ONE OF THOSE DAYS…
With the river season opening, it reminded me of a session that was memorable, for all the wrong reasons!
Fishing ‘out in the sticks’ on rivers can brings with it some extra problems that you don’t get on say a commercial. But there’s quality sport to be had as well, if you look hard enough.
This session after carp was on a stretch of the Sussex Ouse where I was returning to a spot I had spotted some decent fish on, on a previous session.
I had been looking forward to a window of opportunity to get back down there, keeping an eye on tides and conditions. And I arrived fully prepared, or so I thought.
Firstly I turned up to find there was some sort of rave gathering momentum on the opposite bank, a field away, with more and more gatherers, vans, tents arriving, as the afternoon wore on.
My baits were lowered in the edge over a few freebies and I retreated to the cover of some nearby bushes hoping not to skyline any of the fish in the area.
There were a few visits to the far bank by early revelers enjoying the sunshine, but I wasn’t spotted thankfully, with a bridge just upstream I didn’t want to attract any unwanted attention. There were various sound system checks and booming amps too, but I stayed put.
Fishing just above a weir and around the mouth of a feeder stream, next off I had a few kayakers coming through, some negotiating the weir whilst some others paddled right over my baited areas in about three feet of water. Not a big deal, just a little frustrating.
An hour or so later a group of lively heifers arrived and decided to gather just down from my rods.
Fine by me I thought the carp must be used to them, like the kayakers, ‘clumsying’ their way around the waters edge. The next thing I heard however was a snapping of branches quickly followed by an almighty splash – and lots of mooing.
A lively one had somehow managed to fall off a high bank crashing through the branches of a bush on the way down before landing in the river. Whilst his pals mooed in the excitement, he resurfaced then puffed and panted clearly a bit shocked, before heading off downstream to find a shallow exit point. I kept an eye on him to check he could get out.
Thinking that must be it now for disturbance and that any of my target carp will have definitely done the off, I pondered what to do. The rave was starting to gather momentum opposite and more vehicles were arriving across the river, to enjoy the night ahead.
Out of the blue though, sitting back on my low chair, I suddenly heard a gunshot, then another, and another. Next thing there’s a ricochet off a sign opposite and pellets landing in the water in front of me.
Was that aimed at me? A subtle hint that I was in someone else’s swim? I couldn’t even work out where the shots had come from!
If I stayed put, I might get shot, if I walked out from behind the cover I might walk straight into the line of fire. I needed to make a decision and decided to try and confront Mr Trigger Happy. Minutes later, I spotted him, complete with bed chair and high powered rifle at the back of a van, 25 yards away down a track.
I walked towards him and had a word. It turned out he was down for the night to ‘get some rabbits for the freezer’. And didn’t realise I was there.
I gathered up my gear, I had to be off by dark anyway and just accepted that today, wasn’t my day!
DISABLED ANGLERS ACTION REPLAY. Disabled England International Alan Chadbone blew me away with how he’s conquered his disabilities to carry on fishing. It’s a must read feature in this weeks Mail.
GOLDEN RULES OF CARP FISHING. Our Col talks a lot of sense when it comes to carp fishing. Don’t miss his 12 golden rules in this weeks Carp World.
SWEET MAGGOTS FOR SUMMER TENCH. A Tackle Up feature special that shows how YOU can bag up with tench.
OVERWHELMED. We were so overwhelmed with big fish – it’s that time of year – that we just haven’t got the space to put them all in the mag.