Monday 23 March 2015

Challenges 2014/15

Species Challenge: The first of a few challenges I set myself this season, I wanted to put a few fish on the list I'd never caught before (or had only caught very small ones). The first task was to catch each species and I also added a reasonable target weight to try and beat.

I achieved four out of the five targets (bloody bream) and have totally fallen in love with (four out of five of) them. They are all going to be future targets - very enjoyable fishing.

Crucian1lb2lb 9oz 12/04/2014
Bream5lb3lb 14oz 03/05/2014
Tench5lb5lb 4oz 29/06/2014
Zander5lb5lb 10oz 22/10/2014
Grayling1lb2lb 1½oz07/02/2015

Pike Challenge: A repeat of last year's failed challenge, 200lb of pike including 5 doubles. I didn't take into account there is no real pike fishing close to home and work is pretty relentless, but that's not really an excuse.

I didn't manage the 200lb, but I did end up with 6 doubles - so half way there. A couple more trips to the River Wye or a weir permit might well have push me over the target but in the end I think I left it too late to start may campaign.

I love fishing for pike and really need to learn this time. Make some more time for pike fishing next season!!

276154lb 11oz

Barbel Challenge: A challenge I decided on a few months into the season. Time was limited so when I could string two or three hours together I'd have a blast at a small river barbel. I wasn't targeting big fish I was just after something to put a bend in the rod.

As thing were going well I decided to aim for 60+ barbel and a target weight of 300lb. An incredible (lucky) run of multi-fish catches and next to no blanks meant I realised this target without that much time on the riverbank - perfect opportunistic fishing. Cracked!

Jun?2?7lb 10oz
Aug37010lb 1oz
Sep41208lb 7oz
Oct31106lb 10oz
Nov51409lb 12oz
Dec2509lb 14oz
Jan4908lb 4oz
Feb3516lb 15oz
Mar2607lb 15oz
Total--71--348lb 11oz

Gudgeon Challenge: I've always loved gudgeon and normally specifically fish for them a few times a year. This season, armed with a set of digital kitchen scales, I decided to chase down a real monster, the target was a genuine 3oz fish.

I didn't manage a three, the best going 2.7oz which was still brilliant. Going to keep carrying the scales so when I do bump into one I'll get a proper weight... I'll keep trying...

And as for next season's challenges... Another attempt at 200lb+ of pike? A big rudd? Perhaps my first moggy? I'll have to give it some thought...


  1. Congrats for your successful 2014/2015 season. I was particularly interested by your report concerning your fishing on the River Test, in Hampshire. (The river plays a significant part in Richard Adams' novel Watership Down). ... All the best for the 2015/2016 season!

    1. Cheers Ollie. Loved fishing in the Test Valley, both the main river and the smaller ones - hopefully be back later in the year for the grayling - and a River Test pike. Roll on the new season...

  2. 30Lb + pike and a bigger beard. Nuff said.

    1. A thirty is the long term goal, who knows it might be next season - been trying for a few years now! And that reminds me, should get started on the new beard!

  3. Pike pffft rofl

  4. Hi Brian,

    If you're looking for a challenge, how about joining us on this:

    James is already on board.