Monday, 20 June 2011
Fishing is the greatest pastime of all when it comes to following up a million mysterious leads. There simply aren't enough days in the year to follow up on every hunch you have or water you'd like to explore. However, I like to have a bloody good go! There is so much more fishing out there than you ever read about. If anything, the growth of blogging and web articles have heralded a more varied and open version of the sport, rather than mainstream articles which often confuse catching big fish with interesting fishing. In the midst of the copy I provide magazines, my own blog represents possibly my least polished writing- but you will find some of the more interesting subplots and smaller stones turned over.
This week I got back to some bass in the esteemed company of David Pilkington and Ben Garnett. For David it was a welcome day off from his guiding- for Ben it seemed like something of a field trip. For those who don't know my brother, Ben is very much a "wild fish in wild places" angler and is a dedicated natural scientist. A fanatic. This is the reprobate who culled the brighter coloured goldfish in my folks' pond because they "weren't natural enough". You couldn't say the same about bass in a million years.
With dodgy weather ruling out the open coast, we headed for an estuary mark. David has been increasingly drawn to bass for the past few seasons, which provide another angle to his guiding. Conditions were wretchedly windy, but that didn't dampen our enthusiasm and several gutsy school bass came our way- some of them more like Kindergarten than school bass! Just to get the line out and catch something seemed like a result on a day better suited to kite surfing. Nevertheless, for anyone looking to explore bass on the fly I wouldn't hesitate to give Dave a call (see the Arundell Arms link on my site, or google it). I can't give away our specific location, but if anyone can put you on the bass, it's Dave.
In the meantime I continue to be fascinated by our canals. Bigger adventures are all well and good, but I just love the diversity of species and methods on these little waters. Joining me for a very early Sunday service on the Taunton to Bridgwater canal was Seb Nowosiad. We fished flies, lures and baits at different times to enjoy a really varied day of sport. I also like these places simply because they are so beautiful. With rows of tall trees and pretty, lily dotted water you could easily think you were in rural France- until the bloody rain sets in.
Not easy fishing on this occasion, but a different possibility at every turn. I had roach and rudd on the fly, Seb had perch, pike and a terrific 3lb plus chub on a lure. We saw several others, which were amazingly spooky- nevertheless, they are clearly catchable provided you don't scare them first.