I'd fried 2 pints of maggots on Wednesday in that blast furnace heat, and though I've revived about half a pint with about the same froze down and with Noah like predictions for wet weather for a fortnight, plus twitchy key holder opening sluices decide not to top up my maggot supply for the only forecast dry day yesterday and head for a nearby still water that's just reopened its creaky gate hinges after a post coital lay off. And speaking of pints, no not the honey influenced Waggle Dance, but a pint of Woodforde's Wherry, with crisps (no scratchings I'm afraid) called me to stop on my way.
The clouds hung low, heavy with menace but I chanced it with just shorts and tee, with an auxiliary hoodie just in case, as I reasoned a few less bits to dry off it it did rain. A changeable on and off breeze kept things sub humid at least. I'd loaded the kitchen sink into the pantenchnicon as I was couldn't be sure what swims would be available as the trend is for far bank fishing which potentially cuts off several spots at times for the close in merchants like me. But, as hoped the Royal Box was free and only one way to go, corn under a 5 AAA peacock insert waggler over a bed of Black Bream with hemp and corn top ups. Hindsight told me I should have added pellets to the top up but I didn't.
Lots of floating debris following the recent heavy rain and wind did hamper presentation at times but first chuck in and this chunky hybrid put up a good show before being hustled into the stink net before it became pike fodder.
A couple of roach, and then an unseen opponent that pondered off purposefully before shedding the #14 Kamasan B560 but not leaving any tell tale snot or scales for ID purposes. Next bite again seemed to produce a decent bream like response but something sowed seeds of doubt and these were amplified by a series of pings down the line as the line slipped off the dorsal, only one thing does that, a mudpig. An indeed as it broke the surface big scales were visible, and the only question was whether I could cram the plodding old warrior in the stink net before it really woke up. I did but only then felt its bulk as I struggled to hoist the net up and into the cradle mat. Bearing spawning wounds it required some skin treatment before I quickly dampened the sling and zeroed the Korum Digitals. 17lb 1oz(or as the current fashion 17 and ozs. Yes really. That is how you have to say it now). Surprising what a decent actioned rod, 3lb line and a small (ish) hook can cope with if you are careful.
A flurry of roach an da few skimmers followed some needing the net too. Magical fishing, on the drop or just after the shots steadied the float on the bottom. Lifts or slowly dimpling under (dotted down natch).
The bubbles belied bigger prey and after this hybrid they showed up.
Tench of course. And boy did this pair of angry males put up a fight, rapped knuckles and every thing. Weighed the first and it didn't quite make 4lb (3lb 15oz). Punch way above their division. Not as pretty as the females, the grunts of the family. Almost wrasse like sometimes in shape, much dumpier.
Had to retie a hook which had bent straight after an eventually fruitless battle with an aerobatic pike with sweet teeth, low doubles I thought, certainly not the ever present furloughed unit after my roach and skimmers under the pads, and decided to move the shot up and go for the roach on the drop rather than mix more groundbait, it was getting chilly and spots of rain in the air so wanted a bit more feed and cast action before my 5pm curfew.
No bigger bream, guess they might have hung around more with pellets in the mix but there's always another time.