Monday, 27 May 2013
Back to more active fishing this week. You can only contain me in a bivvy for so long before I get seriously restless. I did finally get into some carp at Darts Farm on another night session, but must have had three of the smallest fish in the lake. I couldn't wait to get back to some more impatient fishing, which started on the Bude Canal (above). This is a crazy little venue; every chance of a flounder amongst the roach. Or indeed a trout, and I had three on maggot or caster.
I waggler fished most of a short session, catching rudd steadily. With hindsight I should perhaps have spent longer down the track for the bream. It's not the prettiest or most sophisticated method, but a small method feeder was deadly. In fact it can be downright unfair- you can be sat there presenting the bait perfectly on a pole and fine tackle and yet next door someone is hauling fish out on a horrendous chunk of groundbait and 6lb hook length. There is a certain pleasure in watching the tip go crazy I suppose, and I landed a cracking bream and lost another two in perhaps 90 minutes of trying this, although pedalo warfare soon slowed things down. Not a bad catch though:
I've also been back on the trail of new waters, first up at St Tinney Farm, which has several of the sort of ponds that take you back to childhood- cute, leafy and stuffed with carp, roach and rudd. I took one look before reaching for the fly rod.
The water was hardly gin clear, so I went for a size 10 black and peacock. The rudd played ball from the off, and I also had some cat and mouse style fun with the carp. I had one suck in the fly without getting hooked, another keep nosing it for several yards and then, finally, a nice mirror bolting off. Just shows, you don't need chum mixers to lure carp. It takes a little more patience, but the fish of mature ponds know exactly what insects are:
I'm hoping to do more with St Tinney in fact (about 20 mins from Bude). There are lots of great little streams and stillwaters nearby as well as the coarse fish on site. Some nice rudd could also form some great guided trips on sunny afternoons. For today's mission, visitors Karl and son Callum Salmon (great fishy surname) were keen to learn to fly fish, so I took them to Simpson Valley to try a half day session. Well versed in coarse fishing techniques this was something entirely new to try.
Some anglers take a bit of practise, others are just naturally good with a fly rod. Callum was definitely one of the latter. I always like to start the process on a nice flat space without the distraction of fish, water and trees. After an hour or so of pointers on grass, he was already creating elegant loops on the lakes. Both our intrepid fly casters caught fish and hopefully caught the bug: