Sunday, 28 March 2010

The Bloodworm is Deadly

Having had so much fun last weekend and being a little unsure about the condition of the rivers was all the excuse I needed to head off to Foremark again this morning. It had been a cold night; there was a slight ground frost as I strode out to Sunblest Bay. The sun soon got up and it was a bright morning, tougher conditions than last Sunday.

I struggled earlier on on a variety of lures on intermediate lines. This was the killing method last week but proved fruitless in the early morning. I'm a firm believer in keeping on the move until you find the trout rather than staking out a claim for one plumb spot. I tried Sunblest Bay, Flamingo Bay, and Hut Point without success. It wasn't until I got to Verduns Point at around 1000 that I tempted a fish on a damsel. Soon after this I decided to change to a floating line and bloodworm on the point with a Basils Buzzer about 4' above. This is a great way of fishing just letting these imitative patterns drift round on with the breeze, and it was certainly breezy by then. No need for a bung; you'll know soon enough when a fish takes particularly when it is a bar of silver like the one below.

I quickly took a brace on this method with both fish falling to the bloodworm. The fish seemed to be livening up by now and typically it was soon time for me to head off home. I spoke to several other anglers who had all found the going hard in the morning and I hope it picked up for those who stopped for the afternoon. Nevertheless I returned to the car park happy with my mornings catch.

Friday, 26 March 2010

The Mayfly

Earlier this year Brian lent me an Oliver Edwards DVD in which he did a comprehensive guide to tying his Mohican Mayfly. I found this pattern incredibly frustrating and long winded to tie but by persevereing managed a few half decent attempts. Today Mick Martin has put a pattern on his blog which he has christened the 'James May'. I like the look of Mick's flea and would urge readers to have a butchers at 'Derbyshire on the Fly'.
This fly will be discussed on Mick's blog come mayfly time as I'm sure it will be the downfall of many Derbyshire trout.
Hopefully my Mohicans will do similar and I'm looking forward to what can be the most magical time of year.

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Foremark Rainbows

The bank fishing at Foremark reservoir is superb early season and I got to sample some for myself this morning. I have been fishing Foremark sice it first opened, in those days with my Dad usually for an evening ticket after school. The fishing has varied over the years but the current management have a good stocking policy which reaps dividends in the spring. It was a spring day as the early morning mist burnt off to reveal gorgeous weather although perhaps a little bright when I packed up around 1130 ish.
I was the first angler round to Sunblest Bay and after starting off on a floating line and buzzers I soon managed to match the hatch with a black tadpole on an intermediate line (thanks Mick). This fly is a little out of vogue now but I have always found it a good early pattern. The fish were as usual in great condition and you have to go a long way to find harder fighting trout. I would recommend the bank fishing up until the end of May when it starts to get a bit tough.

These fish were taken on my old Shakespeare Sigma rod which is now over 25 years old and has banked many trout. The line will positively wizz through your fingers when one of these fish take. I had intended to take a stockie for my dinner but the fish are above average size at the moment and the one in the fridge is a good 2.5lbs.
As I was walking back to the car I took the shot below of Flamingo Bay. This is now a very popular spot when the reservoir first opens as you can see from the knitting match. These guys were all fishing into a flat calm and I'm sure would pick up the odd fish. There was a slight breeze into the opposite bank but only one angler and I saw him take a couple in the time it took me to walk round the bay.
In the late 70's this bay was alive with fish through the season and a good evening rise was almost guaranteed. The fishing has changed significantly over the years with a lot of the bank fishing now closed. The Ticknall bank used to be a favourite spot of mine but now there is no fishing on this bank.
However, for those wanting some early season sport with tip top fish you cannot go far wrong at the moment.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Carp, Spam, & Floatfishing

I recently had the opportunity to catch the last hour of light on a small lake I had not fished before. A week or so earlier I had spoken to another angler on the bank who was very helpful and suggested that simple floatfishing using meat was sufficient to tempt some of these free biting fish. This was a great opportunity to try out the Peter Wheat Avonmaster rod that was another of my ebay purchases, together with my trusty Mitchell 410A reel.
These fish were not monsters but provided great sport and I missed as many bites on my simple set up. This comprised 6lb Maxima straight through to a Drennan Specialist size 8 barbless hook. A crystal waggler taking 2AAA locking the float completed the set up. I have always put my bait straight onto the hook but am now wondering whether this accounts for only about a 50% hook up rate. All that hair rig business though seems a bit vulgar.
The coarse fishing season on rivers has now closed and I am still agonising on whether I should voluntarily observe this on stillwaters. Being somewhat of a traditionalist I do feel a bit guilty but as any politician will tell you it is a wise man who in not bound by his principles.
I was disappointed to notice that one of the carp I caught had not been handled with the care it deserved and its mouth was distorted. This is unforgiveable in my book and that careless angler should be ashamed.
The Avonmaster was a joy to use and I will look forward to fishing with this rod again. It is in good condition but unfortunately the tip ring is non original; a previous owner has replaced it with one threaded for a swing tip.

Sunday, 7 March 2010

Roll on Spring

In contrast to the list of impressive PB's on Glen's blog mine is dedicated to anyone else who is blanking their head off at the mo. I had a really tough morning at Ellastone again failing to trouble the scorers. I should have known better with the temperature at -3.4degC when I left Derby and bright sunlight.
After I had been fishing about half an hour I stopped to chat to a Norbury chap who then started fishing above the riffles at the top of the DRAC water. I didn't see him catch either. The temperature was still very cold and I only lasted just over a couple of hours before calling it a day. I also had an interesting debate with two other anglers who were just setting up to bait fish the lower section. Having established it was their first time at Ellastone I politely enquired whether they had trout membership. They didn't but were adamant that they could fish the stretch out of trout season on coarse membership. Having just read the DRAC handbook I think they were wrong.
Hopefully spring is just round the corner and the trout season too. I am looking forwards to the weather warming up, I'm not a great fan of winter angling, and I'd also quite like to replace the picture of the perch at the top of the page!