Piscatorial Quagswagging

...the diary of a specialist angler in around the Warwickshire Avon and its tributaries.

Friday 18 March 2022

Transient Towpath Trudging - Pt. 1

You would have thought having managed to bring my 6 year quest to catch a canal double figure Zander to its conclusion rather abruptly on the 13th of June 2021, where the capture of that special 11lb 8 ounce fish would take me on to something else to get ones teeth, tackle and tenacity in to. 

The problem is I like catching Zander especially when for this first session of the 2022 closed season I would be venturing to a stretch almost a stones throw from ones house. 

With the fuel prices as they are the reality is I have Zander literally on my doorstep whereas the Hallowed stretch where I caught the big'un is a good amount of fossil fuel burning away.

This stretch of convenience though ain't a bad stretch of water when I fished it in anger, and in-fact is home to the second and third biggest canal Zander I have caught. 

A fish of 9lb on the nose and also one of 8lb 10 ounces. 

Those Zander got big from no fault of their own, you see before I stumbled upon them the stretch was electro-fished and the Zander removed and to appease the person who held the fishing rights at the time (now a friend and tackle shop owner) 20,000 silver fish were introduced to compensate for the fish removal.

Electro-fishing just to remove the Zander is a fruitless exercise, it always has been, no matter where it takes place. Zander can boost the Christmas party coffers of the anode wavers and that's where the contention will always be. 

As a non-native albeit naturalised fish in the waters I fish, Zander will forever fear that potential prod up their jacksie.

Anyway better get off ones soapbox and get back to the fishing. A tad over a mile door to door (aren't I lucky) the first towpath trudging opportunity is so handy its hard not to ignore. The problem it is nothing like its heyday but hey, I'm not bothered by that. I can relax now the big'un has been caught and just enjoy the fact that I haven't any pressure whatsoever.

A by-product of fishing for canal Zander is that not only is it good exercise walking the various dog pool allies but also standing around waiting for a bite with the way I target them (overdepth float fished deadbaits) means when leapfrogging you cover lots of water, and often those crafty well hidden carp reveal themselves by accident.

So although Zander are the main target for these next few months, carp as well may well feature if I do actually stumble upon them. I've seen carp around the 20lb mark in the past and they would certainly be a nice fish to target and I really do hope I find out where there are some holding up.

The daytime temperatures are starting to rise so I'm sure they will be removing their onesies and start stretching their fins. 

For this short session though there I woke up to a rather misty morning and that quickly lifted to clear blue skies and the sun high in the sky, not ideal Zander catching conditions, but so what, no pressure my friends, no pressure. 

Anyway back to reality with a bang, the dog poo, yeap plenty of that, the great unwashed, yeap those too but at least the fish were biting.

This fish was actually was the biggest caught and it wasn't happy at all, all fins and fury and when they extend their gills like that you know you have upset them. It took a chunk of roach from the chocolate coloured canal literally 10 mins fishing the first bit of cover. 

Still 3 further fish caught, 10k steps ticked off and at one stage I was just in my t-shirt. The spring sunshine was nice and warm, nothing big but then if I wanted big fish that would be a tenner away. Did I enjoy it, errrrrr not particularly !!! 


  1. Sounds like a good session to me.
    And pressure 😂 ? It's fishing not the Olympics 😂

    1. Big monkey off my back :), it felt like the Olympics believe you me !!!

  2. Zander, I must try harder and maybe this spring come up your way for a go, just not enough down here to target properly. Nice fish and who said fishing was a lazy mans sport!

    1. I did 14k steps on Sunday !!!, thing is James I'm finding bite much harder to come by these days. I'm sure much of it is down to the amount of cover that the CRT contractors seem to be removing for whatever reason.


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