Welcome to a new series of diary blogs that I will be writing for the Cadence Fishing website. Each month, I will detail some highlights of my fishing around my local area and beyond!
Session 1 – Grayling on the Derwent
The first session of the month was on the River Derwent. I fancied hitting a smaller river to have a day trotting a float with maggots for grayling. Although many people like to use a centre pin for trotting, I prefer to use a closed face reel. It gives me good control on the line and the Edge Float Mono really does flow off the reel very smoothly and pairs well with my CR10 12ft Match #3. After setting up and feeding a few maggots into the swim, I cast out and immediately caught a nice grayling. A great start and it looked like a great day. However, the rain started and progressively got worse over the next two hours. This made it difficult to fish with the float, so I moved over to a small feeder and my CR10 Specimen Rod. This was a positive move, catching my first ever bull head. Once the rain stopped, I went back to the float and caught another three grayling and a ridiculous number of minnows! I rarely pack up if it rains, and trying different methods can often yield results. The only downside, is I get very wet!
Session 2 – Zander on the Trent
Three days after my grayling session, I fished the River Trent one evening for zander. The main issue with zander fishing is that pike will take the bait too. I’m not a fan of using wire when fishing for zander, they are shy biters and the wire can put them off. To stop being bitten off by the pike, for the past couple of years, I’ve been using a product called Supratress by Cannelle. This stuff is brilliant! It is a braid but with a fine steel woven into it, it’s not heavy like wire trace and for me, it makes the zander more eager to investigate my baits. Sadly, Supatress is no longer in production, so every time I see it around, I buy up the entire stock.
Casting out a small roach dead bait with my CR10 Specimen Rod, I’d had nothing after an hour, so I decided to change bait. I know that smelt can be a good bait for pike, so I thought I would try one with the roach not producing anything. Not long after I’d cast out the smelt, I started to get a few indications. The rod tip engaged, and I lifted into it, amazingly, I caught a nice zander on the smelt.
Afterwards, talking to other anglers, it seems that when nothing else is working, a smelt can often pull it out of the bag. I’ll definitely use smelt again in the future for my zander fishing.
Session 3 – Back on the Grayling with Hannah
My friend Hannah asked me if I would take her fishing on the river, as she hadn’t fished one before. Normally, Hannah will fish for catfish and carp, and she has caught catfish to over 100lbs! As this was her first river trip, I thought I would take her to a small river and show her how to trot a float. The Derwent contains some nice fish and having had grayling here earlier in the month, I thought it would be ideal. I set up a CR10 12ft Match #3 for her and kept the bait going in, so she could concentrate solely on trotting the float. It didn’t take long before Hannah had got the hang of it. During the session, she caught three nice grayling trotting the float and also on the bottom using a small feeder loaded with maggots. Not quite the carp and catfish she is used to but still a great way to fish. I enjoyed showing her the ropes and also being the net person for the day.
One of the things I enjoy about fishing is meeting new anglers and swapping knowledge to help us all catch more fish!
Session 4 – Back on the Trent
Every so often, it is nice to just go out for an evening! I headed back to the Trent with exactly that in mind, tooled up with my CR10 2lb Barbel Rod and the CR10 1.5lb Specimen Rod. The session started off great with a nice barbel caught after twenty minutes. My mind was set that this would be a great session. It then went dead and after a good hour of little activity I saw an otter in the swim. I’d heard other people mentioning otters before, and as soon as they saw one, the fishing died. After a little while longer, some signs of life began again, and I caught another nice barbel and a chub. Evening time can be exceptional in October, and I was joined on the session by a beautiful low-flying owl and several deer.
Session 5 – Swapping the River for the Lake
Turning my attentions to a local lake, I was fishing once again with Hannah, who wanted to do some pike fishing. The session started off really cold, and I had high hopes that the pike would take a dead bait. Such is the case in October, the weather can move from one extreme to the other, and it wasn’t long before the sun was beating down, and the day got warm! We switched tactics to using lures.
Hannah caught her very first pike not long after this switch, which was fantastic for her. With that pike in the bag, it was my turn with his chunky pike that she helped me hold for the camera.
Seeing carp topping, I tackled up my CR10 12ft Match #3 with a piece of bread set at a foot deep. It wasn’t long before one took it and being a match rod, it certainly put up a decent fight. The day was made even more memorable by the constant kites that were flying overhead.
We headed back to the lake again a few days later. Fishing with lures first, we caught nothing. Switching to the dead baits, ensured that Hannah caught her PB pike.
With the PB pike in the bag, I switched my attention to fishing with a simple method feeder to fish for whatever would take it. The session ended with two nice carp and a bream.
It was a great day fishing, with a new PB for Hannah, a few fish for me and some great fun using the CR10 Specimen Rod.