More proper fishing

In early Autumn I returned to Britford for another coaching session, this time with Colin and his son Joe.. Their second lesson is featured here and their third here.

I knew this session would prove a very steep learning curve for both of them but at Colin’s suggestion I concentrated on coaching Joe, leaving Colin to take a back seat.

Joe took to fishing with a centrepin like a duck to water and was soon catching dace almost every cast, I even allowed him to use my latest aquisition, a Shakespeare Aerial Centenary centrepin nearly as old as him and in mint condition, which I had yet to use myself.

Joe learning to trot a float

He quickly learned to feed the swim from a bait apron, a little every cast, whilst standing in the water in waders. Eventually a pike moved into the swim and the dace stopped feeding, so we moved to another spot.

Joe enjoying his river fishing

Here after a quick lesson on the use of a bait dropper he caught some more dace and his first Avon grayling which he found, as many of us already know, very difficult to hold being like a bar of soap with muscles.

Joe with avon grayling

He also caught a fine roach that this stretch is famous for, not the biggest specimen but one that young Joe will remember. A truly beautiful fish which made me secretly quite jealous.

Joe with avon roach

When the swim went quiet I took the opportunity to show him how to fish with bread flake and to use liquidised bread as loose feed. A longer trot further down the swim produced a couple of chub which gave him a good fight on fairly light tackle.

Joe and his dad with chub

You can see from this picture how proud his Dad was of him, so was I. A wonderful day on a wonderful river.

Later that month we tried to duplicate the session on the river Kennet but it proved quite uneventful with Joe losing a big fish which turned out to be a double figure salmon that didn’t know it was hooked. When he turned it upstream and put as much pressure on it with his five pound hook length as he dared it rose in the water column which proved to me that it wasn’t the barbel I had hoped for. As we saw it, it saw us and bolted in the direction of Newbury, smashing Joe’s hook length with unbelievable power.

Joe was heartbroken and asked what he had done wrong and I told him nothing, he had no chance on such light tackle, it was out of season anyway and Joe had no salmon licence. He has the makings of a good river angler and I am looking foward to our next outing.