Did you know that the UK is on the same latitude as some places in Canada? If it wasn’t for the gulf stream we would be literally up to our necks in the white stuff. Wow. Then we would truly be cold. And there’d be precious little chub fishing to look forward to. A frightening thought.
Even though I’m fully aware of this ‘other reality’, I can’t help thinking that we are having some really horrible weather conditions at the moment. Ones even less condusive for catching fish in. Cold, strong winds, unsettled weather patterns, and for the river angler, rain, rain, and more rain. Water levels up and down like the undergarments of a certain worldly type of person. It really is testing at the moment. Still, though, we must go out and try. Even though we know, with a strange kind of certainty, that our chance of catching will be slim to nil.
My plan this week was to head to one such small river and wander between swims. The cold water that ran in a few days before put pay to that, raising the rivers level, and making fishing there pretty much a no-go. So I didn’t go. I mean, I did go to the river, just to confirm my suspicions, that little nagging doubt of ‘what if’ spurring me on to at least take a look. There was no ‘what if’. The next day I headed to a stillwater, with half a pint of red maggots, and a few worms. I fished a simple waggler set up for anything that cared to come along. I’ve never seen a commercial water with such clarity. I could see the bottom for two thirds of the way across, and in the strong wind that circulated around the venue, it made for a very cold and bite-less few hours. No amount of layers were fully impervious to its biting nature. Oh, and the sleet came, and soaked everything. It was utterly grim.
When I was sat there, freezing my unmentionables off, I’m going to be honest; I really thought that I might get a bite in the end. Even though my brain was screaming at me to pay attention to it, and leave, I just couldn’t. There was this other voice you see, weaker and more distant, coming from somewhere else within, that made any ideas of an early dash for warmth simply not an option. The most annoying and eternal conflict rattling around inside any angler. One of logic versus hope.
I really can’t wait for the day that I am no longer able to hear that little voice anymore. Though, I have a feeling it wont be for a very long time yet, however. I suppose I’m glad about that. I think. Ask me next time I can barely move my fingers enough to pour a warm drink.
See you in two weeks,