Ramble on (Entry 195)

12:30pm. This is the week.

2:37pm. Or maybe not. I’m struggling again. The perch are not giving themselves up too easily. A quite annoying pattern is starting to rear its ugly head. I’ve made a good start to the autumn perch fishing, but it is quickly turning into hair pulling frustration, with no recompense in sight. I’m sure there’s some of you out there reading this who think, why the hell don’t you just go to a commercial and have done with it? There’s no doubt there are plenty of big perch swimming around in these types of venues, but for now at least, I really want to catch the wildest perch I can. And that means canal or river.

4:10pm. I’m not taking the high horse in the matter, nor am I derogating anyone who chooses to fish for perch on commercial type venues, hell, I will more than likely do it myself one day and you still have to catch the fish. But for now there is a strange kind of lure over me when it comes to these wild, aqueous veins that divide up our country. A grebe has just swam past me. I can’t ever recall seeing a grebe on a canal before. Earlier a pheasant jumped out from behind the hedge behind me, half scaring me to death. The world our side of the divide neatly providing all the reason I need to keep fishing here, barren session after barren session. There’s no way of knowing just what is going to happen next.


4:56pm. Fish I caught a few weeks ago may now be miles from where I’m sitting. With no lock gates why wouldn’t they turn into nomads? Following the bait fish. Seeking out more sheltered areas away from a strong tow or endless boat traffic. Equally, a fish that was nowhere near casting range, even just a few hours ago, could now be swimming ever closer to my bait. Ready to make a memory. Good or bad. Just like the gudgeon I caught at the start of this session, in a different league to all the others, almost as long as my hand. A mini canal monster in its own right.


5:27pm. The pennywort is really starting to get on my nerves. I can hardly put a float in between it. Forever clumping on the line, the float or well, anything in its way. In a week or two it will be leaves doing the annoying but at least they are more colourful and varied. I should stop moaning. Its not that bad, and as soon as the boats ease, the flow will decrease putting an end to this leafy rampage. And at least I have caught a few perch this week. Not the really big one I hoped for but certainly not fish to be sniffed at.


5:42: A few moments ago the float sprung into life and my heart rate did something similar. I struck into heavy weight. Weight that ran so speedily up to the surface. A new PB. My very first grebe, gudgeon clutched tightly at right angles, in between its dart like beak. Thankfully the hook was not in contact and a short, sharp pull saw the grebe begrudgingly give me back my bait. More proof, I guess, that on the next cast, anything could happen.

7:55pm. But not today.

Thanks for reading and until next time,



6 thoughts on “Ramble on (Entry 195)”

  1. I certainly understand that taste for wild fish. I applied the same rule to myself since the first commercial fisheries appeared in France (let’s say 15 years ago). Hopefully I’ll never wet a line in there until my dying day even if that means struggling, and struggling again. I wish you a nice big wild perch Vinny.

  2. Hats off to your dedication and application NWF. I take the view that fishing should be enjoyable, so when times are bad, at the start of the season, when time is short, then for me there is a time for commercials. They can boost your confidence, but a diet of only commercials wouldn’t work for me. I guess for me (and I’m not saying others should concur) rotating around a variety of venues works!
    I’m aware I’ve used ‘for me’ a lot in a few sentences, but what works for me, may not work for you!
    Perch … I grew up in a time when perch stocks had been decimated by disease, so any size perch is a worthwhile fish in my view!

    1. I have nothing against commercials, bob, and just like you enjoy a variety of venues. A change is as good as a rest and all that. But I do love my solitude and mystery.

      And a very good point about the perch disease, my old man said they were thin on the ground when he was winning a lot of matches, back on the 70’s/early 80’s. He used to love them you see as, “they weighed bigger than they looked”, but as you point out, were not so easy to come by.

      Thanks for the comment 🙂

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