The postponed trip to The River Wye and me and James found less than ideal conditions! We had watched the high water roll down the river on various online guages - the river was flooded but falling when we arrived, and you've got to be in it to win it...
James fished two barbel rods, I fished one for barbel and one for pike - dawn until dark (and a bit) - and a couple of hours the following morning - for just a couple of small chub. We'll be back - but we will pick our conditions a bit more carefully next time.
We did nab a blank-saver barbel each from the Small River on the trip back to London - nice consolation prize anyway!
All clear! Cancer free!! Words can not express how relieved I feel - as you can imagine. I was very lucky, it was caught early and there was a surgery spot open that I was eligible for. Aggressive treatment schedule but I was glad to get on with it - and get it over.
My Mum and Dad have been brilliant and my girlfriend has been absolutely fantastic - couldn't have got through it without them! I only told a handfull of friends (and you lot as I thought I wouldn't be blogging) - everyone has been great - thank you.
The Small River has been a godsend. I'm not going to lie; when I was up all night being sick and could feel my bones grinding together under my skin it took a lot of effort to drag myself to the river - but it kept me sane, and to some degree fit!
And I popped down yesterday - to get over my good news hangover... A couple of hours - and after watching the bream sniff my bait for 20 minutes - I bagged a few barbel - 6lb 12oz (above), 6lb 8oz, 4lb and 3lb - James even turned up for net and photography duties.
When I was on the river last I spotted a bream - very rare on this river, in 13 years of fishing it I've only spotted one before. So armed with a tin of sweetcorn I planned to see her on the bank.
The water was pretty dirty but I cast out under a tree where she was hanging out before - and 15 minutes later the rod slammed over. A small common carp - I was convinced I'd hit my target for a second!
With the swim thrashed I decided to leave it to recover for an hour and went in search of a barbel - a wander about downstream and I found two, 5lb 2oz and 4lb 6oz - great stuff!
Back to the bream swim but the water was rising like mad - two chub found a bait before I was flooded off the river. I will be back when the water drops - and I can sight fish for her (or him).