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

Hampshire Avon, Dorset Stour and a 6lb 13oz chub

Since my last visit to the H.Avon a couple of weeks ago and luckily catching a 6lb chub, I was just hoping the river level would stay about the same as I knew some swims that could produce that 7lber for me.

I was late leaving home as I had been guiding the previous day and was knackered. I boiled the hemp at 7.30am and got all the gear ready plus put the bed chair and all the things that required a couple of nights down south into the car.

I called in at Avon Tackle to talk to Andy Browne and find out what has happened in the last couple of weeks. Once this was done I visited Throop to have a look at the river there. It looked low and clear, with much of the weed gone. Again few anglers were there and little had been caught.

My thoughts were that I would fish The Middle Avon for a few hours to use up 3 pints of maggots from my Itchen trip, then ledger for about an hour before I had to be off the water by 6pm.

Arriving to find the swim empty and no signs of anyone fishing it for a while I went about baiting the swim. For 20 minutes I catapulted out red maggots about once every 30 seconds to get the chub competing for the bait. I had about 2 hrs of float fishing left, so I didn’t hold back on the feed.

The rod was not my normal 15ft Hardy Marksman but a cheap £40 12ft float rod which was a little stiffer. A 3 bb avon style float was used with 4 lb main line and a size 20 barbless to 2.5lb hooklink. There were some willows near the far bank however the flow was almost midstream and it’s here where I wanted the chub to feed.

So whilst tackling up I kept the feed going in (most important thing) until I was ready to cast out. I knew the depth was about 7ft. The bulk shot was placed just above the swivel where the main line and hooklink are joined. The reason for the swivel is to prevent line twist on the hooklink as you retrieve the float. If you use 2 maggots often it acts as a propeller and line twist can become a problem.

I’ve caught chub to well over 7lbs on this method before so I know it works well in low clear water conditions. However there hasn’t got to be too much weed around otherwise the chub will find it. this area was clear other than the far bank willows.

First trot down produced a minnow, which is not a welcomed sight. Next trot down saw the float bury in the river and the strike met with a very strong resistance. Unusually this chub didn’t go for the far bank willows as I don’t think it knew it was hooked.

It did lead me a merry dance once in the faster current but nothing that was out of control. When it came to the surface I could see it was a huge chub. So then you take even more care. Soon though it was in the net. I unbeknown to me a local angler had seen the scrap and came over to see what I had. He helped weigh and photo the fish for me which was very kind.

On the scales the chub went 6lbs 13oz and a new H.Avon pb.

I continued with spraying maggots into the swim to keep the chub active while I did all the photo’s etc.

After about 10 minutes I hooked another fish which this time made it into the willow where the hooklink broke. Not sure if it was a chub or perhaps a barbel, but I couldn’t hold it.

I then had another chub of about 3lbs while the local angler was still there.

Finally I had one more chub at 5lbs 8oz

I had a few more dace and smaller fish before I couldn’t see the float. Even the ledger with cheese paste didn’t produce anything however a good few chub were swirling on the surface near the willows.

So a great session for 2hrs worth of work.

The next day I was off to fish Throop because there was one particular swim where in the summer I saw some good size chub of 6lb plus, however it was too weedy to fish. However now most of the weed had gone and I fancied giving it a go.

I baited with hemp and casters at first light in an area which was slightly deeper. I sat back and had breakfast before putting in more hemp and casters. Then disaster the swans moved in.

For those of you who can count unlike me there were 4 of the little ones and not 3.

Eventually they moved on and I put out more of my expensive casters. The method today was going to be a feeder with 2 casters on a size 16 hook to 4 inch 4lb hooklink. This was going to be fished in conjunction with a Nisa inline feeder. These are going be my choice of feeder for the winter when using maggots and casters. The only thing is for casters I think I may need to open the holes up a little to aid release.

It didn’t take long before the tip of the rod pulled around and I was playing a large chub, however just downstream from me was some marginal weed which I think was fools watercress. The chub got in there and threw the hook. It didn’t take me long to decide that every chub I hooked would have the same idea, so I changed swims.

The next swim was a nice run where there are always a good few chub and it fishes best in winter. I used the same tactics and baited with casters and hemp with the bait dropper. 3 chub came my way during the day but nothing over 4lbs so I was left feeling a little disappointed.

Even the evening feeding spell failed to produce a bite. To be fair the swans were a nuisance going to and fro for most of the day. Meaning I had to cast out more frequently than normal.

So it was back to Ringwood for dinner of chicken and chips and a coke.

The next morning I was determined to get back to the original swim where I had the 6lb 13oz chub and float fish for longer. It had a days rest and the chub might just be responsive again. I called into Avon Angling and picked up a gallon of maggots and made my way to the swim. Disaster someone was there and they told me he tried to fish it yesterday but it was already taken and so he was there early today. He did say a big chub had recently been taken from there……..jungle drums!

I then baited a swim where an 8lber had been coming out during the summer and went for a walk way upstream to where I saw a few large barbel in September. However the weed was gone plus the leaves on the trees and so were the barbel.

I returned to the swim and saw nothing. So I made another decision to drive back downstream and visit a couple of swims where I had seen some good chub during the summer. I baited one swim where I had caught some chub to just over 6lbs but then moved about half a mile upstream to look at another. I baited this one and waited for a while, but nothing other than a few 4lbers came along and I certainly wasn’t going to waste £20 of maggots on those.

I returned to the first baited swim and found one 3lber feeding and two 5lbers. I was knackered from walking so I decided I would bait up a little more and see if I could catch them. In went some more maggots by dropper and some hemp no more than half a rod length out. There was some high vegetation which gave me cover and I could see everything going on.

After a few more droppers and an hour I lowered in the same feeder setup as I fished on Throop yesterday and in no time the tip belted around and the chub darted over into some streamer weed and I guess the feeder became stuck in the weed and the fish straightened the hook.

Not too sure what to do next I saw the other two fish come back into the swim. This time I used a Drennan size 16 specialist hook which is a stronger wire gauge. I continued watching and feeding the fish, when I saw these 2 huge chub come up from downstream. They were so large they kind of waddled upstream. They settled right under a piece of streamer weed and took the odd maggot as they drifted downstream. I fed and watched them for a 90 minutes, they had a particular patrol route.

When they had left the swim I lowered the swimfeeder through the weed where it sat nicely on the gravel. Soon they returned and the rod tip gave a nod and they both bolted off. That was it I though, but quickly they came back up on the feed.

I lowered the feeder back in when they had left the swim, then I could see them waddle back in a again, this time the rod tip bounced twice and I lifted into one of the largest chub I’ve have seen. It didn’t really fight that much and it plodded around the swim for about a minute and as I drew it up to be netted the hook fell out and slowly the chub sank from view.

The air was blue for a while and the rod ended up in the grass together with my hat, polarising glasses. Not a happy bunny springs to mind. The rod I was using was ultra soft and had a quiver tip so it wasn’t a hook pull because of unbalance tackle.

The only thing I can think of is that the hook hold must have got bigger and the feeder might have just pulled it out because of the short hooklink length. It was indeed a monster I lost.

I waited for a while longer to see if the other big fish came back but it didn’t.

I ended the day in a true banker of a swim further upstream and guess what I balnked in that too.

So what started off so promising on the Saturday afternoon slowly got worst. However a 6lb 13oz chub is still a very very good fish. But I don’t know, the middle Avon has so many big chub around at the moment and soon I think it could take over from the Stour in the future.

At least all my bank walking looking for big chub down that way hasn’t been wasted.






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