Wednesday, October 15, 2008

A bit of a waste

It was a glorious autumnal afternoon as I readied my gear. Then the phone started ringing. I wasn't in a rush so I answered it, not that it got me any business as I don't stock Fex pike rods. I finished loading the car and set off.

Autumn in the valley

There were three cars parked up when I arrived at the river. No worries, I'd put my Smartcast in and wanted to give it a run through a swim I hadn't fished before. Usually I drive to the river kitted up and ready to hit the ground running, but today I had to call at the Post Office en route and my fishing boots were still covered in mud from the last session. As I was still running early I could get changed at the river. I opened the tailgate to spy the rod quiver, bait carryall, chair and rucksack plus my fleece and bib and brace. No boots. No boots! "Oh, ffff-fiddlesticks." That phone call must have distracted me when loading the car.

It was fine and the grass wasn't too wet, but I had a horrible feeling that my feet would soon get damp and cold. I wasn't driving all the way home and back again for my boots. A plan was hatched. Not a very appealing one, but a plan. The only good thing was that I hadn't set off for an away day and I could face just a short session. The plan was to fish until my feet were uncomfortable.

I ran the Smartcast through the swim a few times and found it to be completely different to how I'd imagined it would be. Quite interesting in fact, and well worth a few hours. One bait fished the crease and the other the tail of the slack. When the sun sank too low to light up the trees the chub knocks commenced. Nothing conclusive though, but there were obviously fish around. Maybe there'd be a barbel or two down there.

Bad moon rising

At dusk proper a bat appeared, and after dark a tawny owl settled in a tree to my right and began too-witting. It stopped and then flew upstream to carry on its noise making, answered by a too-wooer. After some minutes it flew back downstream too-witting as it went.

Bites came to an end. My toes were beginning to complain. Although it was a lovely night to be on the river I'd had enough. If I'd had my fishing boots on I'd have moved swims, but tramping through damp grass would have aggravated my tootsies. When I got back to the car I threw my gear in the back and turned the heater up to blast warm air on my feet as soon as the engine was running. Ten minutes down the road the heavens opened. I drove through rain that really bounced off the tarmac and consoled myself that although the session had been a bit of a waste of time I'd not got completely soaked. Not a complete waste of time as I had learned a bit more about the river's topography and had another swim noted down for the future.