Thursday 16th May saw me, as planned in my previous posting, at 0600, heading off to the other pool (SAC-NP) of the club that Liz and I recently joined. A solo journey this time as Liz works on Thursdays, this pool lies about 20 miles from home in Shropshire and so I arrived there around 40 minutes later without mishap as I’d located the pool ‘virtually’ by following directions given by a friend using Google Earth, obtained the Lat:Long co-ordinates from the GE data and entered these into my car’s SatNav … well, I did overshoot the entry gate by a few feet and had to reverse a short way but near enough… :)
So, I followed the downhill track and at the bottom of the hill there was a 4-section folding barrier and a cone across half of the track but the barrier was placed so that half (a car width) of the path was clear and so I was unsure whether I was allowed to drive down to the pool side (about 100 yards). So I parked up short of the barrier and strolled down to the pool and it appeared vehicles had been along there – and also in the hedgerow side of the path it appeared there were layby/parking areas… so walking back to the car and looking around the area of the barrier it seemed that there wouldn’t be much room for farm vehicles to manoeuvre if needed … and so I did drive the car down to the pool. However, after fishing for an hour or so, two of the bailiffs for pool appeared and after a card check informed me that I should have parked outside the barrier and that if the farmer needed access he always walked down to the pool to sort it. Anyway, all amicably resolved in the end by moving the motor to the correct area and some info on the pool gleaned into the bargain.
And … so to the pool …
As you can see a nice small pool in a very quiet area … and a nice sunny day to boot … and carp were already topping all over area. In fact, I’d been previously told take plenty of bait especially bread for surface fishing for those carp. I was also told by the bailiffs – who were also fishing – that besides the carp there were good roach and perch and skimmer bream to around 6oz and as I’d already planned to split my day by firstly floatfishing and then switching to floating bread I initially catapulted out a few floating dog biscuits to literally ‘test the waters’ – and it was like a piranha attack in the Amazon horror story almost!
Anyway, sticking to plan, I set up the float rod to fish on-the-drop, plumbed the depth (around 8-9 feet where I was but I was told its even deeper further along by the dam wall) and set depth to fish the bait just on the bottom…. the usual feeding of small balls of particle laced cereal groundbait and catapulted maggots throughout the spell. Baits were maggots and worm. Results of this period – a few small perch, roach/rudd and gudgeon – I even found one gudgeon ‘gill-netted’ in my landing net later in the day. AND … whilst tackling up, even before adding a float, I’d placed the rod with shot and bare (I think it was although there may have been a remnant of worm/maggot skin from previous outing) hook dangling in the water whilst I looked up the float I was to use … and the rod bent over! And a carp of about 1-1.5lb was landed – and was fairly hooked on the inside of the lip… a bit parrot mouthed and ‘tatty’ but think it must have been the worse conditioned fish in the pool as all the others caught were pristine!
Part two of the day saw me switch to my ‘floater’ rod with bread baits… and for the next few hours it was a good bit of fun – and nice to be able to do it again after the long period of extended colder weather we’ve experienced. All in all I must have had 10 carp varying from around 1-1.5lb to a best fish of 4lb 15oz ….
A few from the day…
A FLOATER TIP – when using bread, a light bait, you sometimes need to add weight to cast out further than the dry bread itself allows and often a quick dunk of the bait into the water immediately before casting will suffice but that does suffer the occasional drawback that the bread can fly off the hook on the cast if it becomes too wetted and soft. An alternative is to use a commercial ‘floater’ float – a sort of elongated bubble float – or even attaching a piece of stick with elastic bands. However, my personal preference – and free if you like cheese – is to use the wax that BabyBel, Edam(?) and the small Xmas truckles of cheese come wrapped in. A bit of working in the hand soon makes it mouldable to whatever size and shape (ball, sausage, etc) you require but in use the cooler water soon stiffens it nicely. A 1cm x 5cm sausage adds sufficient weight for quite a lengthy cast, floats well, can even be used to support the weight of things like linkswivels that may be used to attach ‘hooklengths’ to prevent those dragging the line down.
Anyway, an enjoyable water, that although it seems the fish won’t be smashing any records provides an excellent day’s fishing in pleasant and quiet surroundings :)
BAD NEWS – well, for me – in a way…
It seems now that I’ll be lucky to get 3-4 sessions in over the next month or so … Monday 20th we have people coming in to completely redo/refurbish our bathroom which is going to take around 2 weeks – but hopefully less as on Wed 5th June we have Liz’s parents arriving from Cyprus for 2 weeks and Liz’s Mum needs the use of a shower (otherwise it’ll be a watering can in the garden) due to having suffered a stroke a while back and unable to use a bath. And whilst the parents are here, for the 7 days in the centre, we are heading to Great Yarmouth for an extended family break at the caravan of Liz’s brother and his partner … The parents fly back on Wed 19th so normal service will be resumed shortly after that. I do have plans to fish a short session on Saturday 25th May and possibly Saturday 1st June when the contractors should not be working and I can drop Liz off at work early and then pick her up again on the way home around 2pm… so all very que sera sera at the mo :)