Monday 27 December 2021

Small Brook Fishing Pt.19 - Jimswingers and Jiggumbobs

One of the great advantages of brook fishing is that the water is seldom out of order for more than a few hours at a time. The short, often steep, courses quickly discharge the flood water into the larger rivers so that by the time the rivers are beginning to feel the cumulative effect of this water the brooks have already run out and are coming into perfect order. 

Even so there will be occasions when the angler arrives at the brook side to find it a swollen mass of swiftly moving colour. 

A casual glance would pronounce it un-fishable but there is hope, even in these extreme conditions. High-water worming, although not the most artistic way of catching trout is certainly not a " chuck and chance it " method, especially on a brook. 

The narrow course confines the water and makes it all the more difficult to find the sheltered bays and back eddies which are so necessary for this kind of fishing. 

When a flood comes, fish seek shelter where they can lie and feed without being in a raging torrent and while the water is really high these are the only places worth fishing. 

The centre stream bores along the fastest so this should be ignored and attention focused mainly within a few inches of the banks. 

It is, at first, an unreal sensation to stand on the bank and use a short line to fish places which were dry stones an hour or so before but this is what you often do. Every boulder has its little pool of calmer water behind, which will hold fish and a constant watch must be kept for these temporary sanctuaries. 

A place which normally holds a single fish may hold three or four when there is a flood. Because of the coloured water it is not so vital to worry about being seen by the fish but it is very necessary to cover each likely place thoroughly before moving on. 

Flood conditions sometimes make it necessary to vary the low-water technique of moving quickly and covering a large amount of water. Fish are much less likely to be disturbed in coloured water and it has been my experience that it pays to spend a little more time exploring the possibilities of a place before moving on. 

Because of the murky water, fish cannot see a bait so easily and it frequently has to pass quite close to them before they will make a definite move. Apart from the colour, the increased volume of water will frequently whip a worm away over a fish before it has had a chance to sample it.

Now this brook was probably a little higher than I'd have liked but still find the slacks, find the fish. I fish with reasonably heavy gear I suppose but these fish are never fished for really when there are easier options down the road when you can catch a ten a penny F1 or three.

Having a wormery is handy because once established you have a decent supply of worms and worms really are the key to get bites. Now I usually fish half a worm and tip with a maggot and its surprising just how pungent a small worm can be, which is why when the river is chocolate brown a pungent bait will always out-fish a visible one.  

I didn't have long to fish and only fished 3 slacks but each and every one of them produced bites. The area of slack water doesn't have to be big either, for instance the last swim I fished produced a tiny trout, a dace and a roach all grouped together in an area around the same size as a cars boot.

An hour and a half in to the session bites were forthcoming luckily but nothing big enough that needed the landing net until out of the blue one small pull turned in to a proper decent bite and something better was on.

To be honest I knew exactly what was on the end the way it was fighting and it only confirmed what it was when it launched itself clear out of the water. Ok I have caught far bigger trout in Warwickshire brooks and streams but on light gear big enough to take some line and activate the drag.

So an enjoyable short session really, I don't do enough of this fishing but with the Avon, Leam and Alne having been over their banks in the last 24 hours at least it gives an option to fish when the options are very limited indeed.

What I love about these small forgotten brooks and streams is the unknown and the fact that its always a lottery and offers much intrigue what is going to be on the end of the hook. Oddly no bullheads which I do tend to get here. I'm sure another 24 hours when the debris washing down is a less of a hinderance I'm sure they would be up for a nibble. 


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...