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Diary of an average angler

This diary dates back to a holiday in 2003 when I think the urge to get back into fishing took off.
From around 2007 the trips became more frequent with 2010/11 probably being the peak of activity.
Things again pick up in 2020 - a sort of rebirth!

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River Great Ouse - Offord (17)

Top Stream

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Arrival time: circa 11.30 at swim
Weather: Mainly sunny with a strong westerly wind. But not too cold.
Tackle: Shimano 9ft Aero X1 with 1.0oz quiver, simple SSG link and later a small cube leger weight, 5lb line, 2½lb hook link, 16 hook.
Baits: Maggot with hemp as attractor
Fish: A number of small perch, 1 roach and 1 bream

After struggling for chub recently I decided today to try for roach in the Top Stream at Offord. I hadn't fished this stream before but had been advised that it held some good roach. I think they're best fished for with the pole but as I don't have one it was to be match rod and centrepin. However, on arrival not only did my planned swim look uninviting because of the strong wind but the idea of float fishing in such conditions wasn't appealing.

I walked a bit further along the stream, towards the weir, and found a section where the water surface was at least reasonably calm. But the wind would have still made float fishing very difficult so I decided to leger using my recently acquired Shimano light feeder rod.

I fed an area on the far bank with hemp and maggots, having popped into St Ives Tackle on the way to pick up the maggots and some Drennan hooks to nylon; 16 & 18 to 2½ and 2lb line respectively. I tackled up with the size 16 and started with a 2xSSG simple link leger.

After adjusting my sitting position to get a good angle on the feeder rod, and ending up a bit too close to the edge, I was soon into my first perch. Small but feisty. I continued to catch perch on and off. Nothing large but good sport and lovely conditioned little fish.

It was warm enough to take off my jacket and the wind certainly wasn't as cold as it could have been at this time of the year. After a while I did catch a roach, my intended target. But it didn't register a bite and was 'just there' when I retrieved. It was to be my only roach. A bit later I hooked into a heavier fish that turned out to be a bream. Again, not big, but certainly a bit heavier than the perch and adding a bit of variety.

I had by now changed the SSG link for a small cube leger weight. This held the bottom better and made tightening up on the quiver easier, the SSG link tending to move as I tightened up.

Around 2 o'clock things quietened down and I only had a couple of bites before I packed up around 3 o'clock. It had got a bit chillier and the wind hadn't relented.

Although none of the fish was of any size it was a very enjoyable few hours after the struggles I have had recently to catch anything at all. Something to be repeated I think.

© 2024 Robert Bassett

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