Days and days of rain, then a sunny afternoon - and we get to the river and it's painfully low and clear. It is a small urban river, with a small but mostly concrete rain catchment area, so the influence of the weather is very quick to take effect but doesn't last long.
I've been mad enough to sit through a storm, the water soon starts to rise and colour up, an hour or so after the rain has finished it begins to return to normal.
Work and other commitments has kept us off the river so far this month, but with a quarter of the challenge bagged in June we were keen to add to our total. With the low water we could see the fish swimming beneath our feet. We saw ghost koi, a carp, chub and our target - barbel.
No bites for a few hours and we came to the conclusion the fish must have fed like crazy while the water was up and weren't hungry now. I finally had a little tap-tap on the rod and I thought it was a crab or a little chub, eventually I hit it and it powered off.
A 7lb 4oz barbel, perhaps they were feeding. It had definitely taken a liking to SB4, it took the entire length of the disgorger to find the hook. We waited for more barbel to come on the feed but all that took a fancy to the bait was an eel each.
Dan counted down last minute out loud before we headed home, when he got to 59¾ seconds his rod ripped round. The barbel gave him some real stick before finding freedom, a shame, looked like a good fish! We'll be back.
Then disaster, Dan just phoned to say he left his rod on the bus - fingers crossed some nice soul has handed it in. We'll find out tomorrow.
Oh, and Roger phoned while I was fishing; he's landed his fourth double of the season - well on his way towards ten barbel for over 100lb!