Monday, 20 June 2016

Warwickshire Avon – Double, Double, Toil and Trundle

I’ve never been mad about fishing for Barbel, I’m not sure why, I’ve caught quite a few doubles now and am still amazed at the strength of them and how much of a scrap they give, the violent wrap over of the rod when fishing static is also something to behold too, no other coarse fish gives a bite like that.

Could I target them exclusively, errrr No….

Well I say that, I’d caught a few doubles from this one particular small section of the Avon when one morning I was playing a Chub when a Barbel that must have been disturbed came out from an overhanging tree towards some thick streamer weed where it must have been laying in wait….

…..and it was colossal, bold as brass and seemingly without a care in the world, a Warwickshire Avon record? Quite possibly, it would have smashed my PB of 11lb 11oz right out of the water.

No I won’t tell you where I saw it….

I tried in vain to catch it, even devising the Gluttenous Chub Poka-Yoke Rig to improve my probability of it banking it. Some nice fish were caught, but not, ‘The One’

I like challenges in fishing and something to keep the interest up, weight isn’t necessarily the bee-all and end-all as I do love sight fishing for Barbel in low rivers for example where any size of fish is most welcome but certain fish I’m up for spending time to target.

It’s a little like my womanising days of bladderation, playing the field with monotonous rogerisation situations after a while you get bored of the mediocrity, the easy, and fancy something that….

turns heads, gets the lads talking, the curtains twitching....

It was usually a long drawn out process but eventually the mission was accomplished.

On these pastures new, just a double won’t do….I want a big-un….A >14 pounder must be such an impressive creature in the flesh,and I want to see one.

It’s the wrong time of the year though, they ain’t at their biggest so again this session was more of a look-see at the swims on offer and to give me an idea of the contours, holes and features available to me for future reference and a Chub or two would be nice.

My head was nursing a rum punch, a self-inflicted hang-over but got to battle on haven't I.

Now the last trip out the river was on the rise but not as coloured as I thought, so for this session I'd fish too different styles, on the upstream rod I'd fish a sausage sizzle squab (with extra glug) and then use the other rod downstream with smelly garlic spam. from time to time I'd remove the lead and fish trundle style and move and bump the lump of meat around the swim to try an intercept a waiting fish.

The fishing was tough,and other anglers I spoke too on the walk back to my car had the same story. I gave it an hour and a half in 3 swims with a few rattles and plucks and that was it, a switch to lobworm I had a small chublet. The last swim was shallow and there was a nice gravel bar 20 yards out in-between some stream weed. The bait was bouncing nicely through the swim and I could feel every bump of the lump of meat when after the 20th cast or so a decent Barbel intercepted it, it powered upstream with the drag being tested and then I managed to turn the fish, and then after another powerful lunge the fish was off, the hook had pulled. Damn....

Not my day but I'm exploring more and more of the swims on offer and I've barely scratched the surface. The clarity was improving no end so I'm hoping I can start doing some sight fishing. Sitting behind rods, isn't my thing. I'm a roving angler at heart. It's always tough for me at the start of the season, I just need to stick with it.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Lovely stretch of the Avon. Very different to further downstream. Will have to give the upper-middle reaches a go one day and explore those streamier runs.

  3. I look forward to seeing if you manage that monster, you know the river is capable of it and I hope that one day, that "special fish" will oblige. Best of Luck Mick

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