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Martin James award-winning fisherman consultant,broadcaster,writer


23/02/2019 - Four good chub

A good chub that escaped an otter


Four Good Chub

It was around 0800 hrs when I arrived on the banks of the River Ribble to find the field had a covering of frost which surprised me, but it would quickly disappear with the wall to wall sunshine which I hate when out fishing, even more has it causes me problems with my Ophthalmic shingles so I suffer badly from the sunlight in my face causing me to lose the sight in my right eye. The water level continues to drop with the colour going out fast, taking the water temperature I got a reading of 45 degrees F it had dropped 3 degrees F in 48 hours. There was only one fish to target today that was the chub, but I had my doubts they would feed in the current weather conditions. I chose the big oak swim which shades the area from a lot of the light. Currently I am having problems with my right arm which I put down to spending several hours a day over many days trotting with a cane rod which has probably caused some strain on the arm, it’s even difficult to lift a kettle of water. Today I chose to use a light C rod to ease the problem I use a single LG shot wrapped in plasticine stopped 18 inches from a size 4 barbless hook, bait would be three or four small pieces of meat on the hook pushed slightly up the line.

Chub within minutes

With a light underhand swing I dropped the bait on the edge of the faster water as it flowed close to the trailing branches of the oak tree, I doubt if the bait had settled when I felt a light pluck quickly followed by a savage pull, a bite one couldn’t miss, perhaps it had hooked itself. Line was stripped from the reel for a minute or two the chub was winning, but as is usual it then just hung in the water, all I had to do was slowly work it upstream, as it got close it swirled on the surface where I got my first glimpse of the fish a good chub. On the scales it weighed 4lb 6 pounces. In the next hour I had three more chub 4lb 3ounces 4lb 8 ounces and 4lb 3 ounces, sadly this fish had been chased by an otter as it had lost a small part of its tail lobes on both sides. I was now at the stage of suffering from poor eyesight and pain from the shingles. I made my way back to the cabin for some pain killers and eye drops, that’s where I stayed for around three hours, then once my eyesight had improved I headed off home, thinking how many chub I might have caught, but it was good while it lasted.


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Martin James Fishing
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