Friday morning saw me heading to an old neglected club water for a few tinca's, I arrived early but less than impressed to find two Eastern Europeans in my fancied swim, the jibber jabber in their voices giving it away and my second choice swim was also occupied although by the look of his attire and equipment he was English. There was also a chilly wind blowing down the lake that saw me heading for a more sheltered spot. I got settled into a peg between two large over hanging trees and got just a single rod out, my Grey's specimen float rod to be exact and a trusty reel loaded with 4lb Maxima, onto this I slid an 8in long hand made swan quill float and a size 16 hook to 4.4lb hook link, a single swan shot 3in from the hook finished things off.
I introduced a good hand full each of small mixed pellets, hemp, casters, dead maggots and a few bits of corn and baited up with a fresh red worm from my allotment and two red maggots.
It looked good for a biteI dropped the float in, sat back and got the flask out and waited for things to happen. Half an hour or so passed before I decided to try a bit of corn and a caster, and about the same again before I tried double maggot. The float never even twitched so I made a change to the rig and removed the swan shot down by the hook and made a more usual waggler type rig in the hope they were just been a bit finicky. Two more hours of steady loose feeding maggots and casters failed to see the float move so when the chilly breeze swung into my face I called it a day.
One thing I will point out is that this lake is rather deep, a good 8ft where I was fishing but anything from 12 to 14ft deep a couple of rod lengths out around the other side and more in the middle. My thinking is that the up and down day and night temperature had not put the fish off but the fact that the lake is so deep they have not yet fully woken up, so I'll give it a few more weeks and see what the weather is like before I return for another try.
Today gave me an opportunity to get back on the bank and use up the bait I had left from yesterdays session. I only had a few hours to spare this afternoon so I headed back to Sally Walsh's Dam as its close by.
When I arrived it was quite busy but i could see most of the anglers had opted to fish from the dam wall with the now strong wind coming from behind them or the first few pegs up either side. I was having none of that, with bream and skimmers on my mind I didn't mind sitting it out in the rough as fishing a tip rod I could have the wind over my shoulder anyway. So with that in mind I headed half way up the field side to a peg in the mid 40's a few pegs up from two guys carp fishing with 3 rods each leaving plenty of room for them.
Firstly I knocked some ground bait up before anything else so as it had time to soak up the water fully before i was ready to fish. Next I set my trusty old Kamazan feeder rod out, more known for their hooks in the early 90's the brought out a range of just 3 rods and I acquired the medium feeder as a birthday present from my parents. You could compare it to some of the old Tricast rods that were about in the same era, a real nice still water rod and a joy to use. I added a simple running feeder rig and a size 16 hook. I gave the ground bait a quick riddle to get rid of any lumps, a 50/50 mix of plain brown crumb and fish meal(you can buy this in shops for about 4 quid a bag, its called Ringer's mine cost about £2.50 for twice as much!) and added dead maggots, casters, hemp and half a pint of 4mm skrettings pellets. 10 quick chucks with a large feeder and i was ready to go.
I put on two dead red maggots and cast out, now why when your doing something do you always get a bite??? i had just lit a cig and was taking my first sip of tea when the tip flew round, yup missed it, second cast and it went again but I struck too early. Third time lucky and I was in, the first skimmer of day slid over the net. Great I thought were going to get a few. For some reason it went very quiet and I missed two bites over the next half an hour before I added two more and the missed bites started again. I shortened the hook link and got one right away only for it to go quiet again, I tried a little further out past my baited spot and also a bit shorter but for a couple of hours it was miss two hit one, the now stronger wind making it a bit hard to see the bites clearly and I was striking too late for some of themand thought to my self I would give it an hour. The fish did come onto the feed and over the then hour and half I added around 10 decent skimmers before calling it a day as the cold wind was now cutting straight through me. The walk back to the car warmed me up and I was happy with the nice net of fish I had put together in just a few hours and the swans were impressed with my bait.