Days and Ways....


I don't believe that I have ever found my ideal carp pool and at times when near perfection has been found, the pleasant situation has lasted perhaps two or three years at most. Everything changes, and usually not for the best.

New rules come in; - a bad winter takes the largest fish, or over-zealous management "improves" the swims and ruins them.

We've all been there. Perhaps that is why I love the changing of the seasons - the edge of change.  You can always rely on the coming of another season, and it rarely disappoints me.

The great Irish poet, WB Yeats said that yearning for a different time of year was but "yearning for the tomb". I hope that's not the case! I love the autumn, and today, on my walk across open fields to "Clay Farm Pond", I was keen to spot the signs of autumn, such as the increasing number of yellow leaves on the long lines of poplar trees, or that heavy crop of bright red hawthorn berries in the hedgerows.

I did, however, find some unwelcome changes at Clay Farm. Children, under 18, have now been banned from the pool, even if an adult is with them! What sort of signal does that send out to the generation of up and coming anglers? Don't we need their enthusiasm? I am flabbergasted. My own daughter, aged 11, loves that pool, and she has caught a few decent carp there. Now that time is over. It is also forbidden for members to take a guest,  unless the guest supplies name, phone number, car registeration and address (!).

And it is also forbidden for anyone to walk around the pool, unless they have permission..

My wife, an artist, likes to visit the pond. She likes to sit there and see the leaping carp, or watch the swallows as they skim the placid green surface. 

Rules are rules - but I think it is time to move on. The first danger signal, for me, was the banning of floating baits from the club's four pools.

Sorry - but when I fish, I choose the method that is appropriate for the day. As it happened, today I caught one carp on slow-sinking flake and another five on sight-bobbed prawns. None of them was large. There aren't so many big fish in that pool, these days; - and yet I have loved that pool.

I found its outline on a Victorian OS map, and although I think it was little more than a weed-choked puddle by the 1970s, when a syndicate took it on and stocked it, the pool exudes a sense of confidence and endurance.  I would like to think that, in other years, there will be fewer rules and bigger fish! I'd like to imagine that, a century on from now, when I'll be long gone, another angler will sit on the bank of Clay Farm Pond - often alone - to watch the seasons change and to see his float disappear into those haunting depths.



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gary | Reply 02.09.2013 15:57

I just cannot understand the sense of these rules, JAA - and I am indeed on the lookout for new waters.

JAA | Reply 02.09.2013 15:11

Gosh, over and over again we see this. I assume there is money in providing beige fishing on tap. Move on Nome, stop when you find a new paradise...

David Taylor-Bills | Reply 01.09.2013 21:40

Dont these so called fishery management teams realise that we visit their pools mainly to catch fish.I sincerely hope that the membership dries up for them.

gary 01.09.2013 22:09

Yes David, - I think they will struggle if they keep on like this...
By the way, a great pic of a great chub! Thnaks for sending that.

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Latest comments

27.11 | 23:05

We missed you, dear nephew, we missed you...x

27.11 | 19:45

It's Ok, you guys just keep enjoying your little fishing sessions without me...we all know why

07.09 | 21:31

Yes Dave, I look forward to a Three Amigos' reunion at a carp pool. Our fishing sessions together are always a great joy.

07.09 | 20:49

Lovely account of a most enjoyable day Gary.Lets hope that Steven can join us next time.David

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