Saturday, 23 January 2010

I just don't understand pike!

I have a confession to make, for some reason I can't seem to get into pike fishing. This is despite the fact that my first big fish was a pike , surely I should be a pike nut!

It's not that I don't appreciate pike, they truly are magnificent creatures, the apex predator in freshwater. Maybe it's because I don't understand pike, and so my pike sessions are usually either pikeless or I fluke out a single fish. Although I have caught a handful of twenty pound plus pike, I somehow don't feel that I deserved to catch them. Maybe it's because I have only fished for them on stillwaters with static deadbaits, perhaps if I fished for them on rivers or employed active techniques such as lure or fly fishing I would finally catch the pike bug?

I tend to pike fish only when the rivers are out of sorts and today was one of those occasions. With the rivers high with snow melt I decided to revisit one of my old haunts, a shallow gravel pit in the Nene valley.

I arrived just before first light and cast a sardine into a marginal spot, or should I say onto a marginal spot , blast it the lake was still frozen. The daylight seemed to take an age to arrive but eventually I could clearly make out a large ice free area to my left so both deadbaits would have to be fished in the same area.  Just after 9am the rod carrying a half herring was away, I hit it and felt the fish for a few seconds before it was off. I recast another half herring to the same spot and that was taken almost immediately, I didn't even have time to attach the drop off indicator. Only around seven pounds, but in my eyes any session that produces a pike is a success. An hour later I had another slightly smaller fish to the same rod and that was it for the day.  I still don't understand pike!

(To make me feel better I have included a photo of a twenty pound plus pike from a couple of years back to inspire both you the reader and me the incompetent piker.)