28 October 2014

Deserted by the gods

Few gods desert one as completely, rapidly and without warning as the gods of fishing.

I don't know what angers them or otherwise incurs their displeasure, but it is impossible to miss the moment when it happens.

Just over a pound: before it all went wrong...
One minute you will be fishing tolerably well, catching and enjoying a reasonable session; the next it will be all you can do to look at your own shoelaces without creating a birds-nest tangle of epic proportions.

And once the gods have left you, there is no going back. All your casts will find trees, your knots will fail and whatever fish you do hook will find root, reed or hidey hole by which to evade capture (invariably snagging you at the same time).

Thus it was on Sunday afternoon, when an ill-fated attempt to repeat the pleasure of the previous weekend at Bishops Bowl started well (with a small tench, barbel, a couple of decent carp and a second 1lb plus perch in two weeks), and then descended into farce as fish after fish towed me to the reeds, snagged me or otherwise drove me to distraction. 

After that promising start I proceeded to land little more all afternoon; I lost hooklength after hooklength and trashed at least four pole rigs. My pole technique improved with every put in, I thought I held my temper and concentration well given the provocations, but it was to no avail - the gods of fishing had deserted me and nothing would entice them back.

With the first early nightfall of winter upon me I packed up and went home, offering as I left a tiny prayer for better luck next time. Just in case.

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