Saturday, 18 September 2021


Date fished 18/9/2021 - this time last year

6.45am until 3pm

Its not deliberate that my fishing is Swale, Tees, Swale, Tees etc but I guess I like to keep going with both my clubs to ensure I visit as much as possible each year. There will be times I am sure that one river slightly dominates. Ellis and I were discussing on our last trip that we prefer the Swale in winter and the Tees in summer. But, having said that there are times when we fish the Tees in winter for Grayling week after week! it's just nice to have options I think. 

Anyway, Ellis was busy so it was a solo Swale visit today. Two thoughts were on my mind as I prepared for this trip.

1. Barbel

2. Having missed our annual trip due to covid, I am taking Davey next week onto the Swale as a day ticket so wanted to check out some Chub ( he has never caught one) swims on the day ticket stretch in the hope that I can get him his first chevin.

Having fished the day ticket section a lot last year, with varying success as shown in this blog, I was pretty confident of dealing with number two, so it was onto number one - Barbel, again! 

I got my tackle ready on Friday evening and brought pellets and hot dog sausages - I had blanked using these sausages before but thought I would give them another go. 

Those that know me, know I am sometimes a fanny. Well in between getting kit ready on Friday evening and leaving 5.30am Saturday morning, I had changed my mind. I was going all out for Chub

I arrived bright and early and walked to the river. The rod was already set up so I had a quick cast in the first swim I got to. 

Nothing in here so I went for a walk. Walked a fair bit today, not eighty miles or even forty but a fair bit.
I walked upstream and spooked a good sized Pike that was just chilling in the shallows. It moved mid river and sat on the bottom. I watched it a while before heading off myself.
I tried many swims, ledger or free lined meat but no interest. The river is really low and the bottom still covered in thick weed. 

I had plenty of taps but I think that was Ronnie and Reggie. Twice I reeled in and a Crayfish was holding onto the bait. I had walked to 9lb bay, so called as Davey fluked a 9lb Pike from there in 2015, (6th pike down in the link pics.) It was here I turned around and headed back. I fished a few more swims and went downstream of where I started too. Nothing in swims both Ellis and I had caught in before. The river was really out of sorts. 

I saw a Trout zipping around the weed, it wasn't stopping so I kept going. A few more swims with not much happening and it was time for home. 

Oh, and I made zero connections with any fish!!


  1. Lets hope some of Sunday's threatened rain lands on the Swale and gives it a bit of a flush.

    1. I hope it does. Am doing a rain dance....

    2. Keep on dancing. We've had spots of rain here