Due to currently being on a four day week I had the chance to get a few hours out on the bank in Friday. I was undecided where to go, but it had to be close to home as I had to be back for about 4pm latest. I drove to Avon Angling to get some bait and pretty much decided to have another pop at Conham (although the river up at Bath town had been on my mind).
There were a few people in the shop, Craig "Trigger" Edmunds and Bob Warren, both of whom had tales to tell of recent exploits. Trig had come 3rd up at Colemans Cottage with over a ton (boys match) and Bob told me about Mike Nicholls new match record at Hunstrete Bridge pool. I also knew that Tony had won (again) on Wednesday at Landsend, but I didn't want to ask him as I'm sure he gets fed up talking about winning all the time. Despite all this commercial fishery talk I was still going on the river! By the way Tony is thinking of creating his own blog, but he told me he needs to know where the "ON" button is for a computer first. I think a blog by Tony would be of great interest, especially if he revealed his match winning tactics.
I was soon at Conham mixing just a couple of kilos of gbait, I did not fish the same peg this time, I went a little further toward the rowing club where there is platform peg engraved with "fishy" things. I noticed there was a lot of muddy water (plumes) coming down the river, and this carried on all day so can only assume there is some work going on upstream somewhere? Just before I was about to ball in a dozen jaffas, work mate and Corby Pellet wag producer, Paul Corbett came down for a quick watch. As I balled it he said to me "none of your balls went past your float, was that on purpose?" Now this is the kind of thing I take for granted, but anglers not used to those methods don't. The reason for not balling past the float is two fold 1) The gbait balls when thrown in will hit the water and move forward a bit further due to the momentum and trajectory (unless you throw them 20 mtrs up!) and 2) By feeding the gbait short of the float you create a clear feeding zone, and you can sometimes add another pole section and go past the zone and find other fish when it gets hard.
Well on this particular day the gbait had the effect of drawing in fish and I had 6 roach quite early on and some small dace with the odd better one. The bites were hard to hit though and I needed to shallow up very quickly. It soon became apparent that although I was not loose feeding the roach and skimmers would not feed, and the dace wanted to be up in the water. I was getting a fish most chucks but having to change the depth to keep me hitting the bites. Whilst fishing a large fish swirled in the middle river but neither Paul or I saw what it was. Later when Paul went home for a nap another angler appeared for a chat, I told him about the large fish and he said there are a few trout about. Honestly, within 30 seconds of him saying that I was shipping back a tiny dace when I noticed the elastic was now stretched out! On the other end was a decent fish, was it pike, no, a chub we thought, no, it was a trout! A 4lb brown trout in immaculate condition had taken the small dace, wish I had a camera! I put the trout back, and carried on catching dace, eventually I was fishing 4 mtrs to hand just a 1 foot deep catching the dace shallow. I guess I had around the same weight of dace as last time out 15lb when I got a bit bored and packed up.
For anyone who wants to get out and catch some dace shallow go to Conham, especially if you've got kids they will love it!
My plans have changed for the weekend and now I am fishing on Sunday, going to Landsend fishery on the Tony Rixon benevolent league, sorry float only league. As I haven't been to this place for a year I will need a lot of luck at the drawbag, but I'm looking forward to it.