River Great Ouse - Offord (26)
Arrival time: 10:00 (at swim)
Weather: Once again a bright start but it soon clouded over and the wind freshened with strong gusts.
Tackle: 9ft Shimano Aero X1 feeder rod with 1oz quiver, Shimano Exage 1000RC reel, 5lb line with circa 3lb hook length to a 14 hook. Started with a small bomb leger. Tried float and maggot feeder before reverting to bomb leger. Also tried a micro lure.
Baits: Maggots and worms.
Fish: A good bag of perch with two notable fish at 1lb 2oz and a PB of 1lb 14oz.
With the chub proving to be a bit challenging over the previous weeks I decided to try for perch at the Top Stream at Offord Cluny. I had caught perch there before and had spoken to another angler the previous week who said he had had some success with perch and roach. I picked up some red maggots and worms on the way.
On arrival it was bright with a clear blue sky and at 14⁰C was unseasonably mild for mid November. But the wind was fresh and strengthened during the day with strong gusts. Fortunately the spot I chose was somewhat shielded by trees on the opposite bank.
I started with a light bomb leger fishing the near margin as the chap the previous week had mentioned that was where he caught. I was using maggots to start with and soon had bites that I couldn't hit. They didn't seem like perch bites.
After a while I slipped a float on and it wasn't long before I pulled in a bleak! Not wanting to dice with bleak I reverted to the leger, trying worm this time. A perch soon came to the net. Not big but it was the target species.
The Top Stream swim
Click on image to open lightbox
Perch 1lb 2oz
PB perch 1lb 14oz
A perch comes to the net
The unsuccessful micro lure
After this I continued to catch perch both on worm and maggots. I tried a maggot feeder for a while, which seemed to work in that I took a couple of perch in quick succession after starting to use it. But then bites tailed off and I wasn't too happy with the large splash it was making, so I once again reverted to the light leger. I continued to loose-feed maggots.
A couple of better fish came to the net before I hooked into something that felt much heavier. After a short but spirited fight a perch of just over a pound was netted. I was very pleased of course but not long after, fishing with a bunch of maggots, I again hooked what felt like a decent fish. Netted and weighed it was a PB at 1lb 14oz.
Things then quietened down a bit although a few more smaller fish were taken. I decided to try a micro lure, something I was about to do just before I caught the PB. But half an hour with the lure produced nothing. Once more I reverted to the leger but things had now gone very quiet. There were bites but I couldn't hit them. Then just before I was going to pack up a small roach was hooked, answering the question of what the unhittable bites were.
So, a great day after perch, not a fish I target that often. Perhaps I should do so more frequently.