Thursday, 27 June 2013

Despair to elation

I was up for work yesterday as usual at 4:20am and i pretty much rushed for the rest of the day to get my work done and get on the bank to meet my mate Neil. We had planned to fish a river we usually fish from bank but today was going to be a trial in Neils boat to see what we could find. So after rushing round i was finally on the bank where Neil was already waiting for me with the Boat set up and ready to go, we would head of downstream and fish into the evening.

The river levels were really low but there was allot of colour in the water, despite there being some visibility it wasn't really that good for trolling. We must have spent about 4 hours exploring downstream with not so much as a take, it was very soul destroying and despite having a laugh we were both abit miffed and ready for a fish each.
A few boats had been through heading in the opposite direction which had churned the river bed up making even more colour, we hadn't thought about the fact that we was heading downstream and all that extra colour would be following us. When the penny finally dropped we thought it best to head back the other way and see if the water cleared abit beyond where the boats would go. On the way back we had abit of a drama when Neil let myself have a go at driving (sailing?) the boat. It was to be my first time and i soon realised and appreciated what Neil had to take on, watching the finder for snags and sudden depth changes, watching ahead for things, steering the boat and powering it whilst also fishing. After about 10 mins of me in control the engine suddenly cut out! what had happened was the braces on my waterproofs had snagged round the fuel line, when i moved it must have pulled it out. It took us awhile to get the boat going again all the time drifting into the trees, it would have been interesting if a large boat had come along and lapped us with waves!

I suggested Neil take back the controls when the engine was running again and off we headed back upstream, another hour and still nothing to show for our efforts. Just as we are discussing our next move Neil gets a couple of knocks then a fish is one, a nice little chub saved the boat from its first blank and Neil was chuffed to bits with the fish. next up we needed to find myself a fish to avoid a blank.

Eventually we got back to where we started with nothing else caught, Neil sometimes fishes this spot from the bank so he knew it well but wanted to run around the area with the finder to get some idea of the depths for future reference. We found a really big hole that was about 20ft deep and all around it was averaging about 3-7ft within the deep hole it looked like a huge ball of bait fish. This was a feature that was too good to miss so we anchored up on the edge of it and started to cast soft baits. I clipped a 2.5" white kopyto on, cast it out and let it sink, as soon as i started retrieving all went solid and i had a fish on, finally a fish on the line and i was going to save myself a blank! It felt like a good fish and it was staying low so we couldn't fully see it, just as it looked like we had the better of it, it flashed away and out pinged the kopyto!! barsteward!
I moaned for awhile at the loss of that fish, after fishing for so long then finally getting something on which also felt a good fish, then loosing it was heart wrenching.

i decided to change the kopyto to a cannibal shad which i also rigged with a stinger to hopefully avoid losing another if i was lucky enough to get another take. Luckily after several casts i was in again and this time the stinger made all the difference, a smaller fish than the first but as you can tell by my face i was over losing the first fish and pleased to be off a blank!

Not long after putting that fish back i was in again, and this time abit bigger, had we finally found some fish or had they suddenly just switched on?
The captain was in next with a pike, it was great to finally be onto some fish.

Several more casts and again I was in, this time a touch bigger again, when this fish surfaced we got quite a surprise and i consider this fish quite a special one, abit of a freak really... The photos do not show it well but this pike was bright electric purple! not just that usual sheen you get on some fish, the whole fish had a really bright vivid purple colour which was pretty amazing, its a real shame you cannot pick it up in the photos, there are hints of it but nothing like in reality, it was almost glowing it was that bright.

I was really beginning to enjoy myself now and the change to the cannibal shad with the stinger really paid off as most fish were hooked on the stinger. I was using my Volkey and these were the best fish id had on it to date, really solid stocky fit river fish really put the rod through its paces and it was a joy to play them on. Its really different playing fish from a boat as they have so much more water to run in, at times the fish were going under the boat tugging my rod end down into the water. I must admit i can get abit over excited and i bet at this point I was becoming abit annoying!
It was just about time to head back and get the boat out so Neil decided to have another quick scan for depths, while doing so i left my shad in the water and just let it swim, just as we was circling round i had a fish take the shad and i was playing another, a great little spell of fishing that I really enjoyed and just what I needed, a big thanks to Neil for putting me onto the fish and making it a great end to a frustrating session, cheers Mate.


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