With an improvement in the weather – and the improvement is forecast to last at least another week with air temperatures at a minimum daytime reading of 8’C – I decided to take my lure rods for a jigging session on the local Staffs-Worcs canal (KF-SW/SP) in search of pike and perch – zander not having reached this neck of the woods yet … but they are getting closer…
So, I set off out of the house at 0930, arriving at the canal at 1000 with my 2 pre-setup rods. Both were 9’ lure rods rated 10g-40g with 30lb Dyneema braid main lines. One was set up with a 3”-4” fire-tiger pattern paddle tail jelly on a jighead and the other had a Shakespeare Midi-S plug, perch pattern.
Anyway, I walked about 1400 yards down the banks casting in all the likely looking spots and others too fishing just the jig rod but without a single response. And I had the misfortune to encounter groups of my three most despised members of the human race on that walk – ramblers (a group of about 20 passed by), cyclists (again a group of about 20 passed by) and Canals & River Trust workers with chain saws… even now I shudder at the thought!! Oh, to be in the USA and have the right to bear arms!
So, at that point I had a stop for a cuppa and changed the jig to a small red bladed bar spoon – but it felt ‘less right’ than even the jig … with the jig the 9’ rod was the wrong option and I’d have been happier with my 8’ rod – trying to give small jerks the rod was too long and making the jig ‘jump’ too far as a consequence for what I wanted … and with the blade spinner the braid was far too heavy for purpose, 15lb would have been far better.
With the time now around 1200 I decided to turn back and head to the car casting out the Midi-S from time to time but again with no response …..
So I think the problems were due, apart from my natural ineptness, to the snows of last week having thawed out … and entering the canal they have cooled the waters and the higher air temps haven’t been high enough to counteract this in the time. Plus the melting snow has washed probably a bit too much colour into the waters plus a dual carriageway runs along the canal at the top of a high bank and possibly the salt from the road grittings of the past few weeks has also been washed down and ‘sickened’ the water to a degree….
And so that was my day…..
The Worcester Stour that runs alongside the canal:
At the minute I’m thinking of visiting the Fazeley Canal at Drayton Bassett (by Drayton Manor Park), a stretch under the control of the BAA (Birmingham Anglers Association), on Friday 26th in search of pike, perch … and zander as the canal holds a reasonable head of them – unless the C&RT have been netting recently that is…
I’m intending on taking my 8’ jig rod, one of my 9’ lure rods of today and my 12’ 3lb TC bass rod which is my ‘canal pike bait’ rod along with some deadbaits so that I can sit it out in good looking areas and/or rest with a coffee and chocolate when desired…. It will mean an early start though to try to beat the M6 going-to-work traffic but no problem once I’m there as I can sit out the darkness out in the car….