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).

Good decision!

My last Freshwater page ended with a description of how I lost a good perch "-which took the Mepps and (very unusually) ripped off a few metres of line before snagging me solidly. I had to wade and mess about in the river to get the lure back before getting severely nettled as I climbed out." Of course I wasn't too happy about any of this but I gave it some thought and decided to try the same spot the following day - assuming that the small, deeper hole where the fish took my lure was still likely to hold one or two good perch.

When I arrived at the river it was already very hot and the sun was blazing down - not the best. This time I intended using a livebait so I had two rods; one set up with float gear to catch minnows or other small fish and the other rigged to paternoster, a small bomb lead and a 20lb wire trace with size 6 circle hook for livebaiting. Since the recent wet weather the nettles are now head high so as far as I was concerned the ideal summer apparel of shorts and T-shirt was not an option and I was wearing my chesties and a thin waterproof jacket - not the most comfortable outfit. I started fishing single maggot in a large slack and it was a good choice because I was soon catching minnows for bait. It was quite enjoyable and for half-an-hour or so I was happy reeling them in and popping the best ones into my bait bucket. As well as minnows I managed one or two bleak which I thought might be ideal baits for a good perch.

Having caught a few baits I trekked down through two fields getting hotter by the minute. I looped on a small lead and lip hooked a bleak. First cast I had a tappy bite but it didn't develop before the gear was swept out of the hole. Next cast I missed the desired spot so I reeled in and tried again: the lead settld into the hole, immediately there was a good pull and when I tightened I was into a good perch. After a short struggle I landed the fish (1.2kg), nicely lip hooked, so I took a couple of pictures and slipped it back. No more bites so I tried spinning and landed just one modest pike.

I probably lost a couple of Kg walking back up in the blazing sun but there are few things more satsifying than catching exactly what you are after eh?

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 -

A smaller perch caught earlier in the week on the Mepps which lost me the big perch.


The big one caught on live bleak. They do look hunky.


The gear 1 wire trace, 2 small bomb, 3 Size 6 circle hook.


Selfie before I put it back.


Pike not a lot bigger than the perch.