Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Lea, Me and a Flask of Tea

On misted dawn, through dew dropped grass I walk. To nestle 'mongst reed and nettle. The upper Lea...low, slow.

Drawn to sit aside her snaking flow, the early morning sounds are all around. The relentless cooing of the wood pigeons and shrill call of the moorhen, all too familiar.
 A cast is ventured and white feathers pass by like little boats on the surface, as if to signal the flyover of the swan, his wing beat reverberating to the angler below.
 I watch attentively for a flicker of the tip, but that attention soon wanes, too much to see....a shoal of massive roach.
 Then 'tap'....the tip grabs back my attention, and round it arcs, I strike.
 Immediately, I'm aware that I am connected to the ever reliable chub, I love them for their ability to make a difficult day worthwhile.

  Time for tea, Twinings of course, not best from the flask, but needs must.
 On the small river, especially when low, a catch can send every other fish in the swim scattering. Patience is needed. I rest the swim and wander, the grassy path downstream.

In the next swim I see....barbel.
 A handful of pellet and a couple of chopped boilies will keep them occupied whilst I get the rod.

Not too long before I'm waiting, watching. So much to see through Polaroids, a dip into their world, I never tire of watching a fish in it's domain.
 Whack, the tip slams round, the wait was short, but sweet. This one fights harder, barbel? Yes barbel! Tearing up and down like a thing possessed, but he will eventually be mine. 

 A quick photo,then a good rest in the landing net before release. Very important, especially in these conditions.

 More tea Stanley!.....Perhaps it's time to take a bit of Lemon cake down stream to Mike.

I thought about it, I really did but I'll have one more cast before cake...
 Just as well really, this lively fellow decides to interrupt the two damselflies who were having a little rest on my rod tip.

OK, cake .... now.
 Feeling somewhat replenished and back to the serious(?) stuff of angling. I become sidetracked by the visiting carp under my rod. Round and round he goes, the same circuit over and over. I give him a bit of pellet and chopped boilie...he likes it. I wonder if I might formulate a little trap and catch him, but then I wouldn't be able to watch I decide against it.

 The sun is now high in the sky, the fishing slowly grinds to a standstill. I'm still happy to idle a few hours, Mike has had enough and departs.
 With bites grinding to a halt my thoughts become fishlike, where would I be. It is actually bloody obvious, in the reeds, in the shade. An upstream cast is needed., and the result is immediate..

 I only drink tea when I'm fishing, it focusses the thought processes when old Gurn's head has had a bit too much sun. I drink and  it soon becomes blatantly obvious that I should move back upstream.
 I like this swim, it feels right.

 When they feel right, they usually are right, so knowing I might only get one opportunity I'm keen not to mess it up. One bait, no freebies...stealthy.
 The bait is in the water for no more than two minutes before the rod wraps round and the Speedia bursts into song.
 A hearty battle on lightish tackle, and a fitting end to the session.

 A shake of the flask concurs, I'm out of tea. Off then, through haystack'd meadow, past ripening sloes. Another delightful small river session comes to an end, but I'll not forget that shoal of roach.


  1. What lovely fins! Coral pink is not far off it...


    1. Indeed sir, its such a rich little fishery, the fish are thriving.

  2. Great read that Gurn, my sort of river too, small and intimate.

    1. Indeed, my favourite places of all.

  3. Loved it Gurn, a proper autumn day.

    1. Did you just say the 'A' word Dave...Hmmm perch.