13 April 2012

The tench and Ratty and me

I've never fished White Bishops lake well, and following Tuesday's performance I see no reason to update that statement.

My favourite Bishop Bowls lake, Walworth, had been hammered in two big matches over the weekend, so I thought I'd give it a miss and try to break my White Bishops hoodoo instead. Hmmmm.

With a decent westerly pushing through I set up on the northeast edge, peg 3, and gently lobbed a feeder out with luncheon meat on the hair. Within minutes I'd missed my first bite of the day. I won't bore you with the full details, but suffice it to say that I missed perhaps 20 bites on the tip during the day, and hit precisely none. I tried everything I could think of - shorter hair, longer hair, no hair, shorter and longer hook lengths, hitting them later and earlier, tighter line and slacker line. I'll happily accept any ideas anyone has that might help me remedy this in future because quite frankly it drove me to distraction.

small but perfectly formed - my first tench of 2012
Thank goodness for the float then. After two hours in the teeth of the wind I relocated to the sheltered calm of the opposite shore, allowing me a) to warm up and b) to put a small waggler on the edge of the marginal shelf. Red maggot produced some skimmers, a string of decent roach, a couple of small carp and, at last, my first tench of the year. Admittedly it was one of the smallest I've ever caught, but it was an absolute smasher to look at. A sight for sore eyes indeed.

I kept returning to the feeder from time to time, and the misses kept coming. This might have made for a miserable day, were it not for the redeeming successes on the float coupled with some delightful wildlife encounters - an oystercatcher flew loudly south, chiffchaffs fluttered and sang all around me, and finally a water vole swam across my swim no more than two metres from my toes. This was only the third or fourth I've ever seen one that closely, making it an absolutely priceless moment.

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