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).


It must be obvious to anyone who looks at my webpages that I enjoy fishing for almost anything. Well this week I put this to the test by going to the sea (and blanking) and also by fishing in a local river and a lake. My river fishing involved two trips - both in the evening (19:30 -21:30hr). Just to set the scene I'll go back a day or two - this year there has been exceptional weed growth in my local rivers. I don't mind weed, in fact I like it but it does influence the way I fish. If I want to spin it is most effective to use a Mepps and retrieve downstream after casting up. Plugs, on the other hand, are best fished down and across so inevitably they tend to get hung up in the weed. Anyway, the Environment Agenncy had cut the weed on part of the section that I fish, which gave me the option of using either approach. For the first session on the River I fished a size 4 luminous Mepps and the second time I fished a J7 Rapala. On both occasions I caught fish. On the Mepps I hooked and landed two pike in three casts. the first fish was a few pounds and the second one was a jack. Then, as it was getting dark, I had a perch of well over a pound. After the perch two or three seatrout had a go without being hooked and I scared several others. Finally I landed a two pound seatrout which jumped several times without managing to dislodge the hooks.

Next time, when I fished the Rapala I had another seatrout a bit bigger than the other one. Then at dusk the little plug was taken by a larger pike which fought like stink on the little Teklon rod and fine braid - thank heavens for knottable trace wire. Eventually I manage to net the fish and land it, not without problems. The trebles hung themselves in the net as I reached down from the high bank and I finished up by dragging the fish ashore. I left the pike until I picked up my camera and returned to find that it had released itself from the lure leaving the trebles so firmly embedded in the net that I had to abandon them and change lures. The pike was 72 cm long, so getting on for ten pounds and in fine condition. I took its picture but now discover that I must have deleted the pictures accidentally. I must be getting old and even more careless than usual. Still it was good fun.

The following day I went carp fishing and for almost two hours the carp refused to take my floating crusts. They seemed to be in one of those moods where they showed no interest in eating, even though there were several nice fish basking at the surface. Eventually, for my final fling, I moved to a smaller lake with a single patch of water lilies. Out went a crust and I waited. After perhaps fifteen minutes the rudd had knocked the crust off the hook so I reeled in and rebaited. As I was baiting up a saw the lily leaves shudder and a carp sucked in the old piece of bait. Out went the new bait and again I waited. After perhaps five minutes it was gobbled up and I grabbed the rod as it slithered towards the water. A bit of a tug-of-war ensued before I led the fish out of the lilies and into my net. It was one of the fattest commons I've ever seen and I measured its (fork) length at 70cm - a really nice fish. I managed one reasonable selfie before the fish was returned to the water. Must use the scales in future, my pals seem to find the lengths less interesting than the weights (I'm just lazy).

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 -

My first pike on the Mepps.


.. the smaller pike on the same lure.


A nice perch, again on the luminous Mepps..


A seatrout caught on the Mepps.


Another seatrout, this time on the Rapala.


The fat common.


A selfie with the fish that actually came out OK.