Sunday, 31 January 2021

Small Brook Fishing Pt.15 - Sherry Butts and Silver Foxes

I had grand plans for this short morning session down at the cut, you see the local rivers were unfishable and it was about the only venue I'd be able to wet a line. Even the Alne was over its banks and in the road, the Avon, well, yeah bombing thorough and I doubt I'll be able to get anywhere near it anytime soon.

Now Dry January ended rather abruptly, well with a few days to go because, well I'd beginning to feel all a bit crap all of a sudden, I cannot quite put ones finger on it, but with a movie to watch with the Wife, some good food and a roaring fire, I thought what the heck, so it was out with the Kingsbarn's finest.

A decent hitter too, 46% and matured in American Oak Sherry Butts, it's a nice dram I must admit, hence I made a decent dent in it when there was the need to climb the wooden hills.

I'd switched to rum you see over the last few years but after 28 days without a drop whatsoever it went down rather well indeed, it complimented the rich Beef Massaman Curry and was one of the smoothest single malts I'd have for a while.

Now the plan for the canal session was to fish a float for whatever came along and then a Zander rod out as a sleeper to see if I could pick up a Zed that was laying up in this brass monkey weather.

It didn't get off to a good start as the intended swim was frozen solid which meant the bream bay was out of bounds but the journey to get there was rather eventful as the side roads were lethal, the roads not gritted and sheet ice in lots of places meant I had to go the long way round.

An hour or two in without a bit a bit further up the canal where it was perfectly fishable I was getting itchy feet. Shame as it looked good for a bite. I'd also had my light quiver rod with me as well as my Zander and conventional float set-up, so I decided to end the session early and head to a small brook I've fish quite a few times now with some success.

It's only a stones throw away luckily and the decision to bring 3 rods paid off big time. The diversion meant I didn't get to see how high it was but as I passed it, it was well within the banks....

....Get In !!!!

I hot-footed it bankside with the minimum and tackle, the minimum of bait but knew if I could find a slack or two I'd get a bite or two, I've fished these diminutive waterways enough now to know even with very turbid water like it was for this session fish would be up for a feed.

And a bite within the first cast, just confirmed that, I had made the right decision....

Simple tactics here just how I like it, so a light quiver rod with a 0.25oz tip and a couple of grubs on a size 18 hook.

They are not tackle shy and I bet they see literally no pressure whatsoever, in-fact where the tangleator and I have fished, I bet we are the only anglers stupid enough to fish it....

...."a dirty stream, errrrr why ?"

"Well proof of the pudding !!!"

A nice roach and trout caught in subsequent casts, "What did you say again ?"

Ok they may not be the biggest of fish but they are providing some sport where my allegiances lie. That's flowing water, as much as I enjoy the canal Zander Quest, I rarely fish stillwaters because I love rivers, streams and brooks more. much more.

Over a 100 metre stretch here there was maybe only two fishable swims and all the fish for this short session all came from one swim not much bigger than a dinning room table wide.

I had to cast over the turbulent shallow water and almost fish Barbel in flood style with the rod tip high so that the flow didn't dislodge the rig from out of its static position.

It worked rather well and by drip feeding maggots there was plenty of bites. What I really wanted was a decent Dace though, in-fact my PB of 8 ounces exactly came from here. Eventually after 3 trout and some roach the first dace succumbed to the red maggots. 

I didn't have any worms with me and that was a shame as it tends to bring out the bigger stamp of fish. Still out of the blue a bite that nearly took the rod in and a fish had hooked itself I'd imagine.

I knew it was a silver dart straight away and it powered off downstream I thought I'd lost it, but no I teased it upstream in the heavy flow and it was in the net. I needed the scales for this fish and I was amazed when it upped my PB by 0.2 of an ounce !!!!

A proper big fat belly on it, a lovely fish indeed !!!!

Now I've a well deserved day of work tomorrow and this short session gave much such a wellbeing boost I may well head here again tomorrow where I'll have not only more fishable swims, but also I'll have some worms at my disposal too which does bring out the better stamp of fish.

The dedicated small stream rod at the ready as well, lets hope the decent dace are biting again, I really did enjoy that. 


  1. Nice fish - there is something about dace at this time of year!

    1. They really do get on the feed, really nice to see at this time of the year isn't it.

  2. Ta, I do love catching them especially from these small brooks and streams.

  3. Mick , that piece of old timber looks like a medieval boars head. I need a beer. John

    1. Yeah I thought that too, Sam thought it looked like a ghost when you look at it on its side.


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