The art of the river angler

But the rivers are dead now or are they? or is it more we just don’t know how to fish them in these modern times.

We may never see the glory day’s of anglers lining the banks of the river’s up and the country in 100 + peg matches week in week out. World championships held on the Trent embankment in Nottingham, drawing huge crowds to watch top anglers at their best. I even recall matches covering both banks on the Trent and river Soar on more than a few weekends.

Trent

But the rivers are dead now or are they? or is it more we just don’t know how to fish them in these modern times.

Anglers are slowly drifting back on to the river banks, but why?. Is it because clubs are trying to make access better, I’ve come across some parts of the Trent that has better access than some commercials with pegs that you can now park behind. Or is it the weights that are coming out, the 2016 Soar Valley winter league you had to be well in to double figures to get anywhere. Not to mention the treble figure weights yes that’s right well over 100lb, but the rivers are dead aren’t they!

So where do I start, what tickets do I need?

If your relatively new to river fishing then i’d suggest starting on the river Soar rather than the Trent. Access is pretty good in a number of areas and there is a good variation of sections from slow deep runs to fast shallow runs that will test your skills.

Much of the Soar is club controlled, as a rough guide starting from the Trent area Ratcliffe on Soar through to Kegworth is controlled by Long Eaton Federation, Kegworth to Kegworth Deep locks is controlled by Long Eaton Victoria. Kegworth Deep locks to Sutton Bonington playing fields is controlled by Loughborough Soar AS. Zouch canal (tow path) to Barrow upon Soar Osier beds is mostly controlled by Loughborough Soar AS. Barrow through to Birstall on the outskirts of Leicester is mostly controlled by Leic’s & District Amalgamation. Find out more

Can I get away with using my commercial match gear? of course you can. Your pole floats and set ups will be different and you’ll more than likely need to size down your elastics to a solid 4-6. A lot of commercial rods tend to be between 9 and 10ft which are a little to short for river fishing but that doesn’t mean they are completely useless.

By far the quickest and easiest way in to river fishing from commercials is with the pole. As mentioned above scaling down your elastics and a few running water pole rigs, don’t forget the pole feeder and your sorted.

Want to know more? why not pop in to our Kegworth shop for a brew and a chat or you could throw your self in at the deep end and join us on some of our river Soar open matches.

5 years old and bagging

Was school holidays and little man had been pestering me for sometime to going fishing, after all he’d been out pegging match sections and seen me off entering verious competitions all winter.

The weather wasn’t great but a careful watch of the forecast showed a window of two days at the end of the week when it wouldn’t be to cold and windy for him.

He wanted to fish the river but it would of been so hard going just to try and catch tiny roach that I knew we had to go somewhere with at least half a chance. So off to the Moat at Weston we went with the view to let him fish the whip in the margins.

How wrong was I

I adjusted my seat box so the footplate was as high as I could get it moved everything in and set about priming two swims to fish. I’d got the near swim started with a few telling knocks on the float it was over to Leon. I want to use your pole dad

err…!

Well ok after some thrashing about helping him get settled we’d pushed the fish further out than we wanted, to about 9mtr but Leon was getting the hang of holding the pole across his legs.img_3344

Swinging on 9mtr of pole at 5 years old he had his first fish on which turned out to be a dam good sized Perch. Once broken down he handled the pole prefectly guiding the fish in to the net.

Back out and it wasn’t long before he was in to some good skimmers, getting a little to confident he was trying to hold the pole and reaching for the landing net!

The wind started to get up and really gust making it really difficult to control the pole so we had call it a day.

Can we come back tomorrow dad?

We’ll see what the weather is like in the morning.

Day two

Same peg and the weather was almost a spring day bright and sunny not good for fishing really. I’d packed a block of wood for him to place on the foot plate to raise his legs a bit more in line for the pole.

We basically fished the same way all though we tried a small amount of groundbait with the hope of forcing things on a little faster.img_3343

As with the first day Perch was the order of the day followed by skimmers. The light was all wrong causing the pole to cast a shadow across the water like a sun dial. There were fish in the area then a few missed bites saw us breaking for something to eat. A hour gone by and the sun had moved causing the near by trees to cast shadows over the same area we where fishing, the prefect time to get back out on the pole.

A few pots of micros and I past the pole over to Leon which saw the float bury in to a nice carp. After a good scrap Leon managed to guide it in for me to net, good few pounds that fish. Shipping back out we managed another two good carp before the strain of the fish and swing about on the pole beat him and it was time to pack up for home.

A day pegging out

Pegging out and one muddy little helper

Sundays are my day off from the shop, So with our fourth coming matches on the Soar I thought id better get out on the bank and peg the sections out.

A cold crisp morning, well by time id got little man motivated it was mid day! peg posts cut and numbers painted on we set off to kegworth to walk and peg out the first two sections.

Earlier in the morning id had a call from one of our Colmic team member (Charlie) to say that he had just arrived at the horseshoe in Kegworth for a practice session. A short walk up from the road bridge we found Charlie on peg 5 in the boat yard. The river looked just perfect thinning down nicely from recent rain there was some colour but not chocolate like it was a few days ago. Peg 5 is just at the end of a bend with the way the boats funnel the river round it creates a nice crease in the flow just past the crease there’s a nice slack area.

Charlie was steadily catching a nice mixed bag of silvers with a few quality Roach and the odd Skimmer on the pole line.

Leaving him to it we walked round on to the next section that runs up to Kegworth deep locks. I don’t think this section has been match fished for years but I know it produces some great results to pleasure anglers.

I’ve limited the amount of pegs per section to 5 giving each angler loads of room to play with. This section at Kegworth looks great for running the stick float through the wide spaced pegs giving nice long glides to fish. So here’s hoping that a few people will put the pole to one side and reach for the rod and line for a change.Watch a live view taken from peg 5

Little man was enjoying passing me the peg posts but seemed to be getting muddier and muddier. By the time we’d walk up to put the last peg in he was proper caked in it! The last peg looking so good I just wish id could be fishing today. I know this is a noted Bream peg and it looks bob on for the feeder on the far bank.

A last drop in on Charlie to see how he was getting on, now trying the feeder up against the boats he’d still be catching steadily for around 6lb of fish by the time he packed up.

Back home it was time to hose little man down before letting him anywhere near the house!

A most enjoyable few hours walking the river with one other section to peg out at Normanton. The river looks spot on and seeing what Charlie was catching I’m optimistic for some fish to be caught on the Kings winter matches.

Well feet up with fave read and a brew me thinks.

Fancy fishing the Kings winter open matches find out more.

2016 draws to a close

With Christmas only days away and 2017 a little over a week away, it seems like 2016 has gone with in a blink of and eye.

We’re starting our wind down towards our annual break and are we looking forward to it I can tell you.

2016 has been an exciting year with things like the Colmic Soar Tackle team plus a few other individuals fishing for us in the Middy lake view tournaments both doing really well. Fishing with and against some of the best anglers in the country has been an amazing experience and what a great bunch.

So what is planned for 2017 well lots really. Why not come and join us with the Kings Head AC and get out on the banks for some light-hearted match fishing. From here we are also looking to bring new anglers through the ranks in to the Colmic team.

With late winter river matchs starting Jan 29th there are a few places left so be sure to get your name down.

June will see the annual Soar Tackle ‘A pint with friends’ road show and your going to love what we’ve got planned for 2017. All ready for the open river season, get your hands on some amazing kit, meet the pro’s ask the questions. In an amazing location see first hand how they actually set up and tackle the river Soar. Not to be missed, Watch out for future information.

We’ve new and exciting ranges coming to the shop and I’ve got to get my building head on to make some major changers in Jan / Feb.

Don’t forget to pop in to the shop on Christmas eve and have a beer and a few mince pies on us until 4pm.

With an exciting New Year a head we will be off on our holidays from the 30th Dec and back open on the 14th Jan.

Wishing you all a very happy Christmas and New Year

Scott & Kath

Winter League (part 1)

A new team throws its self in to the Soar Valley Winter League

Oddly, I’ve actually not fished a full blown match since the early 2000’s when I used to fish regular club matches and opens.

With a gap of some 10 years or so all was about to change after fishing with a local club The Kings Head AC.  Sat in the pub one evening a few of us got talking about getting involved with some of the bigger matches in the area. The first of which being the Soar Valley Winter League.

This would be throwing things right in at the deep end fishing against some the best teams in the Midlands – Matrix Trentman, Kamasan Startlets to name but two. Starlets fielding England international and World Champion anglers.

I might of done quite well in the past picking up the odd trophy, but knowing who I would be fishing against things were about to be taken on to another level.

With 5 rounds and a final the league would start in October and finish late in November, the weather would either be kind to us or near unbearable.

Weeks of preparation was needed, but finding the time to get out and practice was proving hard to come by.  Making the best of the kit I’d got was going to have to do, digging out old river pole rigs and retying them.  Making hook lengths up to what I thought was right was soon to be proved just not enough.

The day’s running up to the first round saw heavy rain and a rising river with the competition being held on sections of the river Soar that I’d either never fished, or hadn’t fished for a very long time. The pressure and nerves where starting to build by the Saturday, all I could do was just go and fish the first round and learn from there.

Meeting the rest of the our team early Sunday morning for breakfast with the rest of the teams, it was soon time to draw our pegs and try our best . I drew Proctors, a place Id never been let alone fished, but with two hours to get to my peg and set up before the whistle at 11:00 am, I’d got time to settle myself and think about what I was doing.

With the river up, my peg was a messy mud bog – great! Fishing the pole wasn’t really going to be an option for me.  As the river was pushing  through I opted for my 16 ft stick rod and a small feeder fished on the tip.  I caught steadily throughout the day.   I soon learned I had to pick my pace up even though I was only 1/2 a kilo off the next peg, if I was going to compete I had to be pushing a pound an hour or be looking for a bonus fish.

As a team we did very well, and we were all buzzing having realised we could actually compete against the fore mentioned anglers. Lifting the spirits we were ready for the next rounds but could we still hold our own?

More to follow soon

Part 2 coming soon

A frantic few hours for the cameras

A hot and bright Wednesday afternoon in April saw a frantic rush about to collect littleman from playgroup, grab some kit and off down to Kegworth club water to meet Steve Collett and Ian the photographer for a feature shoot for Anglers Mail.

It was a great few hours with Steve and Ian the photographer. Littleman didn’t really want to have his picture taken and was very shy in front of two people he’d not met before. But Steve got him involved asking him to take control of the camera.

  

In the end against the odds we pulled it off. Fish in the bag under pressure in near melting heat.

  

You can find our feature with Steve in May 10th edition of Anglers Mail.