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).

Lost and landed - surprising seatrout.

I had decided to have an early start after bass with bait, which meant being out of the house before 03:30; as a result I had to turn down an evening at the coast with my pal Martyn. Since I was left with an hour or so to spare in the evening, I decided to pop over to the river and have a go for seatrout. Now we'd had a reasonable amount of rain three days ago so I expected that it would have cleared by now. When I arrived at the water I could see that 'cleared' was a bit of an understatement; it was low and gin clear. Never mind it was a pleasant evening and well worth a dabble.

I started at the upstream end of the stretch and decided to fish systematically by casting down and across with my little plug. After every two or three casts I moved a few paces downstream to fish the next area. Half-a-dozen casts produced nothing and I was already thinking that it could be little more than a pleasant walk down the river bank. I reached the top of a nice glide, leaving a big pool. The first short cast swung the little plug quickly back to my side with nothing, so I lengthened the next one by perhaps two meters, closed the bale arm and watched the braid tighten in the current before swinging more slowly across. The lure was roughly in mid-river when it was grabbed, the rod whanged round and a beautiful silver fish of perhaps two kilos flung itself into the air with a violent head shake. Typically, this dislodged the hooks and I was left disappointed. This happens so often with seatrout that I almost expect it. I had a couple more casts, but they rarely have another go and this one was true to form.

I pressed on, encouraged by the bite. I always think that if one fish was active and interested there is likely to be another one somewhere. Twenty metres further downstream I contacted another, a bit smaller than the first and it stayed attached for an even shorter time. Press on, and it was not long before I had a solid bite with a swirl but no jump. 'Probably not a seatrout!' I thought, and sure enough as it swam upstream past where I stood I could see the green outline of a small pike. I landed this one and took its picture before returning it.

My fourth bite was at the head of a longish stretch of fast flowing water and it was just a pull, which I missed - certainly a trout of some description. The next take was properly hooked, at last, and despite a spirited, leaping, thrashing fight it was soon landed, a nice little bar of silver. That was more like it. A bit further on and I hooked another smaller seatrout which this time came unstuck as I drew it towards the bank. Before packing in after my hour's fishing I landed one more seatrout and lost two others, all in the same stretch of fast flowing, shallow water.

All in all it had turned out to be an excellent hour's fishing. I went to the coast the following morning and it was a total blank. Ah well! That's fishing I suppose.

My disappointing pike.


... at least it was neatly hooked and easy to release.


At last a seatrout. Pity it wasn't as big as the one I'd lost.


Again, nicely hooked on the little plug.


Yet another seatrout - small but beautifully marked.


Neatly hooked again.


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