Jeanes Pond wakes up from the cold with roach and rudd

February 21, 2023 at 10:25 am

A spur of the moment decision to test the waters for bites, saw me arrive at Brayrooke’s Jeanes Pond at 2 pm this week. If I had no bites, then I would be gone by 2:30. The ice has gone and temperatures are scraping double figures, so it was worth a session with a light 4 x 14 pole rig to a size 18 hook and a 4 mm punch of bread.


Arriving at Peg 16, I was not hopeful, the pond miror-like without a ripple from wind, or fish. With some fine plain liquidised bread, I squeezed up a pigeon egg sized ball of feed and dropped it beside my antenna float, 3 metres out. The wait began. The float was dotted down with just 6 mm of the antenna visible above the flat calm surface. Several minutes passed before a ring radiated out from the antenna. There was interest in the bait. The float tremoured a few times before sinking level with the surface, then slowly disappearing with the line following down. I lifted the pole and yes there was a fish on, a rudd coming to the surface to be swung in.

Barely hooked, I was lucky to land this one. The next bite was more bold and the hooked rudd seemed secure, but fell off the hook, dropping close the bank on my left, where it was engulfed by a pike, the swerl throwing up a mass of bubbles. A pike already! I fed another ball of feed to my right and began catching again. Bites were plentiful, but so were missed and dropped fish, the soft bread pellet still intact.

I had begun fishing a foot off bottom and catching rudd, but with more small balls of feed going in, I moved the float up to fish just off the bottom, where roach had gathered around the feed. These bites took longer to devlope, but most resulted in a roach and my net was filling.

My keepnet was now attacked by a 5 lb pike trying to take one of my roach, it’s teeth lodged in the mesh causing it to panic, bucking and rolling on the surface. The bites stopped soon after.

Adding another length of pole, I fed a ball further out and fished over it, the bite starting slow, then sinking away to the depths. A better rudd.

I added more depth and was among the roach again, swinging them in to avoid that pike.

I hooked into a decent roach, too heavy to swing in and brought it across the surface as quickly as possible. Too late! The pike zoomed in an arc up to intercept the unfortunate roach and grabbed it. On for a few seconds, the hookline was cut through and the float rig sprung up to finish in a tangle around the pole tip.

That ended a promising session, the bread punch producing fish from an apparently lifeless pond.