Sunday 21 December 2008

A bit of a Spin

We're into the Xmas holidays again and there was really nothing for it but to break out a rod or two today to try and blow the winter cobwebs away. I didn't set out until after 2 P.M. so didn't get too complicated with my set up, opting for my Diawa Regal lure special rod and Ukuma Razor reel carrying 4lb line and some wee spinners with red tassels on the hook as Perch were to be my quarry.


Now in case you're wondering, red feathers on Perch lures are a good idea because Perch will nip at the tails of their prey until they're disabled and then move in for the kill. The red feathers simulate the tail of a prey fish so the perch may have nipped at them a couple of times before taking the lure proper. The best method for the retrieve is to bring the lure in as slowly as you dare or even stop retrieving every now and again with maybe a bit of a jerk here and there. Don't forget a swivel on the line when spinning to prevent line kink.

Now where to go was the question on a short winters day with the light already beginning to fade. It had to be close at hand so I opted for a couple of still waters close to home that I'd never fished before but had heard held Pike, Perch, Roach, Rudd, Tench and Carp.

Venue 1


It was blowing a hooly this afternoon so I went to a small still water which is maybe about four or five acres in size but has good access which would mean I could get the wind behind my back and get a decent cast out. This pond / Loch really is a nice little venue and I'm looking forward to the Spring and Summer when I can get the match gear out and really have a good bash with some particles and Maggots. I'd never been here until earlier this year or even realised it existed until some guys at the canal put me onto it. It's a well maintained public water and the fact it has a head of fish is a definite bonus. Anyway, time was short so I only spent about half an hour here. There were fish moving close in which I take must have been small pike or perch going by the water they were displacing while chasing what I take must have been fry. I had no luck though so decided to move onto a larger Loch in the area which is reputed to hold fish as well.


Venue 2

This second venue is a larger amenity loch about 1km in length and 300m wide. I was at the West end which has good access as the westerlies would have made the East End a nightmare. The Swans, Ducks, Moorhens, Geese and various other wild foul were out in force and this really is a pleasant place to come fishing to even on a wild and windy day. It's a shame more housing is being built here but I do envy the folk who have a view of the water from their windows. Shame about the pylons but I guess we gotta get power one way or another. Apparently there is a section of the Loch which is sectioned off as a nature reserve and it's nice to see the local authority making good use of land.



I had about half an hour here too and spoke to a guy walking his dog who does a bit of fishing on the water who told me that he does well with Roach in the Spring but I'm going to have a shot at dead bating for Pike over the holidays and if the water warms up a bit I'll have a blast with the match gear too.

No luck here with the spinners either even though there were predatory fish moving in the margins. Not a wasted day however and some good reconnaissance work done for the future - let's see what happens. :-)

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  1. Its encouraging that there were fish moving, all too often waters seem dead at this time of year because the fish dont move as much.

    I Think im gonna have to go to the smaller of those two waters tomorrow to try out my new pike fly rod!

    There are a few more waters within close proximity, including a trout burn that im pretty fond of.

    That wee pond is great for the match rod, some big rudd and loads of tench. Beware though, the coots / ducks / swans etc have a taste for groundbait or feed of any kind, and can be a real pain in the arse!

  2. Lovely waters, and the prospect of tench. Which brings me to a point, was thinking about fishing for tench on the fly with czech nymphs/beaded bloodworm or is that just crazy?
    Also is it worth pike on the fly at the great climbing walled quarry if you know what i mean?

  3. Michael, ive read a few reports of people catching tench on the fly, like you say, heavily weighted nymphs seems to be the preferred method.

    Ive done a lot of pike fly fishing at that quarry since september last year, ive had them to about 9/10lbs. Its pretty poor at this time of year but in september i had a proper bonanza, i was getting a few fish evey trip, with a few of those bigger fish.

    Im just looking forward to april / may when they turn on to surface lures :)

    Also worth considering is fishing small dries on any of those waters. Ive had some nice roach and rudd from the quarry on wee klinkhamers. I daresay st maurices would be better, plus theres the chance of some carp.

  4. Thanks for the reply.
    Think I will have to investigate that tench on the fly as soon as the weather warms up.
    Heard that the quarry can get very weedy in summer though.
    The local canal basin up here beside the football ground is ideal for pike on the fly, however only surface lures at it tends to get very weedy in summer.

    I've never tried st maurices, but hope to this summer. Tried the dry fly for roach and rudd and almost ripped my hair out with frustration missing the takes. I'll get there one day.
    Next experiment on my list is fake bread on the fly for carp. Should be interesting :)

  5. The quarry can become choked with weed at times. From spring 2007 right through till september 2008 the water was literally blanketed with weed and algae. I think it was cut back by the council as it disappeared very suddenly and began to grow back pretty quickly. Thankfully this cold winter so far has kept it back.

    Most of the canal is worth a shot in summer for pike. Not many BIG fish kicking about but again ive had them nudging doubles on the fly last year.

    The roach especially are incredibly tricky to catch on the fly. Part of the problem is that they have tiny mouths, therefore tiny flies are the order of the day. Well worth persevering with though.

    They have to be one of the most frustrating fish to target on the fly, because they will nibble it readily but rarely take it with any conviction.

    Another thing to try is to take a box of small / medium rainbow lures and a light 3 / 4 weight rod to the canal and chase perch. Much easier than the roach and they scrap quite hard aswell. In my opinion they are more aggressive than pike and can become quite addictive once you start hitting them.

  6. Hi there, just logged in and hadn't expected the replies.

    Some interesting reading for when the water warms up a bit but I'm hoping to get down to the larger Loch for some Pike deadbaitng later in the week and will do a post.

    Michael, if you're thinking of Carp on the fly, you don't need to stick to bread flies. You can tie up flaired deer hair flies muddler style to represent dog biscuits. Then you fire in some free offerings to get the fish feeding before casting the fly into the same area. It's a method which can be quite succesful and allows you to fish at ranges as far as you can cast.

    Just a thought and thanks for the comments.