Archive for December 16th, 2011

My trip to the Ivel had to be postponed, due to the severity of the overnight rain on Monday and Tuesday morning. Reports were, that the river had risen and was heavily coloured. It’s too far to go unless conditions are worth it.

So Geoff and I opted for a trip to Hertfordshire. We fished a club water that hopefully wouldn’t be too affected by the rainfall. On arrival we found the place deserted, which is a rarity. It was cold, with a slight frost. Brass monkeys fits the bill! The wind had calmed down and things were looking promising.

My intention was to target the roach and dace. So with this in mind I was armed with a light quiver rod and 3lb mainline and a float rod with 2.6lb mainline and 1lb 9oz hooklink with a fine wire 22 hook. On the float rod I intended to use a single maggot or caster and the quiver rod small pieces of crust and lob worms, cut in half.

By the time we got riverside the temperature seemed to be dropping. The wind gathered some momentum too and it was a cold one. Things felt decidedly chilly. Still we were wrapped up and anticipated a good day, as the river looked spot on. It is still a bit low and could do with another 6-10 inches, so lets hope we get some more rain soon, although preferably not whilst I’m actually fishing. Not that I’m selfish you know 🙂

As the light started to become more evident, so the wind increased. It got colder and colder. My fingers were numb and I had to keep reeling in and walking up and down the bank to keep warm, the big whimp that I am. Still prior to that I had missed a good bite on the half lob worm and then tempted a small chub of about 2lbs. Now the light had improved out came the float rod. After an hour I hadn’t had a twitch and still no one else had turned up. I decided a move was in order. Just as I settled into my new spot, another angler had decided to try his luck. He came to regret it! I think out of the other 3 or 4 anglers that turned up throughout the day, I only heard of 1 small roach being caught.

First trot through the new swim and I hooked into a zoo creature. It was obviously a barbel. It straightened the hook. That’s the beneficial thing about using fine wire hooks with light line. You won’t get snapped up and leave line trailing in a fish. They just straighten the hook and they’re gone. After that I spent several hours trying to induce a bite but couldn’t even muster a tiny dip on the float tip.

More walks, coffee and food were in order, to keep out the cold. It really did feel like the bleak mid-winter had set in. Then of course I couldn’t get that damn hymn out of my head! The wind by now had increased and after a heavy shower the skies at least looked a little less threatening. So out went the feeder rod again. This took up the remainder of the afternoon. Fortunately the fish responded well. Sadly not the roach, I never found one. However the barbel and chub offered more sport. Two barbel, the biggest about 5.8 – 6lbs and 6 or 7 chub to about 3.25lb kept me occupied. Then another spell of heavy rain dampened my spirits just a little too much. I was fed up now, cold and wet. Geoff had managed a few roach and a couple of small chub and we decided enough was enough. Time to head to the services for a nice cuppa and some nourishment.

A nice barbel

All in all, not a bad day considering. I think I’m just beginning to thaw out.

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