Farewell crucian session (Entry 9)

As the title suggests this was to be my last crucian session of the summer and I chose to spend it on a small pond in the heart of the cheshire countryside. It’s an all too rare sight these days, a little pond nestling in a field, its margins lined with beds of lilies and milfoil, a home to the humble crucian. But these habitats still exist and I was really looking forward to spending a few hours in the evening targeting these fish on delicate float tackle. No trying to catch monsters. Just simple fishing in beautiful surroundings.

Arriving at the pond I had a wander around it and, due to the gentle south westerly that was blowing, decided to fish the windward bank. I was sure the crucians would be following this warm wind, taking advantage of any naturals it stirs up out of the silt. The peg I chose gave me two margin options both with features. The right margin was to be my main crucian swim. It took all of three sections of my pole to reach over the lily bed and being a good depth of around 4 feet I was confident as the light faded the crucians would be there. I baited this swim with a few small pellets and casters and a generous amount of hemp. I intended top this up every 30 minutes with a smaller amount of the same feed and fish it only as the light began to fade.

The swim I fished in the meantime was the one above. It was my left margin and I approached this line differently to the other, using chopped worm and caster. I did this for two reasons, the first being I wanted to catch anything and everything that was infront of me, allowing me to get a feeling for what was going on. And the second reason is that this water also contains a fair amount of decent sized tench and some truly huge perch, some to over 4lb, and with both these fish being partial to worm and caster, I thought it was a good road to go down.

From the first put in with a worm section tipped with a caster I caught steadily. Small roach and bream to 6oz being the main fish, the odd better roach invariably muscled in on the action, but not in any great number. I fed chop worm and caster from my pole pot every fifteen minutes or so or when bites began to dry up. I couldn’t feed little and often as this brought the fish up in the water and made the bites a lot harder to hit. I plundered this line for roughly two hours catching over 50 fish but not getting any action from the ponds resident tench or perch. With the light starting to quickly fade it was time to try the right margin.

The first put in on this line with 4mm expander pellet produced the above crucian. It was a stocky, well built fish and I was surprised to see the scales pull round to just over 1lb 2oz. The bite itself was confident. No tentative dips and lifts. It simply buried. Proof enough that leaving a swim alone for a few hours can pay dividends. By now it was the other side of dusk and as I was using my head torch to see my float, I decided to fish on for another 30 minutes or so to see if any more crucians would turn up.

As it happens I only landed one more fish. I did miss a few bites and bump off one fish. The crucian above was a little smaller than the first but gave a great, thumping battle typical of the crucian. They really are dogged little fighters and on light balanced tackle you can really appreciate their fighting quality.

I packed away in the dark while low flying bats whizzed past my head. What a way to end the crucian fishing for this year.

Until next time,



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