Saturday 28 October 2023

Changing places

Fancied a trot, and  a new row of bushes to look at. Had some better than usual Dangling Indirect maggots, dendros and hemp but only used the maggots. Fished above the last mill on the tidal, river still up and pushing though but steady. Scared off a poxy cormorant on the way up the stretch, not many spots opened up so came back down to where the Black Death had been working, mainly because there was a steadier glide and someone had cleared a small gap. There was a slacker pool across but this was shallower and I'd not bought a fixed spool, just the pin.

Bites straight off but only from a short length of the glide. Dace at first and then some nice roach including this dog roach which had an escape from the Black Death

I'd get a few  then have to ring the changes depth wise to get  a few more. It's really nice playing better roach in a good flow on the pin.

There were fish over in the shallow bay and a pike or two chasing them and I guess they'd come into the glide for refuge. I'd like to come back with some caster/worm slop as that has tempted some bigger roach and very decent perch in the past, and have a few into dusk sessions with bread on the tip.

Sunday 22 October 2023

Piking it was

Rivers might have been ok (full and brown but not a raging torrent) but I didn't have any lobs to drown so headed off to Golden Pond. Seems I got as caught out by the heat of the sun as much as England did yesterday, pathetic excuse for a pathetic shower) and I shed as much clothing as decency allowed in full sight of the road.  Sardines popped up over the silt  was the plan.

The slit was quiet handy as I saw the shape of  a pike puff up under the 20gm Esox float which began to slide to the right. Quite a good scrap; even with the trapped in a car door sawn off  rods (3lb tc before the loss of a foot). 8 or so pounds, lightly hooked that took it's revenge with the first raker rash of the 'winter'.

Had a couple of trembles on the close in rod which didn't develop and that was it. Chased off a cormorant and was treated to a zephyr of long tailed tits as I packed up. Known hereabouts as bum barrels. 

Saturday 21 October 2023

Forgotten fungi

Fungi got boring overnight the kids said so we did something else.  Then I got the last hour on  a dropping river. Had to fish for bites but found a few below "my" bend. I'd probably have had more with  a mini feeder but I like to trot when I can.

Standard roach and dace. Nothing nettable but lovely bright fish. Here's a few.

That was last week. Missed a mild dry window midweek. Now bloody Babet has put somewhat of  a damper on things. Possibly still water piking tomorrow.

Saturday 14 October 2023

Get the big coat out

River still bombing through so headed down to Golden Pond to let my arms recover from a double flu/covid jab attack. Mean wind so Big Coat over the bib 'n' braces 

Fished back to the gate with sardines wafting above the silt (in theory), twitched back, varying spots tried to no avail.

Went for a wonder on the warmer side looking for toadstools when I'd had enough, some fish rooting round in the pads but no suitable tackle with me.

The Little Uns want to look for some toadstools tomorrow having seen these


Sunday 8 October 2023

Another roll of the dace.

Thought about the canal and rudd but time was tight so back to the Mill, as has been the case the last two trips the pool swim was taken so on to the bend. After the bend lots of near bank to bank reeds and ribbon weed.

No wind and the fish seemed more spread out but I was hampered by:  a large loop and knot unseen when I packed up last night. Struggling to see to join the line again with a blood knot then realising I'd missed out the butt ring. Then one of those impossible tangles between tip and next ring. Surprisingly I kept my temper.

Most trots a bite, most bites a fish. Mostly dace with just two roach and a pike that let go again.

Proper dark before 645. Still very mild. Little owl in the back garden when I got home.

Saturday 7 October 2023

Mixed bag

Thought it only polite to use pleasant chap's bait so headed back to the mill after chores, two not so pleasant chaps beerily belligerent about fishing the private stretch so left them to it and settled in a bit up from yesterday. Fresh 4lb bs Maxima on the pin and dace from the off, it went a bit quiet when a small but persistent pike moved in but he/she must have got bored and things picked up again. Red or white maggot, they weren't fussy. The smallest dace were in fact micro-chublets, the biggest dace very plump. I had two small perch. one was oddly coloured round the head, red  and purple. Two roach and a rudd to complete the set.

Here's a few I kept for a net shot including the reddish perch.

 And the plumpest dace

Tee shirt and shorts still, very mild but very dry.

Friday 6 October 2023


Work was doing my head in and I needed to get out into the windy but balmy late afternoon. Not enough time to get maggots but there was enough time to grab a couple of slices of bread. A pleasant chap on a wicker creel was in my intended swim, he had had some nice little chub (dace), some net perch and roach and  a brownie. 

I headed down to the bend where I caught my first ever Norfolk chub in horizontal icy rain and broke out the punch kit I'd bought in the spring but never used. In truth even the 10mm punch pressed out very small thin discs but I gave them a go. Neater than flake and bites came quick even with no feed. Half a dozen hand sized dace and it was time to go

The pleasant chap was leaving too, heading back to Leicester in the morning he said and kindly offered me his left over bait.

The sheep looked on as they always do.

Thursday 5 October 2023

Social on that Undisclosed East Midlands Stillwater

Once a year the Loafer and I meet on the Undisclosed East Midlands Stillwater (well, it 'off a road that does traverse the East Midlands in parts), latterly to coincide with the yearly return to Blighty of the giant Canadian émigré, 6 foot 7ish in his stockinged feet and with hollow legs that accommodate the vast quantities of liquid he can imbibe, tea or alcohol mainly.  I'd radioed ahead to the Quartermaster to pack extra water just in case. 

I'd intended to be there at first light but road works at Little Stonham (I do miss the road straddling Magpie sign) and an unnecessary detour over the estuary straddling Orwell Bridge meant it was a bit later than that  that I found the Google pinned layby and set off down the track, having first pissed all over the front my trousers having got in a pickle with my bib and braces. 

No sign of The Loafer and the Exiled Giant as I poked the rod rests in the gravel bank and readied to send a sardine roughly in the vicinity of the buoy at the entrance to the small bay but as I did they appeared from the willow and birch scrub. Comparison of each other's ailments and the failing health of our olds indicative of our own advancing years but nowhere as ancient as Hugh Cornwell and Charlie Hooper. By the way, isn't that new Stones record AI?

Four rods out the ritual of the gas stove was initiated, 3 mugs produced and steaming tea drunk to ward off the slight chill of the facing wind. Forecast to brighten the big coat was kept in reserve.

As has become traditional the first take take goes to the visitor and the air mile collecting Exiled Giant trumped my A140 schlepp  by the odd 10 hours and thousands of miles. Not a full blooded run but tapping of the tip of the Greys 3lb tc deadbait rod. Several acrobatic episodes but not much of a match for the rod.

The Exiled Giant used to be the Chief Unhooker but prefers a back seat now as below. I  wonder how many pike we've unhooked on that bed of reeds over the years?

And as has become traditional just the one fish. I had a drop-off drop off but no run and the Loafer bought back a scuffed and slashed bait. No matter, sausages were cooked and eaten (Toulouse sausages) and more tea drunk. We talked of Mequinenza carp and catfish, mitten crabs and  raw shit in rivers, Liverpool VAR and (my) Facebook trolling (Pardon?). Carbellers losing their rods and Brightlingsea Cottagers. The anachronism that is Radcliffe's tackle and guns. 

No matter about no more fish. Tea, sausages and lifelong great mates. That's what life is mostly about. It may be gone tomorrow so enjoy it today.