Sunday 31 December 2017

Old Year's

Today in Norfolk is always Old Year's, never New Year's Eve. That aside I had a pre-lunch out of the back of the car pike sortie over at Gentrification Lock. The rain abated  but the wind didn't. Just thinking about starting the last twitch back on the long rod and the float simply wasn't there anymore. What had made it disappear didn't give much of an account of itself on the way in and was quickly slipped back. With that the couple who had been sitting in the car behind me watching for a wordless hour slid back through the quagmire, presumably off home, and presumably still silently. The charabanc made it through but now looks like an off road vehicle that had been put through it's paces on Dartmoor.

I've got Tuesday off with a plan for roach and chub if the river is fining down but just at the moment rain of biblical proportions is forecast for then so it's in the lap of the gods..

Saturday 23 December 2017

Goodbye darkness my old friend

Ring out Solstice bells. Slowly, barely imperceptibly at first the days are starting to draw out. I had two and a bit hours today and intended to spend some of It at least on my new low level seat. Light and comfy, not sure about the arm rests but time will tell. Beats sitting on the unhooking mat for sure.

I  thought I'd dropped low enough to avoid my new found friend but not to be. On the bank again but thankfully lightly hooked so quick head and mat shots and back again. 

Not the only pike in the river as just before she/he took the bluey for a trundle another fish had swiped at the upstream bait on the way in.  However  a bit baffled by the lack of other chances.Next day out will probably not  be until the New Year and I fancy some wag and mag roach if the frosts keep away.  Might sneak in a west  end recce if  the gods smile on me though

Tuesday 19 December 2017

The road to nowhere.

Headed towards the rising sun this morning for a change  A massive white elephant is being carved  across part of Norfolk, a road that really does go to nowhere as it leaves the east bound A47 just the other side of the Yare but falls about 2 miles short of  a rendevous with the Westbound A47 over the Wensum.

Which is a lot of ole squit to say its a lash up. Looks good  in the early morning light though.

Sunday 17 December 2017

Early bird catches the chem trails....

Early morning flight paths etched across the North Sea. Some say the planes seed the sky with chemicals to keep us proles down and that's why what the rest of us call con (densation) trails linger and spread across the sky. Nurse, nurse, where's my tin foil hat?

Saturday 16 December 2017

Living in the Ice Age

The Very Local Water  was near and time was tight so I decided to test the new bib n braces on the first staging again on the blueys. I mostly succeeded in attracting and growing ice floes as the temperature fell. Unsurprisingly speculative casts at rolling bream with bluey halves proved fruitless. I do think though that trickling in some feed could have some breamy benefits. 

First target of 2018: a Very Local Water bream every month of the year on the waggler.
Second target of 2018: a chub on lamprey section.

Tuesday 12 December 2017

Fen tastic

Over in Zanderland today with Essex Scribbler and the Two Terriers (and their two terriers). It was a bit bleak. The ice on the roof of my car stayed put all day, and for 150 miles. Warm company always makes things easier. I will approach the Very Hot Chilli and Tomato 2017 with extreme caution.

3 Holes.

Sunday 10 December 2017

Further last knockings.

Out and about in the Bureboy Charabanc this morning and it was cold, wet and horrible. The early frost had been washed away and the nearest we got to snow was some  lethargic half arsed sleet. Some very bedraggled pikers in a boat on Rollesby, you can't hide from the rain unless you have  a cuddy and that is not advisable on  a wide open broad. Bank high at the constricting Potter Heigham bridge over the Thurne and even on higher on the Ant at Wayford. Not one of those perched  on their platforms in Richardsons looked as if they were really enjoying it. A lot of work for a few bits. Wonder who took the coin?

I'd  said I would have  ago if it held off and by 3 was in the car park of the vaguely blue lagoon with the intention of fishing as near to the car as I could.  Shielded by the trees it was ok and on a quick walk round it even looked good for a last knockings roach. 

However I'd only put two pike rods in so  a bluey was halved and allowed to continue it's slow decomposition. A few hard bits as the light leads touched down.  You can see by the noddy train (again) that I'd not strayed far from the river. No chance of a repeat capture of my new friend, still  awaitng a name from the Essex Scribbler at least today. 

True to recent form as the church clock struck four (3 minutes late as usual) the last rod, a net, a mat and forceps were the only things not back in the car when the ticking of the baitrunner indicated the bluey tail had not only been resurrected but had decided to move off towards the reed fringe. Unfortunately after a few thumps the half bluey was flying back towards me. Saved getting the unhooking gear wet I suppose.

Last knockings, last cast....

Very cold but no snow. However, a thick hardening of the surface of the field and path and  frost holding sway in dips and hollows. It also highlighted several entry/exit slides.

The sheltered very local water had a 85% lid  but the barely blue lagoon was ice free.The river was back on it's bones, clear and with medium flow. No day for chub  so pike it would be. That weather was going somewhere.

Started further down the stretch but the blueys weren't provoking much interest and mine was began to wane. Kingfisher, buzzard, magpie, yaffle  and dabchicks enough to make me persist. A brief double dip of the upstream float came to nought so no value added action for the noddy train passengers. Double bubble on the locos though.

Wind in for  a wonder and prospecting for future trips. Need to give the free stretch a go.

I urged myself to make one last move. The downstream bait dropped into a slightly deeper hole and the float remained subsurface. In no time the tip began to nod and a decent fish tried to get into the tree roots and then across to the far bank. A couple of teetering on the lip of the net cord moments then into the onion bag and a difficult haul up the step bank onto the mat. Hooks out in a trice and  a look along the flanks and a  familiar wound pattern and it was the fish from last trip, a bit plumper in the belly so it might of had a feed. Couple of mat shots  and I was on my way back to the car, wet net and mat stiffening in the frost.  Think I'll definitely drop down the stretch into the free section to give this one a rest. Name please Wak.

 Shame about Chelsea.....not. Col U managed not to let  a 3-1 lead slip  for a change.

Friday 8 December 2017

Tall (New) Order

Off to The Waterfont last night to catch Peter Hook and the Light pound through nearly 2 hours of New Order stuff then a cracking Joy division set. Very surprised to find a long queue snaking up the road. It s a smallish venue and it was packed to the rafters. New Orders longevity  meant the demographic stretched a bit but by god there were  a lot of tall buggers there. Some mean old feckers too. Like long stay carpers or pikers but tidier. The crowd thinned for the Joiy Division sessior but wer  more enthusuastic.

Adam Ant made a din here with his double drummer attack and Hooky had bought a fellow bassist along to create  a deeper attack. The New Order stuff was as good as you'd expect but made better with that more direct approach. I don't readily recognise their stuff by name but things like State of the Nation, Procession never ceased to amaze me when played on day time radio back then and were  corkers last night.

"How does it feel, when you treat me like an eel? Tie me to the back of a bike and ride down a steep big hill. Release me in a fast flowing stream, and say I swam off alright.." Typical Alresford malarkey there.

The keyboard players always remind me of someone who is in the band cos their dad has got a van.

3 pints and the last train home. Not a bad night.

Sunday 3 December 2017

Shallow Hal

I only had a scant hour so popped onto the very local water. Very clear, and very shallow. So shallow if I had popped up a whole bluey it would be breaking the surface. Nothing doing in three spots.  Never mind.

Saturday 2 December 2017

Slacking off

The recent snow and rain has put some water through the mills, and some speed on the current. I figured the debris would be catching on the line at every knot and swivel meaning frequent casts so left the stink paste and bread at home and stuck everything on the pike shaped horse.

Everything down the near bank today, given the boily flow and shit coming down decided against wafters and nailed the half herrings to the deck under a float tips well up. Think the herrings  were Essex Scribbler's boat fresh individually wrapped ones from last year. All tail ends too.

Lost a fish in the first spot to the downstream bait after it had been on a little while, fairly decent too. Next swim down and I realised I'd set the bait runners a bit tighter than usual to combat the flow when the downstreamer did a big barbel 3 foot twitch and the alarm went into single tone melt down. This one definitely bigger and going flank on against the main push. Eventually got it over the spreader, just one treble in so quickly unhooked and on the Fly Weights. A nice solid 14.06. A bit scuffed at the rears, Tarka had fancied it for a snack and discard at some point recently. Read this week that the Wild Otter Trust have realised that there has been no proper thought about what river catchments could be best placed to handle otter dispersal. Too late. Found two well used slides within a 100 yards of each other.

Nice to have a gallery sometimes. The noddy train timed it just right.

Not long to to the equinox. A brief but glorious sun downer. Not cold enough  to need gloves but only just.

Wednesday 29 November 2017

Plastic ladyland

The other day I noticed several bottles festooning the A10 shrubbage. Deliberately hung on closer inspection. I did notice a rogue CD and suspect some of the witches knickers plastic bags may also have been placed, not blown there.  What dark and dastardly deeds do they hint at?

Work will be taking me as far as Littleport so expect more sightings. And perhaps a few raids on the boatyards and marinas for  a zed or two.

Tuesday 28 November 2017

Friday night and the....

Friday night and  the.feelingis right" "Ok Wigfield. That was a banger. But releasing the same tune re badged as "Saturday night and the feeling is right" used up all your ditzy appeal.

So, Friday night having it large in the Hanseatic port of King's Lynn on the Great Ouse. Or for most of the day and night the Great Ooze. Many, many straight, featureless miles upstream before it becomes big perch water.

I've always wanted a crack at Palm Paper with one of those magical sunsets but access is tricky. Friday's sky wasn't that spectacular but I snuck down and had a go. That's the A47 spanning the Great Ouse which runs from Birmingham to Yarmouth and lots of that is single carriageway. Norfolk is like the Hotel California, you can check out but you can never leave.  Second only to the now divided Yorkshire in terms of land mass but not quite as bumpy as Ooop North. We hit the dizzy heights of 103 feet above sea level so eeh by gum you need oxygen up Beacon Hill. Most of Two Terriers  country which this is, is probably almost below sea level so a stand of maize assumes forest proportions relatively speaking.

Back to the sumptuous Hovelodge to begun the gentle pre-load with a bottle of Abbott and Come Dine with Me on the box

Into town on the part lash ( I am old and with work colleagues so  needed to rein it in a bit). This sobered me up before I even started so I needed some more neck oil to pull myself together. Shameful. End of. No time for bigots. Feck that "of it's time" mularkey.

Now this chap is  playing mere lip service to that extendable feast for commerce when they palm off all the shite they can't shift on the great unwashed.

Fullers Quay all lit up like  Christmas Tree

Nice coffee (Grey Seal) at Glandford on Saturday moning in the way home. And their artisan container office..

The Glandford roasted coffe was served in the Art Cafe, whch is a mine of comedy gold, from the anally repressed clientelle to the hapless trust fund teenager staff. I wish someone would change Word to English UK setting and proof the copy. Flavor my arse.

Sunday 26 November 2017

Tarka Dahl

Had a good pass out today so headed up to the middle beat. More water above the mill but clear and still some weed waiting for a good flush through. I fished hard for me, recasting, twitching back and leapfrogging  quite a stretch but not one show of interest.  Only consolation of  a blank is no smelly wet net, mat and sling..  

To be honest, I felt a bit hemmed in by the large herd of cattle, with several stand-offs. They circled several times and I was eyeball to eyeball a couple of times.  

I came across Tarka's left overs; the remains of this big perch were as deep as the face of the scales, and the forceps were long pike forceps.

Un filtered sunburst. 

Cue Louis Theroux Scientology stylee video stand off with  these friendly brothers of the angle.

Tuesday 21 November 2017

My failing eyes...

I went for a quick smash and grab on the river, couldn't see the quiver tip in the gloom with my useless eyes. The ancient cheese paste is stinky though. One tiny dace smaller than the worm it took. Can you get a  1gig betalight?  Treated to the kingfishers though.

Bit more light on Sunday. Who doesn't like  a beech wood in autumn? Blickling is a beautiful place. Might have to have a couple of quick pike sorties.

Finished off on the hard at Blakeney. I  think hard is just an Essex/Suffolk word for the hard foreshore on an estuarine harbour. Don't hear it round here. Juno is back in for her winter haul out. Handhelds from the Bureboy Charabanc window. Then we went to see the "Norman Lights". Little 'un speak for the Holt Christmas Lights. Do try and see them. Oh, they both saw and now spout on about sun dogs too.

Might just give the cheespaste an quick outing on the Wensum if I can fit a starlite. Trouble is, I'll stink of cheese paste and the Commander in Chief might suss out I have had a sneaky one.

Saturday 18 November 2017

Pass the port

Asking someone to pass the port is pretty ghastly apparently. But then I'd have thought throwing bread rolls and goosing the waitress/waiter pretty low life. But I don't wear a cummerbund and am an oik.

So, please pass the port and Stilton so I can have a good crack at this.  I've lost the cover somewhere and it has probably gone past slightly foxed but it is a damn sight older than me.

Think this one will require a malt or two.

Friday 17 November 2017

Frosty reception

The Bureboy Charabanc was in for the annual MOT and held up by a shorting rear offside light cluster so it was not till this morning that I picked it up.  Missed the lovely sunrise but not the first frost we've had this winter. Phone shots with a sprinkle of Snapseed magic. Just helps lift out the shadows  and a touch of sharpening.

I think this one is air cooled. It's a fixer-upper anyway.

Not lung searingly cold but crisp enough

And I've done 30k in a year. Mostly up and down the A148.

Tuesday 14 November 2017

Wild and wandering in Wells next the Sea

Weekend away in Wells next the Sea in a stonking great big house for very little money. 9 rooms sleeping 14 for about £300. Perfect.

Wells has a most delightful Library

It also has a working harbour, several boats in with  a variety of port of registration prefixes. Blucher is local as from Kings Lynn. And is not a large battleship of the Admiral Hipper class.. General von Blucher did rather well at Waterloo in cahoots with Wellington. He also a characteristic one cut vamp shoe  named after him after a boot he helped design for his damp footed soldiers. Think DM shoe as favoured by Tony Benn. A bit more stylish than an old welly boot anyway. Sorry Wellington, #justsaying.

This must be the fisherman's version of the Non-League Football paper. Niche.

No crabbing  (or gillies  specifically in Wells) today, no water and cold to boot. A long way down into the gloop for an over eager little'un. And a fierce tide too.

And yes, turned up Dickies are quite the thing in London Town so say the Metropolitan Elite.

Looking down on the port from the gantry of the old Granary must be quite pleasant, I think it is a games room now. 

I am sure they see many stop here. Makes  a change from the Yarco hot dog. And I bet well polished in parts.

Park life.

Who doesn't love a swing?

Or think they can shoot a hoop? (They can't)

Now this must be one of the bleakest, coldest places to play football bar none. The wind is evil from the right quarter, all the way from the Steppes with nothing but a few beach huts and pines on the Holkham Estate to stop it. Even with the poshest ad hoarding ever. Holkham has a massive land footprint, made possible in no small part by the advent of the railway allowing  produce to reach the well heeled in London and later the Victorian tourist trade which grew the seaside towns. Not that Wells next the Sea is next the sea anymore.  Holkham Hall is a truly Palladian pile. One time home to Turnip Townsend,  he of crop rotation fame continued by the Cokes. The previously dubbed Viscount Coke is the Earl of Leicester these days.

Though the sea is  a good next the sea mile away now  it can come in very high at times. High enough to dump trawlers on the quayside. It is well defended now but god fear the day it reaches the top of that recorder.

Everyone has heard of French's.

And the Pop Inn amusements. Hideous things amusement arcades. I hate them.

Golddigga indeed. The boxes are too big to fall down the chute by the way......

Up in town the Howell dynasty is following the PadStein model of land grab.

He is a baker too but not  a candlestick maker.

And if it ain't Nobby's it ain't worth a... (Cue Stiff Records innuendo).

For the hoity toity, not the hoi poloi.

Given we had got the place for a song we felt we should get the caterers in.

Food, wine, what more do you need?

Crew dem

A post-prandial kick about it seems.

And for me a sozzled foray for some hand helds in the Buttlands. Steady on boi.

The Buttlands used to be an archery range. It is a large beech lined green surrounded by a quad of rather well to do Georgian town houses. Shot hand held at 800 ISO with fill-in. I am afraid I was on P so shutter/aperture anyone's guess.  Meh.

Back down through town.

Sunday dawned bright but not for the rain and hail  foreshortened a planned hike to the mile distant sea and a hasty retreat.  A corking weekend none the less.