The fish that got you most excited/relieved/nervous etc

banksy

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I caught my most memorable fish about 40 years ago.
A mate and I were fishing a quiet stretch of the River Nidd at Wilstrop Hall near Skip Bridge.

That stretch should have featured in a Mr Crabtree book, as it had all the right fish in all the right places.
Shallow streamy water for dace and grayling, slightly deeper, steady swims for chub and roach, and a couple of perfect eddies where, naturally, we caught perch and gudgeon.

It was a very hot day in September, Paul and I had fished from the early morning, sought shelter from the sun under a big oak tree at noon, then returned to the river at 6pm.
Tired of standing in the river to fish, I removed my float, made a link leger with a couple of AA shot, then tied a no. 12 hook direct to the 2.6 lb line. A big bunch of maggots on the hook, I cast out and allowed the current to take my bait down under the trees which grew over the river below me.
I lay on the bank, half asleep, lazily flicking maggots into my swim.

I was shocked when the rod hooped over and the reel clutch screamed. My first thought was that I had somehow hooked one the cows which had been lurking all day!
But this beast ran downstream, into the dark tunnel between the trees, and kept going.
I could not slow it down, the rod bent double, and I could feel the line grating against the tree roots.
Coming to my senses, I realised that I had to stop this fish or lose it, and tightened the clutch up fully.

There was a splash from much further downstream, and Paul shouted "Are you attached to this thing in my swim?"
He reeled in, and came to watch the fun.
Slowly, the fish came back upstream, and I thought I had it beaten. But it remained stuck fast to the river bed, and slowly headed for the overhanging branches upstream. I had to give line, and again could feel it rubbing against the submerged tree roots.
I was convinced that a small fish had taken my bait, and had itself been taken by a pike. But at last, the long muscular shape of a barbel flashed in the clear water beneath me, and my mate netted it the first time it passed.
Eight pounds exactly. But it would have weighed twice that, if I had lost it. :p
 

Jonathan Sutcliffe-Bland

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Freelining cheese paste for chub aged 14. It was alien to me. I used to go fishing at Thirsk with neighbours who owned a static caravan complete with an on-site lake. One day the guy, Harry took me to Cod Beck. I set up a 10' ledger rod without the need for a screw in tip, my reel was loaded with 6lb line tied direct to a size 6 hook. Hook bait was nothing more than a quarter of Edam cheese. As mentioned, all alien. At first I really wasn't convinced I'd catch anything...

Harry said cast to that outflow and just watch your line 🤷🏼‍♂️ So I did and a miracle happened, the line took off. "Strike Jonathan". I struck, reeled, back wound, reeled, then landed my PB chub of the time of 6lb 😁 I had two more that day, another larger six plus a four. It just goes to show that going out of your comfort zone reaps rewards. Plus you're always learning with angling...
 

Silverfisher

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Freelining cheese paste for chub aged 14. It was alien to me. I used to go fishing at Thirsk with neighbours who owned a static caravan complete with an on-site lake. One day the guy, Harry took me to Cod Beck. I set up a 10' ledger rod without the need for a screw in tip, my reel was loaded with 6lb line tied direct to a size 6 hook. Hook bait was nothing more than a quarter of Edam cheese. As mentioned, all alien. At first I really wasn't convinced I'd catch anything...

Harry said cast to that outflow and just watch your line 🤷🏼‍♂️ So I did and a miracle happened, the line took off. "Strike Jonathan". I struck, reeled, back wound, reeled, then landed my PB chub of the time of 6lb 😁 I had two more that day, another larger six plus a four. It just goes to show that going out of your comfort zone reaps rewards. Plus you're always learning with angling...
That’s a hell of a few fish at that age! Well any age tbh!
 

Jonathan Sutcliffe-Bland

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That’s a hell of a few fish at that age! Well any age tbh!
Also Harry scared the 💩 out of me by leaving his full keepnet and bag unattended on Cod Beck. I thought for an hour he'd fallen in, plus no mobile phones in them days. Then suddenly he arrives over the brow of an hill, he'd taken his rod and landing net over to the adjoining River Swale 😐
 

Capt Birdseye

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The event which really sticks in my angling memory happened about 60 years ago. My dad had just bought some used tackle off a mate, neither of us done any fishing before. One of our first outings was to a river in North Yorkshire , id already packed in bite less when I heard the old fellow cursing a snag he had got caught up in . Tugging left ,right and centre to no avail he was pulling for a break when he realised that he had a fish on. After what seemed a lifetime he landed a magnificent Barbel . He was physically shaking for some time afterwards . We didn't have any weighing scales , but I've never seen a bigger Barbel to this day !
 

mbuna_matt

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This one! first (only) bite 10 minutes into a cold winter match when a pound was going to be a good weight...... I then sat bite less for the rest of the day until the all out. Would have been easier to wait if I wasn't on the peg behind the pub......

Weighed in at 5.5 and remains my weighed PB hence the photo.

Matt
 

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Zerkalo

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Sometimes I get excited for other people's fish, seeing people catch their first Barbel, or in a match at Stourport seeing someone catch the biggest Perch I've seen at 3lb 11oz. Or every time I go fishing with my dad I always prefer for him to catch than me, so when I looked up and saw his rod in the air on the Severn was a good moment, he'd already been playing it for 5 minutes he told me and I didn't notice so ran over to see him net it.
 

mbuna_matt

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Sometimes I get excited for other people's fish, seeing people catch their first Barbel, or in a match at Stourport seeing someone catch the biggest Perch I've seen at 3lb 11oz. Or every time I go fishing with my dad I always prefer for him to catch than me, so when I looked up and saw his rod in the air on the Severn was a good moment, he'd already been playing it for 5 minutes he told me and I didn't notice so ran over to see him net it.
My sons first proper carp springs to mind as a similar event.
 

dave brittain 1

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A double figure common on the pellet waggler, foul hooked in the tail, in the dying minutes of a Fisho qualifier at Viaduct, knowing that if I landed it, I'd very likely qualify for the final.
 

DAMFLASK CHRIS

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First fish caught on a pole many years ago on sheffield canal 7lb carp on 1.7 bottom seeing elastic going threw sheets of ice up an down canal for about 20 min seeing it in landing net afterwards
if it was summer would have broke me
Next bite was a gudgeon
 

Browner

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Not sure if it’s relevant, but last season I was fishing the Upper Bristol Avon at Chippenham and caught a Sea Trout. I was amazed, considering the number of weirs between Chippenham and the Bristol channel. I spoke with both the EA and the local river forum and apparently it’s only the second one that has ever been recorded. No idea how it got there. Silver in colour with black spots. Not sure if silver means it’s been in the river system for a short or a long time.
 

dave brittain 1

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Did you and did you ???
Matches are funny things, bankside rumour had it that a number of anglers had over 100lbs, however the results proved otherwise.

ANGLING: A total of 121 competitors lined the banks of Viaduct Fishery for the Fish O'Mania qualifying event.

In very hot conditions weights were generally below their best. Dave Brittain, of Team Sillybait, bagged his place in the £25,000 final with an all-carp catch weighing 129lb 10oz, taken on waggler-fished pellets for an easy win.

Runner-up spot went to Vince Brown, of Bridgwater, with a carp catch weighing 89lb 8oz, taken alternating with legered pellet and paste. He was followed by Mike Duckett, of Landsend, with a carp catch weighing 72lb 8oz, taken on pole fished pellets.
 

chefster

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Matches are funny things, bankside rumour had it that a number of anglers had over 100lbs, however the results proved otherwise.

ANGLING: A total of 121 competitors lined the banks of Viaduct Fishery for the Fish O'Mania qualifying event.

In very hot conditions weights were generally below their best. Dave Brittain, of Team Sillybait, bagged his place in the £25,000 final with an all-carp catch weighing 129lb 10oz, taken on waggler-fished pellets for an easy win.

Runner-up spot went to Vince Brown, of Bridgwater, with a carp catch weighing 89lb 8oz, taken alternating with legered pellet and paste. He was followed by Mike Duckett, of Landsend, with a carp catch weighing 72lb 8oz, taken on pole fished pellets.
Awesome mate, sorry I didn’t know, how did you do in the final??
 

runningman

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For me it was my first trip to Thailand, I had caught the biggest carp in the lake around 190 pound . A couple of days later I hooked a arapaima which I played for well over a hour in the heat , I finally got it into the cage when for some reason the guide lifted the leader with that the fish jumped out of the cage knocked the guide over and disappeared back into the lake. Estimated size 250lb got in on video but never got my picture with it. I was gutted went back twice before I got one .As you can tell I am still not over it🤔🤔
 

Nasha

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About 20 years ago one thing I will never forget.

I was maggot fishing for small silvers on the Medway at Yalding with a 3meter whip. Float slowly sunk and I struck into what I thought was a snag. For a split second it was just a dead weight. Then all of a sudden it took off, left, like an absolute torpedo. It pulled the line left, then the whip tip ripped round after the line, then my arms extended out holding onto the pole and as I went to get up off my box to chase the thing down the bank it pinged my hook length.

With no elastic on I could feel the power and size directly through the pole to my hands but I was no where near quick enough to do anything other than hold on for dear life.

The whole thing lasted no more than 3 or 4 seconds but to this day it will always kill me I have no idea what it was or how big it was...

Big chub, maybe a barbel (not sure if theyre in there) or even a nice pike. Who knows.
 

RedhillPhil

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Sea fishing for a change. Summer(ish) in 1967. I was in (what was then Hampshire) and looking for some fishing. I was near the sea so I did a bit of enquiring. "Hengistbury Head" they said. "You can catch loads of fish there". So off I went. Bus to Mudeford, walk to the quay, ferry across to the other side, walk to the head, walk out onto the big concrete groyne. My tackle consisted of a sort of a Pike rod of about nine feet, reel loaded with (probably) eight pound line. Terminal rig was a basic running leger, size 1 hook baited with Ragworm - the bait that bites back.
I settled down about two thirds the way along casting out about thirty yards on the eastern side.
A rattling pulling bite produced a Bass of about a pound. Ditto and ditto for about an hour. This was fun! Another slightly different bite -a series of small plucks - saw me strike. Solid un-moving resistance. I pulled, nothing moved. Snagged on the bottom/weed/whatever. I pulled and pulled and eventually it came free and I wound in. The solid weight told me that I'd been caught on a clump of weed and that I was now pulling it in.
Then I saw the silvery/white flash. My snag turned out to be a beautiful big Bass. After a lot of to-ing and fro-ing I landed my prize.
When I got it home and weighed it it was exactly five pounds.
I never did catch another there of such size but the sea then was full of what locals used to refer as "checkers". Small Bass of 6-16oz.
 
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