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Martin James award-winning fisherman consultant,broadcaster,writer


03/12/2022 - A Session Float Fishing

A good chub



I’ve been on the river for the past few days, not always fishing, I have also been doing some guiding, Bill caught a grayling, also losing two fish. Leaving home early today Wednesday on my E-moped I arrived on the river some twenty five minutes later, well protected by good clothing so I didn’t notice the cold except on my exposed face, but it wasn’t a problem, also I can exercise by pedalling much of the way, just like walking on a treadmill, no effort needed.

Today conditions were good, over cast sky, light south easterly breeze with no sun to cause me problems, also drop in the river level, with very good visibility, though there was a drop in the water temperature down to 42 degrees F conditions I thought could be good for grayling and dace so chose to float fish. I put together my Abbey match rod with a centre pin reel holding 3lb bs line, I reckon I could get away with a 4BB shot cork on quill Avon, choosing a size 14 hook to nylon tied up for me by Mark Sarul which I attached to the line using a loop to loop method. Then 3BB shot fifteen inches from the hook with another BB six inches from the hook. Wading out about ten feet from the bank, I spent a few minutes casting and running the float through my first chosen swim some fifteen feet further out, estimating I had around four feet of water over gravel with an odd boulder.

Back on the bank, I put a can of corn in the bag around my neck, also a cloth to dry my hands on, with a trout landing on my back fixed by a magnet which allows me to just pull it off when needed, along with my wading staff I was set up. Feeding no more than half a dozen grains of corn every other cast, I had some fifteen minutes with no sign of interest, then I got a good take catching a grayling about 8 ounces, this was followed by half a dozen more of similar size, it was enjoyable fishing session, I then experienced twenty minutes with no interest. I was on the point of moving to another swim when I got a nice “Goer” size dace followed by perhaps twenty or more fish mostly “Goer” size in the next hour, virtually a bite a cast, this was how l enjoy my dace fishing.

A good Chub

After a break for a badly needed brew, while I enjoyed my break, I continued to feed a few grains of corn. Break over I returned to the same swim, second cast I hooked something good, switching on the check of the reel, I got that lovely sound like well-made swizz clock, rather than a loud screech. I immediately recognized the fighting ability of the fish as being very much like a chub, not a trout. A few minutes later the fish started to tire, I then got a glimpse of its body which confirmed it was a chub, to big for the trout net, so I slowly made my way back to the bank where my normal net lay partially on the bank and in the shallow water. Soon I had the fish in the bigger net, unhooking the fish, I clambered out of the water, so I could weigh the fish and take a picture. It weighed 3 lb 6 ounces, one picture and it was returned further upstream.

Topping up the bag with more corn I waded back out into the stream, A few casts later I got another chub around the pound mark but well worth catching on light float tackle. I fished on for another hour or more catching a few more chub around the pound mark also more dace. Around 1300 hrs I ended the session and headed off home so I could miss the school rush.


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Martin James Fishing
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