Piscatorial Quagswagging

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

Monday 26 February 2024

The Tiny River Alne - Trindents and Troglodytes

The river Alne has been up and down like the latest Trident Missile launch from HMS Vanguard. If you hadn't heard, the Ministry of Defence confirmed an “anomaly occurred” during the January 30 exercise off Florida, but the nuclear deterrent remains “effective".

The crew on the nuclear sub perfectly completed their doomsday drill, and the 44 ft long Trident 2 missile was propelled into the air by compressed gas in the launch tube. But its first stage boosters did not ignite and the 58-ton missile fitted with dummy warheads splashed into the ocean and sank.

A source said: “It left the submarine but it just went plop, right next to them.”

Apparently the biggest expense for the Trident program is the day to day running costs, which is around 6% of the total UK defence budget apparently, hmmm, better find out what the problem was then I would say. 

I suppose the key question is the credibility of the UK nuclear deterrent. 

While this recent setback would have Putin laughing his backside off, the overall reliability of Trident is well-proven and the state of the ageing submarines should probably be of greater concern than their missile system. 

Now the Vanguard class can carry up to 16 missiles although only 8 missiles would be carried routinely (5 warheads per missile). A quick google, test results, which may not fully replicate a real scenario, show Trident having a failure rate of about 6%. A very crude projection would suggest if a Vanguard boat fired its 8 missiles then only one might fail and 35 nuclear warheads would still be on their way.

Anyway as anglers we knew what the problem was with the rivers and that was they had been in flood for the week, roads flooded and no way to get the bank let alone cast a line.
As I said on the previous post I wasn't desperate to get out anyway and monitoring the levels they looked like they would be ok the weekend and that would do me to try and get back into the swing of things.
Knowing that the river would be coloured worms and maggots would be mainstay and I'd have some bread for back-up for a change bait if necessary. 

The 12 ounce dace I caught on this stretch  hasn't been forgotten so I scaled down for this session to see if I could stumble upon any that might have migrated up here to chill when the river had been over its banks AGAIN. 

Anyway talking about forgotten, well I had somehow hadn't packed my rod rest in the car, however at least it wasn't my landing net or rod, a rod rest is quite easily to fashion up now isn't it.

An overnight frost and with the river now bank in the banks again the colour looked good for a bite, although often when there is a drop in water temperature that can put the fish off feeding.

Bites were forthcoming though however I suspect they were minnows trying to get at the maggot I tipped the worm with.

I use a fine wire size 12 hook which is perfect for the quarry I was after but maybe not what was biting on the end of the line.

A good hour in that swim with only fast plucks and no proper bites I got on the rove to try and find the fish. There are plenty of swims to go at here so I thought I'd yet at least a bite in one of them.

Swim after swim I was getting the same result in most of them. Nothing that would constitute a proper bite and only indications from small fish with eyes bigger than their bellies.

The Alne is one of those proper moody rivers though because catch it right and it couldn't be more different where multiple fish can be caught.

I crossed over into the other field where you could see just how high the river had been because it was waterlogged in places making it hard work to get to the different swims.

All good exercise though so I wasn't complaining it not all about catching fish now is it. Although one would be nice in the session to make the trip here worthwhile. I crossed over the bridge of death again and fished a swim tight to cover where I stumbled upon a large pile of large scales and also a piece of flank around 4 inches by 2 inches.

At least the Otter was showing me how it is done. Anyway nothing in that swim I decided to fish the deepest swim on the stretch (12 ft or so) where I can now access it from the other bank. I thought I was on for a fish because there was some plucks after fifteen minutes or so, however the bites didn't materialise in to a proper bite, so I can only guess it was minnows again.

This wasn't going very well at all, so after 3.5 hours I decided to head home on a blank. One of those tough Alne days that I've not had for a while, I suspect the water temperature had plummeted and that put a kibosh on proceedings, oh well, on to the next one. 


  1. I take great pleasure in fishing with a stick rod rest on the frequent occasions that I forget the "proper" one. Aesthetically pleasing toošŸ¤£

    1. I'm going to fashion one up and keep it in the car that's for sure :)


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