Thursday 22 February 2018

Warwickshire Avon - After Hours And Zinger Towers

1 million pound a day it’s costing KFC apparently, you see if you haven’t been keeping up with the news they switched their delivery contract from specialists Bidvest to DHL and a ‘failure of its new computer system’ has cocked up KFC’s supply distribution.

A poultry drought, of all things….fowl play ? how knows but it means some junk food consumers have been apparently been phoning the Police to find out when they will likely get their next fix, “no zinger tower meals, oh my f’ing God” “Does that mean I will need to learn how to cook ?”

Now talking of cock’ups Britain’s ‘Ice Queen’ Elise Christie has been falling on her backside like I have with this Zander fishing recently. Sadly her third attempt for an Olympic medal in Pyeongchang came to a familiar tearful end as she was shown the yellow card and sent to the stands after being disqualified. Her participation painful reading to be like the old rhyme about the fate that befell Henry VIII’s wives, only significantly simpler: disqualified, disqualified, disqualified, fell, disqualified, disqualified.

But then too much of a burden on her most probably, not good for anyone,especially seemingly the emotional type where sterner shoulders are required to deal with the situation. You could see it happening before it actually happened if you know what I mean.

That why I like the way I have been fishing recently, variety, no proper targets and no pressure on ones shoulders as such. I enjoy fishing small brooks for bullheads and intrigue and big rivers for anything that will bite. It means I enjoy my fishing more than ever now, because if something half decent turns up that’s a bonus. Ok a few targets are still at the back of my mind, but they are not the be-all and end-all like it is for some.

No Facebook narcissism and skeleton masks to be seen here, just lots of waffle. Will this be another blank session for Zander, most probably but then, I've just seen some patrolling barn owls, enjoying the clear air and ones mind is blank. But then I suppose fishing is what you make it, enjoy what you do and don't worry about anyone else.

With the remainder of the Nadurra Oloroso polished off after packing the car with fishing tackle time mind and body back on track, last episode of Requiem to watch (disappointing). For those that like a dram, well recommended as well and not bad for £50 quid. It's a cask-strength Glenlivet matured in first-fill Oloroso sherry casks. Full-bodied, heavily sherried dram with lots of complexity. Another bottle ordered, such it's suitability to ones palate. One of life's simple pleasures that needs to be enjoyed from time to time.

So anyway back to the fishing, I'm all over the shop....

Convenience, clandestine and cobbled were the words that sprang to mind for this short after work session in to dusk. To be honest I was in two minds whether to fish for a Barbel because the water temperature was on the rise from below 5 to heading up to and maybe past 7 degrees. You see for a big fish like the Barbel that’s a layer off and might stir the loins and get them feeding.

I’ve been waiting for this winter to end but with more cold weather on the way the weekend and beyond, the last week in March maybe have to be the last gasp attempt to bank not only a river carp but an eel too and maybe add a few more points to the Barbus scorecard.

To be honest I rarely fish for Barbel, and let’s be honest, get the conditions and timings right and ticked off for a Barbel session especially the area(s) I fish you can almost guarantee a bite. Water temperature is a factor though and I’d rather not second guess of they were feeding or not. For this session then I decided to have another dabble for Zander, they have been suspicious in their absence recently but as I’ve hardly fished for them come sundown, maybe that was the piece of the jigsaw I was missing.

Upstream from here, a trolley pusher had certainly done ok on the dace front, a proper net full in fact, so my thoughts were, maybe the Zander were laying dormant like they do during the day and then when the bars shutters were down, they’d be on the move to see what dregs they could muster up in this sheltered sanctuary many fish call home.

Like many of my trips they are very short indeed, this was two hours or so, but to be honest, the way fish are like with the dinner bell, particularly the Barbel you can almost expect a bite at the fall of the hand.

My eldest Ben has similar traits because of his Autism, where structure and routine factor in to his day to day living, where he can be often found hovering around the kitchen to see when it’s going to be dished up, he lives by the clock, nothing wrong with that, I have similar traits myself.

Smelt I’ll use again, no question about that, but as the deadbaits will have been sat in my car whilst I was at work, it was out with the familiar, yeap, the roach, a reliable Zander bait if there ever was one. Tough flesh unlike the smelt which can turn to mush rather quickly which when you want to make sure the bait is still on the hook it’s maybe not the best bait to use. I keep on hearing 'fresh' deadbaits are a must, but then having caught hundreds and hundreds of Zander now, I really don't think it matter, in-fact that distinctive smell roach give off when they are a bit manky I'm sure adds to the attraction, it doesn't seem to put them off anyway.

The rivers bed has a satisfying donk in this area, so at least I would know my bait will be sat on a nice surface without the hindrance of any snags which was an issue Monday evening when I fished the weir. So rods already made up two baits out an hour and a half before dusk, one next to some far bank cover the other in-between a couple of overhanging trees.

Within minutes I had a bite on the right hand rod that raised the bobbin considerably and took a little line after pulling on the baitrunner. All went quiet but then it sprung in to life again the bobbin hit the butt and the rod tip was nodding.

I lift the rod and the line is slack, hmmmm.

The bait has had some attention so a fresh one goes on, again within 10 minutes or so of going out, the bobbin springs in to life and goes stationary to fast within a split second it's hit the butt again with line being taken. Again, a strike in to thin air.

So a change of tactics are needed this time I'll allow the bite to develop more, bait goes out, this time half an hour passes and not far off dusk and the bobbin springs in to life, this time I lift the rod, remove the bobbin from the line and feel the line between my fingers. After 30 seconds or so the line starts to go tight between my fingers and the rod is lowering under the pressure and the fish is taking line, some considerable resistance felt so I strike in to the fish. Pressure is instantly felt then I can actually feel through the rod the bait being pulled out of its mouth.

Balls !!!!
What's going on....!!!!

With the club rules dictating the end of the session in 10 minutes I've not much time,so bait back out and fingers and toes crossed for another bite Sure enough, the bite alarm sounds and the bobbin rises, again, lift the rod, allow the fish to take line and again I lift in to the fish, resistance is felt and I can feel the fish on the end, well till it lets go of the bait again.

Then I'm thinking, Zander, has to be a Zander, so many times I've had bait merely nibbled or clamped on without being properly taken, it's the nature of fishing for them sadly, they can be like that from time to time. All very frustrating, but then that's why I like to try and outwit them. I put a half bait on and it goes back at whilst I tidy up but no more bites forthcoming.

I assume sprightly small fish, well I hope so anyway as I return to the car with the tail firmly between my legs. With a cold snap on the way it's decision time but sure enough I'll try and manage another short in to dusk session here next week, this time with some adjustments to the baits and also maybe I might have rod as a float set-up. 


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