Friday after my excursion to the Glebe finds me stuck in the rut again – peg 10 at Bowood, fishing 8:35 to 12:00. I was still only taking my pole but had thought about taking the pike rod as well, so set up in the usual way with one main exception- previously I had been fishing a bulk only 5-6 inches from the hook to combat the weed but now I adjusted the shotting so the bulk was two feet from the hook with two sets of two no 8 droppers as this would allow for a more natural fall but still show up clearly if the rig was caught on a stalk. Four balls of groundbait were cupped in with some corn, hemp and wheat, starting on maggot on the 10m mark I had a roach followed by a small skimmer which prompted a change to the corn. Bites were still forthcoming but I was having to wait longer but at 9:30 the float shook then lifted and a lift produced a solid response from a fish that plodded as I managed to guide it towards me before it realised it was hooked and set off on a run that saw elastic streaming from the pole. It took quite a bit of time before the net was finally slipped under a tench of 5-10.
Now as it happens I had forgotten to replace my landing net after the Glebe as i had taken it as a spare so I was left with a Chinese one I had bought to try but had to use a work around as they use different sized threads to us! The net was only just attached to the handle by a couple of turns but held (for this fish!).
The rest of the session went as usual for this time of year- catch some roach and rudd, things go quiet (pike moves in), catch some more(pike moves off), and repeat! Just about 11:50 the float dipped and disappeared, a strike was met with a goodly amount of elastic coming out and after a brief but feisty fight a tench neared the net, at which point the net fell off! I managed to hook the end of the handle under the net and get it onto the platform eventually, while still hanging on to the tench. Grabbing the net I stooped on the platform and managed to scoop the tench all 4-12 of it. At which point I thought enough was enough! The final tally with the tench was 12 roach 11 rudd and the skimmer for 12-13.
Monday sees me back at 10 this time with the proper landing net and the pike kit but things didn’t go to plan as 9 roach, 9 skimmers and 14 rudd for 3-03 was my return and not a single run on the pike rod. Undeterred back to peg 10 on the Wednesday starting in my usual fashion I soon changed to corn and was rewarded with a tench of 3-12 more rudd and roach followed slowly before another tench of 5-14 put in an appearance with the only other action of note was me being snapped by a good fish after a fight of 2-3 minutes that I suspect was a pike! No runs again on the pike rod despite trying different areas/twitches, etc. Eleven rudd two roach and a small skimmer came to 1-10 for a 11-04 total.
It was no until the Monday that I was able to go again back to 10 for an abbreviated session of 8:45 to 10:45 that will be explained by reading on! I was not feeling great to be honest when I arrived at the peg but put it down to not having made the trek for a few days. Setting up as per normal the sardine on the pike rod was dispatched to about 12m out and a couple of metres to the right, the pole had me thinking it may be a good day as the first two fish were skimmers, not big but usually the harbinger of better bream. Switching to corn I had some more skimmers, roach and rudd when at 10:15 the pike float disappeared and the line tightened, closing the bail arm I wound down and struck only for the spool to whirl in freespool and create a birds nest. Quickly untangling the morass of line I soon discovered that the reel was broken the spool was turning as well as going up and down on the turn of the handle meaning no line was being retrieved, so hand-lining the line back on the spool I was relieved to find I was not attached to a fish (one of the advantages of fishing single barbless hooks), so broke down the pike kit and packed it away. Unfortunately the swim was now dead, Mr Pike had taken up residence, I was still feeling off it so decided to give it best, return home and set up with a different reel for the following day. The 10 roach, 6 rudd and 8 skimmers went exactly 3lb. On inspection it appears that something has sheared- probably through the abuse I have given it over the years.
At home I set up with a new reel that my late father bought for me years ago and prepared for the Tuesday only for me to be met with a day of problematic weather and me feeling rough, so I stayed at home which as things turned out was the correct course of action! I seemed to have picked up a bug and spent most of Wednesday and Thursday laid low losing 10lb in weight in the process! Writing this I am beginning to feel human again and may venture out on Sunday or Monday with any luck.