The bit you should read.

I’ve always been an angler and after around the country moving I wanted to discover and document the best places to fish (where ever I might be) in the way of rivers, lakes, canals and ponds. When previously fishing in South Wales I often fished in club and winter league matches, however living up north presented me with new challenges, venues and angling clubs that I acquainted myself with. Now down in the South West I plan to do the same.

This fishing blog details my angling adventures around the UK (although depending where I am in the country I also sea fish from both Boat and Shore, Carp, Pike and Fly fish). I will be giving a summary of 3 values considered by most anglers as well as the additional Disabled Access rating. Since being diagnosed with CIDP and regaining my motor function Disabled angling and Disabled access is now something I always consider when visiting venues. They will all be rated on a scale of 1* to 5*;

1. Fishability *****

2. Accessability *****

3. Value for Money *****

4. Disabled Access *****

I think these 4 points are the key issues which are readily identifiable with all anglers. Feel free to take a look and add your own comments along the way!

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Trip #7 - None Go Bye Farm, Cookridge - 21/08

After a late start I arrived at None Go Bye Farm to an afternoon of warm sunshine. There are 3 lakes and from quickly scanning the 2 lakes at the top of the complex it looked quite popular. I decided to fish the third pond which was furthest away (in the hope it would be quieter). It was still surprisingly busy, and, after a quick walk around I thought it was going to be a difficult afternoon as every peg with cover was taken. That left 5 open water pegs available. I was considering a walk to the other lakes when a man in the corner peg told me he was leaving shortly and offered me his peg, after quickly glancing around I decided that it looked like a good peg to fish and I was told “meat and mussels” did the business. Unfortunately I didn’t have mussels but I did have meat. An angler to my left told me it was a very quiet day and that only silver fish were coming out. I hedged my bets and baited 2 swims, one straight out in front of me and one to the right. As it was a corner peg there was a gap in the lily pads which looked fishy.

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Trip #6 - Canal wanderings for Wily Perch!

After walking the canal the previous day for some jack pike I decided to try for some of the bigger Perch I had noticed. The previous day they seemed to be sheltering near the foundations of the bridges, so equipped with half a pint of red maggots, a pot of worms and a waggler rod set up I was away! One of the benefits of fishing with very limited amounts of tackle meant that I could walk up and down the canal to locate the fish, rather than waiting for them to come to me.

I set up initially at the Kirkstall marina and fed a few small handfuls of maggots and set the float to about 4ft. After about 10 minutes the float slipped under, it was a nice roach of about 4ozs, but it wasn’t the targeted species. I fished at this location for another 30 minutes and caught 4 or 5 more roach. I was very easy to shift location; so I decided to move to a wider section of the canal just beyond the marina, walking towards Leeds city centre in search of those elusive perch. There were several roach moving very close to the near side bank which I couldn’t resist trying to catch. My hook bait was dropped into the water along with a handful of free offerings and my float dipped under. It was a very timid bite, but it resulted in a fish of about 6ozs. But, I was after Perch, and I’d yet to catch one so another move was on the cards.

A short walk along the path the canal narrowed as a bridge went overhead. There was less weed around there and you could see the bottom of the canal a lot more clearly. It was also happened to be where I spotted some of the larger Perch the previous day. I flung in a few red maggots and saw some fish pick them off at about half depth. A small underarm flick landed me very close to the opposite banking and it wasn’t long before I landed a small roach, this was followed by... A PERCH! Switching to worm meant another and another. On my next cast I decided to fish very close to the near bank and was very surprised how quickly I connected with a fish, again a perch. This happened another 2 or 3 times, the bank must have been undercut slightly as the fish could be seen darting out from under the near side bank to attack my maggots.

I walked back towards my original location after several more fish, but unfortunately saw no sizable perch, although I sat down and caught a few more roach.  Despite my best efforts I didn’t manage to catch a perch of any great size. For future outings, on the advice of an angling friend of mine I might use flavoured maggots (Madras flavour) in the hope for something a bit bigger. Still it was an enjoyable afternoon walking up and down the canal, I’ll certainly be visiting it’s banks again shortly and will hopefully get a specimen Perch (or Roach, I’m not fussy!)

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Trip #5 – River Aire, Leeds - Minnow, More Minnows, and MORE MINNOWS!

The best way to utilise a day of is to go fishing, and that is exactly what I did (for a few hours). Today’s weather did not favour the fisherman, blowing a steady 15 mph and gusts of up to 35, the odd shower and a mixture of sunshine and heavy deep grey clouds meant it was going to be very difficult. After a morning of pottering around for waiting for the weather to calm I decided to go for a walk to both the Leeds-Liverpool Canal and the River Aire which are both a short walk from my home. I have fished the river very sporadically in the past and I know it is packed to the banks during the summer and autumn with minnows and gudgeon. Various Internet searches left very little to go on with some reports detailing big and wily Chub, potential Barbel and the occasional specimen Roach. Others complaining it was under stocked, over fished and horribly abused, yielding very little at best.

Monday, 8 August 2011

Store Review - Leeds Angling Centre, Armley

Leeds Angling Centre, visually it looked quite tired and I’m probably wrong in saying this but I got the distinct impression the gentleman behind the desk wasn’t particularly interested in my custom. After I hung around about and checked out what the store had to offer it was obvious that he was a wealth of information to the right people, but when I approached him and asked fairly specific questions about where to fish and what was catching, that information seemed to disappear.