Kentish Stour, Where are the Barbel?.


 With this river being possibly the closest distance wise to my house that I haven't already done, I set about trying to check the Kentish Stour off the list and get my tenth river double under my belt and achieve my pre-season target, truth be told it was a target that I thought was ambitious, nevertheless I am nearly there and could potentially surpass it with a bit of luck and time.

 Last night I decided to beat the rain and give it a few hours through dark. One area I choose to fish a static "Big Squid dumbbell with matching pellets as rolling was impossible owing to dense weed growth, so I setup a standard 12" hooklength and 1.5oz grippa lead into a gravel channel and fed with 4&6mm pellets in a PVA bag, this is a tactic that does work pretty well, however these Barbel don't seem to feed at all! 

 3 hours without more than a twitch I decided to hot foot it across Kent to another section that I hoped would bare fruit, what with the Great Stour as its also known as being 51.5 miles long there is a lot of water to go at! Luckily a mate of mine is pretty local and has some very good knowledge of the river which he has imparted on me, with that I made my way to another section he'd suggested a few months back, so it was time to give that a go.

 Thankfully the weed in this short run wasn't as bad so I opted for a rolling approach, some may even think surely rolling meat at night is difficult, I grant you rolling meat at night is sometimes easier as your focus is solely on touch rather than sharing that sense with sight, I find my bite identification is much better at night and feel just as comfortable exploring with this technique day or night. Queue the savage Chub bite, normally pretty obvious with a Chub as you feel a few plucks before they commit and yes it didn't turn out to be a Barbel but I couldn't be disappointed with yet another six pound plus Chub and my first from the KS, she was a big old unit, just looking a little worse for wear. 

6lb 1oz on the scales, none too shabby.

For me my task got a little harder and with any potential Barbel now on high alert I didn't think much else would happen and only one other bite materialised before the forecasted rain decided to come down in stair rods! That for me was to call a halt on proceedings and keep my gear as dry as possible. Not a terrible return and that is my best Chub off the Kentish Stour too. This was my 4th visit and not managed my target yet. Where are the Barbel??.


  1. The ‘40 rivers, 40 six pound plus chub’ challenge has begun!!

    1. It’s looking that way isn’t it!

      A great blank saver but the Barbel are a real challenge on there.


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