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).

Seatrout time.

I've already had a few smallish seatrout this season but generally it has been slow. Anyway, I'm a persistent old so and so and every few days I give it another try. Yesterday evening Lilian had some computing to do so I decided to try for seatrout again. This year there seems to be a good deal more streamer weed in the river and this makes fishing across or down and across with a plug (my favoured tactics for big seatrout) quite difficult so I opted to spin a Mepps. These lures work well if they are cast upstream and retrieved just fast enough to spin with the flow. In this way they slide easily between the fronds of water buttercup so most places are fishable.

As my time was limited I decided to fish a stretch close to the place where I parked my car. Starting at the downstream end I was going to work my way up having a couple of casts every five or six paces. I tend to make the first cast up and across so that it will land under the far bank, the next one goes up the middle and the third one is straight up the near bank. Of course it's not always possible to squeeze three casts in at every spot and sometimes I have to walk quite a long way before I find another fishable place but that's the general approach. I started at the tail of a large pool and to cover the water I needed four casts, each one to a point further upstream. The fourth was almost at my distance limit and the lure plopped in right under the far bank where the water was several feet deep. I waited for a couple of seconds as the lure sank and then began to wind. I could feel the Mepps 'gripping' the water so I knew that it was working well. About half way back to where I stood there was a sharp tug and I was in. Then all hell broke loose.

I saw the flash of silver as a decent fish turned then the rod bowed towards it. The seatrout immediately set off on a fast upstream run. The clutch buzzed and line streamed off as it powered away. The fish paused and then set off again. Several times the trout took a lot of line but eventually it began to tire and I worked it back down into the tail of the pool where I stood. Downstream of me was a fast, deep run and I didn't want the fish to get into the strong flow if I could help it. I took a few paces downstream to try and persuade it to go back up again but it jumped and crashed back in before turning and rushing down into the current. The only thing to do was follow it, so I did. Now it really was beginning to tire so after another minute or two I was able to steer the seatrout onto a shallow gravelly bank, slide it ashore and after taking a couple of pictures and weighing it, return it to the River. Six-and-a-half pounds of fat, sleek, silver seatrout what a way to start.

I pressed on upstream but the next stretch seemed devoid of fish. Then I had a pluck and saw a big red fish - probably another seatrout - turn away. It showed no further interest. The next cast was into shallow water and produced a tiny browny. Not long afterwards I cast up my own bank and landed a fine, spotty seatrout of two-and-a-half pounds. After that I decided it was time to go home for my supper. All in all not a bad session. Must try again soon.

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 -

the first and largest seatrout. What a beauty!


Nicely hooked on the big Mepps with the barbs flattened.


My tiny trout - what a contrast.


The spotty one, another fine fish.


This one also took the Mepps well.