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Martin James award-winning fisherman consultant,broadcaster,writer


18/12/2018 - Trout Were a Nuisance

Trout Were A Nuisance

During the night I could hear the wind howling around the house, it was around 0700 hrs when I got up from my slumber, after a quick shower I looked out the window to see the trees in my garden being given a good shaking, on Radio 4 I heard the weather forecaster announcing gale force winds to 70 mph on the Irish sea coast. I had planned to fish today not having fished for three days. Sitting having my breakfast I watched the trees swaying side to side, I was surprised to see lot of rooks looking as they were having fun on the thermals, It surprised me to see so many at this time of the year.As I was drinking my second mug of tea I decided rough weather or not I was going fishing, within half an hour I was battling the gale force wind as I struggled to walk across the meadow, the only swim I thought might produce, that wasn’t in the trees, meant I would be facing directly into the wind but it comparatively safe, also there were a lot of heavy showers. Reaching the river bank I flopped down onto a bit of sponge, first job was to take the water temperature I was pleasantly surprised to get a reading of 42-43 degrees F. The water was clearing after the snow broth on Sunday when the river looked horrid with no chance of catching, so I didn’t bother, today the visibility was around six inches.

Old Tackle But It Still WorksToday

I put together a B James Kennet Perfection that belongs to my friend Paul known as Gobio Gobio on TFF this rod was matched with a centre pin reel with 4lb breaking strain line, I then attached a size 4 barbless hook with would be two LG shot and plastacine, my baits could be either soft smelly cheese paste, bread crust, lobworms or luncheon meat. I then put in two balls od mashed bread with a few chopped lobworms, having placed my landing net in a suitable spot, I baited with a knob of cheese paste then cast out allowing the bait to roll downstream until it settles in a crease, then sat holding the rod, with the strong wind the rod would have been blown from the rod rest, also I needed to hold the rod and feel for the bites, it wouldn’t have been possible to spot bites even if I could have used a rod rest. As I sat hoping for a bite, my thoughts went back to the 1950’s 60’and 70’s when with weather conditions like today, I would have been on a salt marsh in the Thames or Medway estuary, Greensborough marsh, Burntwick Island, Windmill Creek on the Isle of Sheppey, I was there on the February night in 1953 when the big floods hit the east coast, causing tremendous damage and loss of life. If we had two or three days to spare we often headed off to Lincolnshire Wash often shooting with possible the best guide of his generation Kenzie, also a notable poacher.

No Chub But Trout

Suddenly my thoughts were back to the present as I felt a pluck on the line, a second later another pluck striking I said “Yes a fish” eventually I netted a trout around 2lbs, quickly sliding out the hook I released the fish without touching it, I do get annoyed when I see people holding out of season trout for a picture, these fish are very fragile even more so as they are getting over spawning. If you should hook a trout please just unhook and release immediately. In the next hour I had four more similar fish, even though I was switching baits, though I didn’t use lobworms, I then rested the swim in the hope the trout would move off, at the same time feeding quite a lot of mashed bread.

At Last Some Chub

Having rested the swim I baited with a large chunk of luncheon meat, then cast further out into the stream, in the hope the trout would have dropped downstream, twenty minutes later, I felt a good firm pull despite the rod being moved side to side in the wind, striking I connected with what felt like a good fish as it used the fast water to its advantage, eventually I pulled a chub over the net estimating its weight around 4lbs. Rebaiting with another chunk of meat, I cast to the same area, within minutes I got another firm pull, soon another chub was in the net around 3lbs, in the next six casts I had three more chub averaging 3lbs. As the rain beat down, it seemed as if the wind was increasing in strength if that was possible, across the other side of the river I watched a good size tree come crashing down, later the roof was lifted of a shed. Around 1300 hrs I decided to have a brew with some eggs and bacon before deciding if I was going to fish on, lunch over I did give it another hour, with no more bites I before headed off home. I had been warm and dry at the waterside despite the heavy rain showers, though my fingertips tingled at times as they got cold it was worth it. I wouldn’t have caught those chub sitting at home and I will be back tomorrow.

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Martin James Fishing
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