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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Lincolnshire
    Posts
    29

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    Most of my big river roach have been caught from the upper reaches. Is this just me or has anybody else found this to be the case and what is the reason behind it?

    And another thing, roach fishing on the upper reaches is better in the winter than it is in the summer but on the Middle Trent it seems to be the other way round. It was full of them in summer but now they seem to have done a disappearing act!
    Never take life too seriously.
    Nobody gets out alive anyway!

  2. #2

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    I'm not sure it's very easy to compare....

    Theres probably an interesting ratio that would be impossible to work out regarding the volume of water in relation to the average size of the fish in it.

    Lower rivers are by nature much broader and deeper than the upper rivers but theres also a bigger head of fish...
    I guess what I'm trying to say in a very long winded fashion is theres probably a very similar size of roach in both.

    It also depends entirely on the supporting geography of the rivers.
    In my part of the world (Norfolk/Suffolk) the upper rivers start very small generally from one source as tiny flowing dykes move through flat enriched farmland for 20 or so miles then turn immediately into deep tidal rivers that flow for a similar distance into the same esturary with few feeder rivers picked up on the way. So we have no real middle stretches at least not of any size or length and therefore very few ideal big Roach stretches on the upper rivers. The Wensum is an exception to this rule round this way but then it has no lower river to speak of so it's impossible to compare.

    Upper and lower rivers will also contain vastly different food soures in different number and your ceiling weight is going to be dependent on these too.

    Big Roach are easier to target in a way on upper rivers. If you've been out with your polaroids in the Summer you'll know if the river contains big Roach and by a process of paitience, trial and error, dedication, watercraft and no little skill, given time it might pay off.

    I've been out for the last two afternoons on The River Waveney around Bungay in the freezing fog, on a stretch that I know the bigger Roach could or should be in and endured 3/4 biteless hours then a flurry of bites around dusk which have resulted 5 Roach over a pound with the biggest at 1lb 12.

    Where as if I'm fishing the tidals in the Summer on a maggot or corn baited feeder rig it's really a best guess as to whats going to knock the rod tip next. And harder to target specific species of a specific size.
    I could fish the boatyards where most of the tidal Roach end up at this time of year and fish with a pole and maggot or caster, the next fish could be 1oz or 1lb.

    I've had 6 Roach over 2lb with the biggest at 2lb 9oz, 3 have come from the tidals virtually by chance and three from selectively targeting them on the upper rivers.

    As regards your where are they now query, It's probably down to the fact that roach are seasonal migrants so will of moved to their winter quarters and done so en masse. Leaving previously packed stretches of river barren....

    Any help??



  3. #3
    Ron 'The Hat' Clay (ACA) Guest

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    There is a tendency for the bigger roach on my local river Idle to migrate to the lower reaches during the back end.

    All my big Idle roach, fish over 1 1/2 lbs have come during the months of January Feruary and March.

    And I am fishing the lower reaches too.

  4. #4

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    A few years ago I lived in a house were a small drain used to be at the end of the back garden.
    Not much bigger than a large ditch at its narrowist 8 to 9 ft across and in a lot of places barely 18 inches deep. You know the type of water you look at from the bridge and then move on, thinking no fish will live there, it looks nothing.
    If I had never lived there I would not of fished it.
    One day my dad came home after walking the dogs and said, "I have just seen a massive fish it was this big" he said holding his hands apart. I thought my dad was exaggerating, but due to his excited state I went to have a look. My dad was right it was a large common carp lying lazily near some reeds. I nearly fell in with shock, how could such a large fish live in such a tiny non descript water?
    It was not a record breaker probably 8lbs if that, but at the time it was the biggest fish I had ever seen.
    For a few years I fished that small drain catching good carp, bream , gudgeon, perch and some lovely roach, in water so shallow I could not use a waggler. If I caught one of the larger fish there would be such a commotion on this small drain, that I would have to wait ages for another bite!
    This taught me a valuble lesson never overlook small waters, they can produce some realy good fish, with minimal tackle stealth and cunning!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Lincolnshire
    Posts
    29

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    Big roach from the the upper reaches are easier to locate. You can often learn a lot more by a couple of trips walking the riverbank in the summer with your polaroids, than an whole season of fishing it blind.

    In the winter time especially towards the end of the season, if the conditions are right, the big roach will often give their presence away by 'rolling' on the surface particually in the evening and early morning.

    And not forgetting, many years of experience of fishing your local water will often tell you where at various times of the season the fish are more likely to shoal up. Though catching them is a different matter!

    So maybe it is the intimate nature of a small river that enables you to target the larger specimens.

    But on my local river, the Upper Witham there appears to be a higher density of good sized fish. Whether this is down to poor spawning and a lack of younger fish coming through is open to question.
    Never take life too seriously.
    Nobody gets out alive anyway!

  6. #6

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    Can't comment on Roach, they are almost non-existant in this neck of the woods.

    Chub though: They are abundant in the lower stretches of my local river. Lots of small ones, from an ounce upwards, up to 3lb max.

    Further upstream they are pretty rare, but all 3lb plus.

    Strange.

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