the prolonged recovery rate of Pike when fished for in the summer months, and survival after capture can be a bit hit and miss, this is because the oxygen levels in the water are rather depleted , though Summer Pike have a lot more energy and can provide some fabulous sport. I may add that all Pike that I have caught this summer have swam away with much vigour. So then I will turn my attentions to Tench and tip fishing over the coming weeks, with the odd Carp session thrown in for good measure. I fished on the Sluice today, I targeted Tench on ledgered sweetcorn (Blanked!) and I also fished my tip rod with maggot on a size 18 hook to 3lb main line. I had quite a few fish Perch, Roach and Skimmers were queuing up, no Tench or Bream were showing.

Friday, 3 July 2009

Three Pools water contamination

It was with great sadness to learn of the contamination of the Three Pools water way yesterday, thousands of fish were unfortunately killed possibly due to an overspill of a sewage waste from an outlet system that runs into the Three Pools. A local website has a report here

at the moment I am unsure as to the lasting effects of this tragedy, and indeed if and when it will recover.
Where it all started

Not giving up without a fight, an Eel comes to the suface for air

Bream of around 5lb's

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

Sluice, still fishing well, even in this heat

A couple more Tench and a Pike of around 11lb's were my spoils from another session on the Sluice, I fished late afternoon until evening, the temperature was very hot, but it didn't seem to put the fish off feeding, this leads me to a point, in my opinion the Sluice is fishing very well this season, bait fish are at the moment, are pretty easy to catch, most times I'm getting a bite a chuck on my whip, there is a good head of Perch, Pike are certainly feeding and the Tench are showing in good numbers, the only species that seems to not be making an appearance (For me at least) is Bream, I'm due a few slabs in the net! I have started to notice a pattern on Pike feeding times during the summer, and it has come to my attention that most of my catches are coming between 6 and 8pm, and I haven't had any takes in the later evening, I will check through my photographs and make a record of capture times.

Caught on my whip

A lovely golden colour TenchA double that couldn't resist a Perch