Monday, 31 May 2010

Snitterfield on the pixie hunt!

On Sunday morning I decided to get up and over to Snitterfield to target my favourite quarry, crucian carp. I have fished Snitterfield a lot over the years and feel that I have a reasonable understanding of the reservoir. It is like no other reservoir that I have fished quite often people simply fish way to far out when in fact the fish are right at your feet feeding off the concrete shelves edge.

I arrived at Snitterfield for about 6am and had the plan of fishing the top end where I have fish a lot or my favourite swim on the road bank....I was amazed when I drove down the road to find 7 anglers already fishing...not only the top but most of the top road pegs! Gutted...but I suppose if I ever fish a match on this water in the future I need to fish more than just the swims that I know and feel happy on. After looking at likely pegs I settled on one towards the end of the road side bank.

On setting up my tackle there were plenty of Roach and Rudd topping with occasional distinctive crucian mixed in between. Great fish in my swim! As well as the Great Crest Greeb.
I set up my pole rigs and plumbed up a line to my rig at about 4 metres and one to the left at 8 metres from the bank, into which I cupped a mixture of soft feed pellets, hemp and a few pinkies. By doing this I hoped the Crucians would follow the silvers onto the bed of feed that I had laid down.
In reserve I also set up my feeder rod (Shimano Beastmaster 9/11'') at its smaller length of just 9ft, I really like this little rod and would highly recommend it. Very strong for its weight and has a very nice soft action whilst still having the backbone to fight back hard. To this I rigged a Preston pellet feeder on a long 3lb hook link to a G point wide gape size 16 pellet hook pattern (very good expander pellet hooks) I set this up as I knew if the Crucians were not feeding the Bream might be??
Not long after Dan arrived and set up in the search of the "pixies" on the corner peg with a the overhanging tree.He had selected to fish a long float rod with a pole float "on the lift"
, with pellet and paste as his bait choices.
I started fishing on my inside line but it did not respond as I thought it usually I tried the 8 metre line...again not real activity..strange for Snitterfield. So in desperation I tried double pinkie on the inside line and got a Roach immediately, but I did not really want to do this as I came to the Ressie to target the golden "pixies". Still no response???? Something was not right, was I fishing ontop of weed, was my shotting pattern incorrect or hook link to heavy? Then when feeding some free expander's the answer became clear...I had messed up my hook baits by not pumping them properly the previous evening, this resulting in them floating or hanging in mid annoyed, massive waste of time and effort! I quickly pumped some new bait and checked my depths were correct by re-plumbing both swims.. The only fish really until now falling to the feeder rig at about 30 meters.

Brace of bream taken on the pellet feeder

Well it was like flicking a switch, bites came straight away but not from my quarry in fact in the whole morning I only managed to bag one! Taking 4 bream on the feeder and one on the inside accompanied by and a few nice roach on the inside was my total catch about 15lb tops...not as good as usual.

Few bars of silver
Whilst I spoke to Dan of my general disappointment with my haul for the morning, an angler from the top section of the lake spoke to us and it appeared that no body else had really caught all day so every cloud un all!

Best Brama of the day...only about 3lb 6oz

I will be back soon to give them another go.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Fishy Friends?

For those people who read this blog, I have the next week off work and am looking to go out to the following venues:

Snitterfield Res in search of crucians and perhaps silvers,
College Pool to target the bream on the slider and feeder,
Oxford Canal with silver bream in mind on probably the pole,
Perhaps a return visit to Napton for revenge on the tench!

Up for an adventure anywhere if anyone has room for me to join a jolly?

I am looking for folks to fish with as after meeting lots of good people at Ryton it has made me aware that fishing on my own can be a bit....urm..."boring" at times. By that I do not mean that I get bored by fishing, just would not mind a chat and a bit of company...sad I know.
If anyone fancies a run out then please let me know.
Cheers Andy

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Last Chance Saloon!

On Sunday morning I wanted to put the previous days nightmare behind me, so I decided to go to Ryton for a morning session to see if I could continue on from Friday with some tench.

The lake was empty at around 7.30 which really surprised me, so I walked around and set up on Morris' again. As Friday i baited a spot to my left on a clear patch and one in front of me at about 40 yards. But this time I replaced the cage feeder with a method feeder instead and used a much coarser ground bait mix with sardines for added fish.

Immediately I was getting line bites and small pick up but nothing really wanted to pick it up and run with it...very frustrating. This resulted in three small runs but no fish in the first 30 mins which is unusual for Ryton as usually it takes a while for the fish to move onto your baited area.

Dan arrived at about 8 and I waved and shouted over that had been alot of fish moving in and around Morris' and the log swim,even though the wind was blowing towards the island. Dan then came over and set up on the log swim fishing a method out in front of him,

Whilst we were talking a nice carp decided to jump and tail walk asking Dan to catch it!!! Not to look a gift horse in the mouth he put his rig on the spot and without 15mins had a nice common carp on the bank. We were convinced it was the same fish that jumped earlier.

It was a very quite couple of hours with fish moving but not really feeding hard, as the sun rose higher and the time ticked by I did think that it was going to be to blanks in to days! Nightmare!

Whilst talking to Dan in the vacant swim between us a very nice ghost carp of a estimated mid teens jumped at about 50 yards in front of me. I immediately reeled in and prepared my method to target this fish as I have not seen this fish on any other blogs previously, it was a cracker! Dan commented that I was spot on with my cast and the trap was set. It only took a matter of minutes before the alarm screamed and I was into the carp, as fast as it ran it was off! Gutted! We spoke about the fact that we thought that it was the fish that had just jumped, ironic that both Dan and my carp had jumped prior to taking our baits...I will be back ghosty!

I had decided the next casts were my last and re baited the methods back on to their spots and started to pack up (in a right strop!). As soon as I had put my landing net away my right hand alarm let out a series off bleeps and I was into a fish...but not a carp.

It is becoming increasing difficult to land fish through the growing weed at the moment and this was evident as a tench surfaced with a side salad attached to it! Dan came over and netted the fish for me which to my relief broke my blank!

We estimated the fish to be about 4lb 8oz or slightly heavier. Cheers for doing the honours Dan

Very grateful for that tench on my last cast.

Salad, with your tench?
Myself and Dan walked back towards the car park and had to stop at the disabled peg....only to see about 50 carp upto around 10lbs basking in the sun!!! Doe! That might be a reason for the lak of action other things on their minds?

When people say there is not many small carp in this pool it is simply not true!

Hopefully get back out later this week to have another crack before the weed takes to much of a strangely hold on the lake.

I did walk the pool on Tuesday evening and the overflow corner with the brushes was simply alive with spawning carp including two very bright koi! (golden ticket fish for a special prize I think)

Tight lines.

Monday, 17 May 2010

Napton Res

After looking at reports of great tench catches from Napton I decided to make my first visit on Saturday morning.

On arrival I read the board and discovered there was a match pegged all along the one side of the larger lake, and all of the pegs along "the causeway" were taken...where to fish? As the smaller lake had no one on it walked around to the far side next the over flow and set up, out of the wind and quite comfortable. The conditions were not ideal for tench fishing with crystal clear watch and bight sunlight but due to having left over bait from my earlier visit to Ryton I decided to give it a go.

In a similar vein to the previous evening i put two bed of bait down about 35 yards out on to which I put a cut down pop up with a cage feeder helicopter rig. After about an hour a couple of guys that had fished the causeway came round to have a chat and commented that the fishing was very poor, in fact the match was only won with a couple of fish...not great for such a prolific tench fishery! As I spoke to them about a whole range of fishy subjects my left hand rod ran away...only for me to miss it by a mile due to being on the bank away from my this point I joked that this would be my only run of the day!

The lads recommended that I moved to the causeway as they were the hot pegs on the fishery.(perhaps a mistake!) Though I fished the peg hard for the next 5 hours I failed to get another bite, the only positive being that no one else did either.

Perhaps the conditions were not right? Wind in the wrong direction, to sunny and clear water?

I will go back to this fishery as there must be some truth in the stories!

Better luck next time.

Tinca Time!!!

I decided to target the tench in Ryton instead of catching them whilst primarily targeting the carp on Friday evening.

On arrival I was very surprised to see only Colin fishing in the log pegs, such a nice evening and an empty fishery...

After walking around the lake I decided to set up on Morris', as it appeared that there were fish moving in the shallows. I had already set up two Avon rod with a helicopter style rig with a cage feeder, six inches of rig tube, swivel beads, braid beads and a short link that would house a cut pop up as bait. Prior to casting out my baited rig I decided to get some bait down with the aim being to set a sound bed of bait from the tincas t move onto for the evening.

My ground bait mix was quite basic with red crumb, sweetcorn, source pellets, pinkies and chopped worm. This I thought would do the trick for a few tench...

I baited two areas one to my left which looked like a clear space in the weed (which is getting very dense now) and a channel straight out in front of me at about 40 yards. On these areas i put 8 feeder fulls. I then introduced my baited rig.

After about 30 minutes I got my first run which screamed off very quickly, on hitting the fish I knew it was a carp by the way it continued to run to the right, to my disappointed it broke the hook link (8lb) after about 30 seconds. It seems when I aim for the carp with heavier tackle I catch tench and when I lighten my approach the carp move in!!! Never win!

It was not long until my alarm sounded on my left hand rod, after a short fight a tench of 4lb 2oz was safely netted, a round little lady who had not yet spawned.

It took 4 more casts with each rod, laying a bit more bait onto the two areas, and about an hour before my next run which again came from my left hand rod. This bite was very small as my bobbin kept on moving up and down about a inch so I decided to wind down and hit it to see. To my surprise a tench of 5lb 3oz was my reward, things looked like they were picking up on the baited area to my left as murky patches were appearing at regular intervals......

But, my next run came from my right hand rod only 10 mins later, this fish felt alot different....perhaps a not running hard enough....what about one of the big bream that occasionally definitely was not a fight that I was used to??

As the fish came closer I could see that it was a good size tench but why was the fight so strange? I had caught it by its caudal fin! I quickly removed the hook and let the fish rest in the net whilst I sorted the sling and scales. I was very happy to watch the scales register 7lb 10oz which minus the sling weighs in at 6lb 10oz my largest tench this season from Ryton this far.

I did tell Colin it was 7lb 10oz but then realised that I forgot about the sling....sorry Colin I was quite happy but not that large!

After getting pestered by the swans and signets I decided to pack up at about 9.00.

Three tench and a good run off a carp...quite happy

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Walking the towpath

Not out fishing until tomorrow night so...

I decided to take my little boxer pup on a walk along my local stretch of Oxford canal (which I only found at the weekend) to see if there was any fish showing or anyone fishing the stretch for that matter?

The canal looked very inviting with some very nice areas that I feel wouls surely hold fish. I walkied for about 2 miles checking all the overhangs and reeded areas but failed to see any movement or tail patterns of anything large, but there was alot of bubbling areas "down the track" so might well have a look at fishing the stretch over my hoilday at the end of the month!

Tomorrow I aim to have another play at Ryton with tench as my focus as a change to carp.
Will let you know how that goes...

Monday, 10 May 2010

Swan Lake

After a heavy Saturday night at my rugby club end of season awards evening my head to longer to clear than I had anticipated.
I arrived at the pool at about 4pm to find it very busy with people on Morris', the log, in the woods , on the point and in the sandbanks! So this left me "one" choice! I put my left hand rod into the middle of the lake with a zig set up and my right hand rod aimed towards the right hand feature.
After about an hour nothing had shown an interest in either rod so my approach changed. I decided to put bottom baits out straight an sit it out for a while.
After a short while, whilst chatting with Thad, my left had rod roared away into open water. At this point I thought I have hooked into a carp but the rod tip banged numerous times to give me the tell tail tinca signs, a fish of about 4lbs was landed shortly afterwards and returned quickly to the pool.
It was now time to put a bait into my favourite area in an evening session with a change of bait and an accurate cast my traps were set in anticipation.
Barry (the poacher) who had fished the bottom bay for the session stopped in for a chin wag and a chat about fishing some of the other Leamington waters etc, when my right hand rod let out a howl with both myself and Barry commenting that this was something big.....I ran to the rod which was screaming and hit the run!..........It was something big in fact I think the biggest thing that lives at the pool.....the cob swan!
With both myself and Barry wondering how it how picked up my bait and indeed how I was going to deal with it!,the swan shook his head violently and to my great relief spat my hook within seconds of picking it up....was I glad that we fish barbless!
I retrieved my rig complete and intact!
This I feel was lucky situation for the swan as Barry had rolled up his sleeves ready for a full on fight!....I was more concerned about how to pull in a swan from 100 metres in the air!
Very pleased to say that no damage to any party concerned happened.
After Barry had stopped laughing at me and cracking "Swan lake and Swan song" jokes I re-rigged and hoped for more luck.
I had one more run at about 8.45 but lost the fish on the strike .
Once more Ryton wins.......

Will hopefully get out sometime later this week for another evening session...might try the method as it seems to be taking some fish at the moment.


Saturday, 8 May 2010

My first reason to Blog!

After following many blogs, I have decided to do as the Romans do by joining in and creating a blog page myself.

It is my aim to blog about my experiences as an amateur angler with all my "ups and downs" along the way.

The reason I have started today is that at last I broke my "Curse of the carp".

As previously mentioned I have been following various anglers blogs which include Ryton Pool in their content, especially that of Roger Booths "Ryton Carp", I knew the lake held some very nice fish, not only in size but also in quality. So this season I decided to give them a go!

Over the past weeks I have banked quite a few nice tench up to 6lb and a mirror carp of 10lb 4oz (which was very pretty) but the larger specimens have alluded me.
Tinca of 5lb!

I have tried various rigs including chods,zigs, running leads and bolts, with and without back leads. Now at last I hope I have found a method that I feel works! (until I try something else!).

I have also been experimenting with baits ranging from bread, maggots, boilies, and pellets through to spicy sausage! Again , as with the rigs I hope now having caught I can stop experimenting and just concentrate on a tried and tested method and hopefully bag more fish.

So, less waffle!

After putting some time in last night, learning how to splice lead core and creating new rigs for today (spending more cash!) I woke earlier and had my fingers crossed for a good day. On arrival I was the only person on the lake so I decided to put my tackle down at peg and walk the lake to see if any fish were visibly feeding, with the water so clear large brown areas can be a good sign. With nothing shouting "Here I am, come and catch me!" I decided to fish where I had put my tackle,on a peg that I no has produced some nice fish recently.

I quickly set one rod quite close to "a feature" with a bottom bait and the other at distance with a zig rig set up.

The traps where set now just the wait......About 1hr 10 mins!

After contemplating my competence as an angler and the pros of fishing a well stocked venue, my right hand margin rod tore off, with the bobbin flying forward and the alarm sounding, this was not a tench!

I wounded down and hit into the fish,I had to slacken of the drag quickly as it replied by kiting hard to my left, which to my relief was above my other line. At this point I had big match nerves!

As it came closer in my heart sank as the fish hit very heavy blanket weed to my left and I thought it was snagged, and lost. Steady pressure thankfully saw it release and swim back towards me. Applying increasingly more drag I lifted a huge clump of weed with my back lead (which at the time was far from flying!(, by doing this it put me back in direct contact with the fish which slowly drifted in over the lip of my net and up to the float at the knuckle.

At last I had done it, after numerous weeks tallying up to probably 100hours fishing I had caught one of "Rytons' Living Jewels!"

I let the fish rest in the margins whilst I prepared the unhooking mat, zero the scales, get the camera and composed myself!

First for the weight, i estimated in my head upper teens and was very happy indeed when the scales read 19lb 9oz but realising the are weighing heavy a more realistic weight of 19lb 3oz could be safely recorded.

Pose for the camera!

With the camera on timer I managed to get a few shots of the fish before slowly returning her to the pool, one second of hesitation and then away she went!

Great reticulation in the scales.

I fished on until about 9 o'clock on this peg but moved round later to another area but no more fish came, but this did not matter!

I walked away very happy and after talking to Roger who was fishing the point, it appears that it could be one of the best fish caught thus far thus season, though I do think Roger caught the very same fish a couple of weeks ago at 19lb .

Sorry about the pics juggling a fish and setting the self timer was a nightmare.

If the blog is boring and poorly constructed then again sorry, but everyone starts some where!

Hopefully be back soon with more news.

Tight Lines...