Piscatorial Quagswagging

...the diary of a specialist angler in around the Warwickshire Avon and its tributaries.

Wednesday 16 August 2023

River Wye - Juveniles and Juramentums

With rubbish sleep for some reason the early start to get to the river Wye for 6.00am to be honest wasn't as bad as expected. From my house a few miles from Stratford-Upon-Avon with no traffic to speak of it only takes an hour and fifteen minutes or so to get bankside where it's around 60 miles or so. 

My little Jimny cannot pull the skin off a rice pudding so something with a but more ummpphhhh I'm sure I could knock quite a bit off that. Now Nic was with me for this trip where recently he'd been mixing with Paul Merson and David Seaman so he had to put up with lowly me instead, but we've fished plenty of times together down the Wye now, we do our own thing mainly, it works for us !!!

The river had recently risen and throughout the day the colour seemed to change quite dramatically from some decent visibility at early doors to when when we left it was chocolate brown.

The weather was all over the shop as well, where it went from blazing sunshine to complete cloud cover and a smidgen of rain. When I'm spending a whole day out I prefer to fully cover to negate the suns rays which at times it felt like sunning it up in the Med no on the banks of a river in Hereford.

We both had a dabble at trotting in a couple of swims but not only was it fruitless but not ideal conditions and swims really. After 40 minutes or so in this one I was wasting my time so decided to get roving with the ledger gear.

19k steps covered on this session but it was clear to both of us we needed to get on out feet to catch the fish. Nic had the first barbel which was >8lb and after that message it was encouraging as I was only getting chub rattles and not that 3ft twitch. But I've always said at least you know you are fishing effectively when the foot plucks start. 

A switch to luncheon meat directly on the hook a chub was shown to be the culprit but I knew that anyway. It was a case of 30 minutes in each swim and move on and then fish those swims in rotation. At least you know there had been some bait going in and boy if there are fish in the swim, they are on to the bait straight away. 

In one of the swims I was getting pulls and rattles constantly before eventually having a proper bite to strike where after an eel type fight I was amazed to see it was a tiny barbel. So nice to see as these are next generation but not exactly the size I was after. 

I was alternating between baits in the session and nothing stood out at getting more interest. Paste wrapped boilies, single small boilie, pre-drilled gob stopping halibut pellets and meat. 

I'm sure if I changed to fishing meat directly on the hook I'd have had netted more fish, but oddly I find it quite satisfying when using a hair just how chub avoid getting hooked despite all the carnage on the rod tip.  

The first proper barbel I managed took me in to a snag within seconds so at first I thought it was a chub but after manging to tease it from its escape route and after a decent fight, it was a 6ish lb barbel.

A fish that had a brush with the otter by the looks of it but apart from that in the sun it was a lovely glowing gold colour. Got to love these Why barbel such nice looking fish. 

That fish took a gob stopping halibut pellet, I've not huge confidence in pre-drilled pellets because even when using extra large pellets stops once the chub start their antics, the breakdown of the pellet can often mean the bait breaks in to two pieces and you're then fishing without a bait.

The fish are on to the bait really quickly though so they key is when the bites stop give it another 5 minutes and then check you've still got a bait on. 

A tried and tested Dynamite Hot-Fish boilie was the downfall of another barbel of similar stamp that again gave my 1.75lb TC rod a decent work-out where one last lunge had it bent right down to the cork.

Talking of which Nic was having battles of his own with the Wye barbel where in the end we both ended up on 4 fish each. Nic having the bigger of the fish where one of them he thought was a double because of the battle it was giving him. 

Not a prolific session by any means because it was hard earned but overall a decent session. We could have stayed till dusk but with me still feeling knackered and not 100% I knocked it on the head at 6.00pm with Nic following not long after and not having any more fish.

It was the lack of chub I was surprised at. I had 3 or 4 in the end but with so much interest from them throughout the session I did think more would end up hooking themselves because boy they were active. Were they small chublets ? who knows but very odd indeed I must admit.

After saying goodbye my friends with horns I made my way up the track after another enjoyable trip to the river Wye. I do love this river and the Wye valley because it is like being in a different world.

Solitude, wildlife in abundance and it just so happens to have plenty of fish to catch as well. It makes a nice change from the Warwickshire Avon I must admit, and at least there are barbel here in numbers so getting that fix is only an hour and a bit away. I'll be back !!!


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