Session 59 – Lure Of The Canal…

Tuesday, December 8th, I decided to head to a stretch of the Staffs-Worcs canal that is available on the Wolverhampton AA card … the decision to visit that stretch being influenced by (a) its quite a nice stretch of canal – usually with good features (brambles, overhanging bushes, etc) over on the far bank and (b) its likely that I will not renew my WAA card for 2016 when it expires at the end of December 2015… due to having taken out a BAA card for the coming year which gives me access to lengthy stretches of the ‘Staffie’ and I also have a couple of stretches available via my membership of Kinver Freeliners … and if I should decide to fish on the odd occasion on a WAA stretch then day tickets are available on the bank at £2.50 per day.

You probably noticed in my opening paragraph the phrase ‘usually with good features’ – as currently it seems that the legalised hooligan/vandal organisation that goes under the name ‘Canal and Rivers Trust’ has deemed it necessary to wipe out that vegetation almost entirely – and has made the towpath side almost golf green like. As they intend to dredge the Staffie along its entire length from its confluence with the Severn at Stourport up to its confluence with the Trent & Mersey canal at Great Heywood in Stafford I can only hope that the bankside destruction is just a part of allowing these works to go ahead unimpeded – and that after the dredging is completed and for the next 25-40 years (the frequency of canal dredging) the bank sides are again allowed to grow naturally… OK, I have no problem with mowing/maintaining a path of say 1 metre width for walkers/cyclists/etc but to mow an entire 10 yard width of bankside, esp along the water’s edge and under hedgerows, to golf course standards is a waste of money and more importantly causes destruction and disruption to the habitat of our native flora and fauna…

Rant over….

And so it came to pass that I arrived at the canal at around 0945 and started off with a small oval purple/turquoise pearlised pattern blade spinner – which over the session was changed to other blade spinners as I walked along the banks to the furthest limit of the WAA stretch… and as that area is known to have pike (99% of the time I’ve fished this swim I’ve had takes or at least follows….) … I tried larger spinners and then a mini-S lure in roach pattern, and finally a ‘Rapala Countdown’-type lure in fire tiger patterning – but no joy from perch or pike at any point of the walk. I had a coffee, a few more casts into and around the ‘pike area’ and then walked back to the car, casting out the fire tiger lure at strategic and promising looking points but to no avail and I finally arrived back at the car and left the water at around 1230…

Plans for the next outing – Thursday 10th December – Pike Pool 7 – a deadbait session and possibly an hour on the lures at the end of the day.

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