Saturday, 10 April 2021

Adder Time!


 Sadly I have barely mustered a cast since the end of the season and with not much time to hand of late I have found myself planning trips when the weather warms up, so with that I thought I'd set a slightly different target. Last spring I got into Lepidopterology as I noticed a couple of different species flying past that I'd never taken any notice of before hand knew very little of them. 

 By the end of the butterfly season in early October I had successfully documented 47 species and photographed 45 of them, quite an achievement which was wholly driven by my thirst for completeness. Now I know I'm short by 14 species ( to photograph ) but accepted that given the whole lockdown/covid-19 scenario I think I made a great go of it.

 This spring however I have factored in something a little different and that being reptiles, one that escaped me last year was the Adder, but after a bit of research and luck I soon put that to bed with over a dozen individuals spotted amongst the Gorse in just two short afternoon visits with the camera, as time goes on I'm sure the images will get better but these will do for now!


 The Butterfly photos will be posted on a separate post this weekend as I hope some of you may find them interesting!

Tuesday, 23 March 2021

Autumn and Winter Barbel Challenge River Colne 2020/21


 Now I had massive plans for this winter with plenty of plans cemented and targets set, that was until the travel restrictions were put in place to ruin it all. Alone on a bank in the middle of nowhere, travelling at quite times to avoid traffic, travelling on safe routes etc seemed to matter not, so my thoughts of targeting an Itchen, Medway, Kentish Stour and Lea Barbel were all thrown out the window, my only one saving grace is that I'm working a lot around the Colne Valley and what runs through it? 

  The mighty and hard as nails, River Colne. A river I don't know particularly well but last season managed two in my first visit, both 8lb+, how hard could it be? Early November I went down for my first outing and did half a day in search of a fish, fast forward to the 3rd of March when I finally got a savage wrap that given the fact my rod/s had remained motionless for almost 11 trips I wasn't expecting it but bloody happy I did as I was severely questioning my approach, my timing, my chosen venues, basically everything and knowing the Colne through other avenues I know time is a commodity that is very much required to be successful here, probably more so than many other rivers where Barbel are the chosen target.

 So when that Barbel savagely headed downstream I automatically had visions of a huge fish that had evaded capture for years and had achieved biblical proportions and now I was tussling with it, trying to outwit a fish in its own backyard which was littered with numerous downed trees and submerged obstacles to avoid, with plenty of power still clearly on display I tried to get its head up in the torchlight reveal was I was connected to and determine whether I needed to play with more caution or throw it to the wind and mug it! Given the lengths I had gone too to get this far and be connected with one both those thoughts were vying for number one spot. 

 After a good 3-4 minutes she finally came upstream gently and into view, I have to admit, I thought she was a lot bigger given the show of power, but didn't fight erratically like most Barbel of that size do, my heart did sink a little bit, I thought my target of a Colne double had been achieved, not long after I saw her she was resting in the net and my first Colne Barbel of the season was on the chalkboard. 

 Not the monster I hoped for at 7lb 14oz but a welcome sight for certain. I spent another three trips after that fish for nothing but the occasional quiver, hard work indeed as 14 trips comprised of 64.5 hours of hard graft for 1 Barbel, 1 Bream and a lost Carp to something sharp.

 I will be back in the new season with a new sense of vigour and hope to put this difficult river to bed, it will happen, just when....

Saturday, 20 March 2021

Time to Search for Silver.

 A season bound by endless restriction saw very little angling of note taking place and what with a constant stream of work surrounding my garden and paid work coming in swathes to keep things afloat in the Denison household I had barely found the urge to fish beyond the odd hours after work in search of Barbel. So around valentines day Brian and I took an afternoon off from the mud-pit ( my garden project ) in the hope of finding some Dace as the females begin to put weight on in preparation for spawning around mid-April.

 We began by trotting the head waters where sometimes they start to congregate around mid-Feb but after 15 minutes of running the 6g stick float through with a generous lump of bread flake was ignored it was time to get moving, which is strange as late season can often see shoals of 100 fish plus, but recent heavy rains may have displaced the shoal so we headed downstream, fortunately for us we know roughly where they will be and chances of monsters 12oz and over bracket are certainly possible and I have achieved fish over the 1lb barrier from these very swims, so if there was ever a reason to remain focused and fired up for a trip that would be the tonic.

 Clear and cold conditions were order of the day and have been very successful when shrouded in mist, low pressure and cold, its something like this just seems to get the Dace feeding, but now after three swims it seemed like they either had other ideas on feeding or we simply hadn't found them. The game of cat and mouse is always a thrilling one and after a good two hours of searching I peeped over a hedge and could see 30-50 fish including Dace, some of which were real corkers and the sense of excitement went through the roof, like a little child unwrapping a desired toy at Christmas, we couldn't wait to get fishing for them and in the crystal clear water we could see them hovering around mid-depth, flashing on the gravel, turning at objects coming down in the water and darting in and out of the numerous beds of ranunculus. This was the chance, so I gave Brian the rod and hoped to be on camera duty for a big Dace.....

 Unfortunately for Brian, Trout and Chub decided to scupper his efforts, but I got lucky with two Dace on the alternate fish, one was around 6oz, then this one which was a welcome sight and a beautiful winter "Silver Dart", praying it didn't come off in the brisk current were answered as I got to cradle another chalkstream beauty.

 Then as the light failed the mornings rain started to affect the river and clarity was lost and then the fish started switching off. That was it for us, not a bad result for an off-the-cuff afternoon visit. Locally!

Thursday, 4 February 2021

Getting Prepared.

  As new season is just a little over 4 months away I am beginning my plans for proper assaults on the country's Barbel stocks as I look to turn the screw on my new challenge.

 So far my BAA ticket has arrived giving me access to some pukka sections of river and at £40 for a full membership that enables fishing on reaches of the rivers ; Severn, Anker (albeit very limited), Mease (again, only a small beat), Teme and a section of the Wye. Having done a bit of reading I am quite tempted to start my season on the Severn and if I get lucky quickly I'll move on to the Wye as they aren't too far away from eachother, or the Teme, Thame etc. God the list of rivers to target are endless.

 However, rivers closer to home such as the Kentish Stour, Rother, Arun, Medway, Lea ( which I acquired a Fishers Green Consortium ticket for ) provide good fishing whether its a couple of hours after work or a days fishing when I have the time available. Then not to mention other rivers like the Colne and Itchen where work often takes me for which I have dabbled on over the last 4 months with not much success it has to be said, not that it surprises me of course!.

 Summer and Autumn 2021 I hope will throw up a few surprises and that a few of my targets are achieved. In the last week or so I have learned my youngest brother is moving up to Bolton-upon-Dearne in Yorkshire from London which will put me on the doorstep of another river or two that are on my radar, hopefully I can grab a couple of hours kip in between days on the river as I stalk my targets out of the lush weed infested rivers, those days can't come soon enough, hopefully this situation we find ourselves in will have blown over and life can resume on the banks as normal and I can make up for lost time. 

 I live in bloody hope! By this time next year I hope to have chalked off a few rivers and been firmly in the double figures. I currently stand on five rivers. 

 Here are a couple of shots of sections I have available to fish from June 16th onwards.

 Already dreaming of it all.

River Teme, Lindridge.

River Wye, Stacklands.

Monday, 4 January 2021

2021, Master Blanker.

 Since kicking off my Barbel fishing in mid October last year I had as most of you know a good start to the campaign, as November drew closer my rod has remained practically motionless, all manner of conditions have been fished, some I would really feel confident in. Alas I have only mustered a couple of bites in some 15 sessions in that time leading up to yesterday where I got back on to the Colne having been close for a prior commitment.

 With the mummers of another full nationwide lockdown I can count myself fairly lucky that as a mobile engineer within the M25 I have to be on the road regardless of what restrictions are in place, these callouts and jobs will often bring me close to waterways and with a selection of gear always in the van the opportunistic couple of hours can often be taken advantage of.

 Given the fact temperatures down here have struggled to push the mercury beyond a couple of degrees the river temps have also in turn been very sluggish and knowing Barbel in cold conditions their feeding spells are very short and I suspect will often go days without feeding as their bodies acclimatise to the cooler water before searching for food once again. Guessing it was going to be tough I thought what the hell, I'm here lets get on with it.

One rod either side of the river, targeting the margins.

 As usual I adopted a light roving approach and moved between swims on a 250m section (not to spread myself too thinly). One rod was fished with G.Nimrod 15mm hookbait shaved down to around 10mm and a small rounded off piece of Prince's luncheon meat (these are getting harder to find as time goes by).

 Any spots that looked worth while targeting I did, but as the swims changed and the hours ticked by I found myself looking at a very distinctive outcome, one I am hoping to change sooner rather than later. I know it's not really a good time to be on the Barbel but they have to feed at some point, I just hope to be there, in the right place at the right time as I am sure the areas I am targeting will provide me with what I am searching for.

 21 trips so far since mid-October and 19 blanks across 7 rivers, all of which I have never fished for Barbel and I am learning most of this in the dark with most of my visits being for just a few hours after work.

Thursday, 31 December 2020

A Round Up of 2020.

  2020, the year that if I could, start all over again, roll the dice and hope for a much better outcome!

 January: Very little of note was caught apart from a superb brace of tiny chalkstream Chub, four pound fish are still considered good fish. After plenty of searching myself and Brian located where there were some fish, a steady stream of maggots and dollop of patience was enough to take three super fish, topped off with a 6lb 3oz brute which was braced with a 5lb 4oz fish that in itself was good enough to walk away feeling a great sense of achievement.

 February: Was even more difficult as I only went fishing once, Whilst away in the Caribbean I did get some fishing done but as they were caught in March they don't really count, so this lovely marked Brown Trout will have to do! Oh and I had a lovely Barbel the evening before I flew out, 10lb 7oz.

 March: Once I got back to Blighty I fancied a trip out after Grayling and ended up having a great day out, with numerous fish to just under 2lb and also a lovely brace of Roach which again just missed out on the two-pound mark but were amongst a shoal of much larger fish, one of which I did lose.

 April: Owing to the pandemic sweeping the globe our freedoms were stripped to protect the elderly so we were told to stay at home, so thats exactly what I did, the fish could breath a sigh of relief and my house got a lot more attention than I thought it would. No Pics, apart from copious amounts of Gin!

 May: Well, what can I say, most of it again was spent at home until restrictions were lifted slightly, with that I decided the Catfish needed a good seeing to, so Brian, my brother Richard and I did just that where I landed fish to 39lb 9oz and my largest UK caught fish ever. Plus I had some beautiful small farm pond Tench that ranged from 5lb to nearly 8lb, everyone a worthy adversary as all of them battled tirelessly for freedom amongst the thick pads.

 June: Opening day of the new season Brian of Navareth ( formerly Brian of Sreatham ) came along for a 48hr session out in the boat after Rudd....3 hrs later we came in, hole in the boat we decided we'd stick to dry land, I managed a nice old warrior of 2lb 5oz, not bad for a session that was littered with poor decisions (mainly weather related)

 July: July looked to be my 2020 turning point as I went out in search of targets and got close to some and achieved others, a big chub of 6lb 4oz (early season) slipped up during a short morning session on a small chalkstream, then a canal march was decided upon. Although no Carp were located a big Bream decided a lump of slow sinking bread flake was too good to ignore, 8lb 14oz. Then I made my Wrasse debut where I had a few stunners off of Portland west side, a great experience and one I will certainly go for again.

 August/September: These were both very lean months in terms of angling and found myself scratching around for the odd Chub and Barbel, all of which weren't big therefore not really worth mentioning! Not that that is the criteria of course, just this is a highlights!

 October: By the middle of October I hadn't managed a trip, then I gave myself something to think about that put a foot up my arse, as my fishing was going stale and quickly losing my mojo. The plan isn't necessarily a short term goal but will give me a sense of direction for my angling. That target is to achieve a double figure Barbel off of forty different rivers across the country, some obscure and some alot more obvious. I started off with the not so secretive (Trent) and blanked then went off the radar and banked a huge 15lb 12oz Barbel on my fourth visit to that particular river. A few days later, I went back up the Trent and banked an impressive 13lb 9oz Barbel on the first evening, two rivers checked off in 5 days I think it was, not mention beating an 8 year old PB (originaly 14lb 6oz from the Hants Avon).

 November: The blanks started to mount up at an alarming rate but one I could have foreseen as temps started to fall away, the only thing that was good about November was a chub session I had on the float, 16 fish teased out of one pool where the remainder of the river seemed empty, glad I found them!

 December: The blanks continued on at the same rate, but for another session on the float for silvers it was fairly dead, on the float was great fun and to finish off I managed a beautiful mirror around 6lb on 2lb bottom, size 16 hook and a light float rod.

 Lets hope 2021 is a darn sight better in many respects, although 2 PB's isn't a terrible return I must admit.

 I wish you all a very happy new year in blogland and wish you peace and prosperity for the year ahead. Tight Lines all.


Sunday, 13 December 2020

Tackle Reviews.


For a few years now people who know I blog have asked whether I review tackle as part of my blog and the short answer is no, mainly because who wants to read my ramblings on about what rod or reel is good or what winter clothing system lasts a winter without the crutch area being clawed out by the incessant rigours of being a mobile angler where barbed wire is present most of the time and maybe the odd scratch of the family jewels. 

 However, on this occasion I do have a couple of things that I have recently purchased and feel compelled to at least sing its praises. Firstly before going any further I am not affiliated to either of the companies that these items are made/designed by, I personally feel that if someone is looking for something similar then these maybe for them! 

 First up is the Daiwa Igloo2 2-piece Bib & Brace set.

 At £190 I wanted something that will keep me warm when out in the depths of winter which I have already found myself doing and I have been pleasantly surprised as to how warm it is, I've already been subjected to driving torrential rain, sleet and strong winds and have remained dry and cosy. Very much the essence of what a winter suit should achieve. Plenty of decent pockets in the right places and I know that sounds strange but all too often pockets are either not particularly generous in size or if they are they are located in awkward places, where the hand doesn't naturally end up when trying to dig a chocolate bar out.

 Now, for me being 6ft tall and 14st + it works very well and the "large suit" is great in terms of length of arms and legs, the bib sits just on the bottom of my laces on my waterproof hiking boots which is perfect, only downfall for me is that it is a bit puffy, now I am a skinny jeans kind of guy and like fitted clothing ( at the moment I can get away with it ), and feel owing to this puffiness that a bit of heat does escape and when trotting isn' a hinderance but would be a bit more comfortable if its wasn't as bulky. That negativity aside, if you were say 6ft 2in and 15-16st then it'll probably fit perfectly in every way.

 As said above, that really is my only negative point on it and I have had other body suits/winter Bib & Brace' and have found so far this is the one I like the most for the reasons given above, plus you could always buy a SnugPak by Fortis but you would fork out £120-£180 for just the jacket, in terms of value and quality I would at the very least give it a look. Plus it is also made in partnership with Sundridge who are possibly one of the best makers of winter sports thermal wear, just look them up!

 Up next is a piece of terminal tackle that I use quite frequently given my target now for the foreseeable future. A lot of my summer fishing for Barbel will be sight fishing but in the autumn and winter fishing will most likely be following a static approach and I find hooklink material is very important in terms of building confidence in an approach, especially when they are clear rivers and the smallest of discrepancies are picked up by weary Barbel and indeed other fish such as Carp and Chub.

 I have now been using Korda's IQ2 hooklink material now for a couple of years and have found it very easy to manipulate to make tight turns, knots etc and rarely get a poor finish, very good abrasion resistance I have found and that is fishing in swims with snags like metalwork, trees and other rubbish that our rivers collect. Also in water ( not tap water, as I actually haven't tried it ) seems invisible to me and presentation of hookbaits seems to be perfect everytime.

 Some may say its quite expensive at £10 for a small spool of 20m but where I tend to use 8-12inch hooklengths it lasts me a whole season if not more. I have never had this stuff go on me and even when a hard fighting Barbel or Carp takes me through the ringer the rig more often than not is in good enough condition to re-use. That coupled with very good knot strength this is the only hook length material I will use until someone tells me there is something better to try or I find it myself.

 £10 for the 10/12/15lb BS spools that consist of 20m of material.

 All in all, you've now heard my guff, if you are looking for a new winter suit or just a jacket, or not comfortable the rig material you are currently using then look at these. 

Monday, 7 December 2020

An Afternoon on the Float.


Given my recent difficulties in locating and catching Barbel I have decided to target other species until conditions are more conducive to catching. Having visited the dentist this morning and having an extraction at 940am I wasn't feeling up to much. But you can't put a good man down! 

 The fire still burns deep even with my mouth in absolute bits and the temps not predicted to go above 2c all day ( which for once they did get right ).  I quickly shot home, grabbed a pint of maggots and the gear then headed out for an afternoons trotting. 

 The tackle I was using consisted of a Greys Prodigy specialist float 12ft 2-piece, Greys Bewick 4¾ inch centrepin loaded with 3lb Maxima Chameleon and a beautifully made drake quill trotting float rated at 6BB.

 Swim selection on a cold day with cold water is always key and I thought I had hit the nail on the head from the beginning as my second trot resulted in a mint 7oz 3dr Dace. The next half hour was a complete waste of time. Was there just one Dace in that entire 40 yard trot? I am inclined to think not and that shoal just switched off immediately, even though I had fed the swim for 15 minutes before trotting it. I did however have another idea and that was that shoal pretty much ended where I had that Dace, so I packed the keepnet and everything up and moved another 25 yards upstream and began my feeding regime as before.

 Bites again were instant, only difference this time is that they came almost every trot and plenty of quality Gudgeon came to the net, along with Chublet, Dace and a solitary Perch (which was a surprise - highest I've had one on this river). Once the bites dried up I weighed up my bag which totalled 4lb 6oz of hard worked fish, the Gudgeon came to around a pound with the best not far off 2ozs which is a very good fish.

1oz 12dr. My best for some time.

An hour or so in the right spot, 4lb 6oz.

Awesome! Got to love a Gonk.

 Then I continued on upstream to try and find some bigger Gudgeon and maybe a Roach or two as they had been conspicuous in their absence, I normally pick up a few among Gudgeon shoals. Next up was a couple of fantastic looking trots on nice gentle bends where I have done well in the past. Bites once again weren't forthcoming, fifteen minutes spent trying I upped and moved, as I looked downstream to where my trots were roughly finishing I could see two lovely carp, both sifting through the sandy/gravel bottom and really looked like having a bait, so off came the maggots and pinch of Warburton's went on and no sooner did the bait get to the bottom the smaller of the two carp it took it. The bread vanished and with the float dipping simultaneously I struck and the rod slammed over as the carp charged off past me at a rate of knots, I simply couldn't touch the pin and allowed the pin to do its job, but bad luck crept into my game as I suffered yet another hook pull to a river carp, my third in five attempts this season.

 For me, the gear was standing up to the task, albeit fairly outgunned given the fact the carp was around the 14-15lb mark ( not that its stopped me succeeding in the past ). Had my luck not evaded me on this occasion I felt quite confident that I would have eventually won that battle. But as said above, you can't put a good man down and I hoped that another chance would materialise which thankfully, it did and what a beauty it was too! In very similar fashion to the first attempt, the only difference was I would win this battle got the chance to marvel at what a stunning little creature it was, estimated at roughly 6lb I took a couple of snaps then let it head back into its watery world. Sometimes numbers matter not. 

No words.

The last grasp of Autumn slipping away into an icy coma.

Sunday, 29 November 2020

Blank #16...

  As the blanks rack up at a phenomenal rate I maintain the desire to get out and do my best to put a big Barbel on the bank during what are currently poor conditions. Now I know Barbel will still feed in the cold and with the frosts already settling in opportunities are going to be even more reduced, on top of that the work always picks up closer to christmas before having my usual festive siesta. 

 During the christmas break I do hope we get some mild rain and bring up the temps 2-5c, when this does happen I'll get back out as much as possible, at the moment I am trying to nick the odd session here and there just hoping that I get lucky, how many times can I blank? 

 Its probably an answer I don't want to know as I suspect it is going to be a far greater number than I would have liked. 

 Not that this sort of fishing is easy of course and some of the rivers I am currently targeting are not known for big heads of Barbel, most sections are holding possibly the odd decent fish. My task is to find them and put them on the bank.

 After a couple of weeks since hatching this most recent of plans with a friend of mine Mark a trip back to the Colne was pencilled in for Saturday. We arrived at 7am and began swim hopping with a big lump of meat, in such cold conditions it was possibly the best way to find a feeding fish, or at the very least tease something out of its lair. Fishy looking swim after fishy looking swim was worked well but nothing showed up across the expansive gravel runs that the Colne is famous for. Midday came and went in a flash without a touch.

 We were both having a good catch up and its been a long time since I last had a decent chat with Mark apart from when we've crossed paths in London when we've been working (we work in different trades), so to get the chance to do some fishing was pukka. Clearly we knew it wasn't going to be easy, we both trotted, rolled and static fished and my only bite of the day came around 2pm when I was fishing tight to an overhanging bush where my rod steamed off, I struck nice and firmly only to hit thin air, it certainly wasn't the outcome I wanted given the lack of activity, but it spurred me on as I knew at least one fish was present!

A typical nook that I tried.

 And, before we knew it the rods were out for the last time as darkness consumed the horizon, waiting for a bite in the witching hour is always a time where the hair stand on end, just waiting in anticipation for the rod tip to tap or slam around with a big powerful winter fish in tow, sadly, for us it wasn't to be as it was time finally to call it a day, a shame really as I had hoped for at least something to show itself, given the cold conditions I have convinced myself that the fish were tucked up under foliage and the like, awaiting the next warm spell and the river temps to creep closer to 50f. 

Sunday, 22 November 2020

A Decent Morning on the Chub front.


 With my Barbel quest taking centre stage for the last 6 weeks I have been feeling a tad stale with all the blanks I have been enduring, especially after I had caught a couple of super Barbel a few weeks back. So to break up the blanks I needed a pick-me-up, what better way than grabbing the trotting gear for some winter Chub fishing.

 A hard frost has covered the vehicles on the drive for the last two mornings and knowing it wasn't going to be warm I knew Chub were the only species that would still provide me with a few bites. However things were not straightforward if they are ever are in angling. I arrived to find my target river gin clear, painfully low and upon hopping into the water I could feel the water temp was very low. 

 Armed with two bags of smashed up bread and a half loaf for the hook bait I hoped that running out of bait would have been my biggest worry, two hours in and it was apparent this wouldn't be a problem and that my issue would be getting a fish to the net. It's amazing the session you picture in your head when you're planning and the reality is so very different and maybe part of that is down to my optimistic approach to my fishing and that it isn't always going to go by the book.

 By 11am I was scratching around and had managed 2 little chubblet and a solitary Roach to show for my efforts. I kept mobile and trying runs in between weed and deeper slacks off the lacklustre flow. As I got about half a mile up I was starting to think that those scratchings were going to be my lot until I found a nice eddy off the main flow and in the past I have managed a few fish from this particular stretch but its never proved to be easy pickings and typically it only throws up a couple of fish and then the area goes dead. 

First one in the net...relief.

 Twenty minutes later I was breathing a sigh of relief as my baiting of crumb had worked and slipped my net under a nice low 4lb Chub, from that point on I never looked back, it was all guns blazing! It was the sort of sport I was hoping for as my float was running down the back on an eddy I was fishing and burying itself at almost the same spot every time, Chub after Chub came in and the next was clearly waiting in line to snaffle my flake.

A decent Chub with typically brassy flanks...

....And another.

 For the next two hours I continued to manage the run by feeding and resting after every fish and it was a plan that clearly paid dividends as the bites dried up once I had netted my sixteenth Chub, I spent ten minutes after landing my last Chub to try and get another bite but that was it. Six feet of water was clearly what the fish wanted over their heads and with it being very cold to the touch I guess the fish were just huddled up.

A nice brace of Chub.

 The final score was sixteen chub worth counting that went between 3lb 5oz and 5lb 2oz, it wasn't easy but once I had found them they were in fine feeding form and a resting tactic I think was the difference between maybe two or three Chub and what I finished up with. 

Sunday, 8 November 2020

Heading West.

  With that cold snap last week a thing of the past a nice mild spell now sits over us, hopefully giving the Barbel the green light to do some more feeding. Having had such a poor nights sleep I decided to grab the stalking gear out of the shed and headed over to the Colne for a go at a Barbel. Targeting both countryside and urban sections I gave myself half a chance at possibly catching a big Barbel and potentially checking the Colne off my list as my target of eight rivers by the end of the season still looks to be in contention. 

 I headed around the M25 under the cover of dark as I only had this morning free and 45 mins later I was parked up and scouting my first bit of the river. I have previous on this river with my best at 8lb 8oz and I know larger exist as I had seem them at the beginning of last season albeit further upstream, here I was in the lower reaches in some not so glamorous territory. Any little run or bolt hole I was running a bait through, unfortunately with no idea as to what is present I just did what I know best. Rolling meat.

 As I made my way up I came across some more picturesque scenes and felt alot more comfortable and hoped among the numerous clear runs that I could find a Barbel. 

 But given five hours out in the fresh air I couldn't muster a single bite, only saw one Chub (approx 6lb) and a handful of Roach. Not what I was hoping for but know the Colne is capable of throwing blank after blank at you. Just keep going and an old warrior will be there waiting for me. It does look lovely though.

 Sessions count: 11 trips, 9 blanks, 2 fish.