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The bad one

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I guess I'm like most, we only ever remember the good times when we catch good fish and have a very, very selective memory about the grullers!

So I'll deal with the grullers first. Since my last entry the river has been low clear and fished quite poorly. I've not taken any fish of any species of any note.
It got that bad that the Bad One even started missing days fishing, and I'm very fortunate that I can usually get on 3 days a week. At one point I didn't wet a line for 15 whole days......just not me that!
No urge or motivation to go, and when I did I float fished for ow't that would take a maggot. I caught quite a few dace and roach but nothing big.

Then I missed about another 7 days fishing through the malaise of lack of interest to go.
The line in the sand was drawn when she, that's her who shall be obeyed, suggested I go shopping with her. WHAT! the answer was emphatic. "I don't do shopping!"
Well I do, but just not with her. Don't know about you, but women are mindless robotic shoppers to me. They ruminate, cogitate and salivate over each item, which are usually the same items they've see, pick up each and every week, only to replace them back on the shelf unbought.
Me I shop for what I want to buy. I know roughly where it is in the store. I'm in, its off the self in the basket and on to the next item I want. Nothing, despite the buy one get 300 free distracts me from that task. 20 quids worth of groceries are sourced and paid for in less than 10 minutes.
Oh and another thing, "why is it always a woman that goes to the hand basket, cash only till with a trolley and a credit card." "And why does the till operator, usually a woman, let her use the till, getting the manager, a woman, to authorise it?"
It's a really good job the silly sods can't hear what I'm saying to myself in my head!
So there you go, that's why I don't do shopping with my wife or any other woman for that matter!

I've digressed into the grumpy old man's syndrome for a while there, but it's better out than in and I feel a lot better for it now!
As I did after the threatened shock of actually having to go shopping with the obeyed one, so I started going fishing again 2 weekends ago.
I decided that I'd really give it a good go on the float for the roach and see whether I could put a good bag together. So I really piled the maggot in to get them going. I'd like to say the plan worked, but it didn't for that species. First fish was a big dace of about 8 oz, then a seatrout about 3 lbs, a few chub about a pound, then the bills found the maggot, taking 3 fish to about 7lb, which made for good fun on the Harrison GTI float rod. Man did it take on an awesome curve when I hit the biggest of the lot. But the quality of the rod stood the test and all were landed on 4 lb line.
I took more dace to 8 oz up and until the light faded, but not a single roach did I see or catch.

The following Saturday after it had rained a bit on the Friday and put about a foot on the river, I plumbed for a swim that has produce some big barbel to a friend in similar conditions. It produced only one bite for me and that was a chub of 3 12.

Then on the Tuesday lat week it rained most of the day and raised the river to about 5 ft. Given this substantial rise, so did my optimism for having a big Bill. My usual fishing partner Ian phone me to see whether I was going. It was quite out of the blue Ian phoning, even though he'd been my fishing partner for the last five years, as I've not seen or fished with him since July. The reason being he's started his own business and has been working to establish it, so he's not been turning out.

Anyway he turns up on the length about 6 00 pm on the day and found me ensconced in the same swim I'd fished Saturday. He drops in a swim 25 yards down from me and gets on with setting up and baiting his swim. A couple of hours go by and all I've had to show is a few rattles on the Qtip. I reel in and take a walk down to catch up on how things are going with him. The usual questions are asked.... have you had any bites yet, etc. As we're talking the left-hand rod whips round and he's into a barbel. "Its a good en' he says feels like a double." Que all the expletives you can think of from me. You Stuffy fatherless child.. Dangly bits made of justice in the world. After a good fight I put the net under it.

I did think about just catching it with the landing net string and pinging the fish off Oop! Sorry about that mate!
But being more honorable than that, I duly landed the fish for him. He then says it'll go 11 that one! Nop it not an 11 that mate, you've not got your eye in on weight, it's a 10 and I'll give you 10 4. Out comes his scales and they not working right, it weighs 10 3 on them. He's not having it, it's an 11, so I go and get mine which are new and it weighs 10 8. Do I need to say I told you so? The last word I caught was OFF!
Well the end result was I blanked and he had a chub as well by the time we packed at 10 pm.

I've been plagued by wrong swim selection all season, which is not something I'm use to at all. I normally, even when I do get it wrong can usually whittle something out of it. But it's been dog days for me this season.

Ian's up for Saturday and says he ring me Sat morning. Well he did, only to tell me he's tied down on a job that's gone to rat poo. So I'm on my own again on the same length, but much further down....and no it wasn't in the swim he fished on Wednesday!

At about 6 pm I saw a very big barbel roll over my feed on the down stream rod. Confidence and expectation started to rise like sap up a tree. An hour and a half passed with a few rattles on the down streamer, then just as I'm rolling a fag, round it goes and paper and baccy go into oblivion. The fish fought hard and made several long runs before it came to the net. As it went in I could see it was a big fish of about 12lb. Could this be yet another PB, it looked big enough, but was it? Well no, it went 11 14 and 3 oz short. But hey it's still the second biggest barbel I've ever had!

So you just know what I did then.... Yep, I texted Ian saying not only you could he have all the fun catching doubles, just had an 11 14. A smallish chub of about 3 lb followed before I packed up.

Sunday dawned and I made a bold decision not to go back on the same length, but to go a few miles down river. Given my bad choice of swims all season, was I not only getting the swim choice wrong but perhaps the length as well?

Well the answer to that was no, because I had a fish of 8 9 yesterday from that length.
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  1. Rickrod's Avatar
    A very good fish and a good blog well done Bad one
  2. Skoda's Avatar
    Really good blog!