Wednesday, 23 October 2013
Autumn Break (part 3)
The final day of my autumn break is here. Time flies when your having fun, so with day three finally over, I'm quite content with my mini break.
The final day saw me doing some river roving for the resident pike. The river here is slow and meandering, working its way from source to sea via a number of structures along its way.
The club that I'm a member of owns, or lease some of the best stretches in the county, so I took the chance of having a day wandering the bank.
I got down nice and early with the morning mist and dew still hanging in the air. I decided to fish the town stretched.
I parked the car and ventured down to the river bank, the morning was cool and gloomy. I passed a number of dog walks exercising their various types of hounds along the towpath. A green woodpecker was calling in the distance and a heron rose from the bank as I head towards the first section.
The river looked gorgeous in the autumn gloom, the leaves were golden and amber and the whole scene was set for a spot of autumn action.
The approach I took was to fish a dead bait one one rod under a float and allow it to trot slowly down the river, whilst I worked an array of lures ahead of it.
The river was still quite weedy and the lure did pick up lots of decaying lilies, cabbage and other weed so at first it felt like I was getting hits.
Then the first hit came to a perch pattern lure and it was unmistakable.
Not a monster by any means, but a welcome sign on a cool morning.
I quickly unhooked the pike and soon slid it back into the river to hopefully grow bigger over the coming years.
I continued to work lures and bait along the first section, but the section seem lifeless.
Onto the second section of the river and the gloom was lifting to show the river and countryside in all its glory. I continued to work various lures and baits along the far and near margins whilst enjoying the sights and sounds of the riverbank.
The blue flash of a kingfisher whizzing upstream was a reminder that the fish in the river are subject to predation for above as well as below. The little grebes ducked and diver along the far bank and the green wood pecker conditioned his calling as it swooped from tree to tree, but with all this activity, the pike float remained inactive.
With midday looming and no further fish or hits coming from the second section, I decided to walk to the top end of section three and have lunch under the bridge. On route I spied a matchman fish the marina. "Any luck" I yelled to the man trying to get his tackle from the tree. "Yes mate, lots of skimmer and roach in here already! Trouble is there is a pike who keeps taking the roach" Interesting I thought.
I left him to his tackle dilemma and continued up the towpath to the bridge for lunch.
I settle in and chucked fresh sardine out under the pillars, whilst I tucked into the beef stew in the flash.
This was soon consumed and the lures came back out. On hitting the water, the surface erupted, pike and lure when up into the air like a polaris missile. The crashed down on the the river and I could feel it was still attached for a second, then it went slack, the pike and lure had parted company. As I retrieved again, the pike hit the lure hard again, but again the hooks failed to hold.
I continued to work the area, but alas the pike wasn't playing ball.
I can to the end of the stretch and decided to have another crack at the junction to the marina. The side stream is only a couple of feet deep, the water was alive with chub and roach.
I placed a bait at the deeper mouth of the river, but started to work a shallow diving lure through the side stream.
As I worked the brown trout pattern along the reed line, it was hit and after a short tussle and micro jack was in the net.
Soon this bite size pike was unhooked and returned.
I wander bank along the second section, casting a lure or bait in various pikey looking places, but it was quiet.
4pm came and my legs felt tied, and with a birds nest in the braid, I decided enough was enough and head for home.