"Can you keep an eye on my rod while I have a look at the next swim" - I said, I was only away for two minutes, but it was enough time for Paulos to hit this fish on my kit... He said he felt guilty... I'm not sure I believe him!
Day 1 (Sat)
We arrived but the river was in the fields, no fishing today, we were hoping for a miracle - or at least saying a prayer to the weather Gods. Water levels were dropping...
Day 2 (Sun)
Bank high and virtually impossible conditions, but we hit the riverbank anyway... It was a long shot, no fish but at least we managed to wet a line!
I did take a bunch of photos but to be honest I'm sick of looking at flood photos.
Day 3 (Mon)
Water had dropped back another 2 or 3 foot revealing a few slacks. Hopes were a lot higher today!
It was about 3 hours and a few dropped runs before Paulos connected to a fish, the pike we were after, about 5lb - both of us were delighted.
About an hour later, after no further action, I decided to have a look for another slack. I asked Paulos to keep an eye on my rod while I had a look at the next swim.
As soon as I left I had a run, Paulos did shout but I signaled him to hit it - we didn't want a deep hooked pike. A 16lb 12oz pike (top photo), I picked the wrong moment to step away!
I cast back out and was rewarded straight away with another run... My turn... A 3lb jack!
Next up Paulos was into another double, great fight and a 16lb 1oz pike was in the net. A brace of mid-doubles in pretty crap conditions. Top stuff!
I had my chance to add a double to the bag, losing a good fish to a hook-pull - it wasn't my day!
The brief feeding spell was over, but we still fished on through the rain into the dark - great result in those conditions.
Day 4 (Tues)
The river rose about a foot after we left but a frost overnight saw it back to about the same level by the following morning.
It was still cold, unsettled and I have to be honest I didn't really fancy it, but Paulos couldn't fish and Roger has been rendered a spectator with a bad leg - he's been out for a month or so, and the rest of the season. My train back to London wasn't until this evening so I hit the water - you can't catch them sat at home!
Restricted to the same few slacks I had runs on ledgered livebaits and deadbaits, aggressive hits but the pike (or whatever) were almost instantly dropping the bait - weird.
I did hit a fish on the tiniest of runs, a good scrap and a nice double - which as it slid over the net I recognised as the 16lb 1oz pike from yesterday - it's been a tough few days, I'll take it!