I shall call this place “Strangeways” for reasons that will probably never become apparent. I scouted the place a few weeks ago and decided though although this pit is smaller than I’d usually like to fish, it was just about big enough as long as it wasn’t busy. I thought ‘what the hell?’ and here I was pulling the car up in the dark. I chose to fish an area on the western side as it gave me plenty of water to cover but was also sheltered from the gales that were forecast for later in the day. As I tackled up I was pleased to see bait fish topping in front of me, definitely good news.As it was my first visit I kept active, fishing two deadbaits which were recast regularly, starting in the margins and working outwards. I also used a lure rod with a mixture of lures which had one thing in common, they were all sinkers. This was so I could count them down and get a rough picture of depths and contours. This method of ‘plumbing’ sometimes gets a bonus fish and this was the case today, after half an hour a Replicant was engulfed by a hungry jack. The lure was well inside the gob but that didn’t stop the fish chucking it out just as I bent down to chin it.
After an hour or so of searching and dodging showers I’d found a steep margins and a gradual slope from left to right. I was settled fishing a float ledgered Bluey just beyond some weed on the slope and a ledgered Smelt in the deeper water. I bought an Oval brolly in January but because I like to travel light I’d only actually used it twice in all this time. With a rough forecast I couldn’t leave it behind this time, in fact I had to put it to good use and was impressed at how stable it was in even the strongest gusts of wind. I’ve worked out that if I’m careful (!) I can leave the poles attached, roll it all up and stuff it in my quiver. That way I can leave the bag and the bloody groundsheet (I can’t ever envisage using) at home.
By 1100 I was restless so wound in the deadbaits and went searching with a lure rod. Within fifteen minutes I’d moved my whole kit a bit further down the bank and was fishing a different area. The bluey was cast beside a nice looking overhanging tree and the smelt lowered into a deep margin then once again I set about plumbing/fishing with the lure rod.
So Strangeways, it’s definitely not the prettiest place but I’ve fished a lot worse. There wasn’t the array of birdlife that I’m used to but I did see a Sparrowhawk zipping around, there were plenty of Pigeons and Moorhens, a noisy Blackbird, a Wren and a friendly Robin who shared my roll. Strange there were absolutely no ducks? By early afternoon the forecast gales had arrived and I’d had enough. I enjoyed the fishing today, it was all new and interesting as I learnt my way around. I’m sure I’ll return with a better idea of how to approach the place, a few ideas have already sprung to mind. I’d prefer a larger water but today I had the place to myself (apart from two walkers who said hello, one of which may have been a couple of cans short of a six pack) and had room to spread out. So far so good but if the place gets busy and the Pike are scarce it could see a quick end to my enthusiasm.
The latest Pikelines magazine arrived this week and it’s the best for some time with articles for Pikers of all experience as well as a couple of absolute cracking reads that are as good as it gets. Worth the club membership alone. Pikelines has been around since the formation of PAC in 1977 and this is the 150th issue. This must be the longest running Pike fishing publication in the UK and I doubt there is an older ‘Pike fishing’ magazine anywhere in the world? Unlike most contemporary fishing magazines Pikelines is mostly free from blatant product placements and advertorials. Mostly.