An angler's journal

An angler's journal

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Out with a bang...well, not quite

Here it is, it may not be big at about 12oz but it’s been long overdue. This perfectly formed chub, caught today on the final day of the river season from the Warks Avon is my first fish since 6th January. Apart from a flurry of Barbel in the New Year, it’s been a miserable winter due to the inconsistent conditions. Of course, I've not been alone in finding this winter a struggle with cold spells and flooding providing unsettled conditions, which are never conducive to good fishing. Before Christmas I treated myself to two new pike rods, both have yet to be christened. Perhaps I’m just bad at pike fishing?

As for today’s session, well I was keen to put an end to the barren run. I didn't want the river season to end negatively so I pulled out the stops to get on the river one last time. I knew it would be a difficult and blanking again would be a real possibility. I took the temperature on arrival to find the river hovering around 3.5°C, this of course didn't fill me with optimism but was hardly surprising given the two previous frosty nights. I decided to place a float fished deadbait in the slack water in front of me while I also fished a quivertip and maggot feeder on a small size 18 hook. Soon after I had a few encouraging taps, which resulted in crushed bait and filled me with hope. I tried striking at a few of these enquiries but they were far too quick and tentative to connect. Therefore, I decided to wait for a more positive indication and finally it arrived. How nice to see a bend in the rod, albeit a small one. I had hoped another Chub would follow but despite me returning the fish upstream the bites dried up. By 6pm the temperature had plummeted sharply. It had been quite pleasant on arrival after a bright and sunny day but now it was freezing to the point where my fingers were close to giving up the ghost. A warm shower beckoned and proved to be more tempting than another cast.

You'll have to look closely due to the distance
but there's a mink swimming across river
Although I've had better winters, the great thing about fishing and the closure of the river season is that an angler’s mind starts to wonder and create new challenges. I can now look forward to three months of variety where I would like to pursue canal carp and find some tench. It would be good to hear how you have fared this winter and what the traditional close season holds in store. Thanks for reading.


  1. Well like you Lee I have had a tough season, let alone winter. The weather has worn me down a bit to be honest. However I have managed a few good results but I'm really looking forward to some warm sunshine. I just hope its sooner rather than later!

    Still at least you finished with a fish. I hope to read of further success throughout the close season. Good luck.

  2. Great read, hope to meet you on the bank in the summer.

  3. Thanks, be sure to join my blog. All the best, Lee