Walking down the poplars stretch stopped for a chat with one of the syndicate members who said he had a boat ticket for Chew yesterday but it was winded off. Seems to be big pike soup down there in Bristol at the moment. He also said crays were in the stretch now.
I had a pint of turning casters, a lovely autumn afternoon and a nice run below a riffle. The waggler working a treat, most of the casters sinking. Nothing. Never mind. Some very nice Morrisons sardines burning a hole in the freezer pack were soon halved and the day glo polys riding the flow at the head of a sweeping bend.
Noddying about with one of the rods hadn't noticed the bait on the downstream rod had moved several yards back upstream. No cray could do that. What ever had moved it had fecked off with the bait.
Down below the bend. River here only a couple of rod lengths wide. Bob bob, bobbing on that upstream rod. Not a cray surely? No, moving strongly away. Wind down and in. Wonderful, surging runs in the clear fast water. To the net 3 times before sliding over the cord and into the onion bag. One treble in the scissors, the other flying and into my thumb. Luckily the pike turned and tore the hook out. Blood and gore yes, tricky self-surgery avoided. Probably 9ish, certainly not February plump.
Dog walker managed some croppable shots.
Stopped off at Cranes for a chat with grass carp Dave who was setting up for the night. Sun sinking giving a Halloween orange glow.