Piscatorial Quagswagging

...the diary of a specialist angler in around the Warwickshire Avon and its tributaries.

Monday 24 December 2018

The Tiny River Alne – Gold Droppers and Gormagunts

This monster is larger than an Elephant, of a very uncommon shape, having three heads, eight Legs, three fundaments, two male members, and one female pudendum on the Rump. It is of various colours, very beautiful, and makes a noise like the conjunction of two or three Voices. It is held unlawful to kill it, and is said to live to a great Age.

The Canadians could not give it a Name, ‘till a very old Indian Sachem said, He remembered to have seen one when he was a boy, and his Father called it a “GORMAGUNT.”

Ok there may not be any Gormagunts in residence here but all I know is, with water with this clarity, there could be anything lurking within its depths, you see, ok the summer months in some of the shallower stretches you could spot fish, but there are swims especially downstream that have depths unknown.

In-fact one particular swim when fishing with Sam the tangleator I gave up moving the float up to get dead depth, it really was far deeper than I’d imagine it would be for such a small river.

So for this morning session I planned to fish some of the lower reaches of the club waters to try and winkle out something from the deeper pegs that exist here.

There is cover aplenty as well, so Chub were my first thought, but then I’d caught a nice conditioned roach in a swim with a nice glide that to be honest deserved a float rather than a link ledger. Not only that but at first light I'd seen them topping as well.

The trotting swims are few and far between though such the meandering of the waterway, and as I like to travel as light as I can I didn’t really want to take a float rod as well as the light quiver set-up.

Roach and Dace were my target for this session and not having targeted them properly for a long time, I fancied some further swim searching to try and locate them. The river ain’t that big, jumpable in places and my concern was if I ditched the light link ledger and I trotted instead that on the retrieve of the float after a run through it may well scare the fish off, if there were any there.

Errrrrr but then thrown in to the mix was the recent trip to the Lower Itchen where I’d spotted some huge Roach keeping themselves out of harm’s way. Footfall, head torches, talking, farting you name it, even a trout swim bugger’upperer the Roach were still there to be seen with their fins sticking up at me.

Yeap, despite changing to a more lighter set-up, none of these wonderful fish graced my net. To be honest unlike the shy as anything Chevin I don’t this these big Roach were that bothered about the disturbance, well I know there weren’t.

This river apart from the odd maggot dangling knock-up it’s relatively lightly fished, so maybe rather than fish like I would for Chub, a superglued pound coin on the deck to try and attract a headturner. So to cover as much water as I could, trotting a float would be the better option. The fish may well be localised such the biosmass so unless I put a bait on their heads I’d been scratching one’s head again.

Bait, well I had thought about maggots as first, but then I’d a session planned down at the little brook with Sam with those, so bread was the obvious choice.

What fish doesn’t like bread? So at least if the roach were not forthcoming, maybe a dace or chub would be. If you think about it, these fish are used to picking up whatever comes there way rather than a finger buffet being left on the table. The only problem is the pace of the water can vary quite a bit from shallow fast riffles to long glides and slacks over a short distance, so for some situations maybe a light link ledger bouncing around the swim was the best way to go.

But Mick, that's how you've tackled it before for mediocre results, so stick with the float set-up and overthinking things !!!!

Only one way to find out if there was method on ones madness !!!!

Now my 14ft Acolyte was probably overkill and cumbersome so I dug out my Korum 12ft float rod, as I’d damaged it in the past, it was now more like 11ft but still had a nice tippy top despite the decapitation. So a small piece of flake on the hook, a little liquidised bread as feed and rather than just a trot or two down, I’d spend a little more time in each likely looking swim rather giving up the ghost and leaving not long after I'd turned up if I remained biteless.

Lots to experiment with as well, holding back, laying on and the first half I'd bulk the shot quite a way up the line and fish a slow sinking bit of flake.

Then best laid plans and all that because errrrrrr the river had risen overnight to almost over it's bank levels, not sure where all that had come from either as there wasn't that much rain.

So I had to resort to plan B, use the quiver rod to try and find some slacks. I had some lobworms though which when the river is in flood is one of the best baits to use.

If you think about it, apart from the fish trying to avoid being knocked on the bonce with some debris washing down at least they will likely have a disturbed lob or two coming their way.

So I found some slacks and fished each one for a good 15 or 20 minutes, the odd nibble here and there and a sharp twang in one swim, but nothing that materialised in to a proper bite.

The amount of rubbish piling down was a sight to behold, but at least it would have given the river a bit of a flush through. So a blank session then, but enjoyable all the same, the weather was kind if the fishing wasn't.

The following day looked by far the better option as it dropped like a stone overnight, but then that's small river fishing for you, it goes with the territory. Will I get out here again, before the year end, probably not to be honest as I've a plenty of other fishing sessions planned to keep one occupied.


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