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Entries in this blog

It's a good job size doesn't matter

River Kennet, Speen Moors, Thursday 16th June 2011   It makes a nice change for the opening day not to end in an anti-climax particularly at a venue which has provided me with so many blank days in the two years that I’ve been a member of NAA. Speen was chosen because of its location and the fact that it was very unlikely to be busy, my plan was to fish six specific swims in rotation all of which had been recce’d the week before, if they didn’t produce I could either wander off to other parts

Rusty

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

Rusty

Rusty

Pre-season recce

River Kennet, Sunday 8th May 2011   No fishing today but instead I spent a very pleasant morning walking a stretch that I intend to fish once the new season starts. Today re-affirmed my thoughts that I’m a river fisherman at heart, closed season tenching has been great fun and watching a bobbin twitch will always be entertaining but in my mind nothing can beat the sheer pleasure of trotting a float.     Quite a lot was going on when I arrived, damsels were distressed and bees were indu

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Rusty

A change of plan produced a little bonus

River Kennet, Newbury, Friday 23rd September 2011   An opportunistic session following POETS day. The pint of maggots in my fridge was beginning to overstay its welcome so I thought it best to donate them to the Kennet on a lovely sunny afternoon. This routine is quite well established now, once I’ve arrived home from work I can be back on the road again within ten minutes, important at this time of year when the evenings are getting shorter. Chub were the target and under normal circumstance

Rusty

Rusty

A double header

River Kennet, Thursday 8th & Friday 9th September 2011   With the lack of fishing in recent weeks I decided to take a couple of days off work and visit some venues which haven’t received much attention from me in the past. I suppose you’d call them barbel venues, they’re certainly popular with the static bait brigade during late afternoon and evenings but rarely do you see a ‘pin user during daylight hours. With little knowledge of either venue these were definitely recce trips and very w

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Rusty

I know, I've been slacking

River Kennet, Weekend of 30th & 31st October 2010   I seem to have got a little behind with my blog, probably because I’m spending too much time fishing to write about it all so the next two entries will be out of sync I’m afraid.   Speen Moors 30th October   A gentle day out with Steve & Robbie, perch being the target species. Conditions were bright & sunny (not ideal then) and we didn’t fish either dawn or dusk so you could say that we didn’t give ourselves much of a chanc

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Rusty

A Bittersweet day (more bitter than sweet)

River Kennet, Newbury, Saturday 23rd October 2010   What could have been a brilliant session today actually turned out to be a bit of a disaster.   I met up with Steve at a civilised 10:30 for a spot of chub trotting. Steve waded and I stayed on the bank further upstream where I put a concerted effort into a swim which should produce but hasn’t for me yet. It’s where the barbellers fish but it’s also a nice near bank trot for maybe 30 yards until a fallen tree blocks the way. I’ve never re

Rusty

Rusty

Another catch-up entry

River Thames, everywhere, Sunday 24th October 2010.   Well it seemed like everywhere, fishing from a boat gives you so much freedom that it’s easy to spend a whole day just trundling up and down a river looking for likely spots. That’s how I spent the 24th, I’d snapped up an invitation from Steve to provide Portabote pointy end ballast before he could finish saying ‘Pangbourne’.   We were going to be trolling lures. I’ve never used a lure, I have one in my tackle box but it’s not been in t

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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

My drop shotting experience

River Kennet, Sunday 3rd July 2011   This weekend I tried a new method of drop shotting for perch and thought you might be interested in how it went. What follows is an account of my first attempt, it is absolutely not a guide so please don’t take this as how it should be done, it’s just my take on things and I had to make some compromises.   From what I’ve read on the forum the theory is that the line is ‘anchored’ to the river bed and the lure is suspended above the lead, a bit like a pa

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Rusty

A new Rusty PB

Knotts Lake, Wednesday 27th April 2011   Same venue but a different bank this time (thanks Paul G), I said goodbye to the “cawt anyfink mister” calls from the K&A Canal walkers and pitched up on the other side of the lake quite close to the first swim I’d tried weeks earlier. I could’ve float fished into open water or ledgered close to the overhanging trees, casting was the problem. I could swing a small bomb to the trees but not a float, vegetation behind me prevented an overhead cast at

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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

Blanked!

Knotts Lake, Friday 29th April 2011   Not much to report I’m afraid. Same swim, same method and similar conditions, maybe more overcast and slightly lower air/water temps than Wednesday but not too much difference and certainly not a rapid change.   I fished from 11:00am to 6:00pm with just one line bite and I think that was caused by a shoal of small rudd which spent the day doing circuits in my swim. Some carp were caught by other anglers but no reports of any tench. I’m wondering whethe

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Rusty

End of Season Countdown - Day 1

River Kennet, Newbury, Wednesday 9th March 2011   The start of my end of season finale was to be at a Kennet venue which has reliably produced chub for me in the past, in fact my PB of 5lb 8oz has come from this place so it seemed an ideal venue to try out the cheap Shadowlanda centrepin. Hopefully it would have to deal with more than a few minnows and small grayling.   I wasn’t prepared for what I saw on arrival, I know we’ve had some rain recently but the high water level and fast flow s

Rusty

Rusty

A new Harrison PB (clutching at straws now)

Knotts Lake, Friday 22nd April 2011   An opportunistic afternoon session in pursuit of tench (again). I was pushed for time so couldn’t prepare the liquidised bread but lobbed the hemp and a couple of tins of corn in the car and headed off.   I still haven’t caught a tench on the lift method so float fishing the margins was plan A. I chose a spot with overhanging trees either side and a depth of about ten foot a couple of rod lengths out. I’d forgotten my thermometer but it was a lovely wa

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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

End of Season Countdown - Day 4

River Itchen, LIF, Saturday 12th March 2011   Day three of the countdown was spent in preparation for the LIF fish-in so not much to report unless you want to read about polishing, lubing and loading Witchers and the domestic activities undertaken as a result of losing Saturday. No? I thought not.   Well what a day, I couldn’t have hoped for better weather and a better turnout. Last year’s event was pretty miserable and I was beginning to think that I was jinxing them (conditions have been

Rusty

Rusty

End of Season Countdown - Day 2

River Thames, Pangbourne to Goring, Thursday 10th March 2011   A tough day on the Thames with Steve but in the best tradition of blogs the bad days must get reported along with the good days. Today was a monumental blank. It started quite well, I’d forgotten my camera which all anglers know means you’re going to catch several species all of improbably high weights. Steve, however, had remembered his camera so we were back to square one.   We drove all over the place, either trolling as we

Rusty

Rusty

Eden Trip

River Eden, Cumbria, weekend of 16th & 17th October 2010.   A change of scenery for me with a long arranged trip to Cumbria to meet Tigger (Ian) and to fish the River Eden at Wawrick-on-Eden. I’d read Ian’s previous posts on his expeditions and fancied broadening my horizons a little so with B&B booked for Friday, Saturday and Sunday the long haul ooop north started Friday morning, all 285 miles of it! The slog up the M6 was straightforward enough, counting up the junctions and passin

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Rusty

Couldn't keep this in perspective

River Kennet, Newbury, Saturday 2nd October 2010   After last night’s great little session I couldn’t help but head for Speen Moors again. I wasn’t planning to wade but took the chesties just in case and thought I’d take a look further down first to see if the well protected chub were still in residence. The water was more coloured than last time and I couldn’t see them but I did spy a certain Mr. Plumb preparing to empty the river of anything worth catching. It would’ve been rude not to say

Rusty

Rusty

Just a bit more time would've been good

River Kennet, Newbury, Sunday 10th October 2010   A bonus trip this one, a change of plans yesterday meant a mad dash to the tackle shop for bait but with maggots and lobs secured thoughts of which venue ensued. It didn’t take long to decide and with that a leisurely start of 9:00am saw me arriving full of confidence, I had three pints of maggots and the entire day to trickle them in the river.   Target species where chub and perch, the latter being quite partial to maggots at this venue.

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Rusty

Signing off

Well it's been 12 months to the day that I started this blog and I think I've achieved what I set out to do, i.e. provide an insight into the ups and downs of an angler who just enjoys being out and about fishing. Looking back it's interesting to see that this season has been my most successful by far, the biggest chub, perch, barbel, dace and grayling that I've ever caught have all been netted this year. Not too shabby but size of fish caught is only half the story.   Thanks to;   Chris P

Rusty

Rusty

One more time (but that's it for a while)

River Kennet, Newbury, Sunday 26th September 2010   Another exasperating day after the chub that appear to be poking their tongues out at me. Well perhaps today wasn’t quite as bad because this time I didn’t see any sign of them in their usual haunt, I’d hatched a plan to get to them as well!   So, enthused by the thought that they must have moved upstream, or at least somewhere more accessible, I headed towards the top of the stretch and got in again. I tried all of the places where I’d e

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Rusty

Keeping things in perspective

River Kennet, Newbury, Thursday 30th September 2010   Today was a last minute opportunistic session prompted by the fact that I’d been working from home during a nice sunny afternoon. As I was about to turn off the laptop I wondered whether 2 hours fishing was worth a 40 mile round trip. I always get the same answer to that question so I threw a minimal amount gear in the car and set off for Speen Moors via the bait shop. ½ a pint of maggots, a small pot of small lobs and a leisurely trundle

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Rusty

More paddling

River Kennet, Newbury, Sunday 19th September 2010   After Saturday’s mouth watering discoveries I re-visited the venue where chub and barbel could be observed taking cover in their sanctuary.   I was hoping that Saturday night’s curry, merlot and mindless X Factor entertainment would shed some light on the best way to get to them but sadly inspiration wasn’t to be found in a chicken madras. The Merlot was a different matter, halfway through the bottle I was convinced that I possessed the

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Rusty

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