Sunday 6 September 2020

Warwickshire Avon - Raspberry Mushrooms and Gammy Gums

Now for this session it was out with the double takers, you see bread was actively ignored here recently where I could see the Chub coming up to inspect the bread, but they were cagey as hell. 

Not just one swim either bread on the bottom nada, bread on the surface floating downstream eventually did bring up some fish in one of the swims but after I bumped one off after literally feeding half a loaf of bread they vanished completely.

So I had to think outside the box for this session, offer something different, now whenever we pay a visit to my Mum and Dad they always buy a selection of sweets for the kids that generally end up in the bin. They are only trying to be kind bless them but they have never really eaten that sort of sweet apart from the odd Haribo Tangfastics. 

So it was out with the Tesco raspberry mushrooms and the Barratt milkteeth.

A simple link ledgered set-up with a quickstop to secure the bait on the hair, the bait tight to the shank such the size of it. Chub like big visual baits though and I doubt they'd not seen something like these before.

Now you can always spot a successful chub angler. He will be drably dressed, he moves slowly and approaches his swim in a low crouch. He treads softly, landing net and bag are laid quietly on the bank. He knows that 90 per cent of the art of chub fishing is about not scaring the fish.

A frightened chub is not the least bit hungry. It is unlikely that any other river species has senses so finely tuned to detect under-water sounds. Water is an excellent conductor of sound waves, though chub and other cyprinids do not hear in quite the way humans do. 

They are equipped to `feel' sounds instead, and this they do by sensing pressure changes caused by disturbances in the water and above the surface. The commotion made by a careless angler is instantly detected and tells the chub to get out of there fast. 

A lecture in fish physiology is out of context here even if I were qualified to deliver it. For the moment then, just be assured that despite its obvious lack of ears, a chub probably has the most sensitive 'hearing' system of any river fish. 

It has keen eyesight as well, which makes it extremely important for anglers to keep quiet and out of sight and to make use of any available cover on the bank. Provided that stealth is accepted as being the cardinal rule of chub fishing, you will find the species to be the most obliging of the worthwhile sized fish in the river. 

Rarely are conditions totally hopeless. Blazing midsummer heat waves when you feel like jumping in with the fish, mid-winter days when toes turn to ice lollies, floods or drought, a chub or two is always on the cards if the swim is carefully selected. 

Most chub swims are near cover of some kind, classic examples being overhanging bankside trees and bushes, and under rafts of debris that form around trailing branches. 

I was a cold morning when I arrived at the river around 6.30am and ones fingers started to feel that  autumn is just round the corner, the predators could well be up for a bite soon, it was a chilly 9 degrees and I suspect the water would be cold too. The sun came up rather quickly for my liking though but luckily I had the stretch to myself when I left a few hours later so could act fast.

I know this stretch intimately so despite being low and back to clear again I knew where the deeper areas are. It didn't take long for the first bite either, some interest from the smaller fish indicated on the quiver tip resulted in to a proper pull round and the first chub was on.

A decent fight to be fair but a scraper 3lber succumbed to the raspberry mushroom.

A few more swims later after some small fish interest eventually the odd rumble on the tip it went to a proper rattle. Not a chub this time but a greedy Gonk with eyes bigger than it's belly, maybe I'm on to something here.

As the sun got stronger and I would need to remove a layer to feel comfortable there was one more swim left before I decided to go. Another deep swim this and it a proper creep and plop jobbie as its very close to the bank indeed. I could see the bait sink slowly side to side through the water column and out of nowhere the unmistakable white lips of a chub appeared.

WHAM !!!!!

I could see it engulf the bait within a split second and the fish was on. Again another decent scrap as it tried to get in to a reed bed but I managed to bully it away and it was soon in the net. I didn't weigh it but maybe a scraper 4lber.

I love session like this, the minimum of tackle, a deserted river bank and the step count high.

Oh and by the way the milkteeth didn't get a look in, it was a nipple day !!!


  1. Great stuff! A friend of mine once had one on a Hubba Bubba chewing gum... The mind is racing trying to think of an unusual bait to try - you might have started something...

    1. I hope so, I do like trying all manner of baits. The mushrooms worked great to be fair.

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  3. Foam Prawns and Banana's next? Or Licorice, good for all sorts :o)

    1. Could well work, any of those, I was thinking Strawberry Bon Bons or coconut mushrooms might be worth a go.

  4. I'mgoing for hairdo and Fizzy Sharks. If I don't catch I can eat the bait and go hyper in solitude. Mick, this is a major breakthrough, keep it quiet. ATB,John

  5. That should be Haribo, not a mullet.

    1. lol, yeah thought that might be the case. Tangfastics could certainly be worth a blank session.


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