Thursday 23rd September
Short and Sweet
I decided upon a quick evening session after work tonight. With the nights drawing in much more these days i was really up against it timewise and so i opted for a spot of livebaiting on a local stretch of the river Soar.
My gear was already made up so i was able to get fishing really quickly upon arrival and it didnt take me long to catch a dozen Bleak and Chublets for bait. Out went the paternoster and within five minutes a small Perch hanged itself on the hair rigged Bleak.
I had hoped i wouldnt be plagued by these small Perch but my hopes were in vain unfortunately as i proceeded to take a succession of them to about a pound. After an hour of this, the contents of the livebait bucket were running dangerously low and i was literally down to my last two. I put the larger one on the paternoster to my left and the smaller went out to my right under a tree as a free rover beneath a chubber float.
It wasnt long before the chubber sailed away and my strike met with something a bit more solid than the smaller perch previously and sure enough a better fish was soon wallowing in the net. At this point the paternoster rod decided to lurch violently towards the river and i was forced to grab it and try and secure the netted Perch at the same time. The rod stealing culprit turned out to be a turbo-charged Jack of about 5lb which tailwalked several times before i got it near the net. The drama wasnt over yet though because, just as i was about to net it, a much larger Pike shot in out of nowhere and T-boned it straight across its middle! The big croc swam out to mid river with it before letting go and i then netted the poor jack as quickly as a could before the big one moved in for a second attack.
All this time the Perch, which looked to be over a pound and a half, had remained in the net and the hook had actually fallen out so i was quite lucky it seemed.
After this i packed up as it was getting too dark to see and i had no more baits anyway. Thatll be the last of my after work evening sessions for a while i think as it will be dark to early to make them viable. I may have the odd Barbel trip though.
Sunday 26th September
I really wanted to fish the Trent today but with its current weed problems it would have been a nightmare so i went out to a local day ticket lake instead. The lake is extremely deep and has some great Perch and Roach fishing holding numerous specimens of both species. Ive only ever fished it for these species in the depths of winter before and had done well so i was hoping for a good days sport in the current Autumnal conditions. Phil joined me as he hadnt done much on the lake before and was keen to get amongst them.
I went straight in with feeder tactics and after steadily building up my swim with bait via the feeder for half an hour or so i soon started to catch a few. Phil was also catching too but we were getting well pestered by a young swan which simply wouldnt take no for an answer in its attempts to deprive us of some bait. Even a couple of gentle prods with the net handle didnt send it packing so we just had to put up with it unfortunately.
Several nice Roach, some Skimmers, Crucians and even a small Tench put in and appearance before bites suddenly slowed right down. Neither of us could work out why and put it down to the usual midmorning to midafternoon lull which seems to affect us wherever we go.
I did notice that i was getting a few plucks though as the feeder was dropping through water after casting and this gave me an idea. I wanted a much slower descent of the bait than the feeder would allow. Due to the range being fished and the 25ft of depth i was fishing in, float fishing wasnt an option, or was it?
I rummaged through my box for the biggest waggler i had and set it up in place of the feeder on a link about 2ft up from the hook. I then bulked all the shot directly below the float and added enough to only just sink it. This big float with all the shot could be cast to my feeder area quite easily and with it being on a paternoster off the mainline i would be in direct contact with the hookbait and not pulling through the float when bites occurred. The idea was to cast out and let it sink slowly on a tight line waiting for the tip to wrap around.
It worked a treat, i found i had to turn the reel handle very slowly to stay in contact with float due to the wind but the bites were mostly unmissable wraps on the tip and i went on to bagup with a succession of decent Roach, perch and Skimmers. Phil set the rig up too and also did well with it.
By the end of the day both of us had taken around 30lb of silvers apiece and even though the real specimens had eluded us it was a great feeling to have used a new technique to such deadly effect. Phils best fish of the day was a Perch of 2lb on the nose and mine was the Crucian/Goldfish looking thing pictured below which also went 2lb.