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Zero perch....0lb 0oz

Saturday 12th January, K&A Canal, Thatcham   That’s the thing about my AN blog, it’s a record of my angling trips so if I shout about the good days I suppose I’ve got to shout about the bad ones too. That’s what I’m doing now.   This early doors trip was always going to be touch and go, I’d guessed that Thursday would be the last day for mild conditions and hoped that the water would still be warm enough through Friday to this morning. To be honest it was just about, at 6 degrees I was g

Rusty

Rusty

Would Sir Like his Hat Well Done or Medium?

River Kennet, Newbury, Sunday 25th July 2010   My first session in exactly 4 weeks so Saturday evening was spent preparing kit, lubing ’pins, buying bait, making sarnies and all the other stuff which would never get done if left until the last minute. It was to be a dawn raid, I was fishing with Mike (Arbocop) and he would have to work Sunday afternoon so the only way to get a decent session in was to start early. That meant a 3:30am alarm.   The venue was the CSAS stretch of the Kennet av

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Rusty

Worth the soaking

River Kennet and K&A Canal, Sunday 20th December 2015   Today’s itinerary consisted of three venues all fairly close together so travelling between each on foot was the order of the day (I was to regret that decision). The high temperature felt at odds with the low sun and although there seemed little need for waterproofs I donned them anyway, the stiff breeze would’ve cooled things down bankside.   The first venue may not be available to me for much longer, it’s one of two up for re-con

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Rusty

Worst day so far this season

River Kennet, Newbury, Friday 13th August 2010   This was a just a short session of a couple of late afternoon hours at the swim where I caught perch last weekend, I was keen to give it another try to see if anything bigger was lurking under the trees.   Not much to report I’m afraid because I blanked, the only thing lurking was a load of signals which took great delight in devouring my lobworms. I even tried the nearby canal lock cut where small perch are guaranteed but it was the same st

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Rusty

Wish I'd stuck to my original plan

River Kennet, Newbury, Saturday 2 January 2010   Today has been one of the most demoralising sessions I can remember. Not just because I blanked but because everything that could go wrong did.   Firstly my plan was to switch stretches of the Kennet. I haven’t fished any TAA waters since joining NAA and so I was going to rectify that on a nice bit of shallow river where I’ve had good days before. Maggots bought I changed the plan (heaven knows why) and headed off to an NAA stretch. On tryin

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Rusty

Wingham Trip

Wingham Fish-in, 21st 22nd & 23rd May 2011   Words that have struck the fear of God into me in the past and I suspect that I’m not the only one. For the past couple of years I’ve shied away from this fish-in, I don’t really have the right tackle/gear and it’s always seemed a daunting prospect. The offers of help and support from members are continually posted on the AN forum though and so this year I decided to give it a go. I’m sure other AN’ers feel the same way as recent events have b

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Rusty

Wingham 2012

Wingham Fish-in, 19th, 20th & 21st May 2012   Well here I am again, having speculatively put my name down for a place on this year’s event you could’ve blown me down with a feather when Steve replied in the affirmative.   My 2011 experience at Wingham was invaluable in deciding what to take this year, I was able to pare down the gear to the bare minimum and plan cooking activities a little better. My tactics would remain as last year with corn on the hook and a mixture of liquidised b

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Rusty

Where's the patent office then?

River Kennet, Saturday 9th July 2011.   A return trip to the swim that caused me so much angst two weeks ago. Again barbel was the target species and from previous experience I knew that this was probably going to be an ‘all or nothing’ trip. I have caught one chub from here but I regard that as a bonus rather than the norm, the trout don’t count.   Making its debut was the prototype bait dispenser, a lazy way to ensure that a regular trickle of hookbait (maggots) was fed into the swim. Fi

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Rusty

What a wet and windy day that was (did ok though)

River Kennet, Sunday 13th February 2011   This was one of those occasions where anticipation of the day out overrides any common sense that the weather forecast might be trying to hammer into your head. You look at the forecast and try to imagine what ‘light rain’ means, then you look at the wind strength and conclude that you can deal with that provided the light rain isn’t happening at the same time. But of course it always does happen at the same time.   It would, however, have taken ga

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Rusty

Well....I did catch perch

Speen Moors, Sunday 23rd January 2011   Time spent at this water is never wasted, most clubs have a premier venue and in my opinion this is the one for Newbury Angling Association. Despite that apart from some good perch I haven’t done very well here at all, I’ve only caught two decent sized chub and one of those was on a lobworm when after perch. It doesn’t seem to matter though, just the thought of fishing at Speen fills me with optimism and today was no different. With my new found interes

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Rusty

We need rain!

River Kennet, Newbury, Saturday 12th November 2011   A pleasant morning spent trotting for whatever came along at a venue badly in need of some water.   It’s a wading venue and when the river’s at normal levels most of the gravelly sections can be accessed, it’s only the depth of water that restricts certain areas. On this occasion, however, nowhere was inaccessible. Standing in a chub swim which has previously seen water lapping around my bits only resulted in wet knees.   On a more po

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Rusty

Variety is the Spice of Life

River Kennet, below Thatcham, Friday 18th June 2010   Another day and another venue, this time probably the most easterly stretch of the Kennet that TAA & NAA books allow me to fish.   A lot of work has gone into this venue during the close season, death trap styles have been replaced with something more capable of supporting a gear laden angler and the stretch has been extended by about a hundred and fifty yards, the extension provides another ten swims and some great wading opportuni

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Rusty

Using up the Leftovers

Rivers Lambourn & Kennet, Newbury, Tuesday 23rd February 2010   After yesterday’s difficult day I had plenty of maggots left over and so it seemed rude not to invest them in a couple of stretches of water which would possibly provide a better return.   No need to describe the Lambourn (but I will), it was the same as it always is at this time of year, a healthy flow and gin clear. The Grayling too were particularly friendly almost arguing over who was going to go for the bait. Apart fr

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Rusty

Until next Winter

River Kennet, Newbury, Sunday 11th March 2012   Well this was it, our last chance to fish this estate water for some months. On previous visits we’d spent a lot of time roaming about exploring and (it has to be said) not doing an awful lot of fishing, this time we decided to pitch up in one spot and chill out for the day. Steve’s barrow proved invaluable as we loaded up enough gear to cover most options, the chairs, cooking facilities and food were all piled on before we then made our short w

Rusty

Rusty

Two men (and two dogs) in a boat

River Thames, 6th - 9th October 2011   A bit of a long blog entry this but the trip was such an eventful one I don’t want to miss anything out.   The plan was leave the mooring on the K&A canal at about 9:00am, head towards Reading and turn left onto the Thames at the confluence. Our goal for Thursday was to moor up at Goring-on-Thames some 6 boating hours away, ironically I can drive to Goring in about 45 minutes from my house but that would have been missing the point. We were pretty

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Rusty

This was more like it

River Kennet, Speen Moors, Monday 18th June 2012   Well after the abject failure of the barbel hunt on Saturday it was nice to get back to a bit of general coarse fishing at a venue which has provided just that in the past. It was also nice to view the alarm clock somewhat later than 03:41 as I awoke and realised that I didn’t have to go to work on a Monday morning, what a great feeling that is.   So off to Didcot to buy bait…not quite. The traffic was unusually heavy and I soon discovered

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Rusty

Third Time Lucky

River Kennet, Newbury, Sunday 22nd November 2009.   Having tried twice in the past two weeks without success on this particular stretch I've finally managed to catch something.   A dawn raid saw me poised at a likely looking Perch swim waiting for sufficient light to see the float. Lowering in the lob about a rod length out produced a beautiful Perch of 1lb 5oz. A couple of smaller Perch followed until the sun came out about 08:45 at which point bites stopped.   Next to the Perch swim w

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Rusty

They can’t all be successes

River Kennet, Newbury, Sunday 10th July 2011   In complete contrast to Saturday yesterday turned out to be a dissapointing scrappy days fishing for me. The plan was sound enough, firstly I was going to use up leftover maggots at a good chub swim, a spot which has been noticably devoid of any chub recently and it’s getting a bit worrying. It’s a winter chubbing swim really but I only wanted to catch one or two to prove they were still there. After that I was intending to head for Speen Moors w

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Rusty

The Quest Continues

River Kennet, Newbury, Monday 30th November 2009   This venue continues to deny me a chub and today it almost denied me any fish (again).   I couldn’t make an early start today and arrived at the venue at about 10:00am. Too late for perch really (and I was after chub) but it was overcast and so I thought it was worth a try before the chub search. A big lob was dangled into a close swim that had produced last time out, this time though a couple of missed bites and that was it. An hour later

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Rusty

The Merlin sees action

River Kennet, Monday 9th February 2015   A day spent on a stretch of the Kennet which sees a little less pressure than other venues on my club books. It has everything from fast raging pools to quiet sidestreams which would barely pull the line off the most free running of centrepins, the perfect location for testing the rod’s capabilities.   The morning was spent trotting in the slower water, the overcast conditions were encouraging but that wasn’t to last, early afternoon the sun came out

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Rusty

The Lythe gets its debut

Speen Moors, Saturday 17th December 2011   Today was one of those sessions when it’s good that your fishing partner has a similar angling outlook to you. We’d planned the trip with high hopes that today would be one of those sunny wintery days when just being by the river is good and that this week’s rain had bolstered the Kennet. The first part of this ideal was in jeopardy as I trundled along the A34 with wipers frantically trying to clear the windscreen. I had my fingers crossed that the r

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Rusty

The Lythe begins to earn its keep

Speen Moors, Thursday 22nd December 2011   Third visit in as many weeks, my obsession with this venue continues.   I had a bit of a plan today, the session ledgering bread on the 5th December was quite successful so I thought I’d try trotting bread. I hadn’t prepared any mash so would have to use some old maggots as loose feed but on the hook was going to be a large lump of flake. What is rapidly becoming my first port of call at Speen would be the ideal swim to try the new bait. Some of t

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Rusty

The downs & ups of angling

River Kennet, Friday 24th & Saturday 25th June 2011   A couple of sessions to report on, the first a Friday afternoon dash to a good chub swim after spending the day working from home. Newbury is not a good place to be during the rush hour, I’d chosen the back lane route and smiled to myself as I passed over the A34 and noted the huge traffic jam which was being reported on the radio. I felt less smug as I found my own little snarl up on the outskirts of town but it didn’t matter because

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Rusty

The Best Laid Plans etc

River Kennet, Newbury, Sunday 5th September 2010   Having found a couple of decent perch swims and fished them out of ‘prime time’ I decided to see how they faired during the productive dawn/dusk times of day. My wife was visiting friends during Saturday and staying over so Sunday at dawn was the preferred option.   Two swims were to be fished, the first where I’d caught a 2lb 8oz perch last week and the second where a 2lb 12oz specimen had graced may landing net a couple of weeks earlier.

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Rusty

That's more like it

The penultimate blog entry for this season recounting two trips to the Kennet, one venue a day ticket water between the months of October and March the other a last minute invitation to fish a Middle Kennet Estate.   Barton Court, Tuesday 12th March 2013   A long arranged trip with Paul, a work colleague who’s just bought himself an Okuma Sheffield and he was keen to try it out. Although we both had the week off Paul was limited to the day he could fish, Tuesday it was come rain or shine. We

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Rusty

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