Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Gaining ground

Two more weeks of mostly bright and dry weather has made the East Anglian countryside look parched and arid. The only green left is around the watersides and after two weeks away I made my way back to the Marsh for a couple of hours of much needed relaxation. Today was different weather wise in as much as the wind was a strong South Westerly but otherwise the bright dry conditions continue. Water temperature remains steady at 17 degrees, exactly the same as my last visit a fortnight ago.

After a look around and the discovery of too many cars in the car park I found myself fishing the swamp again. The signs were that it hadn't been fished much since my last visit, no broken down vegetation or any other tell tale give aways. This is becoming a factor as unfortunately angling pressure has become much more intense this season. Where as last year it was rare to find more than a couple of other anglers on the lake, this season it can be hard at times to find a swim. For a while I couldn't for the life of me think of a reason why this might be but then I remembered last autumn there were rumours of a very big Carp being caught. I laughed this off at the time but maybe the tale is true or perhaps there are simply lots of people who think it is.

By 1800 I was settled and fishing. As usual I fished the over hanging trees on each side of the swim. On the left hand rod I had a pop up on an inline rig with a bag of mixed pellets and about twenty 10mm boilies. Bearing in mind how many people are now fishing the water, assuming there's a fair bit of bait going in, I decided it might be a good idea to ease off on the ground baiting a little. On the right I decided to use a method feeder with another pop up on a 3” stiff hooklength. So I had two nice groups of food out which I could top up as and when they needed it, if at all.

The wind made things feel cool but otherwise it was a pleasant evening and I was happy to be fishing again. After about ninety minutes something strange happened, I had a twitchy take on the right hand rod on which I was using the method feeder. I struck out of surprise and desperation as much as anything and was sure I hadn't made contact but was surprised to find a Roach attached! Not even a particularly big Roach either, it would have been a nice livebait come the winter. Twenty minutes later I had a repeat performance and another roach splashed it's way in. This was almost amusing! I had a third take a little later but failed to connect this time.

I noticed the odd fish rolling by the pads and a few bubbles breaking surface every now and then. I couldn't ignore this so quickly set up the float rod fishing corn. I didn't get any takes on this set up but at least the float/leger rig I'd put together got the bait down before the Rudd could polish it off. I was also strangely happy to have caught the Roach on the method feeder. I figured if I was managing to hook relatively small roach on 15mm boilies then this rig would hook a larger fish with a bigger mouth.

The light began to fade and I reluctantly began to pack up. All evening I'd felt I was in with a good chance of a decent fish. Who knows, if I had time to fish all night maybe I would have? I'll never know. Here's to next time.

The most recent 'Pikelines' dropped onto my doormat recently as as usual it was an excellent read. The continuing debate regarding “that book” by Derrick Amies rumbles on and in this issue it is DA responding to John Watson's review that appeared in the February issue. I would have been interested to read Amies' response to the accusations posed by Watto (not to mention those of Stephen Harper and Graham Booth), however instead of defending himself, DA's letter is nothing more than an attack on John Watson. Watto's own book is possibly the best book on Pike fishing ever written and although JW's “who dares wins” attitude may attract criticism by some, he certainly has never been considered dishonest. Derrick Amies has decided that attack is the best form of defence but in this case he is sadly mistaken. I'm still working my way through the magazine but it looks great, as usual worth the PAC membership for the mag alone. To join PAC see the link at the side of the page.

Some good news has come from the Broads Authority at last. The proposed dredging of Heigham Sound will not now take place as the BA has nowhere to dump the silt. Although this may well just be a stay of execution it's still good news. It gives concerned parties more time to lobby people and strengthen the case and it's also hard to see a new dumping site popping up any time soon. I have a feeling that the hard work of John Currie & co. at Norwich PAC has influenced the thinking of certain people too.

Full details here;

I'm also happy to say that my MP, Mr David Ruffley has written to me a couple of times. He has questioned the CEO of the BA John Packman and received a reply which he copied to me. Unfortunately Packman's response trotted out the same old propaganda we've grown accustomed to but I'm glad that the questions are being asked and the BA is feeling the pressure. The war is not over but a battle has been won!

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