Saturday 8 December 2018

Warwickshire Avon – Cougars and Cunny Thumpers

A mile and a half of flowing virgin water with its unsullied footpaths has always captured ones interest. The potential to fish for undiscovered monsters given far too much sanctuary and freedom to thrive is at the top of the Santa list of any specialist angler.

Some of the WBAS like-minded that had already fished this forgotten and seemingly uncharted waterway had showed some promising results for those fish that possess teeth, and I wanted a piece of the action.
Not only that but being part of a syndicate means bums on seats and I’ve been stood at the back far to long.

The Zander pics in-particular got ones ears pricked up, because to be honest I’ve not really given the river Zeds a proper go, the canals being my bread and butter after all. Despite losing 2 bigger fish in the past my river PB of 8lb 3oz is entirely beatable considering the size and statue of the fish that now frequent the Warwickshire Avon.

So an area that allows the bigger fish to go about their business without fear of becoming dethroned could well be harbouring something special. I just need to fish flowing water in anger for them, well at least have a bait in the water !!!!

Now talking about harbouring special Vegans look away now, then again probably to late. A new local butchers has a beef dry ager now, so after choosing ours for Xmas, the piece on the top right will be ready to pick up Christmas Eve and I cannot wait to try it. Not bad value too considering the look and quality of the meat.

And thats the issue, good things come to those that wait, but I don't wait enough, so it's always good that others share their captures so at least I know there are fish there to be caught.

All very well I suppose but in my limited experience though, river Zander like their mucky water brothers are difficult to work out, just when you think you have they throw in a curve ball and you’re back to square one.

Fishing for them from dusk and beyond gives the best chance but I’ve had multi runs in bright sunshine on one particular session when a pack went through on the hunt, all very eye opening. Livebaits work no doubt about that and as the light goes probably better than using a dead on the bottom.

The problem with livebaits though, especially when used in clear water conditions is that the Jacks can be problematic, which is fine if just want to get a few bites but with time at a premium they can be a pain in the proverbials.

Colour in the water, or lack of it, really does make a difference as it does on the canal where I actively seek turbid water, they know they have an advantage with their superior eyesight and they actively go on the hunt, rather than wait for the infrequent dinner bell.

So ideally fish in to dark or when it’s coloured, errrr so that’s most of the nearby available venues on the Warks Avon out for me, well the ones I’d want to fish anyway, being a solitude seeker. Also out as well, is the majority of the fishing season, as its usually clear, very clear.

During my search for a canal 10 pounder and my ad hoc sessions on the river, lures and live bait would certainly pick up more fish, but the deads are a little more size selective, maybe the larger fish are lazy in their old age, and are happy watching the schoolies act on their predatory instinct and are happy with easy pickings.

Obviously there are big female Cougars around still chasing young whippersnappers to buck the trend, but I’m confident in using methods that I know work for decent sized fish.

I’ve blanked plenty of times on the river to know that conditions really need to be right otherwise it is very hot and miss, sadly my fishing opportunities are short and dictated largely by others. I’ve got to try and maximize catch potential, and that means fishing when I’m likely to catch, not a finger in the air, toes and fingers crossed.

There may well be light at the end of the ever lengthening tunnel however, you see Nic from Avon Angling Uk who I’ve fished with a few times now has seen the predicament I’m in, and has kindly offered me to join him on a private bit of water he has access to where fishing in to dark isn’t an issue. So I’m looking forward to taking him up on that offer as soon as we can work something out and he is back to 100% fit after being knocked for six by pneumonia.

Anyway back to the task in hand,I was in two minds how to approach this session but the decision was made to make it a bit of a reccy mission. Some small roach and smelt deads I had to use up dictated the session to be honest. So a 3 rod quiver equipped with two dead bait rods and a lure rod was bundled in the car and I was all set to go.

The plan, (because I always have one) was to travel light and rove around to try and find some Pike or Zed’s laid up and and around some features and then whilst the deads were doing their thing, the lure would be used from time to time, to not only try and winkle out a least a fish or two, but also to gauge some of the depth in-front of me.

The deeper castable sonar fish finder would have been ideal I suppose to map it out properly and try and find the deeper areas and troughs, but with time at a premium to be honest a lure chucked here and there can be just as effective. By watching the braided line as it enters the water you can tell visually by the bow in the line that stops dead when it touches bottom, but and also by feel, just how much water is in-front of you.

Now the weather was against me a little, very windy indeed and a clear blue sky. After a couple of hours without even a nudge, bite or an enquiry in four or so swims I headed further downstream. This proved worthwhile doing as not only was it deeper but many of the swims had some good features and it didn't take long for the first bite.

A tiny jack decided that it like the look of the lure I was throwing around so at least it wasn't a blank. Not long after putting it back the bobbin on the left hand rod jumped in to life and actually hit the butt of the rod, I let it take some line on the baitrunner and then struck in the fish.

It felt reasonable at first but then I can usually tell with Zander if it's hooked properly or not, and sadly this one wasn't. A few bends of the rod and it was off, hmmmm, not good.

After another 3 swims without a bite they were obviously not in a feeding mood, and if I'm honest it probably wasn't the right time to fish my first trip to this stretch. Not all lost though, fishing it in the morning gave me the opportunity for a proper reccy, and that's exactly what I wanted to get out of the session.

I'll be back....


Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...