Wednesday 28 March 2018


Quick trip to the Pond on Monday. Standard hemp, corn and worm.  Hardly any bubbling and only a few tell tale puffs of silt but they were single fish and way out. A rudd and some tiny skimmers  slipped up. The levels are really low. My Polaroids are now nestling in about  4 foot of silt.

Quite a few frogs making their jerky breast stroke way across the pond. Those close in were having  a bit of bother from the pike.

Some smaller fish being chased close by my lofty perch above the receding water. Not by Pike I think.

Tuesday 27 March 2018


Out on Cart Gap on Sunday with the tribe. Tide up so limited fossicking but one of the Little'uns found this visitor from far flung climes, the Med and South Atlantic the interweb tells me.

A geologist transported from pre interweb days would have a field day with all the erratics lining the sea defences here. I think a lot are quarried and bought from the Baltic coasts. On large barges this time round, not  delivered on the vast glaciers that foundered on our Norfolk shore. Always nice to catch them wet and with sunlight on them.

As well as the quarry markings there are often marvels contained within.

Further deposits caught our eye and those of others. Nasty mucky stuff and unless you are an avid label reader and shunner of processed foods the chances are you'll be eating or drinking some of this most days.

Apparently some people live as much if their lives as possible as mermaids ( the interweb tells me) , one of them has possibly met  a sticky end (perhaps snared in palm oil)? 

There must be sound logic behind deciding which coastal communities and habitats to protect or create, and which to let drown. We have a lot of drowned communities and land out on the Edge. Here at least the tides are held back for now.

That's quite enough of this old schist for now.

Monday 26 March 2018

Normal for Norfolk

Fakenham has a colony of tree dwelling chickens. Of course it does. It's in Norfolk.

Tuesday 20 March 2018

Getting equinoxical

Time marches on but some times it stops briefly. Well, it does for those who notice such things. Today is marked as the vernal equinox. Thought I'd make the most of it by using up some work pay back time going on a wandering route home.

Sustenance was called for. Fruit crumble cake? Why not.

Some whiskey porn.

Haven't walked across the bridge at Burgh next Aylsham by the church for some time. Spent a while watching a cold looking barn owl settling on every post on the meadow, but not stooping for prey.

I'm not sure about fish density this far up but some lovely looking bends to explore. Just need  some pre-weed bright days for a good root about with the polaroids and a fly rod

The Mill is in a bit of a sorry state

I have always thought about trying this smaller pool. Like most things seems smaller after a few years away.

Saturday 17 March 2018

On Cold(en) Pond

Big easterly and snow (light) all day. Off to the very local water to see if I could get a bend in the rod. Perhaps unsurprisingly I couldn't.  It was very cold. There's always tomorrow.

Thursday 15 March 2018

Bacon and scalding tea

I decided to start my daily trek to the land of the Fenmen a day earlier than the end of my leave in order to deliver some wild fowling classics on behalf of the Essex Scribbler and fish the last day of the season with TT.

The sun was bright, the wind increasing and the drain clear. Certainly not like yesterday's Cadbury coloured Bure. 

TT found a modicum of shelter to whip out a bare handful of tiny baits whilst I struggled to find the right angle to make the most of a wind that seemed to be coming from both ends of the drain at once. As well as the conflicted half drifting roach I carefully lowered a bluey under the shade of the  narrow boat. Toothmarks but no indication. Then an almighty splash and chatter of the bite alarm as a fish slashed at the float. Then a staccato tapping on the tip. Something was down there but it never saw the bank.

Lunch was declared and after some  (by now 29mph) wind and low fuel problems a fine piker's lunch of proper bacon HP sauce and scalding hot tea  were eagerly devoured to the soundtrack of Uncle Sam's finest tearing up  the Fenland sky.

An hour or so out of the wind on the staging and it was time to leave the season behind. Now, has anyone ever seen TT cast overhand?  We thought the owner of the dinghy was experimenting with water powered battery technology to power his bailing pump.

Quick mosey round Salters Lode on the way back to Downham Market. Not sure Illustrious is any more.

Tuesday 13 March 2018

Dog days

Coat hook resited with an extra screw and 2 inchers rather than 1 9/12th ers. Off to Cromer to find the perfect pork pie. Job done. If it ain't Brays it ain't worth a ...

The Bure the colour of chocolate so the ressie then. Moved banks after I started to get the sun in my eyeline, and though a fierce tow a very overdepth wag and mag over hemp presentation picked off  skimmers and hybrids with enough regularity to keep me at it.

On the verge of calling it a day when the wind dropped, the surface calmed and the float buried. A different feel down the rod, staying deep and no silvery flash, just red, red fins. A dog of a roach, covered in black spot but just taking the needle past a pound. Most excellent.

This indecision is killing me.

Weather has really done for my backend plans. Spent yesterday dodging rain and farting about for two dace from the tidal pool. A pigeon chested female and a sandpaper rough male.  Mooched over  a pint of Adnams then watched someone clever (i.e: he had an umbrella) catching tidal bream.

Today. Well, I am metaphorically keeping my powder (tackle, clothing  and luggage) as  dry as I can as I am off to  Zanderland tomorrow for the last hurrah.  So, hike up to the Beck to see if Keith has grown in the last two years? On the barely Blue Lagoon to put my hemp and casters to good use? Slog down the muddy straight to see if my mate the 14+ has any friends? Check the tide table for what its worth being so far from Yarmouth for those slabs? Word is the Yare and Wensum are still well up so no point that journey?

I have been give strict orders to mend the coat rack then bugger off which is a start I suppose.

Sunday 11 March 2018

On the road.

Out and about with some of the offspring this morning. Baconsthorpe Castle near Holt was in effect robbed of most of it's structure by the founding family who needed to realise some capital. Out of bounds mostly today so no walk around the moat looking for frog spawn. Oh, and we vaguely followed in the footsteps of Big Band Anna and Geezer Bob on their Radio Norfolk Treasure Quest.

Dropped in at Bayfield Hall and Natural Surroundings. I thought it rude not to sample a very locally made Bray's sausage roll. Nearly as good as their pork pies. Which are fab-u-lous.

I'm after some roach tomorrow so best get liquidising some Warby Blue, I have some back up hemp and caster too. Got my eye on a very tempting straight above a mill.

Friday 9 March 2018

Sauce for the goose

Arrived at the undisclosed Midlands stillwater for a tea drinking social with Essex Scribbler  to find it was mostly solid. Undeterred we made our way to a couple of wider spots with some open water and were greeted by several empty lager tins and makeshift rod rests.  They weren't Special Brew cans.  Thus opened our discussion, starting with the emboldened 40% whose repulsive views were no longer infra dig, emboldened by Trump and cramming in as many Fall references as we could via not having a thermostat for the heating (App), ear syringing or otherwise, mullet or not on the fly, money grabbing dentists, the  toady Farage and Gove, angling guides and how shite footie is . 

Out with mostly sardines and on with the kettle. Cue the arrival of this fella.

Obviously used to being fed it swaggered up to us like an avian Liam Gallagher, all wings behind it's back and neck craned up to the mic. No tambourine or una-browed brother though. The Scribbler's attention was diverted and  his steaming hot mug of tea unattended. That was all Goosey Gallagher needed and he was mad for it, stabbing his beak in the mug and necking the tea.

Now that calm looking area was we thought cat ice. Well the Scribbler did anyway and sent a big lead and half a manky herring through it, reasoning that a sardine wasn't up to the job. He did momentarily wonder why the line wasn't sinking....

Several mugs of tea later (never serve the Scribbler less than a full mug) and a light breeze developed. Scribbler's floating line started to move and the drop-off  dropped off with a ping. Winding down into sort of nothing he looked up to see his big lead and manky half a herring sliding across the obviously not cat ice and plop in to the free water.  Liam the Goose found it most amusing.

Having just made one of even more teas later my line pinged out of the drop-off and as we were dealing with what turned out only to be a liner Liam  took his chance and was in my tea right up to the fur on his parka hood. I was not fooking having that.

And yes that arm of the undisclosed Midlands still water is still a barren fishless desert, even from the other bank.

Thursday 8 March 2018


Very brief report today. Mostly wet and very cold. Whilst driving around saw an amusing sight, a grey (yellow cloured of course) wagtail using a log trapped on a circling mass of rubbish in the tidal millpool as a perching spot. 

Fished for a couple of hours out of back of the charabanc which was a bit strange. One belter of a take on sardine, tip round and baitrunner  screeching. On  for a few thumps and boils then off.  Hooks had slipped down to tail of bait.  Kept everything dry though for tomorrow's big day out to an undisclosed Midlands stillwater.

Tuesday 6 March 2018

I wouldn't listen.

Snow melt, road salt and coloured water. No hoper. Not going to catch if I don't chance was my reasoning. River certainly up from Sunday and a lot browner, but not  a raging torrent. After a long mardle with  a fellow sufferer set  off for the top of the free stretch as it has more features and slacks.

Fished hard again but what ever was in the slacks wasn't playing ball and the sardines remained unmolested. Whats App confirmed that for yesterday at least our little river was barren.

How rivers change. This was the swim I caught my only 6lb chub from, in a big  brown flood, much worse than this session and in a big wind too, dropping a big lump of cheese paste upstream under that bush in the mouth of the drain. Love it when the tip straightens and  the line suddenly cuts downstream, Thought it was a carp when it got to the net it looked so big. Overgrown now. 

Decided to fish for a bite today at least. Quick look see on the bridge pool. Water clearing already but with a big push on., to much for my favoured eddy so crossed over  and spent a good hour on the float and tip with no interest which was a surprise. Perhaps flake might have been more visual

Off to the mill but very tricky so dropped down to the first bend where I caught my first Norfolk chub many years ago in a very wet gale on meat, the tip stopped banging round in the rain then wrapped completely just as some dog walkers went past. I'm sure they did a good job with the camera but the film (it was a long time age) got caught in the works and was useless. Shame, as at 4.12  nearly a pound bigger than any thing I'd had off the Stour and Colne.

I can claim little credit for this dace today as it was on at the end of the trot but I was pleased with it anyway. One of the blue sheened ones  and rough to the touch, a clear sign of spawning soon.

Two moves and 3 bites later another fish, and this time I at least saw the bite.

Couple of encouraging leads  picked up today and I hope to have followed them up by the 14th. Both involve bread. By the time I  left you wouldn't have know there had been any extra water in the rive r at all.

Toodle pip

Monday 5 March 2018


It has been bitter over here in God's Own County and we certainly have taken a battering from Snowmagedon and Storm Emma. Sunday saw me make a break from the house we'd been mostly stuck in for over 5 days and hopefully before too much salt  got in the river system  Some hope seeing as even our first floor windows were caked in the stuff. 

Two dead bait rods, and see what occurs I thought. Yes sun, and temps at +9C. And no beastly easterly. Sadly little occurred, except for the passive aggressive  baling out of a dinghy, mostly over my 20gm Piker float. Only time it showed any signs of movement.