2021 targets were:
I didn't manage any of the targets but in some way its not surprising as I didn't try for all of them.
For 2022, I will have the following targets:
New river Barbel
5lb Tees Chub
|Caught on size 18, 2lb hooklink|
|Tees warrior at 4lb|
|Tom's first Chub|
|Only 98lb short of our target!|
|1lb 10oz pb Perch for Ellis|
|4lb 13oz pb Bream|
|1lb 10 - pb Grayling|
|Cheesepaste capture, again!|
|A Tees Chub by design this time Giles|
|A perfect example|
8am until 3.30pm
I always wondered what it would be like to write a book. Let's see how it might go.
A snappy cover pic would probably be something like this:
Then I would detail how my fishing trip went, maybe like this:
A red sky in the morning.... well you know the rest. However, Ellis and I are not shepherd's, so we didn't let a red sky stop us going fishing. We met just after 8am at a section of the Tees we usually fish in summer. We usually trot the stick float with maggots and catch some decent fish. We also get plagued with Pike when we have 2lb hook links and size 18 hooks. So, today we came with 15lb line, trebles, newly made traces and Pike gear only!
A gentle down hill walk got us to the river. Quite a bit up on normal level and with some pace, but the gauge said it was dropping. Some mild weather expected later in the week, so hopefully the Pike would be on the munch and we would find them in the slacks.
We walked to the first swim and cast in. We had decided to fish in every swim together, with only one rod each there was enough space. I had (very old) Lamprey as bait and Ellis had Mackerel. As the floats bobbed around in the water we chatted about past and future trips, work, life and generally just caught up.
It was Ellis that saw my float start to bob, twitch and slowly slide away. I was straight on the rod, fish on. I soon realised this was the first fish on my new (now 12 months old) Pike rod and I didn't want to lose it. I played it carefully and soon it was guided to the net. Ellis rested it while I got ready. Soon the fish was unhooked (easy with barbless trebles), photographed, weighed and returned. A pristine Pike of 8lb 8oz definitely worth a good few pics!
Date fished 18/12/2021
8am until 3pm
As I logged off yesterday and put the out of office on, stating 2022 would be my return date, it felt good. Usually I would visit the canal with Giles et al this time of year. It was at this time in 2015 (19th December), that I hooked a 7lb Pike in the lock on Giles's rod. He had to go down the metal ladder to net the fish as there was no way of landing it up a 10ft vertical wall. We laughed as he nearly fell in, but he held on, netted the Pike and it made for a funny story. I will remember all the funny stories that Giles told me, maybe some will feature in here over the years, but some will remain firmly with me. I will miss my dear friend Giles. A top angler, proud owner of Alcocks Tackle, Father, Husband and genuinely a bloody good bloke.
|Giles with a 20 plus Swale Pike|
|Giles giving me an order on his boat, can't remember if I obeyed or not!|
|Canal at Pollington from my photo album, pre blog|
I decided to fish the Tees today for Chub, again quite fitting as I caught my first ever Chub when Giles took me on the Tees Pike fishing in 2014 (15th November). I had a large Lamprey deadbait on for the toothy critters but a 4lb 8 oz Chevin made light work of it.
|Same coat, same outcome (ish)|
I arrived and got the tackle ready. Ledger gear was the order of the day, or breadcrumb in a feeder. Cheese paste, meat and worms would be the bait. It had been minus two on the drive down and very foggy. In fact the fog did not clear all day and was still there when I drove home. Without any wind to blow the fog away, it was not too cold. As long as I kept moving, I would be fine. I walked to the river and fished the first swim, I had caught a Chub here a few weeks ago.
Nothing doing here, so I moved downstream. There was obvious signs of newly fallen trees and another swim I fished a few weeks ago was no more. A tree completely lying across the bank where I sat. There was however a lot more water to fish, the bank side vegetation had all died back so large areas of the bank were now accessible. I tried every fallen tree, bush or collection of over hanging branches but could not find any Chub. I have to admit, it looked very Pikey today ( that is to say, the swims looked perfect for Pike). I had no Pike gear so they would have to wait.
In every swim there was a Robin, actually I think it was the same one in several swims. He was making the hops with me as we went from swim to swim. I like to think it was bringing me luck, as I acted surprised everytime he arrived at the next swim and I fed him some bread crumb. He soon was enjoying the fishing, getting to grips with the rod and net!
As I got further downstream, I feared for a blank. But just then as I wound in my bait, I saw it. My baited hook had caught a fish and I landed it. Therefore I had not blanked!? Haha (yeah, I am not accepting that either)
Finally I came to a spot I was aiming for. It was where I had caught a 4lb Chub a few years ago. I sat down, cast in and waited. After a few minutes the rod hooped over and a fish was swimming off downstream. It was a spirited fight from a very welcome Chub. It was only a couple of pounds but it was the target species and certainly I had succeeded.
I fished a few more swims but then decided to walk all the way back and try the first swim for another hour. A few taps on the rod here, but am not sure if it was leaves or not. Nevermind though as no further fish were caught.
As family and friends say farewell to Giles next week in their own way. I know I will reflect and remember him most when I am on the bank. I set out today to catch a Tees Chub, and spend some time remembering. I did both of these things.
Fishing is a great hobby for alone time and thinking, but it's better spent with friends. There is only so much conversation you can have with a bird! (Robin not female!!)
|Giles would always call me "Chumbo" starting every "work" email with "Yo Chumbo"|