Thursday 31 December 2020

Lazy Fisherman 2020

The stats are in - it's become tradition - time to see how far I walked with my lazy hobby in 2020. Not a lot of walking during lockdown - but avoiding public transport and walking to and from the river afterwards made up for it - a total of 2,340 miles - lazy hobby?!!

Distance Walked 2020

Distance Walked 2017-2020 (4 Years)

Wednesday 30 December 2020

River & Rock

I'd like to be out chasing pike and grayling - but it seems Tier 5 is on it's way. Hopefully I'll still be able to fish the local river - but while I'm waiting for the gudgeon, roach & perch(?) to acclimatise to the recent cold spell I'll crack on with a couple of books I got for Xmas.

I'm about half way through Monsters Of River & Rock by Adrian Smith, so far it's excellent - combining stories about fishing in London as a kid, being in one of rock's biggest bands & fishing all over the world - it is 90% fishing - and detailed - technique, bait, size of hook etc...

Next up will be The Book Of Trespass by Nick Hayes, I don't know anything about this book - given to me by my girlfriend - but the title makes me wonder exactly what she thinks I get up to when I'm fishing?! Right, bugger off Covid - it's pike time!

Saturday 26 December 2020


What to target next? With 1,000 barbel in the bank (I love the comma in the number) it's time to find a new target. Covid, lockdowns and travel are restrictive factors - otherwise pike would be my target - I thought I'd have a sit on the riverbank and a bit of a think...

Wednesday 23 December 2020

A Wye Christmas

As I can't get back to The Wye this Christmas I knew the conditions would be perfect for pike; water is low and clear, frosty mornings and mild afternoons, baitfish everywhere... Oh wait, it's in the fields as usual - the traditional Wye Christmas flood! Hopefully I'll get back before the season ends - fingers crossed. (Photo by my Mum).

Monday 21 December 2020

One Thousand!

Early start and out into the rain - presuming lockdown 3.0 was about to be announced - and I only needed one more barbel. Barbel first cast - barbel number 1,000 - f*cking brilliant! I said it out loud "barbel one thousand" wow - I've talked about it for long enough and here it was resting in the net!! Not a monster but who cares?!

It was too far to walk for just one cast - and I had a whole loaf of bread - I fished on for a few hours. A chub and five more barbel found the net, including this 9lb 7oz beauty. I couldn't help refecting on the amazing little river me and Dan had stumbled on 10 years ago - Dan I hope you're reading this. Anyway, here's a few barbel...

Saturday 19 December 2020

Nine Nine Nine

When I transfered the beer from the fridge to my bag I was certain it wouldn't be coming home with me. In fact after the last trip I was sure I could land two more barbel, drink the beer and be off the river in an hour - home long before the forecast rain would arrive.

I couldn't have been more wrong - hours later and in the rain I finally had a bite and the little blank-saver barbel above. Soaking wet I had to carry the beer home! The barbel hadn't read the script - or perhaps they have and it'll be an epic challenge finale next time..?


Thursday 17 December 2020

The Beer Bottle Curse?

The river looked great but time was limited, it would be getting dark in 3 hours, and had I cursed myself by bringing a celebratory bottle of beer with me? I'd convinced myself I was cursed walking to the river!

Barbel on in the first swim - until the hook pulled (cursed) - but at least I knew they were feeding. And a 5lb 0oz chub the next cast made up for it. Then the barbel gods really smiled on me...

Barbel #991 - 7lb 0oz

Barbel #992 - 4½lb

Barbel #993 - 5lb 12oz

Barbel #994 - 8lb 10oz - best of the session

Barbel #995 - 6lb 8oz

Barbel #996 - 5lb 0oz

Barbel #997 - 3lb

Barbel #998 - 3¾lb

I could almost taste the Blue Moon - but I was out of daylight - just over three hours had gone by in the blink of an eye - no surprise with action like that! Two barbel to go - hopefully I'll crack it next trip...


Wednesday 16 December 2020

On This Day 1995

A quarter of a century ago today...
Paulos, my younger brother, with a 25lb 10oz River Wye pike - one we've both been trying to top for 25 years. I feel really old now.

Sunday 13 December 2020

The Final Countdown

Early morning session and three barbel added to the challenge, total now 990 - ten more to catch! So even though I hate carrying any extra weight - and it'll probably be 3 or 4 trips before I drink it - I'll have my celebratory bottle of Blue Moon in my bag ready. So close!

Bet I forget the bottle opener though - I'll end up opening it with my keys or forceps! Oh, and while I'm remembering forgetting stuff - it's Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Christmas Fishing tonight, BBC 2, 8.10pm - or you can wait for the repeat on Christmas Day!!


Thursday 10 December 2020

Got To Be In It...

With a good frost the night before and ice-cold rain in the morning I nearly didn't go - but I haven't been fishing in over a week - and you've got to be in it to win it. To the river! Barbel #984 (above).

Small river barbel #985

Small river barbel #986 - with the head of a tench!!

Small river barbel #987

Plus a bonus chub!


Wednesday 2 December 2020

Quick Barbel Report (983)

Winter is starting to bite, it's getting cold and the barbel fishing is getting tougher - and it's only going to get worse from here! But I managed to find three early December barbel to 6lb 3oz - result!!


Sunday 29 November 2020

Back To Barbel

While Jack & Bob took over the blog last week I managed a couple of afternoons on the river - banking 4 chub and seven barbel - including this chunky 11lb 0oz double - great stuff! Twenty barbel to go...


Saturday 28 November 2020

Jack’s Pike #315

The excellent Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing is avaliable on BBC iPlayer - definitley worth a watch if you haven't seen it.