Monday, 22 October 2007

It Never Rains...

...but it pours, that's the old adage. What it means of course is that when things start to go wrong they go wrong badly and my recent trip to Chew Valley Lake just about proved it.

I was there for four days last week, two of them I spent in the boat with Denis Bird and two with Kevin Dunne. The fishing was fairly average for Chew, we caught plenty of pike but most of them were small with a sprinkling of mid-doubles thrown in to make the heart jump a little when one of them hit a lure. Yes, lures took the majority of the fish with only two falling to deadbait.

Day 1 brought a few trials and tribulations for Denis. He hadn't put his braid on the spool tightly enough and as a result it was overrun after overun. The pic shows him doing a bit of knitting in the boat - he spent quite a bit of time doing this and it meant more fish for me since I was probably getting three casts in to each one of his. Every cloud has a silver lining though and by the end of the day he finished with two scarves, a pullover and a pair of mittens.
It was an awful day weather-wise. Torrential rain poured down on us all day and we were glad to get on dry land at the end of it.

Day 2: We re-spooled Denis's line the next morning and he had a much better day of it. This was the best day of the trip with six doubles coming to the boat amidst a barrage of jacks but it was spoiled a bit by me having a good pike, a possible twenty pounder, shake the hooks out right at the boat. The day nearly ended in disaster too. On the last cast of the day, Denis made a mighty heave with his six-ounce replicant in an effort to get it as far out into the lake as he could. Unfortunately, instead of the lure sailing out into the blue, it connected violently with the back of my head, whipping off my cap and almost knocking me out. "Ah well" I thought, "At least we'll get a picture of it and it'll make a good story." That was the plan, but as you can see, Denis then made a hash of the picture too!

Days 3 and 4, both spent with Kevin on the tiller were much the same as each other. High pressure brought hard night-time frosts and hot, cloudless, still days, just about the worst kind of weather for autumn piking. I was even wishing for the return of the torrential rain we'd had on day 1. This meant just more jacks and a solitary double to me, while Kevin had to make do with the jacks.
This is when things really started to go wrong for me. One of my reels stopped working - I later discovered that the internal spring had snapped. Then another reel started to play up. Only wear and tear this time but the effect was getting worse with every cast. Eventually I dismantled both reels to see if I could cobble up a good one between them. the result? neither reel was any good now. Then I started to crack lures off. Three Replicants were sent to the bottom of the lake before I realised what was going on. The tip ring on my main lure rod had broken and it was slicing through the line. I had left my other rod in the car (as I had no reel to put on it) and this left me with no tackle at all that I could use to fish lures. Kevin came to the rescue and lent me a rod and reel but it meant we were restricted in what we could do.

Oh well, these things happen, at least we got to see a spectacular sunset and got to share the water with a couple of piking "elites". Can you identify them sillhouetted against the sun?


Fishing Fury said...

Looks like he got you pretty good! How bad was the cut?

Eric Edwards said...

Not nearly as bad as the headache!