Sunday, 1 July 2012

Operation Redfin

 Having the day before only with a short period of time available I decided to make a whole day of it and make an attempt at catching a pound plus Roach or Rudd.

 So I was up and at my destination by 7am and after walking just a short distance up river which happened to be extremely low on water and gin clear I spotted a shoal of Roach up to about 2lb on the gravels, just what I was hoping to see but as I was going to find out quite quickly was that the Roach were not willing to feed and after an hour or so of watching them charging around the pool following each other past my bait time and time again I decided it was time to move and come back later.

 After that disappointment earlier I did have a back up plan that consisted of another shoal of Roach that frequent another spot about 500m upstream and when I crept into the swim I noticed a massive group of Chub there with just 1 or 2 Roach and Rudd amongst them and as we all know what will grab the bait first so I left the swim alone and pushed further up and thought to myself lets just go Chub fishing until the water rises.

 Only for a little while I went off topic and an hour later I had 19 Chub averaging 3lb 0oz and the two biggest at 4lb 8oz and 5lb 1oz respectively.

Whilst waiting for the water to rise the Chub fishing was a good bit of fun with a haul of around 60lb in just over an hour and by which time the level started to increase it was time for me to head back down to the spot that I started in and with my first cast into the pool on casters I had a fish on but it turned out to be a Dace of about 6oz and with the subsequent cast I had another take which did feel a little more resistent and it was a...... ROACH! and it looked a good fish aswell but it was'nt in yet and it kept diving into the weed on the bottom and the weed floating downstream trying it's best to lose the hook and being a size 18 barbless it was'nt a hard task but I did manage in the end to slip my target over the net, job done!

A 1 lb 1oz redfin in a massive net perfect fish

So with my target captured I carried on to try and capture it's parents but unfortunately the rest were not as brave or stupid which ever side your on. With that it was time to move off so I decided to go and do some Barbel fishing, naturally. En-route I gave Stuart a bell and see if he was fishing, which he was'nt with which he said he'd come and watch, little did he know I was going to employ him as head ghillie for the afternoon.

 The river looked good and visibility was as good as usual for stalking purposes which is the only way to do it, so after a short natter it was down to business and I hooked my first Barbel of the session quite quickly and what a great fight it was aswell taking a few minutes to bank and in the tight space to operate in it proved to be a fun experience, with Stu on the net the Barbel was tired and glided towards it and then Stu tried to deploy the quick catch and release tactic by nearly knocking the Barbel off but it was'nt to pay off, but second time round he did land it , I think the Barbel and Stuart have an arrangement. Number one at 6lb 10oz a spawned out female.

1535: 6lb 10oz

After reviving that fish I had about 18minutes of again just nagging with Stu and hung around the same spot as I knew there were a shoal of Barbel present so it was only a matter time until my finger nearly got taken off whilst bouncing my bait along the bottom, with a powerful take right under my rod tip pretty much I was in again with another medium sized Barbel on the end, by now with Stu looking on in amazement that I hooked a second fish out of the same swim, 4-5 minutes later number two was banked with my ghillie in better form :).

1554: 6lbs 2oz

Another 6 pounder, was turning out to be a very good day and it was about to get better aswell when 5 minutes later I had another take same place same strategy number three was in, Stu was becoming a brilliant ghillie indeed with the netting and pictures spot on, I never usually have anyone with me as I focus best on my own but I could'nt go wrong as when I got the presentation spot on they could'nt resist. Cheers mate.

1559: 6lb 7oz

After a mad 25 minutes and 3 Barbel later, Stu and I made our way up river but there was no more joy, so back down river to just past where I had the Barbel earlier and I did have another Barbel at 4lb 2oz which up a spirited little battle for a smaller fish and after that I had a 2 Perch, 1 Roach and a few small Chublet, all in all it was a brilliant days fishing on two different rivers. 


  1. lol, I got it in the end!


  2. Well done, I know that feeling very well. A pound plus roach on the line is something that never fails to please me, especially a wild fish from a river or canal.

    1. Cheers Jeff, I'm looking to spend a lot more time targeting Roach this season but Marsh Farm is mighty tempting on the Roach front, but I agree river Roach are far more impressive when wild.