Piscatorial Quagswagging

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

Monday 29 October 2012

The Brook - 28.10.12

I had planned to fish a maggot feeder and a boilie for the chance of an Autumn Barbel but a trip to Stuarts Angling in Stratford-Upon-Avon Saturday morning I found the shop closed, the post was mounting up through the letterbox, hmmm not good. I know the owner has health problems, I hope all is ok.

Without maggots I decided to go to my Perch banker swim at the Brook and also take a lure rod to investigate the weir. The Avon had dropped 1m since last week and it was clear too. No other angler is sight I had the whole river stretch to explore.

After just a few casts in to the weir, BANG !!!! a fish took the spinner on the drop, I thought it might have been a Pike as first but as I wasn't using a trace and a half decent fight the fish was still on. It turned out to be long but lean Chub, 4lb 2oz and my first to be caught when lure fishing

No more takers on the lure so I moved downstream and tried a few swims with lobworm on a link ledgered set-up. The banks have been cut back and the weed died off a bit so some swims seemed more accessible, Perch are greedy little beggers and the Brook seems to hold lots of them, I had 50 lobworms and within a couple of hours and trying to re-use as many as I could I ran out. Most were over 1/2 a pound with the best two fish below. 1lb 12oz and 2lb 3oz

One of the smaller Perch I was bringing it was snapped up by a Pike that looked about 8lb or so, with Polarised sunglasses on and the clear water I could see the ordeal the Perch was going through. The Pike must have seen me and also felt the resistance of the rod as it unlatched itself and I the Perch survived to see another day.

Come winter time I might bring by Pike gear out to see what I can catch, an enjoyable few hours, in great surroundings and no one else in sight.

Friday 26 October 2012

Centrepin purchase

Bit of an impulse buy I suppose but after landing my first fish on a centrepin last year I've bought myself a Marco Cortesi Mk2, It's my 40th next weekend so I've also treated myself to a custom rod built by Peregrine rods, it's going to be their Paul4 design built from a Harrison GTi blank but with a few tweaks.

I know it's a budget centrepin but the reviews and those that have used it have nothing but praise, so for an introduction to centre pin fishing it's hard to beat. Being a novice I'm looking forward to the challenge and the rewards of catching a big fish on the pin.

Sunday 21 October 2012

Hampton Lucy Brook - 20.10.12

I've been of action for a week due to a bad cold and stomach bug, it's gone through our house like wildfire, I even missed one of the regular Shanghai matches. Feeling much better , and with the water in the Avon up and coloured,  the weather mild I went to the Brook for a morning session.

I got there at dawn and was the only fisherman there all day, the mist hung around till I left and for about an hour or so I couldn't see more than about 20 yards. The water was motoring though so I fished an upstream rod under a overhanging tree with a lobworm as bait and a downstream rod in some slack water with a big piece of Garlic spam.

Bites were hard to come by and the first fish was a nice Perch of just under 2lb. A lovely fat River perch that was in great condition. I caught a few more smaller Perch on worm and even a nice Roach.

The downstream rod was mainly motionless in the 4 hours I fished however as I was packing up to leave the baitrunner screamed off and a fish had hooked itself, as soon as I lifted the rod and felt the fish I knew it was  decent Barbel, the flow didn't help progress and with the rod bent double I was struggling to gain control, I managed to turn the fish however it was headed to the roots of a sunken tree so I had no choice but to bully it out of the snag. With the line singing and giving the tackle as much force as I dared, all of a sudden, ping, the fish was off.

I thought the hooklength might have snapped at the swivel or the knotless not failed however the hook had straightened, I've never ever had that before and they are good hooks too, heavy gauge and usually up to the job.

No big Barbel today sadly, a nice Perch and one sorry looking hook.

Monday 8 October 2012

Wimpstone - 08.10.12

The Warwickshire Stour contains some decent Chub and the setting and surroundings in many parts is hard to beat, I decided to have a reccy from Wimpstone through to Preston-on-Stour to have a look at the swims and it's potential for my winter chub fishing.

As I was unloading my roving gear a Stratford-Upon-Avon Anglers Association member turned up, there was a planned match on the whole of the Stour but after the recent heavy rain, the match was going to be cancelled. The water was motoring through an chocolate brown, not ideal for a match. After a brief chat I was given some tips about where big chub have been caught and the likely swims and come winter time I'll be trying them out. The early morning mist carpetted the fields and the long grass was sodden, Autumn is mostly definitely here.

I stupidly left my cheese paste in the fridge in the garage and would have been ideal today as underwater visability would have been poor and smelly baits ideal, I made some up a couple of weeks ago and should be just enough for the winter. 250g grated strong cheddar, 250g of danish blue, 400g of shortcrust pastry and with a small bit of green lipped mussel ground bait, garlic powder and some CC Moore's feedstim XP powder which I had left over, make sure the Wife is out, whack all the ingredients into a blender, need and job done, a great chub bait.

With lobworms as bait and a 10ft compact feeder rod I planned to try likely chub swims and if I hadn't a bite within 5 or 10 minutes then I'd move on.

You can see from the pics just how coloured the water was and it really did have some pace on it so it was difficult to keep a static bait, after a few swims without even a nibble I found a nice undercut bank with an overhanging tree and within seconds the rod tip was rattling and the first fish was caught, a small mint condition chublet, surprisingly gave a good account of himself too.

As I moved downstream towards Preston-On-Stour weir I came across this swim, you cannot quite see it in the picture but there was a huge raft that must have been about 20ft in diameter. I drifted a lobworm underneath it and before the lobworm could settle the quiver wrapped round and I was in to a decent Chub, I thought I was on top of it till the last gasp lunge it made it managed to bump the hook, you don't usually get that with Chub as they have such tough mouths, once the hook is in, it stays in. Damn felt like a good fish too. I stayed in the swim but sadly no more takers.

I managed another few chublets, and even this tiny one devoured a huge lobworm. I do like this stretch of the Stour, secluded, quiet and hopefully in the winter it will produce some decent Chub for me. The Avon is still hard to beat for Chub though, so I'll probably alternate between the two rivers. I can be at this stretch within 15 minutes, I'm lucky I've got some much available water so close to home.

Monday 1 October 2012

Hampton Lucy Brook - 30.09.12

A stunning morning over Warwickshire, pictures say a thousand words.

The silhouette of Hampton Lucy church visible in the picture above. The plan for the fishing was simple, a link ledgered lobworm and some roving to see what I could catch. Some great swims at Hampton Lucy Brook, narrow sections with streamer weed and lots of cover, shallow glides and a weir. There are undercut banks and deep holes too, the depth can vary considerably.

The walk from across the farmland is usually peppered with big fat black slugs, so the first one I spotted ended up on the end of the hook, natural baits are hard to beat and any bait that had for free is hard to ignore, within 5 minutes the rod tip rattled and I was in to a nice Chub, a decent fight where it was trying to get in to the undercut bank and any snag it could find it was in the net. The Avon chub do seem to be fattening up and this one weighed 3lb 10oz. Two more smaller chub later the swim went dead and I decided to move.

The next few swims I couldn't get past the smaller Perch, nothing really of size but plenty of them, the biggest was just under 1 lb. I tried to re-use the lobworms as much as I could but they managed to get through 20 of them in under an hour. Back to a slug as hook bait I couldn't temp another chub but a decent mornings fishing all the same. Next weekend I'll give the Warwickshire Stour a go or even the Leam at Offchurch. Hampton Lucy Brook is so handy for me, it's hard to ignore.

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