Session 21 – A Potpourri Of Fish

Tuesday, 12th May, and I’m back on my usual swim opposite the island at the club’s silvers tench and silvers pool making my first cast of the day at 0700 after having done the usual feeding and tackling and preparation initially.

2015-05-12 01

The day was quite blustery – to say the least – at times with a cold wind coming from my right to left and in these circumstances it was imperative to get the right tackle set up to cope with those conditions especially using laying on tactics that use a lightly overshotted float fished overdepth. Too little overshotting and the wind/drag will cause the line/float to pull the bottom anchoring shot along moving the bait, too heavy overshotting decreases efficiency of the setup by letting the fish feel too much resistance…. And the float must be buoyant enough to remain above water even in very high winds with water drag playing a part too. In my case a 3AAA straight waggler, with a 2SSG shot set 6” from the hook and 1 BB shot above the float served admirably. As explained before in these diatribes the shot above the float serves 3 purposes…

  1. A part of the standard shotting. In my case, this shot is usually the equivalent of the overshot load.
  2. Helps to get the line between the float and the rod tip sunken in order to prevent wind dragging the line.
  3. Laying on depends on overshotting the float used, and setting that float overdepth, and then tightening the line until the line tension causes the float to cock correctly. However, there is usually little weight used in the overshotting and when tightening the line to the float without an upper shot it is possible that a small sudden jerk may cause the bottom shot to be dragged and the rig to move and the line tension re-adjusted again to get the float sitting correctly – and this can happen several times. But by adding that upper shot (usually 12” or so above the float) when the line is slack that section if line between float and the upper shot hangs directly downwards and, as the line starts being tensioned, the shot will cause a ‘V’ to be created which flattens bit by bit as further tension is applied. Basically, it applies a dampening effect and prevents sudden and sharp movements reaching the float and preventing the movement of the bottom shot.

Baits used over the day were worm or bunches of maggot on a size 12 hook, 6lb main line straight through. 5-10 maggots catapulted around the float on each cast or around 10 minute intervals.

And so first cast was made and within a few minutes the float disappeared but the fish was missed, and 0715, second cast, a tench of around 3lb was hooked but unfortunately threw the hook at the net. Next fish, a 3lb 1oz  tench was successfully landed at around 0800 and for the next hour and a half I had a few bites but caught nothing… however, around 0930 things started to pick up and in the next half hour I hooked 3 chub (1 threw the hook, 2 landed) albeit small ones of 6oz – 8oz each… and for the rest of the session bites were quite regular throughout until I packed in at 1500.

And the final tally for the day was:

  • 10 tench – 8oz, 12oz, 1-00, 2-15 and the others in the 3-00 to 4-00 inclusive range
  • 2 chub – both around 6oz – 8oz
  • 1 bream – 4-11
  • 2 barbel – 8oz and 1-08

Of those a few were of special merit to me – the 4-00 tench was a 2nd best (had 2 other 4-00s previously but my personal best is 4-01), the 4-11 bream was again a 2nd best (my PB of 5-04 was caught in 76/77 season!) and the two barbel were a pleasant surprise, and in fact I had spoken to another angler at the pool earlier saying that there were barbel present but I hadn’t caught one in 18 months or more from there – and then an hour later I catch 2! :)

2015-05-12 Steve 4lb 0oz Tench
4lb 0oz Tench
2015-05-12 Steve 4lb 11oz Bream
4lb 11oz Bream
2015-05-12 Steve 1lb 8oz Barbel
1lb 8oz Barbel

Actually, I think I’ve discovered a new angling technique – tell someone you’ve not caught something for a long period of time and, it seems, that you’ll catch one or more within the hour as same thing happened a few weeks back – same pool too – when I said to someone I’d not had a perch from there for 18 months, and within an hour I’d landed a new PB one of 2lb 8oz! LOL! So can I just say… “I’ve never had a 10lb tench….” Now read next posting to see if it worked! LOL!

So…. next trip out is Friday 15th with Liz who is deciding the venue… she said yesterday she’d been thinking of one of our carp pools but after my results on the tench pool she’d need to re-think.

2 responses to “Session 21 – A Potpourri Of Fish”

  1. That’s a very good idea having the shot above the float, makes sense. Never heard of it being used before, but it will come in handy in certain situations.


    1. Cheers!

      But its an idea I actually ‘borrowed’ from the match/pole guys…
      With a long pole in a wind its hard to keep it steady and as the tip is in close proximity to the float any pole movement adversely affects the float and hence the bait – and so they add a small shot (size 6 or 8 usually, I think) about 6″ from the float and so any pole movement just opens/closes the ‘V’ in the line caused by that shot.

      I use bigger shot than the pole guys though as I’ve different needs – for me to help sink the line as well as act as a buffer for tensioning.

      I generally use an upshot equal to amount of overshot I want to add to the float – so if I want to overshot a float that takes 1SSG to sink to the barest of the tip showing and overshot by 1BB then I put the 1SSG at 4″-6″ from the hook and a 1BB about 12″ above the float.

      Obviously, you can only do it in waters up to a certain depth – say, up to 7′ with a 13′ rod as you need a fixed float and it becomes a casting problem – and can’t do with a sliding float in even deeper waters obviously.


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