Thursday, 22 February 2018

Famine to feast

Given the forecast freeze-up headed off to a small reservoir to see if the roach were willing to feed before the local still waters get frozen over. Tough going and with  a cold wind it took this pound plus hybrid to warm things up with just a handful of skimmers and small roach as back up.

Last two hours on the nearby river, the dace were a long way down the trot and again only took a handful and one chublet that fell off. Switched over to the pike and a satisfying 4 fish in the last hour, all  on half sardine down the edge with three other missed takes.

The biggest was very plump and probably 9ish. They all were leeched up.

Mat and net froze as I packed everything away.

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Bagging up..

Picked up a display full of sardines on the way home for a measly £2.40.  Sardines? Pilchards? Haven't the spots you see on good old Med sardines but the pike dont seem to care.

Very nice on the barbie too. Commander in Chief is not to impressed with the smell. Wait till I get the hemp on..

Monday, 19 February 2018


Couple of hours up Yarco with the Little'uns. Mostly closed it being a winter Sunday. 

Stumbled across the NRA's  prepper weapons cache for the European campaign in Pownall &Sons, a huge three window display of assult riffles, hand guns and swords. Nt much room for any fishing tackle to be sure.

Sunday, 18 February 2018

Bombing along

Back on the river at last and what a glorious Saturday afternoon. River still holding a lot of colour following Wednesday's deluge and being run off hard, which seems to be the general state of affairs this winter. Certainly has mixed things up with flow patterns and features.

This is the mill pool at the top of our stretch. Will need some waders to get to anything like any depth down that far run. For most its working life this iteration was used in paper making but also textile and flour processing and there was a mill way back in Doomsday times and the adjacent Brampton was a Roman settlement.

The Hall is being developed extensively, primarily for weddings so those pesky trees have had to go. Built by the Pastons it has been reworked a bit over five centuries. Oxnead itself was a lost medieval settlement. it's church and lost settlement well described here by Nick Stone:

So, with the river being run at a brisk walking pace and little cover it was  time to work the margins and takes came from near and far margins. The first, after a twitch back saw the float heading off for the next mill at some pace. on winding into the fish it  motored even harder and at first I began to wander whether I'd found a big hen as it was taking full advantage of the flow and keeping the float below the surface. The pressure of a locked down 3lb tc began to tell and the big hen had shrunk somewhat by the time I had it in the onion bag. Leeched but plump and pristine with a small green patch on it's almost striped flank.

The other half of the pollan was taken virtually on the drop in a slight far margin depression and the belligerent little fella did the right thing and unhooked itself as I grabbed the trace. Nothing else really occurred as the sun disappeared into the poplars behind me but what a lovely dusk to be on the river.  I had a feeder rod in the charabanc and had thought  about the bridge pool into dark but decided to  just soak up the increasing clamour of the roosting corvids and the mournful wail of the noddy train over the flood plain.

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Things seen

My train  travels have involved a bit of walking and some things are just waiting for us to have a look for them. Slow you down bor. As we say in Norfolk.

A striking car park facade

Norwich Market

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Stir crazy

For lots of reasons I haven't been fishing for ages. And probably not again till Saturday. Still, I have got the last  two weeks of the season off.


Closest I have been to fishing was a whistle stop tour round Hoveton and Wroxham. A bit cold, and  a bit busy on the river.

Seems part of your guided piking package is a stop off for Maccie Dees. But in full Realtree? I'd want this in my guided price I think. Thick slices of roast pork, stuffing, apple sauce and crackling? Yes please.

I like beer, that's a certainty. But £10.99?

I have been on the train a fair bit which is ok as I do like a train. Mostly.

I  had to plan to get to King's Lynn today by train or train and bus. Either way with 3 changes and waits over three and a half hours each way and  costing about three and a half bottles of Adnams 6oN A6 Imperial Stout  before the cost of provisions and victuals instead I have a day of this to look forward to. Deep, deep joy.

Back to the fishing. I really really must make the most of my opportunities for some chub. I'd like that to be on trotted hunks of flake or quiver tipped cheese paste but do think I might have to get down and dirty and try the pellet bag and smelly krill paste wrapped round a boilie an d a big lead after dark approach. Lets hope the charabanc gets back on the road.

Monday, 29 January 2018

Low water dace

It's getting near spawning time and how I look forward to those  pigeon-chested and sandpaper scaled dace. Saturday was foul and this was just about the most enthusiasm I could muster during my charabanc  trip with littlest 'un.

Would Sunday be any better? I wanted a couple of hours on the Greys 15 footer and given the gusty wind  I would team it up with a fixed spool. The  pool was free if low when I got there and the with main push coming down the near bank I dropped down on to the second tank trap concrete block to fish over to the back eddy. Anyone who has read Bailey and Miller's Chub and Dace will know those blocks

Tackle? 3.2lb bs Float Fish straight through to an #18 Carbon Match spade end under a 7bb wire stemmed Avon, undershotted to cope with the boily water and rough bottom. Bulk mostly down.

Bites from the off, and even at some range the twisty dace visible in the clear, cold water as the hook hit home. The dace came in many colour variants,  some making me check for a convex anal fin given the deep red of the fins but no sandpaper skin and their general plumpness was more fit fish in a balanced system than swelling ovaries. This one nearing the traditional toffee colour.f

A more determined tour of the fast pool  signalled what was on the end of my line, and indeed it was going well. Salmonids spawn a lot earlier even than dace and this one was in need of a spring conditioning. I guess a wild fish. Big tail.

I had to retackle as the extra length of rod saw me tangle above in an elder, and though I got my Avon back I'd run low on BB's so stepped up to AAA's and what I thought was a fresh #18 but perhaps not. With an increasingly swirly wind and more water coming down the main sluice I struggled to hit the still plentiful bites. I'd simply got the presentation wrong and bite conversion suffered as a result. I did retie a new hook and things improved but once I had  surrendered my favourite Avon to  a snag I gave it best and had a little wander with the camera.