Days and Ways....


THE Other Pool was wearing an ageing face today, with the leaves slow-burning into autumn.

But like a kid with a bad hair-cut, it was also looking slightly scruffy: because swims have been cleared recently, with timber platforms set into banks and - as part of that ambitious catalogue of work - an impressive wooden bridge has been built to the island.

The water, too, wasn’t looking its best, because of the rains. It was opaque and soupy when usually it is clear. And so it was with a sense of both excitement and disappointment that I set up in the bank. Excitement, - because I’ve always wanted to fish from the island; and disappointment, because I could still recall the high, tangled banks of last May.

I am sure that, next spring, the club will once again have verdant banks, with tall grasses and the early cow parsley. But now it is high autumn, and a colder, sepia-coloured time is before us.

A few carp jumped far out, – they jumped throughout the day, in fact, and I would try for them with popped-up flake, with ledgered baits in the deep channel. But I tried without any success or encouragement. Not a single bite...

Only one swim called to me, - a new swim, on the island. I baited it throughout the day, returning to look for signs of moving fish.

Come late afternoon I spotted what I was looking for. There were bubbles over the free offerings.

 I set up a sight-bob rig, - choosing the very smallest red sight bob in my bag. I cast out, and I waited, and I waited....  And still the bubbles rose.

Robert the bailiff crossed to the island for a chat and, as so often happens, the bob shot over the surface and went under. Something had accepted the broken-up prawns.

“Good grief,” he said. Robert had just been explaining how he had recorded minus 2 degrees Celsius last night and, certainly, I had cycled to the pool through a frost, with the verges touched by a light Chinese glaze of early ice.  

Robert wasn’t expecting anything to bite. I had been inclined to agree and was feeling somewhat smug, as the rod bent and bucked, until he commented, with a disappointed tone in his voice: “Oh – it’s certainly not a big one!”

In fact, it was probably the smallest carp I’ve ever caught from The Other Pool. But it was silvery and lovely, and in perfect condition too.

“Touch its flanks,” said Robert. “They are icy cold...”  And so they were.

  Robert took a quick snap of what, I was certain, would be my only carp from the pool today. But the pool had one more treat in store for me.

Shortly after Robert waved good-bye, the sight-bob shot away again and I found myself attached to a better fish – not a large fish, but a much better fish.

Another carp was unhooked on the mat, - my second fish in a day when I had expected to blank, and it was a gorgeous common in its autumn colours.

I watched it swim away, towards the depths, and reflected that a long bike journey lay ahead of me; - the light was ebbing and it was time to tackle down.



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jaa | Reply 05.11.2013 23:47

An island with a bridge - you lucky Nome, I'd love one!

Gary 06.11.2013 08:57

It was such a tangled, overgrown island, and the work party members have done so much to open it up.. a simply breathtaking effort!

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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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