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Martin James award-winning fisherman consultant,broadcaster,writer


25/11/2015 - Chub Wanted My Lone Angler Cheese Paste

My chub swim


After a dental appointment this morning I went off to the hospital to have my eyes photographed which is done each year as part NHS care for diabetics, having an eye infection, I was told they would give me another appointment. Driving home I stopped off at the river to check water level and clarity both were perfect, checking the water temperature I got a reading of 43 degrees F. Back home after a bowl of porridge with toast and marmalade, I decided to have a short session on the river the weather could be described as perfect, low light with virtually no wind. Tackle was already in my car, all I needed was a loaf of bread, a bag of Lone Angler cheese paste and sausage sizzle, I was ready to go. Fifteen minutes later I pulled into the syndicate car park, quickly changing from shoes to wellingtons I was ready to go, after the recent heavy rain the meadow was well sodden, you couldn’t describe it as walking more like slithering. My first swim at the bottom of a big pool where the far bank had a long line of beech trees interspersed with alders and willows, many tree roots could be seen plunging deep into the water, creating cover for chub, along with lots of overhead cover from trailing branches scum and other rubbish. I started off fishing with cheese flavoured crust on a six inches link, in four casts I had four good trout all averaging some 2lbs being triploids they put a good fight. All this in less than twenty minutes. I didn’t come to catch trout, I rate them as a nuisance fish at this time of the year, it was time to move. Moving downstream I tried to other swims again trout so quickly moved on. As I pushed my way through the wood, I spotted what could only be best described as an attractive looking chub swim (pic 1140jpg).

Sitting several yards upstream I fed in five pieces of cheese paste the size of a walnut, then moved down through the wood planning to return later. Fifty yards later I got to where a stream entered the river creating a nice pool, three bits of walnut size cheese paste were thrown in. As I sat quietly watching he water flow and a moorhen quietly going about its business, I spotted a movement in the undergrowth then a stoat appeared as it moved slowly across a worn track, I then spotted a rabbit nibbling the grass, I quickly realised the stoat wanted that rabbit as it moved slowly towards its prey, suddenly the rabbit was alert ears erect, I could just imagine the fear it felt. Suddenly the rabbit come to its senses quickly bounding up the bank as the stoat gave chase, there was only going to be one winner the rabbit as it quickly disappeared, while the stoat went off looking for an easier prey, hopefully not the moorhen. Fifteen minutes later I cast out a piece of cheese paste on a size 4 barbless hook, line was 6lb bs rod a light Avon action with a small fixed spool reel. Minutes later I felt light pluck then a good pull, sadly it turned out to be another trout.

Back In My Chub Swim

After slowly making my way back upstream I arrived at the chub swim, getting down on hands and knees I crept slowly forward until I was in a position several yards upstream and hopefully out of sight from any chub that might be in the swim. Baiting with a walnut size lump of cheese paste I made a gentle under hand cast then lifting and lowering the rod I got the bait trundling downstream eventually being swept under the raft, ten minutes or so later I felt a light pluck soon followed by a steady pull, striking I connected with a heavy fish knowing immediately it wasn’t a trout but what felt like a chub. Keeping on steady pressure I slowly got the fish moving upstream, once well away from the swim I gave a sigh of relief as I got my first view of my fish, “That’s a five pounder” I though. A minute or two later I pulled the fish over the waiting net. On the scales it weighed 4lb 14 ounces, I then moved quickly upstream to release the fish hoping it wouldn’t make its way downstream for some time. Putting in a few bait samples I left the swim alone for half an hour, then crept back into position, once again I trundled a chunk of free lined cheese paste downstream to my chub swim, Fifteen or so minutes later I felt a slow pull ”That’s not rubbish” I said to myself as I set the barbless hook into another chub. A few minutes later I netted another fish similar in size to the first one except this fish weighed 5lb 2 ounces. Once again I went off upstream with the fish before releasing it, putting in a few free samples I then went off for a brew with a mince pie to celebrate.

More 5lb plus Chub

Back in my chub swim I repeated the process of trundling the cheese paste sample downstream, now many of my friend often ask why I don’t cast the bait closer to the target area rather than take time in getting the bait under the raft or bush. The reason I feel the bait slowly making its way downstream like a free offering is more likely to get taken rather than a bait which drops virtually on their head. These are wild creatures we are trying to catch. Within seconds of the bait getting in the area I felt a slow confident take, one I couldn’t miss, perhaps eight minutes later I was ready to net another good chub. That’s even bigger I thought. On the scales it weighed 5lb 7 ounces, that’s got to be worth a picture (pic 1143 jpg) I thought, lowering the net in the water I looked for a stick to anchor the net in place then made the long slippery slither back to the car for my camera. Back in my swim I shot a couple of pictures then once again headed off upstream to release the fish. In the next cople of hours I had three more 5lb plus chub trundling cheese paste into the chubs lair. These other fish weighed 5lb 4 ounces 5lb 4ounces and 5lb 6 ounces. Sadly with the light fading I had to leave so I was home before darkness, saying I was an exasperated angler would be an understatement.


My best chub at 5lb 7 ounces

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Martin James Fishing
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