Thursday, 17 January 2013

Compulsory snow blog, but this year a fish!

Last year I managed to get out when it snowed, but blanked in style. There'd been a good chunk of snow down, and I got out in the pretty weather but couldn't put a fish to it. I wanted to get out if it snowed again this year and it looks like there should be plenty of chance for that with the weekend forecast of snow, snow snow. I awoke this morning to find the temperature at minus six as I travelled to work and so in theory the fish are chilling out on the bottom and not really interested in feeding. I couldn't get out after work anyway since I finish at 14:00 I had to be home for the kids at 14:45 so that didn't matter.

As I arrived at work I was met with a winter scene, where back home there was just a bit of frost. I'd have loved to have got out and took some fancy photos for the blog and if I could have got out with the rod too that would have made something at least to write about. As the day went on the snow and ice crystals were still clinging to the trees despite a bit of sun poking through at one point and as I kept sneaking a peak out the window I could only think about one thing, and that was fishing.

The few times I have been out this last week haven't produced much at all. A cold snap came in, the water level virtually down to drought level of early last year and I guess that cold just put the fish off. I couldn't help noticing that my lack of pike came from a water that showed little in the way of signs of life. Usually alive with the sight of feeding fish eating birds on arrival at the bank, and all through a session I would usually see bream rolling over on the surface, something large in my eye corner crashing out of the water down stream and small silvers either feeding off the top or trying to get airborne away from the predators chasing them. There's usually something in the area but this place has been severely lacking just recently.

At break time I spotted a heron. I've seen him umpteen times over the last few years but seeing him today made me realise I hadn't spotted him for a while. Then when I looked closely, well as close as you can from a distance (that sounds daft but I know what I mean) I spotted a cormorant, and then another and then a few moments later I spotted a couple of red breasted merganser, another resident fish eating bird. They're here for one thing I knew that for sure and it told me that the silvers were back in my bit of water.

The clocking in machine just flicked past 14:02 and I was out of the door in a flash. Someone had gritted the walkways and so that meant I could leg it down the yard and I was on the bank in a flash. It was cold and the fish eaters had long gone, with just a few ducks hanging around and some swans arses waving around down stream as they stuck their heads below the water trying to find some food. I could see the footprints in the snow from the heron as he'd patrolled the bank. I thought about taking some blog photos, but instead just took a quick snap of the scene and got on with fishing since I knew I had about twenty minutes at most. I stuck on a rainbow lip lure and set about slowly jerking it through the swim pretty slow, near the bottom, hoping and praying I wouldn't snag up. Three snags later I still hadn't hooked a fish but at least I still had my lure. I made a quick switch to a real eel and tried the same tactic.

Third cast and I felt a bang and as I struck in to the fish I was met with some resistance and a nice bend in the rod as the pike shot off. It thrashed around but I quickly managed to get it up to the surface and upon seeing it wasn't a snow twenty I gave it a bit more pressure and got it in to the edge where I quickly chinned it out. Id love a snow twenty and maybe one day I'll chase one but for now I am very happy to catch a fish in these conditions and to do it in less than twenty minutes work isn't too bad at all. So here it is, my snowy fish blog photo.


  1. Good luck, for here no rain.

  2. Fantastic stuff Paul! I managed my first snow pike yesterday, always good to get a snow shot for the blog.


  3. Good catch Paul, Gives me a bit of confidence if I get the chance to get out in the next couple of days.


  4. Thanks for the comments lads. I've managed another fish too but didn't take a photo as I was down a steep bank and it wasn't worth the risk and effort as it was only about 9lb. There's always a chance to catch even in these conditions. Sometimes the fish are laying up and something in their face works, just cover plenty of water and give yourself a chance.

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