Thames Chubbing

Silverfisher

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So now we seem to be through that freezing spell of weather I was back on the Thames today with sandford being the venue for a first session in a few weeks.

Picked a swim that I first fished 3 weeks back due to it still having the same steady water. That day I had a decent number of roach and whilst the river looked near identically decent today to how it was then it was a good few degrees colder this time and despite being warmer than the last couple weeks it was crucially a couple degrees shy of the 10 degree mark that tends to bring roach and the like on the feed around here. So with that in mind it was chub or bust.

Fished from about 9 to about 1.30 so a good hour shorter at either end of the session than the usual in warmer conditions and it was hard work as expected. I only had 2 chub and you’d measure them in ounces rather than pounds but my grandad did have 3 proper chub in I guess the 2-4lb range so he was happy enough. Probably should have fished on another hour but we hadn’t had a fish since the morning so decided to upsticks before it started to get even colder.

Not really a good enough result to be worth the usual full gear and tactics breakdown but the fish came to a block ends feeders filled with mostly liquidised bread and a few maggots with quadruple maggot on a size 14 the only successful bait. You don’t have to worry about trying to be selective for Thames chub when it’s sub 10 degrees as no other fish tend to be feeding very often!

All in all it was a struggle for me but at least grandad had an ok session. Does look like the temperatures are going to clear that 10 degree mark in the next few days which if the river dropped a little more would probably bring more species back on the feed but unfortunately there’s more rain coming with it. So probably be back out next weekend in worse conditions rather than better but that’s winter fishing for you!

Pick of the swim towards the end of the session and grandad with a couple of his chub. Rubbish lighting on the second one unfortunately.
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david white

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Fair play for reporting on a less than fruitful session, typical of the Thames in winter ( feast or famine ) back when I fished around your parish ( 20 odd years ago ) unless the river was spot on for the waggler or even less likely the stick float most of the time it’s was a roving for chub approach ( not always to obvious feature pegs either, used to be a swim about 60 or so yards downstream of Clifton Hampden bridge opposite the pub garden where there was a underwater holding spot about 15 yards out used to get loads of chub rolling bits of cheese paste through the swim ) if the water was cold and clear bread crust used to be a killer last hour of daylight
 

Silverfisher

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Fair play for reporting on a less than fruitful session, typical of the Thames in winter ( feast or famine ) back when I fished around your parish ( 20 odd years ago ) unless the river was spot on for the waggler or even less likely the stick float most of the time it’s was a roving for chub approach ( not always to obvious feature pegs either, used to be a swim about 60 or so yards downstream of Clifton Hampden bridge opposite the pub garden where there was a underwater holding spot about 15 yards out used to get loads of chub rolling bits of cheese paste through the swim ) if the water was cold and clear bread crust used to be a killer last hour of daylight
Yeah got to report the duds as well as the good uns! Gives the good ones more perspective and makes you appreciate them more. Luckily over the balance of a season the good far outweigh the bad especially this season which has been really good. For a brilliant river in summer and autumn it can be a brutal river in the winter.

I’m a bit out of my comfort zone when the roach, dace, perch etc go off the boil when the temperatures go single figures which this year was last week of November. Hardly anyone has been catching them so doesn’t seem much point me targeting them til we get some warmer temperatures provided the rivers alright. It’s been a real struggle the last few weeks for everyone by all accounts, odd couple chub or bream here and there but that’s about it.
 

david white

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Do you have access to the Thame or Cherwell used to switch to those when the Thames went iffy plenty of chubbing sessions on those or a big old lob worm flicked under cover or into slacks could produce just about anything with fins had 1/2 lb dace and roach snaffle a decent lobby
 

Silverfisher

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I have the cherwell but it’s apparently very hard on the bits I have access to these days. Decent when you get down to kidlington but I don’t have access to that on my current tickets. Might add that ticket next year though to add some more bits of canal for the closed season as much as anything.

I usually have the odd session on the Avon or Ouse in the winter as they tend to warm up quicker than the Thames but Warwickshire is in tier 3 at the moment and is a bit of a trek to the decent bits of the Ouse so havent resorted to that yet. May have to soon though!
 

Jimpanzee

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Nice write up Silver and well done to both you and your Grandad for catching on a hard day. The water level looked really high when I drove past it yesterday (Tadpole Bridge)

keep us posted on your trip next week.
 

Silverfisher

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Nice write up Silver and well done to both you and your Grandad for catching on a hard day. The water level looked really high when I drove past it yesterday (Tadpole Bridge)

keep us posted on your trip next week.
Thanks mate ??

The levels were fairly borderline tbh only really ok where we were as it’s quite wide but the narrower bits were still bombing through. All the rain today and back end of the coming week might scupper river fishing for a while I suspect but we’ll wait and see.
 

Jimpanzee

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It looks like we set for a bit of rain right up until Christmas and into the new year. Could write off river fishing well into Mid-Jan. I popped to Burford Friday and the banks were almost burst near the car park. A chap was pole fishing and it was really gushing through, although he was still catching. I reckon that will go this week.
 

Silverfisher

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It looks like we set for a bit of rain right up until Christmas and into the new year. Could write off river fishing well into Mid-Jan. I popped to Burford Friday and the banks were almost burst near the car park. A chap was pole fishing and it was really gushing through, although he was still catching. I reckon that will go this week.
You may be right that might have been my last river session of the year if the forecast is right. What was the guy catching at burford? Been tempted to try there for a while but never seen anyone fish it to know how it's fishing these days.
 

Jimpanzee

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You may be right that might have been my last river session of the year if the forecast is right. What was the guy catching at burford? Been tempted to try there for a while but never seen anyone fish it to know how it's fishing these days.
He was catching small silvers on maggot - roach, dace & gudgeon.
I’ve read it has a decent stock of Perch, Chub, Pike, Trout, Grayling & the odd Barbel. I believe it’s £5 for a day ticket so I’ll give it a go next season.
 
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