Friday 3 February 2012

The Magic Of Chew

Well I wasn't one of the lucky few this year, my name wasn't pulled from the hat in the most exciting draw of the pike anglers calendar. But like a lot (most) pike fishermen I've been following the catches in the angling press, forums and anywhere else I can find any info. And what a year it's turning out to be.

There is a chain of thought that it's shooting fish in a barrel, but it's a bloody big barrel. It's fair to say that the skills acquired through thousands of hours on the bank count for very little here, but the pike are big and everyone with a golden ticket has a chance!

And having been lucky enough to fish Chew once before, I can say it's the most exciting place I've ever fished. You know that feeling when the pike-float bobs and slides under - it's like that, all day.

This week has been hailed as the best-ever week of UK pike fishing, with a string of 20 and 30lb pike, topped off with two 40lb plus fish from the venue.

And I love this story in the Angler's Mail about a guy named Mark Even. Mark turned up at Chew with a PB of 14lb, his first fish of the day upped it to 17lb, and by the end of the day his new PB was 41lb 8oz - now that's a days fishing!

Will I be applying again next year? My letter is already written...


  1. It is a phenomenal water. I love the fact that the biggies seem to come from the boat and the bank as well.
    I just can't imagine how big a forty pound pike must look in real life, amazing.

    Love the blog by the way mate, it's a superb read. Ben

    1. Hi Ben, have you fished it?

      I was talking to a guy last year who had fly-fished it for pike quite a few times, he gave me some advise so I had some tricks up my sleeve for this year... until I didn't get a ticket - I'll save them for next year.

      I was lucky enough to witness the capture of a 38lb Wye pike when I was a kid (34lb when it was weighed after coughing up a 4lb salmon). A memory that still inspires me! Awesome sight!

  2. No, I've never fished there - one day perhaps.
    I must admit I feel more comfortable fishing slightly more 'intimate' waters! The Suffolk Stour, where I grew up and served my piking apprenticeship, is an altogether less imposing water.
    I just cannot imagine a 30 let alone a fish getting on for 40 pounds, just amazing. I still think a mid double looks big!

    I've just moved to south Wales, so looking forward to exploring the Wye - again, quite a different proposition to the Lea where I've been fishing for the last few years!

    I hope you get your ticket for Chew - but you seem to be doing well with some stunning Wye and Thames pike anyway... keep it up.


    1. Chew looks daunting but it's full of big fish, which makes it very exciting. The next cast could result in a thirty!

      The Wye is my favourite river, having grown up a stones throw from it - there next week looking for a pike or two. I'm sure there are a few monsters lurking about there waiting to be caught!

      Good luck on the Wye.

  3. I love your blog and read it daily. You guys across the pond catch some monsters. I just finished a wood burning of a pike and thought you might like to check it out.

    Keep those lines tight fellas. You do good work!

    1. That looks great, having painted pictures of pike in the past I know how difficult it is to get their camouflage pattern looking right - top stuff!

  4. There's still hope, slim but hope! This was the situation earlier in the week

    "Just called to pay for my booking and asked the guy about the allocation and he says they still have 3 weeks in November they are trying to fill and that it will take another 2 weeks before the draw is complete. Everytime he starts to try and sort the places out the phone rings for payments etc so all is not lost yet for those who havnt received anything"


    1. Hi Rob, I think I've pretty much given up hope on a ticket now... But there is always guest tickets... I'm sure someone needs a boat partner :)

      But good luck, slim hope is better than none!