Another Successful Thames Roach Session

Silverfisher

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So was finally back on the banks of the Thames today after a couple weekends off due to first social commitments and then rubbish weather. After some successful sessions in my favourite swim on the sandford old channel last month I decided to head back to by favourite medley swim today as whilst my one session in last month was ok it was nowhere near the sandford level or what the swim produced last season so knew it had more to give. The river was very low, slow and clear but the weather was pretty ideal being warm with a light southerly and saw spells of both sun and heavy cloud so I was optimistic of a good session and thankfully it did turn out that way.

Started fishing just before 8.30 on stick and maggot and half an hour of that was a right flop as I could barely get the float to move in the slow flow let alone get the bait through the bleak and chublets so I switched to waggler and hemp about 9. That at least would run through the swim but still didn’t produce that many fish for the first hour so I was starting to think I was going to butcher the ideal weather. About 10 though that swim just came alive and whilst it was never manic it was a pretty consistent stream of mostly good roach up until packing up a bit after half 3.30. Final tally I would say was maybe 60 roach, about 10 silver bream, 5 chublet, 5 bleak and 1 dace. The roach were typical Thames roach hemp sized much like they have been all summer so probably bought about 15lb with the other fish adding at least a couple pounds of which the vast majority came from the silver bream. So all in maybe 17lb so much more in comparable to this swims capability’s and the results on the sandford old channel last month so it was very enjoyable indeed. Also an absolute miracle today was that I had no pike attacks which is a first for me at medley where you usually get at least a handful sometimes double figures!

Tackle wise there’s not much point going through the stick set up given how brief and unsuccessful it was. The successful waggler set up was the usual 13ft drennan acolyte ultra float rod paired with a 2500 shimano sahara RD reel loaded with 3lb maxima to a 1.5G drennan loaded crystal insert waggler to a size 18 to 2lb drennan silverfish hook to nylon. I set this up to fish the usual line I mainly fish in this swim which currently is a little over 5ft deep but I actually mostly caught a bit further out today fishing the same depth which there equated to about a foot off bottom there most the way through the run. Apart from the early stick fish on maggot every fish fell to hemp over loose feed of just hemp most of the day with a few tares mixed in for the last couple hours. I did try tares on the hook but they wouldnt work today probably because the clarity and slowness of the water gave them too much of a look at it.

My grandad was with me again and I think age is starting to catch up with him as he was still doing his usual “old man” feeder fishing as he puts it which he seems to do on rivers these days even in nailed on float conditions. Think he regretted that today though as it just seemed to butcher his swim as he literally only caught about a dozen fish made up of a fairly equal mix of roach, perch and bleak and a single gudgeon. He didn’t escape the pike either getting bitten off a handful of times. Still he said he enjoyed watching me catch at least!

All in all another really nice day on a river that’s fishing really well this season given I’ve only had 1 bad session out of 7 so far (unless you count the extra 1 rubbish 2 hour session) 4 of which have been really good. I think it’s because this hit and miss summer of weather we’ve had has kept refreshing it and not cooked it too much so at least something good has come from said hit and miss weather. Given the slower flow than usual today I fed a little less than usual so might have a short session somewhere tomorrow to use up the rest of the bait. If not next session will be next weekend on a boat holiday with some mates lower down the Thames so that’ll be interesting!

Usual pics of the swim and a selection of roach.
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SeanB

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Well done mate. Has your grandad thought about trying a whip? Might be an option for him if the feeder isn't working too well.
 

Silverfisher

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Well done mate. Has your grandad thought about trying a whip? Might be an option for him if the feeder isn't working too well.
Thanks mate 👍🏻

He did mention today that he had been looking at the 6M acolyte whip. Essentially the problem is that he struggles to stand for long now so he can float fish fine on Stillwaters when you can sit down but he struggles on rivers where you usually need to stand up. Probably could have got away with sitting today tbf as it was barely flowing.

Just noticed I forgot to mention the groundbait which was 5 balls of Blake baits roach a choc. Not had a bad session with it yet so seems pretty good. Nice dark brown colour and mixes very easily.
 

Silverfisher

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Just remembered something I should have put in the report. Was thankfully a fairly quiet day by medley standards on the boat, swimmer and walker front. But at one point a full on convoy of canoes went past full of people dressed as pirates playing the pirates of the Caribbean theme tune on a boom box which as disruptive as it was I had to give them credit for it as it was quite creative and amusing 😂
 

adriang

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Thanks mate 👍🏻

He did mention today that he had been looking at the 6M acolyte whip. Essentially the problem is that he struggles to stand for long now so he can float fish fine on Stillwaters when you can sit down but he struggles on rivers where you usually need to stand up. Probably could have got away with sitting today tbf as it was barely flowing.

Just noticed I forgot to mention the groundbait which was 5 balls of Blake baits roach a choc. Not had a bad session with it yet so seems pretty good. Nice dark brown colour and mixes very easily.
Excellent as usual! I've got to give Medley a bash..

Are you getting your Blakes GB online or is there an outlet by you? I've been down there to get hemp, its a cross country trek for me,
 

Silverfisher

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Excellent as usual! I've got to give Medley a bash..

Are you getting your Blakes GB online or is there an outlet by you? I've been down there to get hemp, its a cross country trek for me,
Thanks mate 👍🏻

And yes you really should give it a go there! Certainly fishes well more often than not just have to find the pegs that have depth close in rather than effectively a beach.

On the groundbait front I was given a 1kg bag of it then got a 5kg bag when down that way. But you can get it off their website which is what I’ll do if I get any more as it’s a reasonable distance for me as well. Have got hemp off them online in the past.
 

NoCarpPlease

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Thanks mate 👍🏻

He did mention today that he had been looking at the 6M acolyte whip. Essentially the problem is that he struggles to stand for long now so he can float fish fine on Stillwaters when you can sit down but he struggles on rivers where you usually need to stand up. Probably could have got away with sitting today tbf as it was barely flowing.

Just noticed I forgot to mention the groundbait which was 5 balls of Blake baits roach a choc. Not had a bad session with it yet so seems pretty good. Nice dark brown colour and mixes very easily.
not sure why you’d have to stand up to fish Medley? Or is it more that it would be awkward to float fish from a chair with a backrest?
It does sound more like a “convenient excuse”?

another nice catch BTW
 

Silverfisher

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not sure why you’d have to stand up to fish Medley? Or is it more that it would be awkward to float fish from a chair with a backrest?
It does sound more like a “convenient excuse”?

another nice catch BTW
Yeah I don’t think you have to either as if there’s one place you can get away with being sat medleys it given it’s lack of pace most of the time! Guess it is still easier to stand though as the fairly flat banks mean you’re quite low to the water so you can’t really see your line all that well when you’re sat down which makes mending and striking a bit more awkward than when stood. Think he’s got a bit of a if I can’t do it properly I won’t do it at all attitude 😉🤔

And thanks mate 👍🏻 I’m just lucky to have some prolific venues locally that make me look good 😅
 
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