Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Epic session is epic

Ooh, err... What do I write here? It's a little embarrassing to say the least. I know loads of people who would be happy with one fish as it's often a struggle to catch, I'll happily take one fish as I know how tough it can sometimes be..... but then this happens.

First week of the season and I'd had some fun on the river then by Friday I was ready for a change. I didn't want to do the same thing and also wanted some new scenery. I scratched my head as to where to go and what to do before finally deciding to go look at somewhere I hadn't fished for about nine months. I expected perch and pike and quite fancied a steady session on the ultra light gear. Catching a few perch on my small soft plastics and cranks was the plan. Next to a bit of flowing water and a bit of sun there was nothing to beat it right now, well that's what I thought anyway.

I got my small box of lures sorted and put them in my bag, a drink to keep me hydrated but last minute I also decided to take the pike gear so chucked in a few bigger pike lures and took both rods. It gave me options and since there was a chance this place hadn't been fished this year yet, who knew what could be waiting. I was to be throwing the ultra lights but if I needed to I could have a bash with the pike lures and see if anything bigger was about. I also had a back up plan of a couple of spots to drop in on the way home should fishing be a bit steady. Ha ha, steady!

Scything my way through the grass and nettles I was a happy bunny, it seems no one had fished here yet, great stuff. I plonked my gear on the ground and stuck on a Zman shad. I have a sneaking feeling there's a decent perch or two living here. I've never had anything too big, possibly a couple of twos if I remember right. These shads are quite long, maybe four inches and have a nice paddle tail wiggle. That could bag me a big perch if there's one here I was thinking. I had a couple of knocks but maybe I was just bouncing bottom, but then the rod tip bent round and I was hooking in to a jack pike. Maybe five or six pounds and super fun on the light gear. Well at least the lure works and I wasn't going to blank today. Great start.

Zman shad

Happy with the fish I stuck with the same lure in the hope a perch might be about. I felt something pluck at it, then saw a tail but couldn't tell if it was a perch or a small pike that had nipped at my lure. Then the rod bent again and I was in, but then it was off. Oh well, keep going lad and before long I was bagging fish number two, another 5lber and losing another. A pleasing start. I fancied throwing a few cranks so put on a Mark Houghton crank and no sooner had it gone through the swim it was nailed by yet another jack pike. A few more retrieves and I was in again, great sport this. I switched to another MH crank and caught again and then again. (Sorry about the poor pictures)

Mark Houghton crank

Mark Houghton crank

After about seven or eight pike I was now sure there were no perch about. Catching pike on the light gear is great fun, but if that's what you keep catching then you are not geared up for it. The 25lb wire traces don't last for ever and can become kinked after a fish or two. The jacks thrash around a lot and there's more chance of something going wrong. Add to this the fact it takes much longer to get a fish in on the light, soft rod as even a jack has tremendous power and when it goes you have to let it go. The clutch is set light, the rod is soft and all you can do is take your time. The most sensible thing is to use stronger gear, and that's what I did. I got the big rod out, big lures and that is much better suited to getting the fish in with no fear of a kinked trace snapping or over playing a fish. Well done me for being arsed to bring a second rod. Maybe the bigger lures would winkle out a bigger fish two, who knows?

I think I put on a Savage Gear lip lure first. Wiggled and jerked it through the same spot and it wasn't long before another jack obliged. Then another, and another and another. This is a bit mental to say the least. Fish after fish after fish. I changed to a Squirrelly Burt and it was fish after fish after fish. I'm glad I had my GoPro switched on for this as no one would believe these fishy tales otherwise. Fish, fish, fish. I've now lost count. I've now got arm ache. I've now caught an unbelievable amount of pike.
Savage Gear lip lure
Most pike were between four and eight pound. I managed just a couple of bigger fish. Though I never weighed them they were a little better stamp of pike. Nothing huge but both were low double. They were solid muscled fish and made a nice change to the crazy jacks. It didn't really matter what size any of the fish were today though, I was in a bit of a daze after this as I would imagine anyone else.

I got in the car just short of three hours after getting out of it. I sat and tried to work out how many fish I'd caught but gave up. I realised that I could count them all up at home when I checked out my GoPro footage. I must remember to add on the five pike I caught after my memory card had filled up though. Usually if that were to happen I'd switch on the wifi, iPhone and the app' and delete any of the footage without fish on. However I figured that was pointless as pretty much all the clips would have some kind of fishy action on. Back at home I was sifting through the videos and the tally was rising. I ran out of time as I now needed to be at work so I had to wait all day, not knowing the final count until later that night when I could finish checking the last dozen or so clips. More fish to add to the tally, not forgetting the misses too, there were another ten or so hits where I didn't make contact.

Thirty five pike in less than three hours. I wasn't boat fishing all day, I wasn't on a large lake or anything. There' weren't two of us fishing. It was just me, 80 yards of water and a stack of pike. The number of times I've said it, right place right time.

First weekend of the river season came and went and I didn't even go out fishing after Fridays spectacle. I might get the stick float out next week and just catch some silvers....


  1. What an amazing session bud - you probably caught more pike in that one session that I caught all last season! Absolutely brilliant buddy!

    1. Just a normal day out for us top anglers Glen. ;) lol. Doubt i'll have a session like that again for sometime. All I can suggest Glen is get somewhere no one else will have fished yet and you might get lucky, or you might not. lol