Thursday, 20 February 2014

Successful second visit....

With the schools half term this week I wasn't expecting to get out at all but when the opportunity came up for a full day I gladly took it. The plan was to head to a still water, fish until lunch and then reassess from there and possibly move to a river for an hour or two on the way home. I prepared all my gear the night before (3 bait rods and 1 medium lure rod) organised the bait freezer, part packed the Jeep and tried to get a reasonably early night. My youngest however decided that I didn't need that much sleep and had me up at 1am and again at 3am. The alarm went off at a quarter to 5 and I was very tempted to turn it off and have a couple more hours, however the urge to get on the bank was strong and before I knew it I was in the kitchen making a brew.

The water I was fishing is a 75 mile drive and in my old Jeep takes around an hour and twenty, I arrived at the water at just after six thirty and it appeared that I had the water to myself. I chose an area that I know has produced in the past (not to me) and although this was only my second visit to the water I was quietly confident.

Rods in by 7 o'clock, sit back and relax
The rods were quickly baited and cast out and by around 7ish I had 3 baits in the water. I did have some trouble with my bank sticks and the rocky ground and a couple of  pointed extending sticks were not up to the job (need to invest in some spiral point sticks). I left the baits alone for a couple of hours whilst I had breakfast and listened to talk sport, nothing happened the backbiters remained silent and still.

The wind picked up slightly and I decided to change my right hand rod to a rig which could be quickly changed from a running ledger to a float. I put a small dart type float on and set this to around 3 foot and cast a roach dead bait out around 40 yards and let the wind slowly drift the float back to the bank. This was repeated a number of times until the wind became a bit much, I quickly changed back to a running lead and cast the bait to around 60 yards. The other rods were also baited and recast. Within 5 minutes of recasting the roach dead bait the backbiter sounded and I was into a fish. After a short scrap I had the fish in the net and thought that it could be a scraper double.

8lb 15oz
The fish didn't make it to double figures, but I wasn't disappointed as it was my first from this water and my biggest so far this season. I rebaited with another roach and cast into the same area. At roughly 1230hrs I had a take on a smelt but this was quickly dropped.

The wind dropped slightly so I reeled in one of the outer rods and had a few casts with a lure, I had a small jack take the lure but it managed to free itself before I could net it. I was about to recast the lure rod when the middle rod went, I quickly picked up the rod, closed the bail arm, took up the slack and lent into the fish. The fish gave a good account of itself and it seemed to be bigger than the pike I had earlier.

10lb 6oz
The fish was my first double of the season and also the first to christen my new DLST P2 rod. The next 2 hours were quiet so I brought in a rod and had a few casts with a lure again.

In successive casts I hooked but quickly lost 2 jacks using a 'Manta' lure, I switched to a Dave Greenwood 'Maxi Mouse XL' and a few casts later I was into a fish.

Lure caught jack
A couple of casts later I was into another jack, again on the 'Maxi Mouse XL' lure. The action on the lure rod was quickly over, so again I cast out a third bait rod.

Beautifully marked clear water pike
I decided to stay until after dark and try to catch a fifth fish, however it was not to be and I couldn't tempt another.

I have struggled with pike this season and before this session I had only caught 5 all season. At the beginning of February I set myself a target of catching 10 pike with at least 1 double before the season ends. After today's fish this takes my total to 9 pike (including one double). Although none of the pike I caught were monsters it was a really enjoyable day and I am hoping on a return visit before the season ends.

A nice view to end the day


  1. A very successful visit if you ask me! Nice pictures, nice water, and lovely looking pike. Well done

  2. Cheers Jim, hopefully I'll be able to get on there again before the close season