Piscatorial Quagswagging

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

Sunday 27 January 2013

College Pool - Wasperton - 27.01.12

With all the local rivers over their banks because of the snow melt I went to College pool at Wasperton, when I got there it was the highest I've ever seen it, some pegs completely underwater.

With lobworm on both rods, a couple of tiny bites that was it, a blank. Nice to be out though, even the sun made an appearance.

Friday 25 January 2013

River Alne - 25.01.13

Just downstream of Wotton Hall weir is a farm where you can fish a small stretch of the Alne, it's 3 quid if the farmer turns up, and today he did. The river was low and you can see the bottom on the majority of it, it contains most coarse fish, even trout apparently so with lobworms and bread as bait and never having fished it before it was going to be interesting.

The first cast I had a bite on the drop, one of the fastest bites I've had whilst fishing, missed it though sadly, so I re-baited and again a fish took it on the drop. It was obviously a chub as it was trying to get in to every snag possible, a decent fight, not massive but a nice fish in cold conditions.

I've a new rod to replace the one I broke last week and it's first outing I was eager to try a new rig out, it's a new MAP in-line cage feeder filled with liquidised bread and a 15" method feeder hooklink, fitted with a Korum quickstop which makes hair rigging bread discs a piece of cake. 4 or 5, 12mm bread discs are compressed and secured on the hair and a single AAA shot an inch from the hook keeps the bait just off the bottom.

A bite every chuck on the bread I couldn't get passed the small dace, switching to lobworms I quickly caught a small Perch and another small Chub

For my first trip to the river I enjoyed it, certainly plenty of fish, a healthy river and handy as it's a minute away. Could do with a bit more water in it, as was quite low but I suspect the snow melt may help with that. I stayed for a couple of hours and made the most of the remaining snow and took the kids sledging. I'll be back.

Monday 14 January 2013

What a calamity !!!!

It didn't go too well the weekend, Saturday morning I tried various swim at Hampton Lucy Brook with bread, cheespaste and maggots, another blank, only one swim produced bites and I couldn't connect to any fish. With a strong cross wind it was bitterly cold and if I'm honest not that pleasant. Only lasted 3 hours before I had enough.

Sunday I was back down the Stour again, this time I was planning to try out some new swims upstream of the Wimpstone bridge. The day before I checked my Stratford-Upon-Avon book and there wasn't a match listed, great. However upon arrival, the carpark was already full with anglers, and yes you guessed it, it was already pegged out and they were fishing upstream of the bridge. Apparently they were meant to be fishing Stannels on the Avon but a carpark dispute and the fact a field was flooded, they decided to change venues.

Was a lovely morning though and I could fish my usual swims so not a total disaster. I loaded the car the night before, my TFG compact 11ft feeder rod and my Pike rod set-up with a float, I also brought my bigger landing net as the Drennan one I have is a bit small for long Pike. After unpacking the tackle from the car I realised I left the Pike bait at home, damn.

I shut the tailgate however the quivver rod that was leaning up against the car slid down just as the tailgate was closing CRACK !!! . I didn't realise the rod was broken at first, it was only when I was mating the two pieces together that I discovered it was broken beyond repair. It's not going well is it.

Bit of a dilemma now, go home with my tail between my legs or try and fashion up a Heath Robinson fix, I chose the later and within half an hour trying sticks for support, even a discorger, hey presto.

Only problem was the rod was now about 7 ft not 11ft foot, I put this to my advantage though and it allowed me to try some swims I otherwise wouldn't have tried.

There was ice in the margins and when the sun came out, it was lovely. If I didn't catch it was a far better day than the previous and was nice to be out.

10 minutes in each swim and then move was the plan, I must have tried 7 or 8 swims before even having an indication on the rod tip and after about 2 hours I thought another blank was on the cards. I changed from my usual link ledger set-up to a running rig with a Stonze weight. Bait was an air injected lobworm or bread discs and with liquidised bread as feed.

The swim above had a crease down the nearside bank and managed a few small roach, nothing of size but very welcome considering I hadn't caught a fish in the last two sessions. I was surpised how well the botched rod performed and I'm glad I fashioned up the repair. As I said before with a smaller rod it's suprising just how many more swims become accessible. The one shown below was between two trees with
branches hanging down that would be difficult to get past with a much longer rod.

I popped a lobworm just under the small raft and within seconds a fish took the bait, a good fight and the rod remaning intact a Chub was on the bank. 4lb 2oz's and a nice long fat fish. For a day that started badly it ended well.

Friday 11 January 2013

Air injected lobworms...?

I'm fishing two 4 hours sessions over weekend, and I am going to give my Perch banker swim a go with air injected lobworms on a low resistance rig, never tried it before but read an article about it recently and made sense, especially some of the swims I fish. Might just gave that small edge that us fishermen crave.

I'll let you know the results. 3 for 2 quid off EBay by the way or free if you have a butchers around Hillfields.

Thursday 10 January 2013

The ultimate fishing chariot ?

I used to be in to my performance cars, my first car was a MG Metro, then a Metro Gti, a Toyota MR2, TVR Cerbera, Toyota AE86, Mini Cooper S, a Jaguar S type R which I owned for five years and then finally the Subaru Forester 2.5XT.

The Forester has to go this year, I've sort of fallen out of love with performance cars over the last few years and at the time the Forester seemed to tick all the boxes. I moved from Birmingham 4 years ago and I live in a semi-rural area of Warwickshire at the top of a hill where the roads are never gritted, the Subaru's 4x4 system therefore came in to its own when traction would have otherwise have been a problem.

The Jaguar was the worst though, 400hp, 400lb/ft and an open diff it just didn't move when the ground was even just remotely slippy.  When conditions were good though I drove countless times down to the bottom car park at the Leamington Anglers Association Wasperton stretch, for those that know it, it's a farm track. After getting it stuck and having to ask for assistance from the lovely Wife it was sold for the car known as Fugly.

For those that don't know the Forester is basically a jacked up impreza, so it shares the same turbo boxer engine, gearbox and AWD 4X4 system. 1400kg's with over 200hp and 230lb/ft of Torque it goes well too, less than 6 secs to 60 if you dump the clutch and give it some beans. It's a back to basic car, crude but has some decent creature comforts.

Heated seats, Sat-Nav, cruise control, heated mirrors and even heated elements under the wiper blades.  It's got good ground clearance too which has come in handy on many occasions when I've gone fishing. I changed the tyres to the Yokohama Geolander AT/S, it's an allseason tyre with a mud and snow rating and it's unstoppable when conditions get difficult. 

It's got a nice big usable boot and with the seats flat you have a bed, so hey why am I selling it, sounds like the ideal fishing rod transporter. Well not sure really, I fancy a change and the low twenties mpg can get tiresome after awhile. I turned 40 at the end of last year, I'd rather spend time fishing than on a track day, so any ideas for a suitable replacement are welcome ?

Sunday 6 January 2013

What a blanker ! - 05.01.2013

Decided to go down to Hampton Lucy Brook to try for a winter Barbel, the Avon had dropped considerably and with the previous few days being unseasonably mild there was a half decent chance I'd catch one.

The 400 yard walk down to the swim showed just how much the water had been over it's banks. This  picture shows rubbish left when the river dropped was just a few paces from the car park.

I settled in to a swim I've caught Barbel from before, the Avon is narrow here so it might be walking pace downstream at Stratford-Upon-Avon, but here, at the Brook it was motoring through still. With a boilie wrapped in paste on both rods I intended to try each swim for 45 minutes and then, if there were no bites I'd move on.

No bites or knocks at all in the first swim

Or the second....

Or third....

Or the fourth and last....

No sign at all of fish topping either, if previous trips were to go by, I'd expect at least a Chub. With some big debris wrenching one of my rods over, I called it a day.

It's starting to get cold again now and with some let-up in the rain, I intend to give the Brook a rest, hopefully it will recover and I'll be back in a couple of weeks to try for the big Perch and Chub. The Stour next weekend to try out some new swims.
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