Kenny's Angling Guiding Service
Kenny's Angling Guiding Service
Kenny's Angling Guiding Service
Kenny's Angling Guiding Service
Kenny's Angling Guiding Service
Kenny's Angling Guiding Service
Kenny's Angling Guiding Service
Kenny's Angling Guiding Service
Kenny's Angling Guiding Service
Kenny's Angling Guiding Service
Kenny's Angling Guiding Service

August 3rd Bristol Avon the pike that got away twice

The day was going to be very warm again and we expecting temperatures of about 28c. I had agreed to meet Ivor for an afternoons fishing. Again I was on the water nice and early with the intentions to look for that large pike. These mornings are full of expectations as you walk towards the swim where perhaps you may find the fish you are after.

I was not disappointed as there was a pike just about into double figures lurking around the swim. It wasn’t the big girl I wanted. The chub and barbel were playing and feeding on the few pellets I threw in, I would leave these for Ivor to catch.

I made my way further downstream where I found 2 large pike one at about 15lbs and the other considerable larger. I tackled up and thought through the plan of landing the pike if I hooked it. Because of the weed I could only cast near to the pike and as I did so the larger pike shot off into the weed. The smaller one just moved and watched the perch dead bait drop to the river bed. This was all in about 2ft of water and I could clearly see the pike go and nose the bait and at this point I twitched it and sure enough the thing picked it up sideways on and I could see it just chomping on the bait but not turning it. This went on for seemed an age I could see the perch was slowly disappearing. I struck the pike powered off then the perch came back rather badly mashed up. So not the best of starts.

I rested the swim for a short while and eventually saw the pike come back. A quick cast again saw it move towards the bait and a couple of twitches had the the pike sufficiently interested to pickup the bait, however the bait was inside the mouth. I struck and had the pike zooming around the swim but disaster the hook hold gave and that was that.

However I now know where there are two very large pike in the river.

I moved on to find another swim where about 10 barbel and the same number of chub were casually drifting in the current. The biggest barbel looked about 8lbs and the largest chub just over 4lbs. I spent the remainder of the morning feeding these fish and taking a few photo’s. I was only feeding them ready for Ivor as he was getting to me at about 11am.

Wheat almost ready to harvest but still some green ears

The wheat was all at it’s regimented height. Yesterday I saw a deer in the middle of this field and I only wished I had my tele-photo lens, it would have made a great photo.

The Avon can be quite wide at various parts on the upper reaches with considerable cabbage patches evident which the barbel just love to hide under.

Wider stretch of the upper Bristol Avon

Then there are some very narrow parts that are quite fast flowing and can be deep. Here the fish tend to hide under the ranunculus that covers the gravel runs. Often the fish do come out of these area’s to feed on the shallow water early in the morning and at night. Several times I’ve seen the barbel feeding at first light, then they disappear back into the watery depths as the daylight increases.

Quite narrow but a good flow

Ivor arrived and I soon showed him the chub and barbel and he couldn’t wait to start.

I had been feeding them some 10mm boilies and they had been bolting them down, and the barbel churning the bottom trying to find them. Ivor soon was tackled up and ready to go. To be fair this bolt rig and sight fishing for Ivor was new and he took a while to understand what was happening. I think to be honest I take this style of fishing for granted and don’t appreciate the skill (if that’s what you call it) in recognising when to strike before the pull on the rod top. On the third attempt at striking at fish Ivor finally hooked a chub of about 3.5lbs.

He then hooked and played another that got off. Put this together with the two other missed takes the chub were getting a tad nervous and it was time to move on.

I wanted to try a couple of swims that produce some good barbel and fish the one where I had my good barbel and chub the previous day. On the way we met another angler Kevin who didn’t looked best pleased. He had just lost a very large barbel, trouble with a boulder…….same swim and almost the same boulder where I lost my large barbel about 10 days or so ago.

We continued looking and another large double came in to feed together with some very large chub over 5lbs. There was another barbel that accompanied the larger fish and this one looked about 8lbs. He really wasn’t happy but sometimes that’s life and he understands this. He showed me a nice photo of a 6lb plus chub he caught this week from the Lodden, so life is not all bad.

Ivor and I walked towards the swim with the chub and barbel and sure enough after putting in some hemp the fish were feeding hard. I put in some boilies and this seemed to scatter them. It was torture watching the chub weave in and out of the far side vegetation but not come to our side of the river. So we rested the swim and went to look and feed a few other spots and were very surprised how the halibut pellets had the fishing churning the bottom up. Fish just materialised from nowhere. We also spotted a few smaller barbel of a couple of pounds.

Eventually we returned to the swim to find all of the boilies gone and the chub still looking hungry. Ivor cast out again, the chub were still moving over the bait but nothing took the bait. After 30 minutes Ivor reeled in to find no bait on the hook. A chub must have pulled them off and we didn’t see any sign of this on the line.

So we decide to move again and we bumped into Kevin who had lost the 8lb fish, he beat it and was just about to net it when it got into some weed and unhooked itself. To lose two barbel in a day is not good news.

Ivor and I moved into another swim that had produced some good barbel and all we saw was one of about 8lbs swim up through the cabbages and into a snag. It was 28c and bloody hot my head was starting to thump through lack of fluids I think. We refilled with fluids again and moved off to another swim where Ivor again missed a few bites and pickups………Rodney and plonker springs to mind here. He even played another fish and lost it if my memory is right.

Then the most bizarre thing happened just before we packed up. We listened to a commotion as other people arrived to fish during the evening it sounded like a coach load had arrived. Soon another angler (loose term this) came down to our swim where we were trying to blend in with the surroundings and not disturb the swim. He stood there and asked if there were any fish in the swim, I said a few, with this he then pushed past us where the path was only 2 ft wide scaring the chub and barbel for cover. He moved probably 10 yds away and was looking in the water. At this point I couldn’t help but say to him that he had just scared the fish, his answer was “I’m only looking”. Ivor and I just looked at each other incredulously. The chap then went a little further upstream and introduced some bait, I couldn’t believe what was happening. He could exit the area from where he was baiting if he wanted via the path that led down to his swim, but no he came back and walked past us again muttering something about some big chub and no barbel, well if 2lb chub are big then he needs some tuition or new glasses.

I just wonder if this chap catches much because his angling etiquette was about zero. I’m sure that Kevin would have said something less kind to him as Kevin is a fine figure of a man. To be fair with the mood Kevin was in, the chap would have been in the river!

I couldn’t take any more and said to Ivor that perhaps we should call it a day. No wonder I only fish during the daytime and not at night. I didn’t cast a line other than for those pike so it was a viewing day for me.


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