Friday, October 03, 2014

Up and running

Once more I managed to drag myself out of bed before sunrise. Only just, it was light enough to manage without the head torch by the time I was getting the deadbaits out of the cool bag. This time I had remembered the alarms, albeit at the last minute. Gradually my pike gear is getting sorted out.

A mackerel head got launched into oblivion while the other two rods float legered a lamprey tail to my left and float paternostered a smelt to my right. Both of those were fished next to close range features. By seven fifteen I was settled back in my low chair supping tea watching the clouds in the eastern sky change shape and colour like a lava lamp.

After an hour of ducks and geese noisily flighting in and out none of the floats had moved. Despite his grin even Fred was growing despondent. There'd been next to no fishy activity on the surface. One fish, probably a bream, had rolled well out. A few fry had leapt clear of the water, but not in any organised way as if being harrassed by a predator. The sun was getting high and bright enough to warm the day. A change of swim was on the cards - except I couldn't be bothered.

Something scurried in the undergrowth, most likely a rat that found me blocking its run. A flock of long tailed tits twittered their way along the hawthorns accompanied by a couple of blue tits. That sound and sight is one that always makes me think of winter.

With thoughts of an early finish in my mind I noticed the left hand rod tip was twitching. Surprisingly the float was lying flat. As I picked te rod up the float drifted ever so slowly down wind. I wasn't sure if it was a take, or if it had been and the fish had dropped the bait. Baitrunner off. Take up the slack and there's a fish on.

Well, it was probably a fish although it felt as fishlike as a carrier bag. As soon as whatever it was came into view in the clear water I was sure it was a pike. One that did nothing except tailwalk briefly before I netted it. Which I only did because there was a treble flying in an awkward place - the top hook being lodged in the corner of the fish's mouth. Once in the net the scrawny thing went mental!Still, a fish is a fish is a fish. Not having fought hard, or been out of the water for more than a few seconds, the snake swam off without a hitch.

It was approaching nine thirty by the time I got another lamprey section cast out. Despite having kept the other two baits on the move, twitching and repositioning them at frequent intervals they remained unmolested. I hung on until shortly after ten, by which time it was starting to feel more like summer again. Back at the car I was glad to get the fleece off. Lacking any better options it looks like pike are on my menu for the foreseeable future. provided I can get motivated to get up in time - until the days get shorter I'm not so sure about afternoon pike sessions. You never can tell, though.