Bread punch roach dominate with bonus carp and perch on the River Cut

September 16, 2021 at 9:22 am

Overnight rain had increased the colour and flow of my local River Cut this week and I looked forward to a decent net of fish, as I searched out a suitable stick float swim, most having overhanging branches. I found my ideal spot with plenty of clearance for my 14 foot Browning, but a sunken branch was visible below the surface, stranded on a mud bank out in front of me. It was just in range of my landing net and bit by bit, I was able to start shifting it. Fifteen minutes of fishing time was spent getting it out, but to leave it would have guaranteed lost fish.

Better out than in.

Not having fished the Cut since the summer, I was keen to get a session in before the leaves start to drop. With no wind and a steady flow, conditions seemed ideal at 10 am.

The river here is only 30 inches deep and I set up with a 5 No 4 Drennan ali stemmed stick float to a size 16 barbless hook, the shot bulked half way with a single No 4 dropper 9 inches from the hook. This would flutter the 6 mm punch of bread, just off the bottom every time the float was held back on its way down the swim. Feed was a base mix of liquidised bread, with a sprinkling of ground carp pellets and a handful of ground hemp. I damped the mix down to allow a firm ball to be squeezed up and dropped a ball close to the edge of the far bank berm.

Following in with the float, there was a bob and a slide and I lifted into a roach, that fought well before sliding over into the landing net.

 Not bad for the first punch fish, although it went down hill from there, with a couple of small chub.

A few gudgeon and some rudd.

I put in another ball of feed and felt the solid resistance of a much better roach, that ran for the far bank.

Next cast I was in again, allowing the fish to fight in the deeper water along the far side, before bringing another good roach over the mudbank to the landing net.

Regular feeding kept the bigger roach interested as the bottom became coated with bread crumbs.

Many of these roach were hooked inside the mouth, the float would usually signal a bite with a slight dip, or a bob as it ran down the swim. A touch on the rim of the ABU501 was enough to slow the float slightly, after which the float would sink away to an unmissable bite.

My keep net was beginning to fill, as I got into a catching rhythm, a roach every few minutes sliding into the landing net.

A slow sink of the float met solid resistance and a 20 yard run downstream needed a rapid response, allowing line to be stripped from the reel under load, the obvious carp then turning round and powering upstream, passing by making a bee line for a fallen tree in the water. I put pressure on and it turned and ran back down the narrow waterway. For the first time I saw the carp, not too big, possibly 2 lb and I brought it up to the surface to net, aware of the shallow mud bank ahead of it. Leaning out with the landing net to guide the common in.

The Cut now has a head of common, mirror and crucian carp, this warrior showing signs of previous battles.

The roach below had a hole in its gill plate, but still fought like the clappers, chasing all over the river.

This perch was a surprise, taking the bread bait, it ran in a straight line and I thought that it was a small carp, until it turned on it’s side to expose it’s stripes.

Running out of feed and punch holes, I made this rudd my last fish of the day.

It had been a busy session, as indicated by the number of punch holes, each one representing at least one fish. With no pike in the river, unlike last week on the River Stour, it was good to fish unworried by “Mr Toothy.”

Over seventy fish, mostly roach in under four hours, were boosted to over nine pounds by the common carp.