Sunday, 7 April 2013

More canal success

I went to the rugby Saturday afternoon and came home depressed 'cos my team is cack. The sun was shining so I wolfed down some snap and headed off to the canal for some late evening lure chucking. Again I was looking for perch and so just took the G lite and my small lures. As I got to my peg at the canal lock gates I was met with a canal boat just coming through. Just my luck I thought, as the water started to churn out of the gates. I got in a few casts before all the debris was lifted up but it was too late. The canal boat moved off though at a steady pace and didn't make too much more commotion so I stuck at the peg to see what would happen.

The rod bent and I was in to a snag, or so I thought. I was just about to give it a bit more levy when off the snag shot like a steam train, easily 30 yards down the canal with me hot footing after him as my clutch didn't seem to want to give. I'd not tested it and so was worried it might be too much but eventually I realised I was ok and it wasn't going to cause me any issues. I knew this wasn't a perch and that it might just be a a new canal pb. I've not really targeted canal pike that much to be honest and usually hit them for some fun with the jacks. I said just the other day I only wanted one thing from this year and that was a double on the light set up and after a cracking battle I knew my one target for the year was already going to be achieved. Weighing in at 12.5lb I was well chuffed with a fat, perfect canal pike which is both my biggest canal pike and biggest on the light gear, and on a kopyto again.

I had the pike hanging in the net when I heard a kids voice. "He's got a fish dad" and I turned around to see a kid of about five sheepishly coming towards me. I beckoned him and a couple other kids over to have a look and the next thing I'm surrounded by inquisitive kids and parents who have never seen a fish so big or so scary.

I kept at it with the kopytos hoping to find the perch I'd originally came for. I could see plenty of silver fish cruising just under the surface. There was stacks of them so I knew I was in the right place for fish. Then every now and again the really tiny silvers not much bigger than fry, would scatter as something chased them. I was hoping it was the perch and so I kept putting my lures where the commotion was, right up against the canal bank and right in perch territory. As the sun was going down I had one hit on the kopyto and I reckon it was a perch but I couldn't get any more action.

My mind was now thinking back to pike and I decided to run back to the car and get the heavy jerkbait rod out. I didn't really have any sinking lures. I wanted to get the lures down to the bottom and work the depth, but most lures are my shallow river lures. But recently I'd re-weighted some squirrley burts. I'd tried to cover all bases with the ones I had and I pulled out the sinking burt and put it on. A few casts in and I'd pick up a coil of wire with a rag on it, which initially felt like a dead body. That was the only problem with letting a burt sink to the bottom, I didn't really know what was on the bottom of this canal.

On the down stroke I hooked in to another snag and the rod went solid. I heaved and whatever it was came up and towards me, and then it went sideways. It's another pike and I'm in to another battle and this one feels another good fish. As it comes to the surface I can see it's quite a wide fish and as I scoop it in to the net I know that again I have got a new canal pb. At nearly 16lb in the net I put it at knocking on 14.5lb. Another absolutely gorgeous pike, fat as hell and really perfect.I've nearly forgot all about the rugby, at least while I was on the bank I did anyway.

With the rivers frustratingly off limit it's good to have a few fish in the bag again. Another few hours today produced another jack of 8lb but I still had trouble locating the perch. I tried a few other canal locations but the water on most places I went was muddy and murky and not the kind of conditions I like for lure fishing. Things are looking up anyway and with evenings a little bit longer there's a chance to get out on a few more places over the coming weeks to see where is worth fishing. T-shirt weather is not too far off I reckon.


  1. Have you tried drop shotting for the perch, heard its a very good method. Yet to try it myself. Nice fish mate, blanked on my last trip but always learning :)

    1. Not tried that yet either Adam. From the outside lure fishing just looks simple but when you get in to it there are so many different things to do. No doubt i'll need another rod and reel combo for that method too! lol