With the sun blazing down, I began to wonder if I had made the right decision. I was after bream. Not usually the lovers of bright conditions, especially in gin clear water, such as the one I was at. The optimist in me argued that the good depth of water might go into my favour and if I didn’t get a bite during the daylight, I would stand a good chance as darkness fell. The time in between would allow me to build a bed of bait with a swimfeeder ready to hold any passing shoal of bream. Yes, I thought, that sounded like a good idea. I settled into a lovely looking swim and went about finding as clear an area as possible with the help of a 1oz lead. First cast landed in a dense weed bed. Long, fresh lengths of Canadian Pondweed came back wrapped around the lead. The next cast, further out than the first, landed with a much more positive thud. The water was deeper here too and I assumed I had found a drop off. Perfect. A cast to either side and further out again confirmed this. With that I clipped up, replaced the lead with a large swimfeeder and made twenty cast to the spot in quick succession. I like to spread the bait a little when after bream, cast to the left and right of my far bank marker so the fish have a good area to feed over. As well as the groundbait and pellets I used to plug the feeder, I also included hemp, casters and a little sweetcorn to the mix. What bream could resist such a banquet?
As it turns out, on my very first cast after just a few minutes, the rod tip slowly pulled round and I lifted into a fish. That unmistakeable, lumbering weight on the other end told me I was into my first bream of the day. Too be honest I was taken back by how quick the fish came and the fact they were feeding in such hot, still and bright conditions at all. At 6lb 8oz it was a great start. A quick picture and the fish returned in the next peg. Grinning from ear to ear, I filled the feeder and re-cast. Another ten minutes went by. Just before I was about to repeat the process, the rod tip once more pulled round deliberately. I couldn’t believe my luck. Another bream and this time it felt a little heavier. Indeed the fish must have thought it was a tench as it tried its hardest to bury itself in the weed bed in front of me. I kept the rod high, gently persuading the fish to rise up in the water. It worked and I was able to lead the fish over the obstruction and into the net without any further worries.
The fish turned out to be bigger weighing in at 7lb 10oz. A brace of bream on my first two casts. This good fortune wasn’t to last though as for the next two hours I sat without any more fish. The odd line bite kept me on my toes and at least proved there was fish in the area but they seemed unwilling to feed positively. Hardly surprising really. I was very content for now to keep building the swim and watching the wildlife. Risk looking away from the rod tip for a fleeting glance of a darting dragonfly. There was a whole host of different coloured damselflies too, resting on the lily pads in the margins, soaking up the suns warming rays. Occasionally a rudd slurped a fly that had been unfortunate enough to fall onto the surface and huge plumes of fry scattered to avoid the hungry mouths of palm sized perch. So much to keep me entertained while I waited for the bream to make up their minds. To feed or not to feed.
But feed they did. Once I realised that I needed to cast five or six times after a fish to keep the bites coming I had a good run of activity. Five in total over the next two hours although I only managed to land two. One dropped off at the net and two were lost early into the fight. I had to end the session earlier than planned as I ran out of bait. I hadn’t planned to be casting as regularly as I had to but the fish dictated otherwise. Three bream over seven pound and one over six is a statistic I certainly can’t complain about. I will certainly be back at some point when conditions are a little more favourable and this time I will make sure I have a plentiful supply of bait. I really enjoyed my few hours in the pursuit of these deep bodied fish. Not to everyones taste I admit but I think there is something really satisfying about bream fishing. Something I’ll have to ponder over for now.
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Until Next time tight lines