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).

Mixed catches.

I've been away for a couple of weeks so I was keen to catch something again. My first trip was to a stretch of river that I rarely fish. Typically I found it had changed fairly dramatically since my last visit (a couple of years ago). The spot where I caught big chub in the past was overgrown with vegetation and unfishable and most of the banksides were eight feet tall in grass, nettles and thistles - not easy fishing.

Having arrived at the spot I decided to give it a go and started by casting a Rapala into the 'chub pool' - nothing! The water was pretty deep so I switched to a size 4 Mepps and first cast I had a bite and hooked a modest perch, better than nothing. The only other fishable spot was upstream of a stone bridge. I stepped over an electric fence and fought my way as near to the water's edge as I could manage. I flicked the Mepps up and across and began to wind. Almost as it hit the water the lure was taken and a decent fish surged off, taking a fair amount of line. My hopes of a giant chub were soon dashed when I saw the green flash of a pike. The fish was about six or seven pounds and put up an excellent fight, running and thrashing heavily as I tried to bring it close. Eventually, by sliding down the bank and standing in the shallow water I was able to take a picture of the fish before I released it. Good fun.

The following day I went to two more stretches of the same river. The Mepps was still attached so I started off by using it. On my third cast upstream into a shallow glide the lure was taken and the fish, which didn't fight very hard, turned out to be a chub of about two and a half pounds. That was that. A further thirty minutes of spinning produced nothing else. I decided on a change and hopped back into the car to drive to another section further downstream.

This time I was hoping for perch which are generally present in the pool I was fishing. A few casts with the spinner produced nothing. So I opted for a change of tactics. I nipped back to the car to pick up a little float rod and a box of maggots, then I set about catching minnows for livebait. I soon had a dozen or so and I switched the spinning rod to a light paternoster with a fine wire trace and size 6 circle hook. On went a minnow hooked through the top lip and within minutes I was landing my first perch of about a pound. This turned out to be my biggest but I lost count of the number of smaller ones that I landed. All in all a satisfactory session. Just as well I didn't stick to the spinning.

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 -


This was a surprise as I'd hoped for a chub.


My pike makes one of its many bids for freedom.

Got it!

At last the pike is tired and ready for release.


On exactly the same gear which produced the perch and pike I landed this modest chub.

Perch again.

My first and biggest perch on the live minnows - I caught many more.