I haven't been on the riverbank since Sunday and blanked then even still I could feel mild withdrawal symptoms setting in. I wanted to get out and about, see what was going on and what state the river was in. The weather's been pretty much a mixed bag this week but theres been a noticable drop in temperatures again especially last night, we were down to 3 deg. having said that theres not been enough rain for any flood the river is only up an inch or two. I'd noticed from my local travels over the last few days that theres been quite a bit of activity on the river, I'd seen a few boats out trolling and the bankside brigade have been out in force too. Was anyone catching? I didn't know, I'd not heard anything for a while such are the joys of being a solitary fisherman! I wasn't going to catch anything sitting at home, the forecast looked reasonable so with any luck I wouldn't get soaked. I'd got a few new lures during the week and fancied trying them too so I threw a stripped down (lure only) kit in the boot. The mission keep moving / travel light / cover water, no exploring or new swims today as I only had a few hours. I had two places in mind both have produced jacks on a fairly consistant basis maybe there would be some bigger fish about willing to feed with the onset of cooler temps, taking the current levels into account I figured these would be as good a place as any to start.
With the school run complete I was on my way to the first swim, conditions appeared ideal a cool misty morning with the hint of a bright crisp day to follow. I wondered if it was my imagination or had the trees already turned a good deal, everything appeared distinctly autumnal this raised my expectations even further. I first went to the swim that has most recently produced fish. A new addition to my "working lure" list the Rapture swimbait was first to hit the surface, as it came closer I could both see and feel it knocking in the water as it sent out vibrations to my unsuspecting quarry. I was sure something was going to happen at any moment.........but it didn't. Nothing, not even a knock or a follow! I went through all the lures old and new, up and down the bank I covered alot of water at all depths....... Nothing. The mist lifted and the river lite up as the sun shone through.....still nothing! This went on for just over two hours until I grabbed the gear and headed to the second swim a couple of miles downstream.
|First double of the season, 11lb 7oz.|
This is a very small weedy swim near a slack it could be fished thoroughly with a lure in less than an hour. I put on a Savage Gear 4Play and got down to business, after forty minutes I was preparing myself for another blank when it happened! I had twitched the lure back one more time and was about to take it out of the water when a late taker forced me to keep it in the water a moment longer, one of those takes when you see the whole thing happen under your nose (nature in action) incredible! Stealth attack, seize and retreat all in the longest split second you could ever experience.
Such was my position on the bank that two anglers in a boat were good enough to come by offering to lend a hand if I was unable to land the fish (bit of a stretch but I got there in the end) and a passer by the name of Sean was kind enough to take a few photos. Came in on the scales at 11lb 7oz (first double of the season) and went back kick'n. Many thanks to all especially the fish!