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.

Breaming of a Slime Fest.

   As the weather begins to warm so does the water and slowly but surely the Bream will come to a point where they will go off and spawn, en...