Sunday 25 March 2018

Closed Season Canal Zander Quest PT72 – Cottontails and Cucumbers

Back in 2015 I had an encounter with what I think was a Wild Boar. The more time I spend in the outdoors during dawn, dusk and dark, these sort of occurrences should in theory be more prevalent.

Bring it on I say....

The blank session last week I spotted a rabbit or hare the size I’d never seen before. Sam could have put a saddle on it and rode it, it was that big, and it was hopping around without a care in the world. I need to get myself a camera with a decent zoom again after the fanned lens buggered up on the last one. All the photos you see on my blog are merely from an Iphone and the zoom on that ain’t the best.

Now talking of giant Hares…. 

Louise Hodgson was convinced she saw a hare the size of a roe deer surrounded by normal-sized hares in a Dorset valley. Louise, who runs sacred site tours in Dorset, said she was on the nearby downs when she met a small group of Romany Gypsies with some lurcher dogs.
She said: "We came to a blind valley and it was early September, so it was an unusual sight for that time of year, but there was a group of 10 to 13 hares with what we thought was a deer.

"But it wasn't, it was a hare the same size as a deer. It was a wonderful experience. It shows there are still some secrets in nature."

Louise said the "magical" experience was in 1976, during a country trek she took from the Cotswolds to Dorset, but the vision has haunted her ever since. She recounted the tale during a question at the annual Occult Conference in Glastonbury Town Hall, in Somerset, which was on the other day.

She said: "Has anyone else come across that?"

Marian, who was explaining about magic in the natural world, replied: "In the countryside many things happen, the 'king' or 'queen' hares are out there. "So are fairies, elemental spirits, or ghosts.

"If you want things to happen, if you let them happen, they can if you are open to it."

Marian had also said fairies and sylphs, small mythological elf-like creatures, were real. "Sylphs, and all living beings, are around us. Some want to speak to us again, connect with us again and we can be oblivious to what is going on around us."

Maybe she was back on the LSD again….

But maybe not....

Because according to Dr Karl Shuker, a cryptozoologist, who is aware of Louise's sighting, it is not the only one, but there have been more sightings of giant rabbits.

Cryptozoologists research the existence of mythical creatures and if extinct species are still alive.

Dr Shuker said there have been two giant rabbit sightings in Banbury, Oxfordshire, and another one in Felton, Northumbria. In a blog post he also said there have been many giant rabbit and hare sightings in Ireland since the 1970s.

However, he is not convinced there is anything supernatural about the sightings.

In a blog post on his website, he said large rabbit sightings are likely to be escaped domesticated large species such as the Flemish Giant, the Continental Giant, which can grow up to 55lbs and the size of a cocker spaniel.

So the plan, a Canon Powershot SX730 unless anyone else had a recommendation. Away from Panasonic I know, but was let down last time.

So anyway, enough of the guff Mick, back to the fishing….

The opportunity arose for an evening of beef, beer and bladderisation in moderation with the Wife it wasn’t something that we could turn down. I planned to stay off the heavy Red’s though as it’s about the only thing that give me hangovers these days, you see only a short drive away from where we were staying I happened upon a section of canal I’d never trodden.

I’d stumbled upon it whilst perusing OS maps online and wondered why I’d not fish it before. I’d fished above it and below it but not this half mile stretch that looked ideal for a big Zed to hide out. Good cover both sides, half a mile in length, unlikely to see ‘that’ much foot traffic such was the location. Now I love the solitude the canal can bring and that’s why I fish the areas that I do. I look for long walks, difficult access and stretches that boat movement wouldn’t be as prevalent as the more popular routes.

This early morning session I’d dump one of the deadbait rods off and also fish a lure rod. The lure in question a 13cm Savage Gear Real Eel jobbie, a head turner that for sure. In-fact the last time I used the lure I banked one the second cast a nice River Zander before it got caught up in a snag and it was lost to the Gods. Usually I’d rig it with a stinger in the tail but that was easily removable as not knowing this stretch I wanted to try and map it out a little first before the stinger got caught up in any snags.

If I felt a take then I’d rig it back up and concentrate on that one area to help the hook-up. I’d used quite big lures in the past and caught fish larger than the average schoolies because of it. A big Zed is more likely to grab at something that would likely fill its stomach rather than chase something that would expend more energy in digestion than calories ingested.

So the baby cucumber was swapped for a potato skin spiral….

The float rod would be used as a sleeper tucked tight against some cover where the bright yellow tip is a great contrast against the cuts water and I’d work the half mile stretch up in sections and then back down it.

So the planning stage was mapped out, how did I get on ?

Well it's all very well having a plan but you have to stick to it, stupidly I forgot the deadbaits for this session and didn't have time to get some more, so just the lure it was.


Having never fished this stretch I could believe how dead it looked, hmmm, maybe not a bad thing as these loners I suspect like to be away from the masses, but after spotting a big bream that had met his maker I made by way up the stretch. The lure picked up quite a bit off the bottom but nothing more than the usual to be honest and I ended the session as I started, the same lure still intact.

I don't do enough lure fishing and working the edge after a couple of hours without even a nibble, a fish properly nailed it with a full on proper vault through the braid the lure has given me confidence again. Especially when it seems to be picking up the fish slightly bigger than the standard schoolies. You only have to see it in the water to see why it's a head turner. Did the trick this morning that's fore sure, I didn't weigh it but was really plump fish, so maybe 3.5lb or so.

One fish one bite again because the last hour was uneventful, it was clearer and shallower than I though it would be which maybe didn't help but not sure I'd rush back here again. I couldn't quite put my finger on it. What I might do is fish deadbaits next time, maybe when the water warms up a little because it was still cold, very cold....

1 comment:

  1. Nothing to do with giant rabbits or Zander but I watch half a dozen hares in an open field doing what hares do this time of year today.Magical.


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