Sunday, 11 March 2018

Warwickshire Avon – Donnybrooks and Dimmets

There was a melee in this swim prior to dusk the other week, things with fins holding up their knives and forks banging on the dinner table expecting to be fed. And fed they were, sadly there wasn’t a thank you in return and I left not only with a load of deadbaits consumed but despite the service I provided they left without giving me a tip, the tight gits.

I wasn’t going to be as accommodating for this session though because I only had one rod for starters, and that rod would have a sting(er) in its tail. You see the runs I left unhindered with fish taking line when the rod was lifted, the line through fingers going taught and line being taken, as soon as resistance was felt I could actually feel the fish (assume Zander) actually dropping the bait, frustrating indeed especially when club rules dictated the finish time just when it was getting interesting.

Single hooks usually work well with Zander but I was hoping a little rig modification would allow me to see what was feeding on the free meal I provided.

I’m not a food bank after all, unlike the other mouths I feed, I wanted something in return this time. So a couple of traces were made up with a small treble hook a couple of inches from the large single to help snare the deadbait ejectors.

With the temperatures and recent snow melt, rivers doing what they are doing, I wasn't expecting much.

The possibility of river eel, carp and a tench went as soon as that happened so the end to the season has all been a bit meeehhhhh !!! to be honest, shame really as I was getting out on the bank as much as I could of late, but even I've been put off with the recent weather, which has been some of the worst I've know, especially the artic winds which have been ridiculously cold even for me to put up with.

Were these small schoolies nibbling the bait or a wise and conditioned big'un that was good at bait nicking ?

Now best laid plans and all that, and you know how much I pre plan because the river had risen Saturday and was over its banks on some of the stretch. So the swim I wanted to fish unfishable I had to move downstream a couple of pegs and fish for what would likely be biting. So it was out with a Barbel rod as well, the river was well up and chocolate brown so a big piece of garlic spam one one rod a roach dead on the other.

The amount of debris bombing down was bordering on the ridiculous so I was casting every ten minutes or so but eventually all hell breaks loose after 3 hours in to the 4 hour session a fish has picked up the bait. It gave me a cracking scrap too in the flow and it was trying to get under the sunken platform. Eventually landed though and a welcome 6lb 8oz Barbus. The two other anglers bankside were biteless when I left. Certainly tough conditions and no more bites came.

The water was 7.1 degrees when I left and with the river starting to fall its going to be good conditions for Barbel for sure when the season comes to a close. Probably the toughest and hardest winter I've fished and to be honest mediocre results too.

I've fished more than ever though, and so may it continue.


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