After the birthday excitement of the other week it was time to see if my boy could maybe come across a few pike on his new set up. After having a great start the poor lad has managed to get himself into awful bother the last few times out, numerous snags some of which to my amazement were not even in the river! (the far bank and some poor unfortunate's boat come to mind) not to mention birds nests, various loops and knots. All these have meant disappointment and little or no fish for him of late.
So a deal was made that I would not fish this time out but act purely as "ghillie" and "river guide". Yes the blind leading the blind comes to mind but nevertheless that was the arrangement.
He really wanted to end his run of bad luck and blanks especially after seeing the photos of my recent double. He wanted a fish! and I therefore needed a strategy!
Of late I've just been fishing one rod, short lure sessions, these have produced fish but I thought he needed an extra edge if he was to come home successful so with his lure rod already set up I as the responsible "ghillie" set up another rod, a static dead bait popped up. We could now move from swim to swim, I could mind the deadbait whilst he fished lures either side of it.
I picked him up after school and off we went to the first swim a place where I've caught a number of jacks. A smelt on the pop up rig was positioned just in the shade under an over hanging tree and the young angler threw lures as directed by the ghillie! This strategy did not entertain the pike they were having none of it, not even my magical popped up smelt could generate a run. Time was running out. We took a gamble, threw the gear in the boot and moved upstream a few miles to another spot. It was time to up the game. I swapped the lure for a sink and draw rig, set it up with smelt and showed him where to cast. I was getting ready to put the static back out when I heard him say "I've got one"......but it was gone just as quick, I told him to leave it in the water, we both waited as the smelt began to sink slowly once again. There was a boil in the water the fish came a second time. No doubt this time, he was in, all hell broke loose as the jack let it be known he was not impressed with being duped by his evening prey. We landed the fish, got it up on the mat where a impromptu unhooking demo was given and after a quick photo call the angler took great pleasure in releasing his catch.
We were still recounting our great result when he was nailed again! a smaller fish this time but far more lively. I couldn't help but laugh as the fish ripped the braid off his reel as he attempted to control what seemed like a rocket propelled pike! After another unhooking demo we said farewell to the river and the pike as he slipped back into the night.