Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Another season starts.

I always book a few days off for the new river season and this year was no exception, i had a few plans on the go for weeks leading up to the 16th. Monday was going to be a day on the boat with Neil, Tuesday was a bank day with Paul and I wasn't exactly sure where i was ending up Wednesday.
I was out all day Sunday for fathers day and didn't get in till late evening so I was pretty much going to be full on for 5 days in a row as Saturday had been a long day, as Sunday night drew near i was getting excited again though, just one more sleep and up early to fish with Neil on his boat.
We was a little disappointed to find the river low but still carrying quite allot of colour, you couldn't see that far past the length of a trace, so we wondered if our excitement was going to soon turn to disappointment.
We started trolling ultralight lures and covered a bit of water before we got a take but it was great to get a fish and give us a bit of hope. We was probably a little hasty in worrying about the colour as we steadily picked up fish, we also caught quite a few drifting and casting into areas which doesn't always go to plan when we have tried it in the past. I would say on this session we caught more fish casting than we did trolling.
Nothing massive caught but we had some decent perch and pike big enough to pull back which were actually amazing fun on the ultralight gear, fit river fish don't half fight!
We bumped into quite a few of the Yorkshire lot who had also had the same plans and at one point i think there was five boats all within view. everyone seemed to be having a decent day and catching plenty.
Another highlight was when we saw an otter asleep on a rock right next to the boat, it was curled up like a cat but soon woke up and went into the river. A brilliant sight and surprising how big they can get, not sure its a good thing for the river though taking into account where we saw it being quite urban.
One more thing to mention was a perch Neil had on that surfaced and looked very big, we only got a glimpse of it and to me it looked a good 3lber but we will never know as sadly it came off!

I was still pretty shattered Tuesday after the long day on the boat and was up again early to fish all day. I had planned to meet Paul for a days bank fishing and hopefully some chub. Paul only had the morning to fish so i had some ideas for where i could move onto.
No sooner had i pulled up and was walking to check out the river than i get a text from Paul saying he had slept in, this didn't come as a surprise as Paul has a bit of a habit of this.  My first thought was well at least there will be more fish for me.
As it turned out the small river was still carrying allot of colour too and i didn't fancy it, i didn't give this spot too long i just had a feeling i was wasting my time so thought I'd put plan B into effect.
I had a drive to the second spot then realised I'd have to wait nearly 2hours for the postie to open to buy a fishing permit! I thought id have a walk and check out all the swims while i waited. What swims? the bank vegetation was over head height and you could not even see the river, i pushed my way though but i was getting covered in pollen which made the hay fever i was suffering with even worse. I was getting a bit annoyed at this point as my plans for today were going down the swanny.
Eventually the post office opened and i went to buy a ticket not really looking forward to having to make my hay fever worse. The guy at the counter was really helpful and said the banks had not been cut yet and he was a bit annoyed about it, he suggested i go elsewhere and gave me a map and talked about the spot in detail.
The story of today was pushing my way through pollen laden grass and lots of climbing into and out of swims often falling back into them and getting scratched and nettled. My arms, neck and face were a bit of a mess with stings and generally being puffy because of the hay fever, i felt pretty lousy but pushed on. It was a tiring day but i did OK, i had a handful of pike quite a few perch and a few chub to make it a Yorkshire treble.
I had a phone call of the Mrs to say her car was knackered and would need mine on Wednesday so that meant i wouldn't be able to fish. I decided to go check out a canal spot Ive not fished for a while and see if i could spend the evening catching perch on the fly that Ive been enjoying over the last month. It didn't go to plan and there seemed to be nothing about other than a few tiny perch. All of a sudden everything tightened up and i had a fish on, what a surprise i got when a trout surfaced! Not sure if it had been to sea or was on its way but given its location it was certainly migrating somewhere. It had some characteristics of a fish that had been in saltwater, apparently the fins of a river dweller are olive and migrated fish have no colour in there fins even when the body colour starts to come back. It also had star shaped spots, no red spots and was nearly white in colour. Its always difficult to tell where the trout have been and its something that interests me and would like to learn more about. i did a bit of reading and apparently when a fish decides its going to migrate to sea at a young age it starts to change its colour and characteristics before it travels, this is called a 'Smolt' Either way it was a surprise and capped the day off nicely.


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