For two seasons now the thought of catching a very big Golden Orfe has been on my "hitlist", at first I thought they would be easy to catch and my target of a 6lb+ specimen achieved in a fairly short time, two years on and six trips I have yet to get a successful shot at one of the known three specimen Orfe which all tip the scales past the six-pound mark. Just one of these fish and it'll be the cherry on the cake, I've had a couple of dozen to 5.02 using various tactics and although they can feed with complete abandon I find usually they're very timid feeders, only with alot of confidence do they start taking bait in such a way you can catch them.
Like most species though when the timings are right anything is possible. A couple of weeks ago I headed back down with one of these specimen Orfe in mind, the conditions were probably as good as I've experienced on this particular lake as the wind always seems to blow a hooley, which as you could imagine makes stalking the ghosting orange shapes very difficult at ranges of 20-50 yards, with the lack of wind I felt confident that I'd get amongst them. A loaf of bread is my usual bait selection and not long after starting the tell-tale pin point bubbles of Tench started to appear close in to where the Orfe typically show.
|A lovely Spring morning.|
As I hadn't seen any to begin with scooting around just under the surface I fancied setting up a waggler and plummeting the depth to 2inches off the bottom, once I had got the depth right it didn't take the fish long to start falling foul to my cheap bait, all 57 pence of it. Soon my float would remain still for no more than 20-30 seconds before the next fish decided to have a go, numerous Tench came to the net in an hours period then a sudden pull of the float resulted in a weighty fish hanging on the end but to keep in tune with their typical lacklustre demeanour an Orfe cruised to the surface and splashed about before slipping into my awaiting net.
Not a monster but on the digital's she went 4.12 and in fine condition, just the start I wanted as if one is feeding the rest will be too. A couple of photos snapped it was time to get back to it, the sun was starting to get up higher and with that the temperature also improved, usually with this the expectation of the Orfe to start patrolling higher in the water would mean I could track their movements and locate areas they will feed. The Tench however continued to feed hard.
For the next few hours I was catching stacks of Tench from a pound up to the five pound mark and as the evening drew closer I managed a bigger Tench which gave me the run around but this wasn't before I lost a big one previously, thought to be well over six pound and possibly a seven. When the fish on the end of my 3lb bottom surfaced I could see it was half decent so I was pleased.
|Long and lean early Spring Tinca, complete with leeches all over.|
6.03 and the best of my spring Tench so far, this was quickly followed by another Orfe but a bit smaller than the first. With time running out my chance of a 6lb specimen was ebbing away and destined to make me wait a little longer, won't be long before a return will be made, again they proved that they can be elusive no matter how shockingly bright they maybe !