Thursday, 5 September 2013

Those EE's!

On Tuesday I was out with the light rod in search of perch. To be honest I was in search of a new peg or two and so taking the light gear gave me a chance to find out what was in the swim. I'd not even been anywhere near the place before so I was turning up blind and I soon realised I couldn't even find the river, the banks were so overgrown in most places. I walked a few hundred yards but eventually spotted what looked like a way through to the river. I looked back and noticed a car parked next to mine in the distance and so tried to see if it was anyone dodgy, a farmer wanting to throw me off or whatever. I realised it was a couple of lads with fishing rods and they were doing the same as I had been, walking along the overgrown riverbank looking for a place to fish. I reached the river and chucked my kopyto in the first spot I got to. A few casts in and the lads were now coming towards me. "Hello, how are you? We've never fished here before and just come for the first time" one of the lads said in a very distinctive accent.

I hate seeing other fishermen when I'm fishing as I like to keep things to myself. I know, why do I do a blog then? What was worse, these lads were Polish and they were here to eat all the fish. Curse my luck, there will be no fish left here soon. The lads were lure fisherman and they took the spot 50 yards up from where I was. I think I had a small perch and then one around a pound which also looked like it had been hammered by a heron or cormorant or something as it had a nasty lump out of it's back, but it looked fit enough to live on. Then I hear the two lads shouting me, they have a fish. I put down my rod and go around to see, and it's clear the pike is a decent one. They were fishing with fixed spool set ups on what looked like a medium set up, soft plastics and jig heads. Basically what I had but a bit bigger. As the fish came in I was quietly confident these lads weren't going to chuck it in a carrier bag and I couldn't see any barbecues anywhere.

They took some photos and then put it straight back to my delight, without even weighing or measuring it. A quick guestimate would put it may be a mid-double pike and a nice fish too. I had a brief chat and a sneak look at their lure gear and I was impressed, they knew what they were doing that was for sure. I trundled off back to my peg and the next thing I know they are shouting me again as they are in to another fish. Not as big this time but they were in a good spot that was for sure. I managed a few more small perch before finally hooking a small pike of about four pounds, and while I was playing that fish the other two lads were in. I think they must have had at least ten pike between them in the time I was there, may be even more. I however had picked a spot which seemed to be a little snaggy and after umpteen lost lures I gave it up. I'd had a few fish, maybe seven or eight perch and two pike so it was good fun with the light gear, I'd achieved what I set out to do and that was find a new peg.

I couldn't be bothered knocking up some more traces and instead decided to have a chat with the two Polish lads. It was good to sit, watch and talk to other lure anglers who knew what they were doing and compare a few stories and techniques. As I watched them I realised that their set ups was what I was missing. I actually have a SG butch light xlnt 10-30g which I've used a few times but really didn't have many lures to suit it. This rod would be perfect for exactly the same lures they were using, the next size up from my ultra light gear. I simply needed to buy some 4-6inch shads and grubs and some bigger hook and jigs and I was sorted. I can finally use the rod I'd had sat doing pretty much nothing for most of the year, why didn't I think of that earlier. We chatted more and eventually all decided it was nearly too dark to see so made our way back to the car. As we walked they showed me their fishy photos from their phones and it was clear they love their fishing. There were chub, trout, barbel, pike all sorts. Turns out the lads are called "Eric" and Patrick (Patryk?). I've probably spelt them wrong, at least I know Eric is wrong as I have no idea what his real name is (edit- it's actually Arek) but he says everyone just calls him that as it's easier to remember. I'm crap with names at the best of times anyway.

pug pike
Wednesday I didn't bother fishing but Thursday I was ready to get out again and I fancied going back to the same spot but this time with some larger lures. I'd not used them for ages and I was itching to throw a few. I got to the spot around 5pm with not a soul in sight, just how I like it. Obviously I kept away from the snaggy peg and went straight for the one where Eric and Patrick had those fish. I expect a fish in the first few minutes but nothing happened. I then got my first sight of a fish when I saw a shape turn away in the distance followed by a fish roll on my lure. This happened a few times but finally I was in to a few fish bagging three small pike to about five or six pounds in the next half hour. Something then caught my attention and I turned to where the noise was coming from. It was Arek and Patryk clambering down the bank towards me. We said hello I told them to get chucking in and around the peg after telling them I'd had a few fish. Armed with their medium to small outfits again they got to throwing soft plastics around an in no time Eric was in to a nice perch. Patrick took some photos for him, and later after chatting it turns out this was Eric's pb perch, so a great result. Again, they didn't weigh the fish but from what I could see it was maybe pushing two, not sure. I picked up three more pike including my first ever pug nosed pike. They continued to catch some small perch and then Eric bagged a pike which gave a good battle on his lighter rod. I wanted to get off home for some food and a shower before bed so I left them to it. As I type this Arek has just text to say they had a couple more pike out when I'd gone.

Two top lads who genuinely love their fishing and also know how to catch. I've no doubt we'll cross paths again in the future as they don't live too far from me and they know how to find a fishy looking spot. There's only so much water and the best spots are few and far between. We might even get together and fish elsewhere at some point too. It was god to meet, chat and fish with you both lads. I hope you have some good fish this coming pike season.

Arek with pike and Patryk taking photos

I can't believe I got this far without mentioning Woody, but I have to now. I'm going to get ribbed when he sees this blog as he has always maintained I'm from Eastern Europe, he says I look Polish  and have Polish friends. Seems he's right after all.

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