Thursday 20 June 2019

Warwickshire Avon - Windlestraws and Witticasters

Followers of my ramblings over the years will know more recently I tend to blog about every session, the reason for this is because for one, I can keep track of my pastime and how my trips are increasing but also because it shows sometimes it’s not that easy out there. Yesterday for instance a news report came in and a picture quickly followed of a beast of a fish caught by Sean Dowling. Then Russ Hilton (remember him) followed with a picture of the swim he was fishing, I just had to get out !!!!

I did say I’d have a quiet night in because after all “you never relax” but after sorting the kids out for bed and me pacing up and down the house looking generally restless, “why don’t you go fishing” . “Well I could do I suppose, I’ll just go for an hour, anyway it’s already half past eight” Luckily for me 14 minutes travel time total there and back I can be at the banks of the Warwickshire Avon, not only that one of my favourite haunts.

Unbeknown to the Wife the tackle was already in the car, as was the loaf of bread I bought earlier. I don’t tend to fish this stretch in the summer months, it is winter here I spend most of my time because not only do I have the stretch to myself most of the time, but there are some cracking fish to be had. 

The chub rise here to take bread off the top and knowing the swims intimately, I headed straight to one that usually has fish holding up. 

Sure enough after creeping down in to the swim and with a couple of bits of bread torn off the slice I set them going upstream. Well I say that the swim is only twenty foot max as there is trees and overhangs each side, but that’s why the love it here, very sheltered and secluded. 

Sure enough within seconds of the bait going out the tell-tale rise of the chub and the ‘pop’ on the surface. 

They wise up quickly though these fish and they don’t get big from being stupid. They literally nudge the bait with their noggins and don’t take it first go till they are happy with it. 

Confidence is the key so after a good 15 or 20 minutes of feeding bread I now had 4 or 5 fish taking bread happily off the surface. I can clearly see the fish rising through ones polarised sunglasses and the biggest looked 4lb at least. 

The rig well, simply a hook attached to the line a centrepin reel and my tippy Peregrine rod that has some backbone. So the bait goes out the bread swirling on the surface till it hits the pacier water and then it proceeds downstream, sure enough it was engulfed after a pre-nudge and I felt the fish through the line, sadly for a split second though as somehow it manged to bump itself off, damn !!!! 

The problem with that is, when you catch a fish from the swim it goes dead and you have to move on, but it’s exactly the same for a lost fish, you’ve buggered it. 

With half an hour left I tried to find some more surface feeding fish but sadly the swim I wanted to fish was occupied and the other 6ft high nettles. So only one thing for it, whack on the plasticine and fish a bottom bait. Small baits can be ignored here but put on a huge chunk of bread it’s too much for a gluttonous Chevin to ignore. 

So after settling down in to a swim with an overhanging tree the bait went out. Within ten minutes a couple of plucks and rattles turned in to a proper pull round. Sadly only a chublet but that ended the session, I agreed I’d be back for ‘Wine Wednesday’ and as I headed back to the car and just having seen a kingfisher in close quarters as they are very active down here , the sunset confirmed just how much this sort of fishing does wonders for one’s mind. I’ll be back !!!!


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