Danny and I exchanged a few texts earlier in the week, the distillation of which was that neither of us were leaving Napton reservoir on Thursday until 6lbs of perch was under our belt. Recent trips had buoyed confidence and I was also expectant that a decent fish was on the cards.
I took my kids out to a nearby horse field midweek digging for worms in preparation for the trip. They loved it, filling a tub with twenty odd worms and getting filthy in the meantime. I need to get hold of a fork rather than doing the digging with a spade though.
Upon arrival at Napton I gave the overflow on the small ressy forty five minutes with a worm under a float at various depths. If anywhere looked like it would hold a perch it was the overflow.
|14ft deep but no perch to be found.|
|It is ripe for a float fished dead bait for pike in winter.|
|Andy was to my Left, Danny to my right.|
Trying to bias the perch from the marauding tench I fished a worm off the end of my rod tip just off bottom. I often saw my float slowly lifting and dipping as the worm gyrated and pushed off against the rocks. If I came up the slope too much the worm would get a tail hold amongst the gaps in the rock and could pull the float down.
I caught a couple of small perch quickly but then had to wait an age for another proper bite. When it came the float was pulled sharply under and I struck into a solid resistance. I saw the fish near the surface after a short but jaggy fight and it was clearly too green to be a tench. Ping. The line fell slack. Perch? Jack? I wasn't certain. I inspected my fluorocarbon hook length and it had been burred and scuffed about four inches from the hook. I renewed it and settled back to fishing with higher hopes than ever.
A sthe light started to fade the float plunged again and I landed my first proper perch of 15ozs. Not a monster but validation of the approach. I also had a single tench.
The sun dipped below the clouds as it set and lit up the lake from an acute angle. A much improved weather scene to this time last week.
Whilst we fished we saw hundreds of perch fry amongst the rocks in the margins.
We scooped a few up in our nets and gave them a go on the hook hoping to attract a bigger perch.
|Danny on the left of photo.|
Within ten seconds of my tiny perch fry hitting the water my float disappeared and I was attached to something which took line from the reel despite my thumb being pressed as hard as I dare against the drum. I had 8lb main line on the reel and a 5lb hook length so this must have been a pike to take such liberty. After a straight line sprint the hook pinged out and my gear fluttered back towards me falling like limp spaghetti on the water.
That was it for me. No more action followed.
Andy did well with the tench:
Unlike last week the perch never really turned up close in.
Here are the latest challenge scores: