Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Crucian Fills the Void

Looking back over the last few posts before my hiatus, what strikes me are my frequent and unabashed admissions of failure. By failure I mean, of course, my inability to put the targeted species on the bank. I was unable to poach pike on the lure, unable to bank barbel at Cotheridge - even under the most promising of conditions - and took an age to garner grayling. Well, here’s another one.

It has been a stated goal of mine for some time now to catch one of the carp which reside in a favourite pair of adjacent pools, close to the banks of Big River. I’ve been fishing the place since I was a boy and I’ve yet to do it. In fact, I’ve yet to see anyone do it. I’ve had a couple on – for a brief few seconds, but on both occasions I had been fishing for tench with relatively light gear and was broken almost immediately, trying to stop them from reaching the sanctuary of sunken trees. When I try for them with a beefier set up I get nothing; not a sniff. Night fishing is the next tactic.

They seem to me to be like the carp of old, almost uncatchable, as described in that seminal tome Confessions of a Carp Fisher by ‘BB’ (who never managed a twenty in his life, despite years spent in obsessively researched questing - not that he seemed to mind one jot, which shows how far expectations have shifted). How very different they are from the pellet-raised versions which abound in the numerous commercial fisheries hereabouts. These unfortunate creatures appear to have become so conditioned to repeated capture that they have come to regard it as an occupational hazard. In return for a steady diet of lager’n’curry flavoured boilies (or whatever) they accept the occasional indignity of capture as quid pro quo. They’re not a match in the fight either. I managed to land a near 15 pounder on a 2lb cast a couple of years ago, while fishing for crucians. It just swam around in circles for a while in the snag-free depths before coming easily to the net, which was barely big enough to hold it.

I don’t mind blank days too much though, as long as the surroundings are as tranquil, relaxing and beautiful as they are there. A panoply of flora and fauna abounds. Kingfishers fish, woodpeckers and cuckoos flit from tree to tree, and grass snakes wind their way lissomly across the surface of the water. There is plenty to distract one from the dearth of caught carp, including an albino mallard duckling (see photo).

Taking of crucians, a friend and I caught a couple of nice ones from our local park lake the other day, which was a surprise, to me at least. I was persuaded to try the place, against my better judgement it has to be said, by my friend who has recently re-caught the angling bug after a few years off. The lake is large, old and rather lovely, and, because my new found freedom from work allows it, we were able to go during the week and were almost the only anglers there. We had a nice day’s fishing, catching some lovely roach and the aforementioned crucians, one apiece. I might even go back.

1 comment:

JAA said...

Welcome back Retarius! On my local lake the carp fight like dervishes, and with only breadcrust, I've had to move up to 15lb line (and still lose them with hook pulls and knot breaks). No quitters here!

JAA (ex Waterlog)