Friday, 25 June 2021

Warwickshire Avon - Sabotagery and Sabbulonariums

Now Bushmills is embarked on a new range of innovative whiskeys back in April with the first in the series, Caribbean Rum Cask Finish. 

The new launch features a blend of the award-winning single malt used in Bushmills Original Irish Whiskey, finished in hand-selected fine oak Caribbean Rum casks to create tropical fruit and dry spice flavours, with its signature triple distilled Irish grain whiskey.

The casks, first used in the Caribbean to hold rich rum for a minimum of seven years, have been carefully selected by local rum makers and transported to Ireland. They are then stored for years in Bushmills’ warehouses, imbuing its single malt with pineapple sweetness, caramelised brown sugar notes, toffee tones and a long, smooth finish.

Whiskey couldn't get a look in over the last couple of years when sipping neat rum took over over my spirit of choice but this easy drinking offering from Bushmills is pleasant enough without the price tags of the cask strength single malts I usually go for. 

Ok not up there with the best, but easy drinking whilst enjoying a movie without the issue whether your legs will work or not and you could potentially disturb the sleeping kids.  

Talking of disturbances crankbaits may not be the first choice for river Zander because I suppose lure fishing has progressed quite considerably over the years where finesse seems to be the order of the day. 

Finesse doesn't really suit my fishing style though and you should know that if you've read my ramblings over the years.

This short and dumpy Savage Gear crankbait has a square bill, with a high arched back, and moves a lot of water on retrieve, great wobbling, wide action, with high buoyancy, moving up in the water when you stop the retrieve. 

It has a loud tubular rattling chamber, that sends out a loud and characteristic sound. The magnetic long cast system, with a sliding iron core, makes far and precise casting super easy where this wide section of the river it is ideal. 

This slow but deep area of the Warwickshire Avon I've caught some nice Zander over the years at the start of the season when things can be a little tough. Much further downstream it can be a little busy sometimes when the drawbridge has been lifted and all and sundry are pellet bashing the barbel.

The lily pads are thick at this time of year and and line the margins where they attract  predators such as the Zander, who hide out of the way among these thick rhizomatous aquatic herbs and are ready to attack anything that swings by their lair. 

Like all predators their make-up means they cannot allow any potential meal to get away and they attack on impulse no matter the size of their quarry. So even though I'd be using a relatively large lure for this session I fully expected small fish to have a grab or two as well.

Now Sam would be joining me and whilst I was chucking the lure around he had is float rod and maggots to see what he could pick up. Sam is happy catching minnows so hopefully something was at least biting to keep him entertained as he would be grasping at my lure rod with both hands I'd imagine. 

When we got to the first swim to our left was a dead Zander around 3 pound or so belly up in the margins covered in flies, hmm not good. The first chuck of the lure in this relatively deep water a fish grabbed it after a few retrieves of the handle.

Bless him probably the smallest pike I've caught on the lure and the first time he's probably been caught. We had to move swims a couple of times before the first bite came on the maggots which happened when Sam was petting one of the Bailiff's dogs and I was having a natter about how the stretch had been doing.

A double figure barbel had come out of the match but at the bottom end of the stretch where is is fast and shallow a >40 barbel were seen spawning. Anyway the float properly buried under and it was a perch. There were quite a few in this one swim so Sam was happy thankfully.

The bites eventually dried up so with Sam sat in the boot of the Jimny we drove along the river as far as were are allowed and fished a couple more swims and lastly the weir. There is one swim on the far side as deep as a gravel pit, well ok, 20ft but still deep for a river, it's a swim I lost a double figure Zander from so it will get some attention come the Autumn. 

Two follows from jack pike and one aborted snatch by a schoolie Zed the lure wasn't exactly doing what I wanted it to do. It can be tough at the start of the season though when its this clear so not unexpected to be honest it was just nice to spend a couple of shared hours beside a lovely looking river. 


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