Tuesday, 13 August 2013

'Smashing' session

A stunning sunrise accompanied me this morning as I made my way along the banks of the Warwickshire Avon. A good start to what I hoped would be a busy day full of hard fighting Barbel. I set up leisurely, there was no need to rush as I had plenty of time unlike most of my recent sessions and when I struck into a fish on the second run through everything was going according to plan. However it was at that point that everything started to go wrong. I was just beginning to get the upper hand when the hook inexplicably pulled. I rebaited and on the fourth cast I ended up snagged up.
The two major problems with float fishing fast swims are hook pulls and snags and I had experienced both within the first couple of minutes. There was a fair bit of weed in the swim so with a decent amount of pressure it is normally easy enough to release the hook. I gave the rod some side strain, not too much or so I thought when suddenly there was a loud 'crack'. The rod had snapped in two places! What an utter disaster. I hadn't planned on fishing two rods so this was the only one I had in the van. As the river is only fifteen minutes from home I packed up as fast as I could and made my way back to get a spare. I was just leaving the car park as a couple of anglers were just arriving and I knew that my swim would now be taken.
Having picked up another rod I made the decision to try a different stretch of the river which is not as heavily fished and where there is a lovely swim perfect for trotting. I baited the run with Hemp and broken pieces of meat and within no time I was into another Barbel. All through the fight the fish felt heavy and I was just about to get my first glimpse of it when I suffered another hook pull. I am beginning to think it is time to look at alternative hooks to the ones I am currently losing.
A few more runs through and I hooked another fish and this time it did stay on right to the net.

Not quite a double but at 9lb 12oz a good fish that went some way to making up for what had transpired previously in the day.
As I was beginning to tire I changed tactic and swapped the float for a lead weight. First cast the rod hooped over and line started to fly off the bait runner. The battle was fairly short lived though and I soon netted one of the smallest Barbel I have ever caught.

An immaculate specimen and a good sign for the future of the river. That was the last of the action for the day unless you count the Kingfisher who was very busy all morning.

1 comment:

  1. Better luck next time mate. You have been doing OK up till today though. I'm on raptors & chod's in sizes 6 & 8 now mate.
    Only had one loss to a hook pull on the barbel front this year. Lost more than my fair share of good fish last summer though. Sometimes when mounting meat on the hook and not hair rigged is a bigger hook.