Just a few of the fine carp tempted from Upper Tamar Lake over recent weeks.
Upper Tamar is not just a carp water it also has a vast range of other options with specimen perch, roach and eels along with bream and plenty of silver making it a fine match venues. (Below)Stuart Burridge had a cracking day at Upper Tamar with 42lb of roach and skimmers on the tip.
Big perch are a worthwhile target at this time of year with fish to over 4lb a real possibility from several venues. A prawn or lobworm bait is likely to bring results either beneath a float or fished on a running leger rig. Lures can also prove effective for these handsome looking predators. Matt Dart fished a North Devon venues where he tempted a fine brace of perch scaling 3lb 3oz and 2lb 8oz. Both fish were tempted using float fished prawn. Following his success Matt returned too the water to tempt another fine perch of just under 4lb.
Chris Mono of www.remixbaits.co.uk changed species moving away from carp for a session after perch and tempted this stunning specimen of 2lb 15oz using a good old traditional lobworm. The venue was a North Devon Reservoir.
Respected West Country based Specimen Hunter Julian Chidgey is presenting a talk on catching Big Pike across the UK and beyond.
For details contact :- Julian via his facebook or instagram pages,
I have had several anglers message me regarding fishing in lockdown and what the position is. The Angling Trust have successfully lobbied Government resulting in angling being allowed within the lockdown guidelines. See updated guidelines below from the Angling Trust.
The problem with the guidelines is that it leaves a certain amount of freedom to interpret for example what is local. Local is within your town or village, though you can drive a short distance to access an open space. I have reluctantly decided to hang up my rods until after lockdown as I live ten miles from the coast. Could I justify travelling ten miles to go fishing? Is it essential travel? Everyones circumstances are of course different and angling could be a lifeline to many giving valuable exercise for both body and soul. The sooner we can get on top of this COVID nightmare the better and staying home for a few weeks is surely worth the long term result.
In the mean time I will be enjoying a couple of books I received at Christmas that will hopefully inspire me in the coming spring and summer.
I will also be sorting through my fishing gear putting new hooks on old lures, tying rigs and having a general tidy. Might even stock up on a few flies, lures and bits and pieces. In the mean time I will try and write a few features on North Devon Angling plus report on any catches reported to me from those fortunate enough to live close to fish filled waters.
Looking back on my fishing year
2020 ! Well what a year; a year that will remembered for the global pandemic that changed the way we live. I am sure that in the future we will reflect upon those pre-pandemic years with a certain yearning for what we will perceive as a golden age.
It has certainly been a scary year in many ways but life will move on and a new normal will eventually prevail. There are positives in that we have perhaps been forced to realise the value of the great outdoors and how nature is a reassuring constant in our lives a fact that we as anglers have been able to savour.
When the year began who could have imagined the restrictions that would be imposed upon us. But apart from the three months of tight lock down fishing continued and we all had to focus on what is on our own doorstep.
The promise of early casts
An early session on the rocks and I meet a hungry bird.
Winter mullet have become a common catch in winter
Winter pike fishing – The true essence of winter fishing the bright glow of optimism upon cool dark waters.
And of course there are also winter carp!
In the middle of February we headed for Dorset for a short break beside the River Frome. The river was out of sorts but it was still good to be beside the water.
At this time we had no idea that times were about to change!
Little did we know that fishings social aspect would be banned under strict COVID restrictions! Tiers, bubbles and face masks were not on the agenda!
The salmon season was underway but with swollen rivers there would be no silver spring bars.
The Wimbleball Trout were obliging and put a pleasing bed in the rod as a coid wind swept across Exmoor.
Into lockdown and April and May we walked the country lanes and glimpsed wild brown trout in clear waters.
As lockdown was lifted what a joy to once again smell the salty sea air. Breathe in and enjoy a new found freedom.
It was a joy to once again ponder upon those important matters like what fly to use?
Carp are very much a fish of the summer though I don’t always catch! Its fun waiting though….
A boat on Wimbleball brings hard fighting rainbows and summer Rudd
In mid June I join Steve Dawe on a one off trip to catch the mysterious eel from a water that has never been fished for eels before! We prove that there are some big trout present!
Summer bass on the lure
Summer salmon fishing on the Taw & Torridge its not just about the catching its good to just drift a fly across the river.
A trip to Cornwall and the delights of mackerel on light tackle…
Followed by bent rods and aching arms far off Lands End
And summer drifts into autumn
Success is sweet when it comes my first salmon for several seasons after many hundreds of casts comes that delightful tug and well bent rod..belief is restored!
Autumn is a time for mullet but sometimes they’re not there or are rather small!
It was a good year on the lure…I just love it when they hit that lure. Sublime!
A carp fishing interlude at Hacche Moor Carp Fishery
And then shark adventure number two with Jason Barrow and others
The trout seasons ends with the rivers low. I enjoy a last day nymphing on the Lyn. A week later the river is a raging torrent.
A good time to hit the beach as the sunsets earlier.
As winter approaches grayling are a fish that spring to mind and once again the Dorset Frome beckons..
(Above) And when the seasons over there is always time for a riverside walk.
A last trip to Wimbleball
Winter Trout and Christmas at Blakewell
And as the years ends those familiar home waters call…..
Happy New Year for 2021 tight lines to all…….
All rounder Aaron Bunning had a cracking session on Lower Tamar this week with his targets being a 2lb roach and 10lb bream! Amazingly he caught both!! here’s his report: ‘Decided to target the roach and bream for a change, awesome fun on the light gear. had 15-20 roach to 2lb 4oz, 3 bream including 2 doubles of 11lb 6oz and 10lb 4oz as well as a few trout and perch. all fish were caught on 12mm Scopex Squid boilie or maggot hookbaits over quite a lot of maggot, caster, hemp, pellet and groundbait’.