This time out I returned to a section of canal I hadn't fished since last closed season but one with which I am fairly familiar, having fished it on several occasions. However, never for zander.
This session would be heavily geared towards zander although I also would also take a short, stout TF Grear rod, equipped with nothing more on the end of the line than a Nash bread bomb...you see last year there were carp here and there was the outside chance an early season basker could be tempted with a piece of Warburtons finest.
I arrived after work to find the sun blazing and not a cloud in the sky. Perfect weather to find a carp wallowing shallow in the murky water, less so for zander fishing so I decided to head to the stretch where they had shown last year. I arrived and indeed, after 20 minutes or so of careful observation, a couple of backs broke the surface and their bow waves followed. However, after several attempts with free offerings were ignored it was clear that the only two fish I had seen were not interested. They were very cagey indeed. Even the merest sound from passing traffic, some 200m away, would have them sinking back into the dirty depths.
After an hour I moved on, knowing that the zander fishing would be no easier in the conditions.
Dusk was still an hour and a half away and having fishing the entire length of the cover I hadn't had even a bob of interest on the float. Time for a change. I reasoned that the original area I had carp fished would now be getting the last of the sun for the day, being tree-lined, so would provide shaded water and also, maybe, one more chance at a carp. I decided to move back and await the arrival of my fishing buddy James who would be along at around 5.30pm for a bit of evening fishing. I was closer to him on this stretch and as darkness fell we could move back to the cover stretch together, hopefully to catch a zander.
On arriving there were no carp moving and several minutes observation provided no signs at all. By this time the water was totally shaded and any realistic chance had gone.
Imagine my surprise after fifteen minutes then when one of the floats cocked and bobbed. Was I seeing things? No it bobbed again and slid under. I jumped to my feet and grabbed to rod, gobsmacked. I would down to the fish and it felt a decent one. After a solid scrap a fish of around 4 1/2lbs was in the landing net. Result. I reasoned it must have been a passing fish that had stumbled over my bait. Still, I was happy.
Mick at Piscatorial Quagswagging but had never experienced it myself. Another fish followed which shed the hook, then another which James arrived just in time to land for me.
Another hour of hectic sport followed for us both with several fish banked by each of us. What a session this was turning out to be.
In total we banked over ten fish and lost another four or five to hook pulls, as is the way with zander and their bony mouths. All between a couple of pounds and getting towards five.
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