Monday, 7 December 2015
Plans changed at the weekend due to the high winds and instead of a whole day on the bank, I squeezed a short session in. As predicted it was another windy weekend and the planned boat trip was shelved and instead the boredom of Xmas shopping was done. The only saving grace is that most of that is done and I need not venture into town again with the great unwashed. I'd decided in advance to try a new pit that I have fished before.
So with time short I arrived early in the dark and bumped up the track to the lake scaring some bunnies off of the track in the process. I unloaded the gear and trudged around to an area I thought was fishable. Wrong! The pit was covered in weed and a tree had fallen into the lake since I recc'd it in the summer. The only fishable bit was on the far bank, but I couldn't for the life of me remember which path to take to get there. After a few aborted walks, I gave up in the dark and decided to fish a pit close by that would be sheltered from the wind and also usually produces.
Back to the car, down the track and onto the next venture.
It didn't take long to get to the other pit and I was soon walking along the bank and dropped onto a spot that would allow good coverage of the pit. Two rods were soon out, a popped up bait in the margins next to overhanging branches and the second bottom bait in a deep hole. With a couple of baits now soaking, it was time for a brew and porridge. With the kettle on and the sun rising, the first signs of the bird life appeared.
The winter wildlife wonderland around these pits is truly great, Long Tailed Tits, Goldcrests, Sparrow hawks, Green Woodpeckers, Goldfinches, Chaffinches are just some of the many birds that frequent this water, along with the usual suspects of Buzzard, Egrets, Moorhens etc.
With brew and sticky porridge consumed, it was time for a bit of work, the third rod I'd packed was a lighter 2.3/4 TC boat/wobbling rod. I'd suck a small float on this and was intending to wobble, drift a bait around likely looking pike area's.
With a roach attached, it was soon lobbed out to a spot that had been kind to me on more than one occasion. The idea was that I leave bait in these spots for 10 mins and then slowly retrieve/wobbled the bait back. On this crystal clear pits it seems that adding abit of life does provoke a pike to strike the bait.
As I worked the wobbled roach around the swim, an unwelcome guest appeared.
Like the loch Ness monster porpoising along the far bank, a dog otter appeared. It swam along the far side and then climbed out on a small island for a scratch and a clean before diving back in leaving a trail of bubbles behind him.
I slumped against a tree, scanning the water and pondered a move. The second sighting of another otter was more surprising of the second and I couldn't decided where to move too with limited time on my hands.
I decided to stick with it and recast the baits. All went to plan with two rods, but the roach decided to go high, wide and end up in a different bit of the pit to the float.
I rummaged around in the bait box for a suitable replacement, but didn't have another roach packed in the cool. I stumbled on a few coloured smelts that I intended to try again on the pond, but hadn't had a chance. One turbo smelt stood out, well it was bright yellow!
This was soon attached head up and cast out as far as I could to drift about over the far side were in a deep bit of water.
The bait was drifting nicely in the wind lane across the lake, but to be honest I wasn't expecting much to happen in all honesty after the appearance of the two otters. So I was somewhat surprised when the float disappear abruptly out of sight. I did initially think it was caught up in weed or ting lillies, but as it was heading off against the wind under the surface I changed my mind.
I wound down and to lifted into the running fish, I was connected to something, but it didn't feel particularly big. The fish kitted off to the right and thrashed on the surface in a vane attempted to throw the hooks, but it was soon under control.
Despite its best efforts the pike was wallowing in the edge and was netted on the first attempt.
No record breaker that for sure, but welcome sight on a difficult day.
The pike was soon laying on the mat and unhooked, it had some noticeable scares on the flanks where it its earlier life it had suffered a predatory attack from something, but was very short and fat, not a typical pike size, so its been feeding well on something.
It was back in the water with little fuss and darted off underneath the nearest overhanging tree to sulk.
The morning session soon passed with no further activity on the rods, and soon it was time to leave.