Monday 18 December 2017

Warwickshire Avon – Muffs and Monkeys

Ones extremities used to get cold very cold, despite trying all manner of clothing and footwear to try and help with managing the uncomfortable. Various, hats and ear muffs, socks and snow boots, gloves and base layers. I’ve probably got it sorted now though, my toes seemed to be the worst affected, but the Muck Boot, Arctic sports seemed to sort that problem out, so now I can stand in the snow or icey water without an issue

Highly recommended for those that suffer the same cold toes like I do. They have a fleece lining with a 5mm neoprene inner boot for ultimate warmth in harsh cold conditions. Stretch-fit top-line binding keeps the boots snug to your legs to keep cold air out and warm air in. EVA moulded sole for supreme comfort and also a 2mm thermal foam underlay for extra warmth.

Now talking of neoprene, invented by DuPont scientists in the 1930’s it’s main application is for demanding applications such as gaskets, hoses and weather strips where it resists degradation more than natural or synthetic rubber. It’s a cracking insulator though and another good purchase is some relatively thin neoprene gloves that once the body heat is in there, it doesn’t escape.

The hat, well when it’s below freezing, it’s out with the Trapper Hat, and I’ve a few now that I use, the Trakker jobbie being the warmest.

I was after a Chub for this session, you see I want to get the monkey off my back which is a Warwickshire Avon 5lber. I’ve caught countless 4 pounders now, probably in the hundreds I’d say, with one memorable session 5 4’s with two going 4lb 13oz’s. I need to cast my net wider that is the issue I would say and one particular area that is on my radar throws them up in some regularity.

I’m not ready to fish there yet though but I intend to over the Christmas break. You see to save a another blank I decided to fish a stretch that is very productive and an area that I’ve seen big Chub and caught them to near 5lb.

It’s feature filled you see and it is a matter of roving around with simple tactics and fish those swims that look chubby. Overhangs, undercuts, rafts, slacks that sort of thing.

Chub are about the only species that seems to feed whatever the conditions are and that’s one of the reasons why they are up there with my favourite fish to catch.

I love this time of year, crisp under foot, the reddest of sunrises, the plump friendly robins. The snow melt however had turned the water in to a turbid horrible looking dark green colour and the previous session banged right home just how off putting it was for the fish.

So simple tactics, my 1.2oz TFG River and Stream rod, a link ledger set-up with paste cage and some pungent cheese paste I made 4 years ago I keep on dibbing in to.

After 3 or 4 swims which are usually quite productive without even a nibble or any interest I decided to pre-bait a couple of swims with balls of paste let them settle for a little while and give half an hour in each before heading back to the diary makers.

So the last swim and 6th I’d tried I was looking at another blank but then with the bait positioned in an area of slack next to a crease the first bite in 3 hours came. The tip pulled round then sprung back and like many of the Chub bites sit tight and they will eventually pull it right round and picture perfect it did exactly that.

It felt a decent fish and with balanced tackle with the fish right in the flow, these fat winter Chub can give a really good fight. It looked a good fish when it surfaced to and not having caught one half decent for a long time I thought it could be heading to PB territory.

It was landed though and looked like it had properly been on the feed however it didn’t have the frame of a Warwickshire Avon Chub it was quite short so despite a big belly it weighed 4lb and 4oz.

A nice fish admittedly and having to handle it to weigh it, it felt like a block of ice. The water temperature when I measured it last week was 5 degrees, it would certainly be less than that for this session, maybe a degree less maybe.

That Monkey firmly clinging on, I need it off, I really do….


  1. Chub bites, are well chub bites. Love a tap,tap, boing

  2. Got to love them, a very hardy species indeed.


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