Roach and chub on the mash

November 4, 2016 at 1:39 pm

What a difference a year can make. Last year I cut a new swim out on the bank of my local river and enjoyed a successful afternoon catching small chub, topped off with a near 2 lb perch. A planned return this week was scotched when I saw the river: there was no water, less than half the usual rainfall over the last six weeks has had a drastic effect.


This same view last year was very different, being able to trot a stick float across the whole river.chub-034

Intending to trot down to the overhanging tree from the left bank, it was clear that another swim was needed and headed off along the lane to the weir, where flowing water was guaranteed. Finding the popular peg unoccupied, the van was parked and my gear unloaded.


This swim has always provided plenty of action with roach and chub on the stick float, feeding into the river to draw fish from the outfall, but with levels down by two feet, the only movement was being caused by a back eddy. With a mix of liquidised sweet corn and bread feed pressed into a ball introduced into the eddy, I watched it sink, breaking up in the clear water to be swept back into the outfall on my bank.

Casting in with a 6 mm bread pellet on size 14 hook, the the float drifted back toward me, and sank slowly. Not the bottom, a good roach exploded onto the surface, dashing out into the outfall and putting a good bend in the rod.


The float was set at only two feet and tripping bottom, the fish taking right under the rod top and clearly visible on the strike, the next fish being a hard fighting chubl. With no depth these fish had nowhere to go, but out into the fast water.


Alternating the bait between bread and sweet corn made no difference to the species, regular feed keeping the fish out in front of me.cut-082

Another good roach close in, a pole would probably been better then the running line, but carp and much larger chub can put in an appearance at any time in this swim, so the rod and reel is a good insurance policy.


Rudd are also present, this one being the best in a succession of fish coming from under my feet in the first hour. When the bites began to slow, holding back the float down the edge of the foam kept them coming.




After two and a half hours, the light was going, the temperature had dropped and I decided to call it a day, around 5 lb of fish filling the net.cut-095