Today, Monday 3rd February 2014, I was off to the club pool again on a lure session in search of those so far elusive pike.
The day was cool (6C) and very breezy with a fair bit of wave motion evident on the water. This breeze made casting downwind a hoot (50+ yards easily) at times but in the other direction it was hard to make 20 yards! This breeze also meant that several times ‘wind loop’ tangles in the line needed to be resolved, and a couple of times this was only managed by cutting out the tangle. The water itself was very clear though.
I arrived at the water’s edge at around 0815 and set up my three lure rods for the day – all fitted with 30lb braid mainline and 25lb wire spinning traces. The rods themselves being a Mitchell 2.42 metre (ca 8 foot) ‘Adventure Fire’, a Mitchell 2.42 metre ‘Catch’, and a spinning rod that started life as a non-descript 11 or 12 foot float rod but which had about 12 inches removed from the top (back in the 80’s) and is now used as a 10 foot 1.75lb TC soft (all through action) spinning/lure/wobbling rod. The two Mitchell rods – as far as I can see/feel are identical in all ways bar colour – the ‘Fire’ has a red butt section, the ‘Catch’ a black one. Both have black top sections – and both top sections fit either butt section.
Three rods were used as it was easier to ‘ring the lure changes’ that way than to have to keep removing lures from their wire traces and swapping around every few casts.
So the lures of the day were chosen as to cover a range of differences and thus, hopefully, try to cover all options….
- On the ‘Fire’ rod – a Shakespeare ‘Big S’ lure in Fire Tiger colouration. A bright, shallow diver with a strong waggle action and has a built-in rattle to add sound attraction.
- On the ‘Catch’ rod – a 13cm Savage Gear Soft 4Play Fungus Roach used in a red scull lip. A small, natural colour and action, ‘jelly’ fish. It could be used with a standard jig hook but I find that the scull lip add and extra dimension to the freedom of movement of the bait – and the red colouration also acts as an attractant, simulating blood/raw flesh and providing a ‘target’ point for the pike. Also the scull lip provides a quick attachment for the lure bodies so its easy to quickly change from one body pattern to another. And they can also be used for suitably sized natural baits too (eg sprats, sardines). And they come in 3 sizes – small for 9.5cm lures, medium for 13cm and large for 19cm – and in three colours – clear, UV red and UV green.
- On the 10’ rod – a 19cm Savage Gear Hard 4Play ‘Koi’ Carp. Very natural action, slow sinking.
So over the course of the next three and a half hours I wandered around the pool fishing several likely (and unlikely) spots – and all produced exactly the same – not a single snifter or peek of a fish – AGAIN.
So the dearth of fish being landed has continued yet again.
However, given the conditions with the wind it was not an ideal day for lure fishing in my opinion.… I find that on such days lures have to work hard for results due to, I believe, the surface disruption casting fleeting shadows and flashes of light in the underwater environment and the lure is having to battle these effects to get itself noticed.
SO…. plans ahead….
On Friday, 7th February, it’s planned that Liz and myself are to visit the pool for a pike session – but this time it will be with the deadbait rods although we’ll probably take a lure rod each in case we decide to do a bit of lure fishing.
I just thought – a long time back I mentioned I used a Kodak C142 camera specifically for its 2-shot self timer, and then a little later I mentioned the ‘new’ 40x zoom one I’d obtained without going into any of the details on the new acquisition – and why its perfect for fishing when you’re unaccompanied and want that ‘trophy’ picture – so I’ll remedy that now! :)
OK – so this new camera is a Canon SX100IS – bought off eBay for not too many pounds actually and I’m exceedingly pleased with it! Its a compact camera – a little larger than the Kodak – and its got a 10x optical zoom and a 4x digital zoom capability (to give 40x zoom when used together) – and the picture quality is very good even at the 40x setting… and its got the usual macro/video/etc capability BUT another excellent facility is that the self-timer function is programmable unlike many other cameras. Usually you get a single 10 sec delay self timer, the Kodak had a 2-shot 10 second self timer (ie on triggering at the 10 second mark it took a picture but then after another 10 seconds it took a second shot). Now the importance of a self timer cannot be emphasised enough when fishing on one’s own – purchase a bank stick/camera adaptor, mount the camera on a bankstick, and selfies of you and your fish are at hand, far better than fish just laying on a mat, etc. But a single 10 sec delay is NOT the best – after all, having set up the camera and pressed the shutter release, you need then, in that 10 seconds, to get to your position, remove the fish from its cover, and pose and 10 seconds goes so quickly – and fish do not play ball, they flap, etc and so you find quite often you need to repeat the ‘fire, run, get fish, pose’ sequence a few times before you get a satisfactory result. With the Kodak, things eased a little, as with the second shot, you got effectively extra time and a second chance to get a decent picture without the need to restart… But the Canon takes this to an extra level in that it provides not only a 2 sec timer and a 10 sec timer but also a custom setting that allows the setting for the length of initial delay (10secs, 20 secs, or 30 seconds) and also to set the total number of shots taken (further shots are taken at 2 sec intervals) up to a max of 10… So I set mine to fire initially after a 20 second delay and to take 5 pictures in all – so effectively if I’m perfectly posed within 28 seconds then I’ve got my shot – and very often I do get a choice of which is the best of the 5 shots to keep too.