Saturday was bright and blustery, but with a lot of rain promised for today and an unexpected afternoon pass out I dropped in just below the noddy gauge train bridge at Buxton. A small bucket of mash deposited in 4 likely looking swims I settled down with a cup of hot chocolate to watch the white painted tip of a Des Taylor 12 footer take on a pleasing arc. And begin a dance of gust aided twitches and judders. Would have been a lot worse on the long cyanide straight above the bridge. Either way, nothing decide to sample the cheese paste.
Next swim a very tight spot that in retrospect was just too boily. At times I think the bait was probably just under the surface rather than tucked ever closer into the undercut bank as in my imagining. I have had pike from this spot so more lead next time. Did have a couple of indications of interest though which always quickens the pulse...There were also indications of plenty of dace moving in the far bank eddy and a couple of more trouty type slashes at something coming off the river.
Next spot down I had jags on the tip from the first cast. This was on quite large lumps of paste on a 4. It seemed that were certainly plenty of dace down there and I mulled over toughing it out with much larger lumps of paste and hoping a chevin would have something left to go at or scaling down to at least get a hook into a fish, but the smallest hook I had was a 10. I chose this option for some reason which with further retrospect was a compromise too far and ended up with lots of activity but nothing on the bank and the light had gone and my curfew was calling..
It really hasn't become winter yet despite it being the 19th of January today but when I first started back on the non-tidal Bure in the early 2000's you could have fished down large sawthes of the river with flake in the winter and almost guarantee that it was only a chub or a hungry pike/stupid brownie that would move the tip but the rebirth of the river now is evidenced by just how many spots do have plenty of varied year group dace and roach and it's a good problem to have to consider using larger baits such as meat to be more selective. The chub are still there despite the otters as early in the spring the Environment Agency survey showed a good head of chub up to a very good size from this beat.
Back to today and in my weekend perambulation stopped off at Stalhnm Staithe and two older chaps turned up, second job after setting up their octoplus type seats was unfurling the obligatory white towel to drape over their knees. A further tour round the boat yard and somewhat amused by the unshipping of 14 metres of very expensive looking pole for a roach that was at the most an inch and a half in length, straight to the white toweled knee....