Sunday, 9 May 2021

The Close Season Zander Quest Pt.202 - Cygnets and Cymbiforms

The rain was hammering down as I made this beef massaman curry which is hard to beat when its home cooked, you know exactly what goes in to it for a start and the beef especially, up the quality it's well worth it as is an extra lemongrass stalk in with the curry paste, a extra smidgin of fish sauce oh and use coconut cream rather than coconut milk. 

Now the bird's eye chilli maybe small, but is quite hot and the fruits are very pungent indeed.  It measures around 50,000 - 100,000 Scoville units, which is at the lower half of the range for the hotter habanero, but still much hotter than a common jalapeño. If you're not in to spice I'd avoid these like the plague, as you'd be fridge bound for a pint of milk or a spoonful of yogurt. 

A bivi'd up carper when I got towpath side had braved the wet conditions unlike me and decided to spend the night on the towpath for well, zilch, well no carp anyway, bream had been a problem, but then when you fish the canals for carp the equally greedy bream are up for a bit of food too. 

He'd caught some nice Zander of late and his mate had managed an 8lber at a stretch I'd fished a while ago but I don't want to spread myself too wide again, I've made that mistake before. 

So a simple roving session this, smelt on both rods this time. Its a bait I discovered by accident really but Zander seem to love it. I'm not sure if its the smell or the soft texture but I wouldn't be without smelt in my armoury now. 

I'm sure the fact it's highly visible helps matters because Zander are very visual fish after all. I've been struggling for bites of late but with milder temperatures on the way I'm hoping ones catch rate will improve. 

Still it was pleasant to be about because 24 hours before the washout prevented me going. I don't mind fishing in the rain but it was ALL day and I'd know I wouldn't enjoy it. 

The water had coloured up nicely because despite boats moving around now I have been surprised just how clear it has been. 

The recent banker swim came up trumps as it generally does and after having two bites really quickly and missing them both, then a fish that felt decent dropped off soon in to the fight I thought this wasn't my day.

Cast tight to cover though and swims like this where the fish tend to hold up, even though they are not up for moving much you can winkle out a fish or two. A couple of lure guys I got talking to had been struggling for bites too, it's not just me of late. 

Now a small schoolie eventually succumbed to the smelt offering and then a few minutes after yet another bite and a decent scraper was on.

Not a huge fish but it gave a good account for itself and wasn't happy to be landed with fins and teeth standing to attention. A 60cm fish but streamlined rather than a bruiser so probably 4.5ish at a push. Apart from some damage on his tail a fish in excellent condition, like they all seem to be here.

The swim went dead so I went on the move but despite fishing some tasty looking swims with cover that one swim produced all the bites and all the fish. 

So plans, well with the milder weather and lighter evenings I will make a couple or three trips to the hallowed swim to try and catch the beast that swims there. So I better get my wire traces sorted because no doubt the snot rockets will make an appearance or three.  

The river season cannot come soon enough, as I'm starting to struggle a bit now and my motivation is lacking, there short sessions are perfect though, a whole day fishing for them, no chance. Even Sam who turned 10 today, 6 years as an angler and about the same amount of time I've been after a 10lb canal fish, he's lacking motivation to join me at the minute. 

Still it was nice to take him to the local park to try out his new roller skates because in contrast to the day before it was t-shirt weather and 18.5 degrees. Can we have more of this please !!!!


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