Friday, November 18, 2011

Give it a few days - maybe that's the answer

I go through phases when I fish every day. I sometimes find hitting a water for three or four days on the trot is the key to cracking it - possibly because if you're on there long enough, they've got to start feeding sooner or later.

Last time I tried this, I blanked four days out of five, which is dire by even my standards. Then again, I knew of other waters where people were catching, one day enduring a running commentary via text messages from a mate who had dropped right on them and was nailing them one after another a few miles from where my floats sat motionless.

You might think this means I'm stupid. But I've decided if I only learn to fish one more water, it's got to be the Ouse. That means struggling through the blank days until the penny finally drops. I've had a few good twenties off it over the years, but these have all come from well-known areas further upstream from the stretch I'm concentrating on.

The bit I'm fishing has produced the bigger fish in recent seasons, but they're literally few and far between. In fact predators seem to be thin on the ground full stop, which belies the incredible volume of prey fish.

I know find the silvers and you find the pike doesn't always hold true, but what's struck me about the few fish I've managed so far this winter is how thin they are. It's November now - not high summer, when pike do tend to look a bit skinny (from what I remember from when I used to catch the odd one or three zander fishing).

But the pike must be somewhere. Maybe the water's low in oxygen because of lack of rain/flow and amount of weed in the river. Maybe that's what's put them off the feed, along with the incredibly clear water.

Either way, I'm going to give it a few days on the trot and try a new area as well - mainly because parts of the river where I was catching a few pike last season now seem all but devoid of them.

I might even dust off the lure rods - just to see if a more mobile approach pays off better than planting my arse behind three or four bait rods and trying just a handful of swims in a day. Maybe it's a confidence thing, after all.

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