Well, the New Year had started started and on Tuesday 3rd January 2017 I set off back to Pike Pool 5 for my first outing of a New Year on a frosty and cold morning although it appeared air temps were on a quick rise which added a bit of optimism for the day. On getting up at 0600 and looking out of the window the car was sat on the drive white all over but when I went out to start a de-icing of the windows at around 0700 the glass work was completely clear of ice although the metal bodywork was still covered over. And the car thermometer registered 3.5’C as I travelled across at around 0730
On the way to this particular pool I cross streams, canals and pass other pools and as I passed by a quick glance at each determined that there all were ice free and thus it was with surprise on arrival that I discovered half of my pool covered with ice – not that it affected me really as the frozen half was the opposite side of the pool to that which I had intended to fish anyway. Another surprise was that there was already another angler on the pool – and he must have arrived only a few minutes before me as he was tackling up and further round the pool than my intended swim….
During the day another 4 anglers arrived – 2 fishing the same bank as the first guy (south-west) and the father/son couple of the previous week’s visit were back on the north-east bank in the northerly corner whilst I was on the north-west bank… and all were pike fishing.
Anyway, as usual, I put out rubby-dubby and catapulted out maggots in order to draw in silvers to (a) attract pike and (b) to be caught for livebait – however, to no avail in respect to both – and I also had my Fishspy camera in action but from a quick perusal of the 3 hours of footage I’ve not spotted one fish of any size being ‘captured’….
The pike rod I fished with deadbaits on a float setup – fished both as float-ledger and suspended bait at various depths and distances out but again no inkling of any interest whatsoever… I used ‘jacks’ and smelt as the baits. Again, all was TOO quiet – usually with deadbaits of any kind, and in particular smelt, there is usually a almost continuous line twitching when ledgering, float bobbing when float fishing as the baits get attacked by, presumably chub although possibly others, who attack and suck the stomachs out – certainly anyway when you do hook a ‘twitcher’ it is invariably a chub that comes to hand. In the past several visits the twitches have been non-existent… ummm, why???
Anyway, at 1400 it was getting a bit cool and the thought of a hot bath and hot chocolate became more and more appealing and so I packed up a bit earlier than usual which also had the advantage of that I’d be missing the ‘school run’ traffic on the return home.
It transpires that the guys on the NW bank managed 2 small (2-3lb) pike between them but didn’t see myself as they were out of view behind bushes from my angle but the father/son duo told me. But seems that they may have been using ‘illegal’ livebaits anyway – all livebaits have to be caught in THE water being fished (English law – not allowed to transfer live fish between waters), on THE day of fishing and any unused ones returned to the water (club rules). And father/son, like myself, had nothing – not even on their maggot rods put out to catch bait…
Oh, on the walk from car to swim, one of the shoulder straps on my rucksack gave way – happened to the other strap a while ago and I managed to effect a repair but this time I think I could do with replacing it especially as I had a £50 tackle voucher for Xmas from the brother-in-law-alike. I’ll still try to repair this one though – a Wychwood Solace (old version, far better than the current one) – and keep as a spare… I’m looking at getting a Daiwa Mission 110 litre one but want to look at one first as it may be too big although the dimensions don’t seem too much, if any, bigger than the Wychwood or several 75/80 litre ones (main compartment dimensions: 37cm (W) x 22cm (D) x 48cm (H)).
Anyway, will be nipping to Angling Direct in Willenhall on Thursday to have a look at one…