Catch fish with Mike Ladle.

Catch Fish with
Mike Ladle


Information Page

Freshwater Fishing

For anyone unfamiliar with the site always check the FRESHWATER, SALTWATER and TACK-TICS pages. The Saltwater page now extends back as a record of over several years of (mostly) sea fishing and may be a useful guide as to when to fish. The Freshwater stuff is also up to date now. I keep adding to both. These pages are effectively my diary and the latest will usually be about fishing in the previous day or two. As you see I also add the odd piece from my friends and correspondents if I've not been doing much. The Tactics pages which are chiefly 'how I do it' plus a bit of science are also updated regularly and (I think) worth a read (the earlier ones are mostly tackle and 'how to do it' stuff).

Accidental salmon.

'Never leave fish'! This is a saying of my old pal Malcolm Brindle and of course he's right. Good fishing doesn't come along so often that you can afford to pass over the chance. Now I don't always stick to this and I often try a change just for the entertainment value. However, the sea trout have been biting so well lately that I thought I had to have another go.

I stuck to the J9f Rapala which has produced all the fish lately and set out on in mid-afternoon. For once it wasn't blazing sunshine so I was pretty optimistic. I was working my way downstream so I generally cast down and across to fish water that I hadn't walked past. First cast into the tail of a big pool I was into a sea trout - fantastic! I landed the fish, took its picture and popped it back - about three-and-a-half pounds, what a cracking start. Five minutes later I had a nice browny. After that my luck deteriorated.

To cut a long story short I missed four good fish in the next half-hour. I think that they were mostly big sea trout but a couple of them might have been salmon. When they take the lure at range (all were tucked in under the near bank) and you just see a big flash or feel a hefty pull it can be hard to identify the culprit. I know that they were all a few pounds in weight, at least (possibly a good deal more). In between the losses I had another couple of modest brown trout so there was plenty of action. After each miss/loss I resharpened the hooks but it was to no avail.

As I approached a deep, tree-lined glide at the bottom of the beat I was beginning to think about going for my tea. 'Just three more casts,' I thought. First cast, as the lure swung round to my side and began its upstream progress, a silver rocket shot out from the bank and I was in. The fish stood on its tail and began the hula dance typical of decent trout and salmon. This one didn't come unstuck but I could see that, for once, it wasn't the desired sea trout but a nice grilse of perhaps seven or eight pounds. Normally I would simply reach down with the pliers and unhook salmon in the water but the banks were too high, steep and unstable so I had a problem. I decided to slide it ashore into a soft muddy ditch and I quickly took its picture before unhooking and returning it to the river, where it swam off strongly. Whew! Pity it wasn't a trout.

If you have any comments or questions about fish, methods, tactics or 'what have you!' get in touch with me by sending an E-MAIL to -

Sea trout.

This is what I was after.  Not a bad first cast.


Little brownies often take the plug but they are rather outgunned by the gear.


A beautiful grilse but I'd have preferred the sea trout that I was after.