Sunday, 19 June 2011

Opening Day Magic

A few weeks prior to the beginning of the river season I had tinkered about with my fishing tackle,to the extent of looking like some crazed squirrel,the hiatus was nearly over,I was so excited just like a child at Christmas Eve.

It was evening as I made my way to the river,to the splash and patter of rain which became increasingly steady,the rivers would certainly welcome this,as it had been such a very dry spring,the rain was turning into more of a monsoon,I reached my swim a little damp in body but not soul,the river looked in fine shape and the insect and wildlife was in abundance.
As I slowly set up,the kingfisher gave me a customary flypast replete with shrill whistle,the hairs stood up on the back of my neck and a tingle ran down my spine,it was something else altogether to be back on the rivers again.

Evening past into darkness and barn owls began their hunting calls,my rod twitched and the swinger rose,I was into my first Chub of the season a slim jim of 3Lb 8oz,a nice way to christen the new season.

I sat back and smiled,it was the smile of a contented soul,surrounded by nature,at peace with my surroundings,I sipped tea,relaxed and listened to the ebb and flow of the river and the sounds of nature as a fox barked into the night.

It was gone 3am as the rain gathered pace when I had my next fish,a lovely well conditioned Bream of 6Lb 8oz in full on spawning mode covered in tubercles,a sign that it would still be a while till the Barbel will have spawned and getting their heads down properly as is usually the case.

By first light the river was the colour of a strong cup of tea and the flow had increased significantly,but the baits were still holding in position save for the extra large chunks of flotsam that were now drifting by at regular intervals,I had seen a Carp pop its head up and roll back down in front of me,a dark looking lady with a large flank and belly, "you must be hungry" I whispered to myself.

A single bleep later was met by the spool of the baitrunner melting into life as if possessed by demons,the fish ran for the far bank cover of pads and streamer weed,firmly lodging itself there and not wishing to come out,applying some steady pressure there was the feeling of some slight movement and sure enough the fish moved free and continued a powerful upstream run,more pressure applied and eventually I had a glorious Common Carp of 18lb 5oz,immaculate and scale perfect,sat in the net.

Well I was more than made up with that and that would be putting it mildly,it was also the perfect way to Christen my new Chris Orme handbuilt rod,which felt beautiful,a perfect balance
between forgiving tip to help soften any sudden lunges,yet still with massive reserves of power and strength,without being a stiff poker,excuse me a moment of indulgence,I have really fallen in love with it.

It was late morning when I had my last fish.a very powerful surging run on the same rod,I was connected with another fast paced bullish fish,that was not in the least bit happy to be hooked and showed it by making its way downstream and bullying me,the rod responded and took every surge of the fish in its stride,eventually nestling in the landing net was a moody,lovely looking mirror of 13Lb 1oz and one of the prettiest mirrors I have ever caught.

It was without a doubt a beautiful start to the river season and with another 9 months of river fishing now available to us,I would like to wish everyone a good time and enjoy it on whatever river you're having a dabble on and more importantly,take pictures and leave only footprints.


  1. What can i say, WOW Mark, Great Fishing, Some real Beautys, What a cracking start to the new Season, The wildlife pictures are stunning as well, And i can see why you have fallen in love with the new Chris Orme hand built rod, What a work horse it is,
    I Look forward to your next Blog Report Mark as this one is going to take some beating,
    Best of luck and well done again,

  2. Why thank you Paddy,I agree with you,it will certainly take something special to beat this fishing trip,but you never know what's round the next corner,such is the joys of river fishing.

    tight lines and kind regards


  3. You certainly did a mighty fine job of ushering in the season, and your new rod. Enjoy both!!!

  4. Hahaha just thought Mark, If you didnt go again this season you would have a 100% catch rate, I like all the fish you caught but i kinda like the Chub best of all,
    Hope you get a couple more Chub next time out,
    Cheers and thanks for dropping in on my blog,

  5. Erin

    Thank you very much,it was a lovely way to see in the new season,I am pretty happy with how it went,thank you.


    Very true lol,but you being the keen angler that you are,you will know only too well,that catch or not,its just a joy to be on the bank and a fish is a bonus.

    kind regards