The recent weather had again caused havoc with my fishing plans, warmer fronts brought rain after the recent snow and ice but then it was followed closely behind it by a colder front so again I found my self checking the EA web site with spiralling water levels with dropping temperatures, not good for anything of the fishy type.........
As the weekend approached I did have slightly renewed optimism as the forecast rain did not really appear and the river had run off to a level that allowed access so I gave it a go. It does not take much to make a total mess of the river on the upper reaches of the Avon, just 2 feet of extra water sees a lot of the river over it's banks and access denied!
On arrival to the river the first problem I encountered was trying to cross a small bridge that was used to cross a small brook, I saw small brook but the recent weather had turned it into a medium sized brook! The recent floodwater had obviously lifted the bridge from it's support and then unceremoniously dumped it back into the brook, I managed to walk back up the brook and then jumped across although this problem would have to be resolved sooner rather than later.
I fancied an area quite a way upstream from where I was as I knew that there was a deeper hole in the middle of a straight that I fancied fishing and also looking at what it looked like with extra water on. The rest of the walk up to the area was equally as eventful as the start, another bridge was underwater but passable and 2 trees were over that I had to limbo underneath but eventually I arrived at the spot, the straight itself was like glass and the smooth flow made me confident of a few fish being present as a lot of the water I had walked past on the way upstream was quite fast and turbulent.
The plan was to fish the quivertip, lobworm being the bait, either whole or in sections and a blockend black cap Kamasan to provide a few red maggots for each cast.
The first cast had only been in for 5 minutes when a fish swirled about 30 yards downstream, I noted the fact but cracked on where I was for now, a further 20 minutes past and another cast when another fish swirled in the same area so not looking a gift horse in the mouth I upped sticks and moved downstream 20 yards so I could cast just above the swirling (and hopefully feeding) fish. The first cast went untouched but the second resulted in the tip folding over confidently after 5 minutes, a short scrap and a decent Chub was in the bag, nice thick set shoulders on it and a huge tail, it went 4lb 11oz on the scales and was a welcome fish to say the least.
The fish was returned a way upstream in an attempt to prevent spooking it's shoal mates but after a further 30 minutes of fishing no bites were forthcoming and no further fish were seen swirling on the surface so a move was made. I really wanted to stay in this area until dusk as I felt it held more fish but with the underwater bridge accompanying the brook jumping Olympics on route back I wanted to clear both obstacles in daylight rather than the start of the dark period so off I went.
The second peg I fished looked great in the current conditions, the water rushed in from the right, hugging the far bank creating a huge slack on the inside, easy to fish and hopefully full of fish.
I knew Chub inhabited the area and had heard of recent Perch catches from the area, although there was colour in the water (weak tea rather than chocolate) I thought that the worm/maggot combo may tempt a stripey if I cast my bait close enough to one. Within minutes of my first cast the tip was twitching and then over it went, a Chub around 1 1/2lb was the culprit. I then fished onto dusk but didn't receive any further bites which was strange as I felt that the area looked good for a fish or two, just goes to show you.
The next few sessions will all hopefully be spent on running water, the weather will again be the key player dictating what species are targeted but as long as a door is open somewhere leading to a river I will pass through it.