Lessons from trotting this evening

Silverfisher

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Barbless all day long but i can see the point of micro barbed for the likes of dace and grayling in fast water i just wouldnt bother using them myself.
 

Zerkalo

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Going to give barbed hooks a try next time and see if it makes a difference. Another thing is I'm keen to fish the stick instead of waggler but on this stretch I've been going for the waggler as I've thought I've needed a bit of a longer cast to reach the fish?

Another lesson is that insect repellent is probably a good idea. Woke up this morning with two big insect bites on my face so using Manuka Honey (which works quite well) to clean/soothe them.
 

Silverfisher

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As I general rule I fish the waggler when the swim and conditions allow as it’s just easier. From how you describe that stretch it sounds fine for the waggler until it gets a bit more water in it. As to distance you don’t need to cast far provided theres reasonable depth. Not sure if you’ve ever seen the Thames around my way but 1/4-1/3 of the way across on most stretches is fine. The closer in you can bring the easier it is to control the line.
 

NoCarpPlease

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Just keep going to the same venue until you master it, choose pegs with a steady flow until you get used to controlling the float properly, try top and bottom floats as well as bottom end only get used to what each float can give you in running water catch a few fish then when you are confident move onto to different venues. I was lucky that I learned my running water fishing in fairly fast flowing spate rivers so got used to controlling a float in fast water pretty quickly. As for barbless hooks I only use barbless and when I switched over I found my catch rate increased as I was converting more bites into fish in the net as I feel a barbless hook gives good penetration so you set the hook quickly in the mouths of fast biting fish, and yes that includes dace (they were my main quarry for most of my fishing) as long as you keep the line fairly tight between rod tip and fish you should be OK, yes you will lose a few but I found that this was negated by the extra bites I was hitting, maybe try changing hook pattern I would thoroughly recommend giving Tubertini 808's a try
My own view is that hook shape is more important than micro vs barbless ... interestingly the 808 looks very similar to the Kamasan b560 - which is a great hook for keeping dace on. I don't use it much for that myself as I prefer caster as bait and I find it more difficult to bury the hook quickly with that shape.
And hooks are inevitably a confidence thing.
 

Zerkalo

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Had a slight downstream wind yesterday but even with that I didn't have too much trouble controlling the line to my surprise as it's nice and slow, using the rod at 13ft. Probably casting 20m as there was quite a lot of slack on the inside on this peg as it's quite wide there, I felt like I'd be better on the edge of the main flow but that was just a guess. I felt if I fished a stick I'd be fishing in the slack and have no flow.

Hooks I was using were size 16 Drennan Silverfish Pellet with double maggot on the hook. Feeding caster and hemp to start with but started feeding maggot when all I was catching was Perch and bites dried up a bit anyway.
 

Silverfisher

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Try a single maggot on an 18, I find it tempts more roach and dace than a double which tends to bring more perch and chublets.
 

nejohn

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Or even drop down to single maggot on a 20 slightly lighter so a little more natural
 

Silverfisher

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My guess is that a single maggot looks more natural as it falls amongst the loose feed so is more likely to fool decent roach and dace which are more wary and less greedy than perch and chub. Definitely seems to work whatever the reason!
 

Tinca Mad

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Had a slight downstream wind yesterday but even with that I didn't have too much trouble controlling the line to my surprise as it's nice and slow, using the rod at 13ft. Probably casting 20m as there was quite a lot of slack on the inside on this peg as it's quite wide there, I felt like I'd be better on the edge of the main flow but that was just a guess. I felt if I fished a stick I'd be fishing in the slack and have no flow.

Hooks I was using were size 16 Drennan Silverfish Pellet with double maggot on the hook. Feeding caster and hemp to start with but started feeding maggot when all I was catching was Perch and bites dried up a bit anyway.
River Fishing can be a challenge but that's what makes it satisfying when you get it right. It's all about Water Craft.
A swim that was dead during the day can come alive once the sun goes down.
Fish start to move about feeding once the sun drops and can be caught under your rod tip!
My advice would be travel light, bait many spots where you think fish are holding up in bright conditions, wear polaroids and fish as light as you can.
Shallow flowing water running into deeper water is always good in Summer.
A tip I got from reading Mark Everard's book Redfin Diaries (Excellent by the way) on catching Roach or any other fish in bright conditions, is to fish for them where they hold up in bright conditions.
His example was fishing a 15g Drennan Mesh Feeder with 6lb Maxima downstream under a Willow Tree.
He cast as close to the roots of the overhanging tree as possible and used the current to pull against the thick Maxima line to bring it closer to the tree roots and the bunched up Roach under the tree with great success.
Another tip I learned is put some Geranium Oil on Sweetcorn and Waggler fish upstream and just mend the line as it comes back to you.
He fishes a Waggler way undershotted and drags a BB near the hook and gets sail away bites!
Food for thought from a man who's caught 100's of 2lb Roach;)
 
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Tinca Mad

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Very informative videos worth watching on how to catch fish are the Q & A's on Clive Branson's YouTube Channel with Gary Etheridge, Timothy Ford, Ian Ward, Steve Maher and Bob Nudd.
 

Zerkalo

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River Fishing can be a challenge but that's what makes it satisfying when you get it right. It's all about Water Craft.
A swim that was dead during the day can come alive once the sun goes down.
Fish start to move about feeding once the sun drops and can be caught under your rod tip!
My advice would be travel light, bait many spots where you think fish are holding up in bright conditions, wear polaroids and fish as light as you can.
Shallow flowing water running into deeper water is always good in Summer.
A tip I got from reading Mark Everard's book Redfin Diaries (Excellent by the way) on catching Roach or any other fish in bright conditions, is to fish for them where they hold up in bright conditions.
His example was fishing a 15g Drennan Mesh Feeder with 6lb Maxima downstream under a Willow Tree.
He cast as close to the roots of the overhanging tree as possible and used the current to pull against the thick Maxima line to bring it closer to the tree roots and the bunched up Roach under the tree with great success.
Another tip I learned is put some Geranium Oil on Sweetcorn and Waggler fish upstream and just mend the line as it comes back to you.
He fishes a Waggler way undershotted and drags a BB near the hook and gets sail away bites!
Food for thought from a man who's caught 100's of 2lb Roach;)

Stourport is a bit of a different stretch but I think watercraft still applies. It just doesn't have shallow runs and deep holes, it's wide and fairly even flow that makes it easy for a beginner though I do plan on trying so more 'difficult' in terms of watercraft stretches eventually.

Thanks for all the tips though.
 

Silverfisher

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Definitely sounds like you’ve picked a sensible stretch to start on. I do very much prefer fishing in steady paced, uniform bottomed 4-6ft ish water with a tinge of colour over something more adventurous but you end up in all sorts over time lol
 

Zerkalo

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I’m going to head to Arley for some Barbel fishing tomorrow. I will resist the temptation to take float tackle but I am interested in trying some of those faster sections on the float. Last time at Arley every time I cast my cage feeder out for Barbel I’d get an ‘eruption’ of small fish around where I cast (often followed by a Barbel jumping as though I’d hit it on the head, did think about changing to a bomb but that’s a different story) and I presume they were bleak? Thankfully not too many Bleak have shown the couple of times I’ve fished Stourport.
 

Silverfisher

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Probably bleak hopefully dace lol. It’s why I fish groundbait in a maggot feeder on the Thames to slow the release. I’ll sometimes use a cage feeder to start off the swim but do it too long and as quite a lot comes out to early the bleak are on it instantly and within a couple casts of doing it in addition to the topping bleak there’ll be an eruption of a pike or two as well! Can turn into proper blue planet stuff lol
 

Zerkalo

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Ah might well have been Pike jumping attacking the small fish as quite often when I cast out a big fish would jump straight after. Too far across the river for me to ID what they were.
 

Silverfisher

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Probably a pike. It happens virtually every feeder session on the Thames at some point in the day, often quite a lot. You hook the odd one right off the top when a bleak manages to take your bait as it lands. My grandad had a small one on yesterday as it happens but it threw the hook just before the net. Pike are generally a lot better at getting fish on the feeder than they are the float.
 
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