Friday, 17 December 2010

A Winter Wakening

Safe in the knowledge that heavy snow wasn't forecast to come till later in the evening,I decided to head off to my local river for a spot of roving.

Early morning was damp but without any frost as I made my way to the river,the sky still dark,as it is this time of year,owl's called out and spooked pheasant's dived through the hedging screaming their warbled cry of panick and shock as they went.The silhouette of a lone deer could be seen on the path,my foot dragged and hit a rabbit scrape,startled,the deer darted off into the mist.

It was a rather cold day with a biting northerly wind,I set up in hope of a chub and if I could present a bait on the nose of a barbel perhaps one of those,given the water temperature of 37 possibly a fools hope where the barbel were concerned,but hope nonetheless.

I had decided to try a few swims and then finally settle in one for the evening,in the hope that the first two hours of darkness might get me a bite.The day dawned slowly and both my rods were out in my first swim,maggot and swimfeeder cast to the roots of an old sunken tree,a likely spot for a chub,my other rod was placed to a very tired looking winter reed bed.

The day past pleasently,but without much action,that aside the winters wildlife was out in force,a squirrel was showing off his daredevil balancing on the bough of a nearby tree and the Red Kite's which are always a pleasure to watch,were gliding effortlessly on the north wind,sweeping one way and another.

I changed spots,moving downstream,to try my luck in a more slower snaggy area,swimfeeders placed to likely looking features with sunken branches,as I sipped a very welcome flask of tea all was rather silent save for the ebb and flow of the current,it started raining,a very cold icey rain,I wondered if there would be snow.

Evening came and I decided to change to my last swim,trying an old spot that had been kind to me in the past,childhood memories of Robert helping me land my first trout on a hot summers bank holiday were etched in my mind as I flicked out my rods,the evening was closing in and the cloud had lifted to reveal a starry December night,the temperature was now plummeting rapidly.Further out in the mid-water there was a reasonable swirl,which seemed like a decent

Tap tip tap,my rod tip was being gently bobbed about,I lifted in and was not met by any great resistance,on winding in I was met by a chap who had a very flat face and rather sullen look he did not seem one bit impressed at being removed from his watery home,Mr bullhead,had taken it upon himself to be the hero of the evening and save me from a resounding blank.

I decided to carry on past darkness for another hour,the droplets of rain on my rods gradually freezing the eyes up,cork handles laced with an icey skin,the riverbank was glistening with frost,I decided it was time to pack up and head off home,with thoughts of returning again and planning different tactics running through my head.On the way home I spared a merry thought for Mr bullhead.Winter was 1-0 up,but it's a long winter,who knows what the next trip will bring.

I would like to wish my readers and other blog writers a jolly Christmas and I hope you have a very healthy and merry one!

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