Well, if you’ve been following me on Facebook you will see a few posted pictures of past fish, thanks for all the LIKES guys, please you enjoyed them. Like you I’m suffering the “non fishing blues” and finding non essential jobs around the house to do that fishing would have saved me from? The car has never been as clean, and I’ve even painted the gas and electric meters that stand outside the front door.
The fishing gear is cleaned and ready to go, and most of my floats on winders for a first time. I’ve used a spool of 4lb line for most of the lighter stuff, and 5lb for the heavy. My thinking is even if I use a 2.5lb mainline, the hook-link would go first being the weakest part of the set up. It’s been better/easier putting shot on a slightly heavier line, and moving it about makes far less damage on the 4lb than the 2.5lb. I also find most main-lines are underrated by at least 10% provided the knots are tied correctly. I must have gotten this idea of the net, as its not mine, but an excellent one. I’ve also started doing this with my feeder rigs, getting that little gem from Rob Wotton the match angler.
Rob will use a main line of say 4lb-6lb, then a short shock leader of maybe two rod lengths in 12lb. Rob and others say it’s better when you put the feeder and shot on this thick line, as it gives a better presentation with less damage. Also up close ,you have that extra bonus of strength when the fish is being landed. I’ve not tried this, but have tied a few leaders up in readiness. Apparently Joe Carass (Match fishing magazine Editor) just has a meter of this thick line, where the feeder, twizzel boom and shot go.
I’ve brought a bit of new tackle in the shut-down!!
This is the solid bar mentioned, imagine one end fixed to your box, the other end with a large rod rest in the end hole, twist and tighten, simples!
I’ve several chairs and seat boxes for my fishing, but the boxes don’t have footplates. So when on the Trent it’s not easy having the rest up high for feeder fishing, as I have to rely on a high front rest. Anyone fishing the Trent will know how hard the ground is being all stone and gravel, getting a from rest in for those Barbel bites can be a challenge. So I brought a solid bar rest from Matrix, that sits on my box seat front rest and is a meter long. In the end is a hole and sleeve like you get with all rests, you get a 18” rest that fits this hole sitting upright. On this you can put a rod rest and fish with the rod just above the water, like on lakes. But this is the cleaver bit, take that piece out and put that high long rod rest in it, using a sleeve provided. Now you can push the long rest into the gravel as far as you can, but its stability is aided by tightening the sleeve around the rod rest. Its a meter away from you and high, so you can rest the rod on your knee or box. Its a bit like putting kids stabilisers on a bike.
I’ve invested in some split shot, two mixed tubs of Dinsmore mixed shot, along with a large tub of Italian number 8s lead shot. Boy is this “new” stuff expensive, a real money spinner for those making and selling it. However, with care it should last as it can be re-used over, its a nice round shot too. But I’m critical over the weight, as almost all the floats I’ve loaded onto winders need more of this stuff, than it would lead. I have some old lead shot and have done the tests, so know I’m not wrong. One 8x4s stick float took 8 lead number 4s and 10 number 4s of the new stuff? I’ve put the two mixed shot boxes into a single little black box you can buy on E-Bay with lids, clearly marked with the shot size, told you I’m bored?
These clear boxes for float winders are brought from a stationer on-line for £3.00 or £7 in a tackle shop?
Another purchase is an old Mitchell Match 440a refurbished. I’m still waiting for it to come from a guy on E-Bay, so should be all ok with a money back Pay-Pal guarantee. I fancied one of these as I do so much stick and waggler fishing these days. I’m told the line lay is impeccable and the speed at 5..1 is good too. The shallow spools take just 100 meters of 3lb line to fill, I’ll try Drennan float fish in 3.2lb and fill it to the brim, excited about this one.
Old, but very usable 501 reel, ideal for windy days stick float fishing.
Last season I had my old Abu 501 serviced, its now loaded with just 50 meters of 3lb line ready for the dace and roach fishing I love so much. The retrieve is slow compared to modern reels, but get any wind on the Trent and it comes into its own. No line blowing off the spool, or getting lost behind the handle. They are much heavier than one would expect for such a small reel, but they do balance a long rod like the 14′ Acolyte. It’s fun to learn fishing with a reel with no clutch, if you don’t know this reel it works like this. The clutch is the backwind. You turn a knob and the handle backwinds slower/stiffer, so you have to remember to get your hand out of the way at times, like when Mr Whiskers takes the bait. You simply back-wind when a big fish takes, or take your hand way and allow the fish to run against a stiff handle going backwards downstream.
Boy these worms love cucumber and carrot.
I started a wormery in February, by buying a kilo of worms from “Willy-Worms” and putting them in an old Daiwa Match seat box with holes in. To date they have breed and I’ve eggs in a second box after removing them from the main brood, they seem to be doing ok, eating cucumber and cooked carrot. The only thing I would have done differently is, used a smaller box than the seat box and stuck to just 4” of peat only compost, I used about 8” so the worms have too much room to move about in really.