An angler's journal

An angler's journal

Sunday, 25 October 2015

Barbel: Back on the riverbank

A plump Severn barbel
Following an injury lay off which has seen fishing out of bounds for a few weeks, I was eager to get back out and find a few fish. A short trip to the Severn saw me net a barbel of around 7 ½lb but it was hard work. With an afternoon session on the Warks Avon to follow, I knew that catching a daytime barbel in the current conditions would be even harder. I've not seen the Avon this clear for a long time. The bottom is visible in 5-6ft of water meaning angling is as difficult as it gets.

In view of this, my tactics changed. The main attack would be
The rig
maggots introduced through an inline feeder with a short 6" link finished with a size 12 hook. This would be baited with an imitation maggot to disguise the shank together with 2 or 3 live ones. The rig would also employ a back lead to pin the line to the river bed for about a metre or so from the feeder. An initial bombardment of maggots and some hemp via a baitdropper put some bait in and hopefully had some fish gaining interest. It was then a case of recasting every 5 minutes or so to keep a steady stream of maggots going in. I had a few plucks and taps when the tip went round violently. I was holding the rod and was able to strike quickly to feel the satisfying resistance of a hooked barbel. It put up a great fight before it was eventually beaten and netted. The fish went 7lb 12oz and was a decent result given the conditions. With it still relatively early in the session, I was hopeful that another fish might show but it turned out to be the only bite of the session and my session drew to a close by late afternoon.

The result - 7lb 12oz of Warwickshire Avon barbel
The nights are drawing in now and there's a noticeable chill to some of the nights. With the water already clear and now cooling maybe it's time to start shifting my attention towards perch and pike.

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