Since the new year, the weather has been very wet, leading many rivers to flood and now we have to put the rods away entirely to keep the public safe. Nonetheless, a benefit I found last season of having the rivers full of water from relatively mild rainfall is the barbel are brought out on the feed.
Employing my normal coloured water tactics of highly scented baits and feed, along with keeping rigs simple to avoid tangles in the fast-flowing water had resulted in over 70 barbel to land in my net since the new year! There were some very good fish among that 70. The battle to land barbel was not easy as I was having to use some very heavy feeders up to 8oz at times, in the strong flow but well worth the effort.
In-between the periods of high water, the river dropped off a couple of times to make fishing with bread worthwhile. I had a few good sessions after the Common Nase (Sneep), I had one very good day with five very good fish and loads of smaller ones with plenty of roach and chub to complete a real red-letter day.
As I have mentioned previously, I love fishing with bread in winter. It is not easy but gets it right and it is very rewarding as is fishing in town centres. Urban fishing or street fishing is also great in the winter as you get a little bit of extra cover and warmth from the buildings which not only is a bonus for the angler but it attracts fish too.
I can’t tell you how hard it is to sit here by the river with odd fish crashing out, the sun shining and days lengthening, I would normally be starting my quest for a big river carp, but with a total ban on angling imposed I will just have to dream until the ban is lifted. Meanwhile, I will be filling my time with getting my fishing tackle in shipshape condition. ready for the off.
To everyone, I hope you stay safe by listening and following the government guidelines. Be sure to look after yourselves, your family and take care of those that cannot care for themselves without high risks and we will get back to fishing in no time!