My tenth season review - written throughout the year. And it was another cracker; monster trout, a serious canal carp, the mini river species hunt, a fantastic shark fishing trip and a load of pike! I added six new PBs (including sharks) and landed a total of 26 species of freshwater fish - that must be a personal record.
Closed Season: A great day on Lechlade produced a new PB rainbow and a PB brown trout, a double! Then I turned my attention to the local canals landing 3 small pike and a monster 28lb mirror carp, smashing my PB. The Blogger’s Challenge concluded and I was more than happy with third place - not a bad off season!
June: Opening day saw me into the local barbel, that pull I’d missed for three months. I also continued my canal carp quest landing two more, including a double. And I started a hunt to catch as many species from the local river as I could this season, setting the near impossible target of 20 species - 11 so far - including a choach!
July: In the grip of a heatwave it was best to try and avoid the barbel, instead I turn my attention to adding some mini species to the hunt; minnows, bullheads and sticklebacks were caught. I added common and mirror carp, but a koi proved elusive. And floating bread provided some explosive chub fishing while waiting for some rain.
August: Shark fishing! I’d really been looking forward to this and it didn’t disappoint. A new PB lemon shark for me and Roger, 7’ 7” & 7’ 8” respectively, two bull sharks to 6’ 9” topped off a twelve shark trip. Plus a few stingrays. And a great holiday in America; dinners, water parks, beaches, nature and crazy southerners!
September: Back to reality I stalked out a few carp on the local ponds, while doing some reccies for autumn pike and perch. The river had seen a bit of rain while I was away and I upped my local barbel count to 55 fish. And, after some near misses, finally landed an elusive koi carp - taking my species hunt total to eighteen.
October: Pike time! And lots of pike, no monsters in fact only one scrapper double, but I landed 44 pike from some local ponds throughout the month - I really wanted to get more pike on Pike Blog this year. I had a few local barbel and a load of perch on the lures but pike were the main mission - 47 landed so far this season.
November: Less time on the water I added 7 more pike, cracking my target 50 Pike Challenge - although I need to add some more doubles. A fantastic trip to the Test Valley saw me land 6 pound plus grayling to just under 2lb. Plus some quick missions to the local river to wet a line - and bag some beautiful autumn roach and barbel.
December: I added a few more barbel (total 71) and 7 more pike (total 61) but I was really hoping The Wye would be on form for my annual Christmas visit - but as usual the floods arrived. I had a cracking couple of days chasing trout and perch on the fly with Steve and Dyl - really should do more fly fishing throughout the year.
January: First trip of the year saw a beautiful double figure pike on a deadbait. A trip down to The Royality produced only a jack - tough fishing. Locally I bagged a few more barbel, but again the cold water was making it tricky. And a few missions to the local ponds saw some pike fall for the lures - which warmed me up no end!
February: I was busy with work - drawing robots! But I did manage to escape to the river with the stick 'n' pin and catch seven pound plus roach, the best of which went 1lb 14½oz, plus some cracking dace. Just one pike added to the challenge. And with some unseasonably warm weather I landed six more barbel to 9lb 1oz.
March: Only one pike trip with 2 more pike added - total 73. But the main mission of the final two weeks was getting my barbel total to 100 fish, I'd left it very late but more trips to the river than I'd planned and I cracked it - including a double - total 101 barbel - brilliant! Another fantastic season - roll on the next one...