Monday 26 May 2014

Caster @ the cut...

Strange isn't it, I could go back to Warwick ressi and catch a load of fish on caster, see the float go under and feel a bend in my rod, and yet this mornings session was on the Stratford-Upon-Avon canal at Bishopston Lane which was mentioned in Dominic Garnett's excellent practical canal fishing guide. I've fished the Stratford Canal once at Bearley a couple of miles away and caught sweet FA, not a bite or even a sucked maggot.

The Stratford-Upon-Avon canal is only 25 miles or so long with 54 locks, when it leaves the Birmingham suburbs the canal passes through the small Warwickshire villages of Lapworth, Rowington, Lowsonford Preston Baggot, Wootton Wawen and Wilmcote before ending up amongst hordes of visitors in Stratford Basin, alongside the River Avon and the Shakespeare Memorial Theatre. Lapworth is an interesting canal junction where a short spur connects to the Grand Union Canal which runs parallel close by. It's an area I'm also planning to fish as the infamous Zander is in residence.

Tench we know are early risers so as I'm only 3 minutes down the road I was on the cut at 6.00am, the plan was hopefully catch a Tina or two, and maybe even a nice Roach. Bait was worm or double caster on the hook with said bait chopped as feed. An 8ft rod with my Crucian rig was ideal, a small in-line pole float, a size 14 hook and a centrepin reeI overshot the float and fished a few inches over-depth.

To hedge my bets apart from pre-baiting with hemp and corn with my youngest Sam the evening before I brought a sleeper rod, my Zander deadbait set-up complete with a headless dead roach mounted on a Mustad ultimate bass hook. Are they present here like they are in the Grand Union ?, hopefully I'd find out.

For the first 2 hours not even a single bite or even any fish moving but as soon as the joggers and dog walkers arrived I was having a few indications. I had thought about packing up and moving somewhere else but after about the 15th 'done any good yet mate' the float went under and I hooked in to a fish, seemed half decent too but as I was sorting my landing net it bumped the hook, damn.

Not a sniff on the Zander rod even after changing baits after every hour. It took another good half hour or so for the float to lift an inch out the water and I was in to a fish again, it did feel like a Tench the way it was darting about and sure enough, a small'un about a 1lb and a half.

Not a blank but certainly hard work. Another biteless hour and with the boats becoming more frequent and the joggers uglier I called it a day.


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