Frosty Morning

Frosty Morning

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Pike fishing on the Bristol Avon

My phone alarm let out its morning cry. "Who in their right mind would allow their alarm to ring at 6am on a Sunday morning?" An angler of course.

I pulled back the curtains and gazed through the misted windows, the grass was white and crisp, a light mist hung in the air. Perfect solitude.

I quietly fumbled around in my partially lit bedroom for my clothing, it would need to be warm and body hugging to combat the freezing conditions that lay in wait for me. I stumbled into my kitchen and boiled the kettle; a flask of coffee is a must in such conditions. I then proceed to load my car with the necessities. Unfortunately for my fiance she would also have to get up as I was dropping her back at her parents on the way to the river.

We set off on the short journey to my fathers; he would be accompanying me on the river bank today, hopefully to photograph all the fish I had dreamed about catching during the night... We loaded his gear into the car, we were intending to cover as much river as possible in our short window of time. After dropping off my fiance we headed for the river.

As we arrived at our destination we could just about make out the meandering river through the slowly clearing mist. The conditions were perfect, the river looked as if it was clearing and a slight pace was present.

After all of our kit was unloaded from the boot of my car and I had replaced my trainers with warm boots we headed upstream, away from the oncoming match anglers and hopefully towards our target species. We were here to catch fish but I couldn't help but record the beautiful scenery with several pictures capturing the beautiful morning landscape that laid in front of us. 

 Panoramic Bristol Avon

Misty River

A Touch of Frost

If you hadn't guessed already, we were after a fresh water crocodile, Esox Lucious, the Pike. A powerful, predatory yet delicate fish, a fish that would most certainly be the icing on the cake for us (no pun intended.)
Our aim was to rove, covering as many swims as possible hopefully persuading a few Pike to trip up on our freshly prepared sea dead-baits on the way.

I took a bucket with all what I consider crucial components on any pike session. 
  • Forceps - Small and Large
  • Wire Cutters 
  • A pair of unhooking gloves
  • Several adjustable wire traces 
  • Leger weights and floats
  • Some baits - Mackerel and Sprats.
  • A camera (just in case)
After arriving at our first swim we set up our rods, using 15lb BS line, a 1.5oz lead to hold bottom and an adjustable wire trace. At the crucial end I used half a Mackerel on one rod and  a sprat on the other. My father echoed this. After perhaps only two minutes my dad had some movement on the end of his rod, it knocked and slowly went around. He struck and felt a solid resistance. Fish on! After several powerful surges, the pike held its grounds but eventually succumbed to the depths of my Fox Predator landing net.

A Pike just under 10lb

She was in cracking condition; fin perfect. After safely unhooking her I took a picture and slipped her back into the depths. One thing we both noticed was that on the gill plates were several lice which perhaps suggested the pike were not moving at the moment? Another reason to move from swim to swim, the only way to catch today maybe to land the bait on the pikes nose.

 Cobwebs - Frozen in time.

As the day progressed we found the session didn't quite live up to a great early start. We tried perhaps a dozen different swims to no avail. Maybe another couple of weeks of similar conditions would signal a change and the fish would begin to feed more voraciously? Only time will tell.

Two Rivers Meet.

 To sum it up, fishing isn't about catching fish, it is about enjoing the moment. Just you, a fishing rod and the countryside. Or as one person once put it " a bait at one end and a fool at the other..." Until the next time.

1 comment:

  1. Nice pictures I think this place is very abundant of different fish species.

    Fish Species