THE TOTALLY AWESOME FISHING SHOW – LATEST NEWS
29th OCTOBER 2014
Well, I finally got the seemingly unending workload under some sort of control though the elbows are on fire and being massaged with Ibuprofen. Job done, I picked the wife up from her trip to N.Z. and Oz, so the “thumb” might be looming over me again. Of the three weeks she was away I had major plans of gargantuan proportions on the fishing front, but with the wind howling and catches pretty dismal across both sea and freshwater, I’m “keeping my powder dry”. I did squeeze in a quick two hour trip, on a complete whim, a hunch that you only get when you have a few years under your belt, to race down to a local free stretch of Surrey River and see what I could catch. Mike had been showing me the success of the drop shotting for Perch technique, but I still can’t get my head around the fact the hook is actually attached direct to the mainline. But, hey, I can’t knock it, the results confirm it works. But the remaining brain cells I have still sparked a bit of interest in the movement attained by some of Mike’s new plastic/rubber/latex??? lures. Surely it was the same motion I could get with a lobworm, and maybe the meat on the hook and any attendant smell from the worm would also work in my favour?? Well, I rigged up with only the finest of Graeme Pullen’s aging tackle. A small Shimano Aero reel, 5lb line and a $4-99 kid’s supermarket rod of five feet. I dug some lobs in a garden, put them in a jamjar, took a net and the minicam and was off. The river itself I had not fished for a couple of years and the storm damage from last year was apparent everywhere. Huge trees across the river, branches in it, in fact I was amazed nobody from the E.A. had been down there with chest waders and a chain saw to sort it out. But then I could see the trees and rubbish in the river had actually created a load of good swims. This stretch is heavily wooded so weed growth is minimal anyway. I rigged up my drop shot rig with just a single swan shot, about 15 inches from the hook, which was attached with my own half hitch loop knot to the reel line. First cast, I watched it bump and twitch round and get nailed by a fish. After a good scrap I netted a Chub about 2 ¼ lbs…a result!! I then had a most enjoyable hour flicking my droplob rig (note new name) into every hidey hole I could. I finished with some 20 Perch to about half a pound, and as dusk closed I found a classic Chub swim. After a couple of tangles in the failing twilight I latched into a good Chub that was somewhere between 3-12 and 4lbs.Probably wouldn’t have made 4lbs on the balance, but a great fish on a kid’s rod. It was probably my most enjoyable fishing session this year, it took me straight back to childhood, when worm and Perch were great fishing partners. And better still it was all…FREE!!!
A couple of days earlier I had gone with Mike for a few hours on the River Thames above Reading and without any knowledge of the stretch we managed to winkle out a couple of small Pike and Perch .Many river anglers don’t like clear water conditions on a river in the water, they want a tinge of colour in it from a falling flood but I’ve found predators like Pike and Perch very receptive. This stretch of river was also a free stretch, so it made the session so much better. The downside of this is that we have now decided to reign in our disclosure of such places, as they seem to get hammered by some anglers that take certain species for eating. Now I suppose there is no better justification for killing a fish than saying you need it for food, but with plenty of supermarkets and takeaways around I see no reason to take freshwater fish. They have enough problems with pollution, cormorants, otters, signal crayfish and general habitat degredation.They don’t need a bang on the head as well. So if there is an area we feel might suffer the unwanted attentions from certain members of society, then we won’t mention where it is. There’s nothing I hate more than dropping into the secret squirrel world of the specimen hunter, but it looks like we have to, as one stretch of river we know has almost been denuded of Pike.
With the rotation of high pressure versus low pressure it seems the wind is always blowing so we have put any sea fishing on hold for a week or so. That’s a shame as Mike is off this week, but I see no reason wasting time and fuel when you know you are going to be up against adverse weather conditions. I am sure it will all come good soon and we might get a decent shot at beach fishing somewhere. Target species are Cod and Whiting. My hunch is the next spring tide set using lugworm and squid strip combo cast as far out as you can get with a grip lead to anchor the bait on the seabed. Don’t forget to drop a second bait around thirty to fifty yards out as this is the time there is often a monster shore bass about. I’ve never caught one yet, but I’m sure there’s a “double” out there somewhere with my name on it.
Looks like the shark season might be about to close. Just the one monster Porbeagle we got on “Hi Sea Drifter” the end of May, and I didn’t even bother to tow her down west for the usual blue shark fishing. Seems I didn’t miss too much as I don’t think anything too exciting has come out. So it will be a wait until next spring for the 3/400 pounders to arrive off the North Devon coast. Let’s hope next year’s mackerel fishing is better than this years.
I had one of my Tok 4000 reels literally implode on me on the Thames. For some reason the entire bale arm came unscrewed, all the bits dropped in the water, followed by the front drag nut !! It had caught a lot of fish but not enough to fall to bits like that. My old Shimano reels might have sticky drags through my inadequate servicing, but at least they don’t burst into pieces. Shame. I quite like using the reels with their tinkly front drags. Would have loved a Bonefish of 8lbs on one.
I’m going to give carp a go myself before the winter comes, but not using the big pit reels and 3lb test curve rods. Just a 1 ¾ lb regular carp rod and standard reels I use for Barbel. I want to see a bent rod rather than a mild curve in a snooker cue. Maybe I’ll last one night under the stars, but it would have to be mild, I don’t need a medal for blanking in a bivvy on the coldest night of the year. An age thing I guess. I’ve done all my winter carp fishing nights many years ago. Bait?? Par boiled potato!! Cast like a bullet.
That’s it for now. Hope to get a Zander trip in this week, plus drop shotting for Perch and possibly a night beach session later next week. Have a good one, and make the most of this unseasonal mild weather.
Well I have certainly been making the most of my half term break. The first few days I was down in deepest Essex, filming the brand new carp series “Bite Time”. The lake I was at was called The Quarry. It had been a syndicate water for around 20 odd years before it became a day ticket just recently. A 22 acre gravel pit with only 15 swims. Tommy and Andy were already there and set up by the time I got there. They chose to double up in a swim and fish in between the islands. It paid off! You can see what they caught in the first episode of Bite Time which will be aired this Friday (Halloween!) at 7pm on our YouTube Channel. I have recently done a trailer for the video which you can see at the end of this post.
As for fishing, I am still addicted to the drop shot fishing for Perch. It’s such a finesse way of fishing and on ultra light gear it can be awesome fun! I use a 1-8g rod, which when you have a Perch of just a few ounces on the end of the line, can really put a bend in it! I like roving, moving down a river to pick out different predator holes, areas of slack water, snags and on the edges of weed beds. Lately I have fished the river Blackwater and the Thames. The other day I had a 2 hour session on the Blackwater and managed 27 Perch! 15 of which were in exactly the same swim, on exactly the same distance cast to the same spot. Just goes to show that they don’t get put off getting caught and they are certainly shoal fish. I haven’t managed to find anything over 1lb yet but to be honest I am in no rush to go specimen hunting. You will learn more from fishing by catching more fish as opposed to big fish. I am happy pulling out Perch of just a few ounces because I am catching rather than blanking! I am sure the time will come that I will try and target the bigger Perch, probably up the lure size and maybe give ledgered lobworm a go, but for now I will stick to the fun stuff! My recent Perch fishing with soft plastic lures video has had over 12,000 views in just a few weeks which is crazy! It shows that you guys are enjoying the same style of fishing that I have been doing which is great!
The session I did on the Thames with Dad was a little harder than the Blackwater, however I did manage a small jack Pike on the dropshot! I was using much heavier line and flurocarbon than I did for my previous sessions, mainly because I knew that a Pike might take the lure and at least I may stand a chance of landing it, despite the fact a Pike could easily bite through that gear. Anyway I landed it fine, and it is the second Pike I have landed on the dropshot. I noticed that both Pike I have landed on the dropshot were lip hooked, I believe that is because you are in constant contact with the lure, jigging it up and down. So when a Pike does hit it, it hooks itself almost straight away. I don’t think that bigger Pike would go for the 2″ lures that I have been using, I am yet to find a big Perch on it! and that is why I think the two jack Pike I landed took the lure, because it is much smaller than a conventional Pike lure.
Anyway I have plans this week to do some ZANDER FISHING with dad! Something I am incredibly excited for as I have never caught a Zander before so any size would make my day! I will update you on how the session goes in next weeks e-news.
Temperature seems to finally be dropping now, the Pike and Perch will be feeding up over the winter months, who knows, maybe I might break my pb???