The past few weeks of struggling to get any decent fish made me rethink what I was doing, and after chatting with Andy we both agreed that we had for now had enough of scratching around for little reward. So it was decided we go for gold and focus on some predator fishing.
The previously low clear rivers have, since the thaw after Xmas plus a week of rain, become swollen a muddy brown. Initially the rivers had been at the top of our list of venues to target along with local lake, but keeping our options open we did not decide until a few days before that we should leave the previousley mentioned places well alone and head for the now legendary Exhall marina swim on the cov canal.
We arrived before sun up and spread four rods over the canal. The weather was perfect for some dead baiting with heavy overcast skys and a good stiff breeze was rippling the canal bobbing my floats and imparting a bit of movement of the baits.
It did not take long for Andy's left hand lead rod to bleep into action and him to strike into a nice pike, which once on the bank after a slow and steady fight pulled the scales 15.8lb. It wasn't till the photos were done and the fish relesed that Andy told me it was a new PB.
Next it was my turn and whilst sitting there chatting away we both noticed one of my floats moving away slowly. The run had small Zander written all over it and upon striking the rod bend indicated this to. After seeing what looked like thrashing on the surface I voiced my opinion just before the fish powered off.
After a while a thick green back swirled on the top and yet another pike found its way onto the well worn banks of the marina swim.
In the water it didn't look to that big but on the mat she seemed far bigger and on the scales it again seemed heavier at 11.3lb.
After two fish in under an hour we could not get another bite between us even though we went through every bait and trick we had at our disposal, so instead the morning was spent lazily sitting drinking steaming cups of hot chocolate whilst talking to each other and the hundred and fifty other people who passed by.
We never did get another bite, but later in the morning the arrival of a crazed spaniel heralded the imminent coming of Jeff accompanied by Judy who were out for a Sunday morning walk. He already knew we'd caught from an earlier text message from myself but as with all anglers was as eager to see the pics as we were to show them. Myself and Andy had already discussed the possibility of his fish being the same one as Jeff caught a week or so ago and as always Jeff had his camera to hand. A quick comparison of the two pic confirmed matching marking on some of the fins. Later at home I to had a look at both pics of the fifteen and even checked them against a fourteen pound fish I caught in the area before Xmas but it would seem mine was a different fish. There has to be some reason why there are so many doubles in one area? My theory is that the larger females are congregating near the marina ready for the fast approaching spawning season as the marina is filled with lilies in the summer, which although are currently nowhere to be seen the roots of these plant must offer the best spawing site on the whole coventry canal.