Pike force a move at Braybrook

October 27, 2020 at 2:05 pm

The weather forecast was dry with sunny intervals, while the rest of the week would see rain and strong winds, so with bread from the freezer, I took the short drive to Braybrooke recreation ground to fish Jeanes’s Pond, arriving at 10:30 to find that I was the only angler there. I was pleased to see that the leaves had only just started to fall, which would make fishing easier.

I set out my stall in peg 18, well out of the wind, to fish the bread punch close in on the pole, putting in just one ball of white liquidised bread four metres out, followed by my 4 x 14 antenna float with a 5 mm punch of rolled bread on an 18 barbless hook, fished just off bottom. The float sat motionless for about five minutes before a tiny tell tale ring radiated out from the fine tip. It sank slowly out of sight and I lifted into a reasonable roach that pulled out the No 6 elastic.

A very nice first fish. Without feeding, I dropped the float over the same spot, this time only waiting a couple of minutes before the float sank again and another autumn roach coming to the landing net.

When the water is cold, the bites can be slow, but they were predictable, a slight movement of the antenna followed by a steady sink under the surface. Another nice roach followed.

I ventured in another small ball of feed and the float sank as a decent roach bounced the elastic. Suddenly the elastic stretched out. A pike had grabbed the roach and was swimming deeper into the pond, the light elastic offering little resistance as it turned and swallowed the fish. I lifted the pole as the 5 lb pike made several lazy runs, eventually swimming parallel to the bank along the surface out of range of the landing net, before diving again and coming in close, as I broke the pole down to the top three sections. I have had dozens of pike on at Jeanes’s Pond and never landed one, but this time I had one on the surface in front of me with the landing net ready. It was not to be, the razor sharp teeth cut through the line as the pike boiled on the surface.

That was the end of what promised to be a good session. I tied on another hook link and started again, feeding a couple more balls, one in close and one 5 metres out. The bites came back, but the good roach were gone, small roach, rudd and even a couple of baby perch taking the bread, including this lipless wonder.

Another angler arrived, new club member Mike, setting up in peg 16 and not long after he was playing a good fish, that was boiling on the surface. It looked like another pike. Walking round, I could see that he was struggling to land the pike on a 5 metre whip, while his landing net was too small to cope and went back for my own. Mike had been fishing cubes of luncheon meat, fairly hooking the pike in the jaw and with no elastic had good control of the fish; I netted it quickly. My camera was ready, but a flip of its tail launched the pike back into the water, so no pic for the blog.

Back at peg 18, still being cautious with the feed, I was beginning to get some better sized roach on the 5 metre line.

Then it happened. The pike was back, making a surface attack on a good roach as I readied the landing net. Already down to the top three sections of pole, I pulled hard against the pike and the hook pulled free, another quality roach meeting its doom. That was enough for me. The pike would wait for the better fish to return, then grab one and kill the swim again. Easy pickings.

Too early to go home and with sandwiches to eat, I loaded up my trolley and relocated to peg 2, close to a lily bed, where the wind would be at my back. It was much deeper here, over 4 feet and fed a couple of small balls along the drop off close the the lilies. Light rain showers were blowing in with the wind and I pulled my hood over my cap to keep my neck dry. So much for the weather forecast.

After a slow start again, it was soon a fish a chuck, but apart from this rudd, the fish were much smaller.

The sky turned black and the rain began to lash down.

With no waterproofs, I abandoned the swim, taking refuge under a bankside oak tree until the rain eased, following blue skies fooling me into fishing again. The punch bread was dry in its wallet and I had stowed the seat cushion safely in the dry pocket of the bait bag, so it was business as usual when I emerged from cover with more roach.

I should have used the dry period to pack up, not realising that this was just an interlude between even heavier showers. It was now just as wet under the tree, due to the runoff from the now sodden leaves and went back to pack up before the rain had stopped.

About seventy fish in total, a typical net of bread punch fish, which unfortunately draw the pike in for a meal that can be achieved with little effort.