Saturday, 16 November 2019

'Not Quite' The Close Season Zander Quest Pt.143 – Mahometan Gruels and Myrmidons

It seems that the rain hasn't stopped for the past couple of months, the river, lakes and streams bulging at the seams at the result of the wet weather that doesn't seem to be letting up.

It's over the banks and in the fields in many areas and the water table is well and truly full to the brim. Usually there is options to fish locally on flowing water, but over the last couple of weeks those opportunities to get bankside have become very few and far between.

As I type this there was heavy rain heavy rain overnight that will last all day so again that glimmer of hope to get out the weekend on the rivers just ain't going to happen. Many of the local rivers particularly the smaller ones will most likely peak beyond the most recent highs of 2012.

Now for a S.A.D suffer this is where I start to struggle you see, every opportunity to get out fishing must be taken when the nights start drawing in.

It's the tonic I need basically, some much needed solitude to look forward to,  after a busy week at work, standing water on the A46 in Coventry  eventually get in the way of the braindead and the road network was carnage.

An hour and a half to get home Thursday, four routes I tried to take were shut, eventually back home after taking the car through the largest amount of standing water I'd ever seen, where it was over the bonnet in many of them luckily the Jimny has more or less  ground clearance as a defender as it might be a different story.

Now a venture out with the family to Charlcote Park as pictured above and below a high Barford the small river Dene was unrecognisable and only small area of the grounds were open due to the waterlogged grounds.

The Warwickshire Avon in the fields and so high you couldn't really tell where the river started and finished. I dread to think what it looks like now as it's another metre higher or something like that.

It was nice to be out though and it was quite a pleasant day to be fair, the kicking of leaves, jumping in puddles and sharing an autumnal scene with Jacob sheep and many deer just getting on with their business is very therapeutic indeed, especially when you know you'd be rewarded later with a slap-up Sunday dinner, a decent bottle of red and a snifter of a Rum I've really taken to.

Rum for some reason has recently taken over from my usual Glevlivet cask strength dram so much so Whisky has taken a backseat. A decent rum drank neat is really hard to beat for one's palate at the minute. Those simple things in life, good food and drink adding to one's wellbeing.

I suppose my eagerness to get back to the river fishing is that one's lead in the bloggers challenge river section is starting to reduce. 13 species down, a thousand points at one time, now almost 200 points down, and in the 800's.

The scoring for this years challenge based on a percentage of a competitors weight, not on the British Record as in previous years. So for instance only two Ruffe caught so far, one by me, one by Russ Hilton but because his was nearly the double the size of my effort my 100 points have dwindled to 67.

However another big spanner in the works, other than when bigger fish are caught by the competitors is that, young James Denison  is now back fishing after his recent lay off because of a bad back, and is now back doing what he does best, that's catching specimen fish. He is fast climbing up the leaderboard and he is only going one way because it's the only way he knows how.

James may certainly have an advantage, according to Sam Newey

“Yeah but he fishes in London and that’s a bit like fishing at Tunnel Barn, it’s too easy”

I put him straight, "Sam, James is a fish catching machine, it wouldn't matter where he fishes, he would still catch the biggest out of the shoal, it's just what he does"

So Grayling, Silver Bream, Roach Bream Hybrid and Carp my targets before I get back to try and catch bigger specimens on the species I've already registered a score for. Certainly doable but if the local rivers are fishable that is.

Sometimes though just being out waterside is all I need. The picture below from the last session, thick morning mist, crisp under foot and the sun just rising to illuminate the river in its full glory

Sadly the fish were just not interested, the heavy frost and low air temperature not helping I suppose I didn't even manage a single bite.

The barbel not forthcoming despite 24 hours before a friend managing two decent fish, one a double in the same area.

It resets the cogs though, whilst seemingly the world rests I'm enjoying what most people don't get to see, and to be honest, I'd rather keep it that way, I'd the whole stretch to myself for that session, for a solitude seeker, what more could I ask for.

Well a session where I wouldn't blank would be nice to be fair....

So yeap, canal zander were the target for this session, at least an opportunity for a bite in these turbid waters is more likely than trying to find somewhere on the river to fish.

Luckily I'm a dab-hand targeting these interesting fish where I've had plenty of 5, 6, and 7 pounds, culminating in a fish of 8lb 10oz and 9lb on the noggin which is currently my PB.

The bigger fish start to show in these colder months and to conclude my quest to catch a 10 lber at least with the rivers out of sorts it gives me another strike on the tally, it's a numbers game basically and some luck I suppose, luck I've not had just yet, but I'll keep on plugging away till one comes along.

Despite not raining it was a rather damp morning, the leaves clinging on the dirt, the feeder streams making the canal even dirtier than it usually is.

I hotfooted it to a swim where the is nearly always fish there and after positioning the floats and enjoying a cup of coffee the left float starts to bob. I thought it was the leaves that had stuck to the line that might have moved it out of position but no it was a bite.

Not exactly a spirited fight meant that I knew it would be a small fish and indeed it was, a schoolie with eyes clearly bigger than his belly. At least it was a fish, not seen one of them for a while. I thought that could be the start to some further bites having had bite after bite session here before but no, that was it.

So a few more likely holding spots sought and leapfrogged but oddly no more bites, a very quiet morning indeed. Only roach used today, my confidence using it is nothing like smelt, I need to get some more sorted asap.


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