Monday, March 24, 2014

An interesting walk, for shore

Brent geese caw in  flocks off-shore, as I hit the sand with furry chops. It's barely five minutes' walk from my house, but the beach is like another world as the tide ebbs and reveals its surreal rock-scape.

Winter storms have taken a big bite out of the cliffs, strewing shed-sized boulders at their feet. What strikes me is how much sand has gone, meaning bits which were barely three or four feet deep at high tide last summer must now be twice that.

The old wreck's still there, but the tides have moved her keel and popped the rivets from  her plates in places. I wonder how many winters she'll survive. I also wonder what fishing my usual pike fishing haunts would be like if they emptied the water out twice a day - more or less, depending on the moon phase, earth's rotation etc - and you could have a good old wander about on the bottom without getting your feet wet.

Then I spot something even more interesting than smashed razor shells and lugworm casts. As in a bit where the winter storms have gounged an even deeper bit, a perfect avenue between the rocks to work a lure through in a month or two's time. Bass alley..?

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Season's end and pastures new

One thing after another ate into my time, as the last week of the season arrived. I managed just one more trip, a few hours on some pits with Matt where we were sure we'd get a few.

After several hours trying - and failing - to catch a pike, I changed down to the lighter lures I'd brought to see if I can catch a perch. Two pits later, the rod slams round and probably the only pike on the whole complex which isn't off somewhere else getting ready to spawn necks a three-inch Hammer shad.

This probably sums up my season. Couldn't get out as often as I wanted, caught jacks when I did catch anything, while a big fish popped up under everyone's noses from a water hardly anyone rates as worth fishing these days.

Sum total of things learned is probably small pike love the smaller shads which seem to be in vogue in the Fens these days, judging by what other people I've seen out and about are using. Next season seems a long way off right now, but I'll probably try a few new waters to see if I can get my head around catching perch.

There's a summer to be savoured before I get the pike rods out again. My plan for that is explore a few new bits of the coastline, which has been re-shaped by the winter storm tides, which have scoured several interesting new features for when the bass return.

Last summer's total of one shouldn't that hard to beat. Then again, it will be me on the other end of the rod so who knows.

As I watched the last of the tide ebb down the tidal river today, another thought sprang to mind. I'm sure I saw a fish swirl in the channel, flattening the ripple. Maybe it was a mullet. I found a few of those last summer, but never quite managed to catch one.

Mullet in the Fens - now there's a totally off-the-wall target, a mad idea I'd get a real buzz from if I ever managed to stick my hook into one. To be continued. Soon.

Sunday, March 02, 2014

What a grey day

I flirt with two drains, neither of which look in any danger of throwing a fish up, before I try a new bit on the river. New, as in you can now get to a bit of it you couldn't before the EA removed a couple of trees and a tangle of reeds and undergrowth on a slight kink, meaning you can now fish along the drop-off, where the depth drops away to 20ft or more.

I'm not overly optimistic, on a grey old day with a downstream gale gathering pace beneath the clouds. After a few changes of lure, I can use the flow to push a Hammer shad into the bit where I think the fish might be, but it soon dawns on me they're not.