On the drive up I hesitated, and actually pulled over to check exactly how many baits I had in my bag,six were found, and that sealed the deal.........or was it that I was just so doggedly determined to catch a decent pike from 'that' swim.I changed plan and pointed the van in a different direction .
The state of tide was much better today with the majority of my available fishing time spent on the bottom of the ebb and the conditions were just perfect. Mild,overcast weather and unusually clear water contributed to a feeling of quiet confidence on my part.......but then I felt the same last week!.............
The flow was so gentle that I was able to fish both baits on the far side of the river with a sardine on one rod and lamprey on the second.I didn't have to wait long and within minutes of casting the ever trusty sardine float disappeared instantly,and the bite alarm shrilled signalling a take from a decent pike.(Jack's tend to fiddle about with a bait of this size)
The pike immediately felt reasonable, staying deep throughout the short battle and attempting to dig herself into the submerged tree branches.
Luckily I'd remembered to collect the net(the two rods are fished either side of a tree) but it wasn't easy landing the pike in the confined swim on my own, especially as I was very close to some 'tricky' mud.Thankfully,I kept her clear of the snags and she went in the net first time.Thinking it would be nice to finally get a picture of me with a decent pike this year, I sacked her immediately noticing that, despite being liberally adorned with leeches, she was very warm to the touch. I really must get a suitable water thermometer.
16lb 12oz and not a bad self take pic .I've spent some time studying the picture and comparing the markings with the other big pike we've seen and I can confirm,once again, that this is a new fish-the 12th from the area, and 6th double. Not my biggest pike but, one of the most satisfying that I've caught recently, and proof indeed that, having finally managed to pick one from this swim myself, It's still showing form.
The sardine bait continued to provide action from over active eels-another sign of warmer water conditions, but it was a dead roach on the other rod that produced the next pike action-luckily a jack which unhooked itself as , due to the size of the tide,and consequently very low water level,I'd ventured too far down the mud bank and become firmly stuck.
Managing to eventually successfully self rescue ( I did at one point think that I might still be there now)I decided that I'd rather not risk the area any longer, and instead fished the last half an hour on firmer ground with the baits on the fringe of the 'hot' area No more takes were forthcoming.
It would have been interesting to fish on if I'd had more time but at least I'd achieved my goal (eventually) and, In a way, it would be nice to leave this area alone for the remainder of the season if only to retain my sanity.Brave words indeed especially as its highly likely that a twenty pound pike (Dave's) is in residence at least some of the time