Autumn Gold. Rudd, crucians and common carp on the bread punch

October 2, 2021 at 10:01 pm

Autumn arrived suddenly this year, following a glorious Indian summer of sunshine and high temperatures. The Jet Stream made an about turn to replace winds from the South, with heavy rain and gales from the frozen North. With a break in the rain bands forecast for an afternoon this week and a continuing petrol crisis causing long queues for the pumps, my choice of venues was limited to the pond within walking distance of my home.

The undergrowth had closed in on my chosen swim and I spent the first twenty minutes carrying out a bit of trimming, giving myself a slot to fish through. A brief shower swept through, but soon the sun was out as forecast and I set up to fish the pole between 8 and 10 metres out. Mixing up liquidised bread, ground carp pellets and ground hemp, with a sprinkling of strawberry flavouring, I fed half the tray of wet balls into the area and cast in my 3 No 4 canal waggler, with a 7 mm punch to a size 14 hook.

The float buried immediately and a decent rudd was on it’s way to the net. I was surprised that the fish felt really cold, the weather of late having an effect. Next cast was a repeat of the first cast with another nice rudd, but the following cast indicated a more cautious bite, which took time to develop, very much like a crucian carp, but on the strike a better rudd was rolling on the surface.

The next rudd had all the colours of Autumn, gold flanks and red fins picked out by the afternoon sun.

These were all good rudd and the mud stirred up by the fish feeding on my ground bait was beginning to leave a dark stain in the water. With no room behind me, I had to feed the pole up into the bushes above the path to reach the top two sections to net the fish, getting plenty of exercise swinging the pole out, lifting into another rudd, then rapidly pulling back and lifting up into the bushes. Feeding the occasional ball of feed kept their heads down and the catch rate was relentless.

Tiny bubbles were beginning to burst on the surface and I dropped the float in among them. The float dipped and dithered, then moved slowly away and I lifted into something solid for a change. The elastic came out as the fish zig zagged along the bottom and I was playing the first crucian of the day.

Back into the bubbles, more dithering dips followed and another smaller crucian was in the landing net.

My ex next-door neighbour Carol was walking around the pond and stopped next to me “Ken is that You?” “Yes.” “Are you fishing?” “Yes.” “Have you caught anything?” “Yes. Lots” I said as I swung another small crucian in, putting it in my net. I punched out another 7 mm pellet of bread and cast in again. The float slowly sank and I lifted into a solid force, that stretched out the elastic as it accelerated across the pond. “Ooo, is that a big fish?” “Yes, a carp.” Carol never stopped talking, as I followed the carp around the pond with my pole, but none of it went in, I was too busy trying to keep the carp out of the lily bed. Soon it was close enough to break the pole down to the top two sections, shoving the pole high into the bushes, before pushing the landing net out to net the common carp as it wallowed on the surface. Carol was very impressed, taking a photo on her phone.

The pond in front of me was now black with mud, but a couple more balls of feed soon saw the float going under again with a gold flanked rudd fighting for freedom.

The crucians were back again, although gudgeon were grabbing the bait first, this crucian taking on the drop.

I put the last of the feed in on the 10 metre line and hooked another good rudd.

A bite that went on for at least five minutes finally sank and the elastic was out with a crucian that fought all along the bushes at my feet, the hook having set below the mouth. It had obviously blown the bread up the line, when I struck.

More identical crucians followed and even a six inch fin perfect common carp, but as the sun dropped low behind the trees, the bites slowed down. The pond had one last surprise, the float sank and I was playing an even bigger common carp that zipped across to the lilies opposite. Keeping the pole as high as I could, the elastic was at full stretch as I steered it away, only for it to rush towards the bed on my right. Carol was at maximum chatter, when the hook pulled out. Shame. Two nice carp among my net of fish would have made a good pic. It was time to pack up and Carol bid her farewells. She has often quizzed me about my fishing exploits and now she knows a little more.

Once more the bread punch had paid off for me, proving that exotic baits aren’t always the answer.

A few hours on the bread punch.