w/e - Sunday 2nd May 2010
After last nights total frustration, I had a lay in bed and didn't get up 'til 09.30 by which time the only remaining anglers on the stretch were packing away their gear. The night wasn't too good for them having just a Bream and a Tench. It was mid afternoon before anyone started fishing again and of course, they struggled. I later heard Pete from Halifax had a Tench on the pole at 3lb 8oz.
At 6.30pm I found Philip near the disabled swims out for an early evening session. Later he was joined by Joe and myself. When I left at 11pm with a solitary Hybrid, they had a Perch each and a smallish male Tench for Joe. The air temperature was about 11-12c and the slight southerly wind was pleasent. There was a lot of surface activity on the navigation channel at dusk. Tim and Jamie Collier shared 8 Tench and 3 Bream near the duckpond. Please excuse this page being posted later than usual as I couldn't be bothered when I came in.
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Up before dawn for a spot of Tincaring near the disabled pegs below the bridge. There was a bit of chop coming off the lake but not too much to spoil presentation. Second cast I was into a Tench, a male weighing in at 3lb 10oz, this was followed by a recently spawned female of 5lb 2.5oz and another male of 4lb 6oz. I'm a bit embarrassed to admit that the female was a new Irish P.B. for me (although my U.K. best is 7lb 1oz) and this was my first multiple Tench catch since 2003.
For most of the day the weather deteriated with high winds and rain and the bank was deserted. At 7.45 pm I decided to miss "The Bill" and try again. This time I started with a flurry of Rudd to 6oz, a couple of Perch and a small Hybrid before finally getting two Male Tench of 3lb 1oz and 3lb 5oz. I would have fished on, but with no head lamp I couldn't rebait my hook.
I was so confident of a prolific Tench session today but arrived to find the river conditions had worsened. To see a bite in the wind was going to prove difficult. I may have missed some, but the three I hit were good hard fighting fish weighing in at 3lb 1oz, 2lb 12oz and a female of 4lb 6oz. The only other fish was a tiny Perch. I saw no others on the stretch until early evening. Are my reports so bad that even the casual angler fails to turn up now?
This weekend should, tradionally be the peak of the season for tourists and fish, but it's hard to see a fresh influx of fish coming before the power station goes off on Friday at 5pm.
My evening session went reasonably well despite the increasing winds. Before it got dark, all I had were tiny Rudd and odd Perch. It was 9.30 when the first Tench was netted, weighing in at 3lb 8oz. Steve from Navan went 2-1 up with fish of 3lb 5oz and 4lb 11oz before I got my equalizer, a female of 4lb 5oz. I also had a Bream of just under 2lbs and 3 bootlace eels which prompted my retirement.
If only there were more anglers here this week, I'd have a more comprehensive report to offer. At dawn this morning, there was a non English speaking "angler" on the gusher with a tiny keepnet who stayed all day. I never saw him catch when I was "spying" with my binoculars, but I guess he must have had a few. I went towards the duckpond and caught just smallish fish today. Alongside me was Steven from Navan who slaughtered me 3-0 in the Tench department. When I packed up, he continued catching for most of the day. My evening session produced lots of tiny fish and eventually a spirited fight with a male Tench of 3lb 5oz. The wind was getting worse so instead of setting up my night light, I opted for an early bath.
The last day of April provided little to excite in all departments. One angler fished below the steps on the disabled pegs but couldn't tempt a Tench. The hot water stretch was deserted, so I tried half an hour on the gusher without a sniff. Two lads fished above the duckpond for most of the day with very little to show for their effort. The evening saw Tim and Jamie Collier joined by Joe, Philip and myself. I was on the lower section. We all caught at least 1 Tench each by dusk when I packed up having no night lights (again) and a couple of fish were caught after dusk. My only Tench was a new Irish P.B. at 5lb 15.5oz making that the second fish I've caught this year that almost made specimen weight.
Surprisingly, at 10pm, the power station had still not shut down!!
When I had a look at the river this morning at 8am, there was water coming out of the gusher but the power station had apparently shut down yesterday evening just after 10pm. There were a few "Lidl bags" trying unsuccessfully to catch. One Irish lad had about a dozen, spratt sized fish but when the gusher stopped around 2pm, so did the bites. Another local caught just two Perch on the disabled swim in 10 hours. My evening stint saw 1 bite resulting in a 2oz Perch. Things really are going to be grim for the next few days.
Could I ask every reader of this report, to support Sheffield Wednesday tomorrow afternoon in their bid to avoid relegation and condemn those scumbags from Selhurst Park to visiting Brighton next year?
When I came to to Ireland for the first time in 1992 it was just for a week. By 1996 I had stretched it to ten days. Since 1997 I have stayed for 6 weeks, thus enabling me to see the complete transformation of winter through to summer. The sequence of events that unfold during the spring period is quite remarkable. I used to so annoyed with people saying "you should have been here last week" or "wait until next week" but the major factor triggers the fish into moving is temperature. I believe, that when the navigation channel hits a constant 51f, the fishing is about to improve considerably. This year I have had no readings, so it's purely guesswork on my part. The hot water stretch, when the levels are low enough, undoubtably attract fish from the lake, but when the levels are as high as in the first week of April, the cold water coming through the top of the stretch, the gap and the bridge will negate the effect of the gusher, thus slowing the events.
So far this year we have seen some extreme events. Firstly, last Novembers flood, the highest in living memory. Secondly the coldest winter for thirty years. Thirdly, the low water of January to the end of March followed by a rise of 18" in just a few days all point to spring arriving a bit later than usual. So why have Roach spawned on the 18th of April and Tench on the 24th? Perhaps this was a premature flush created by the artificial conditions of the power station? Maybe nature is running a month late and we are yet to see the real run of fish? Perhaps the enormous numbers of Roach on the Inny 3 weeks ago was a fluke of nature?
The bottom line of todays report is this*,- At the moment, it is bloody cold, there are little or no fish to be caught, and if any reader is planning to visit Lanesborough in the foreseable future, forget it, stay indoors and watch the snooker.
You may have guessed I'm not too happy today. I had an evening session on the "duckpond" section where 2 of us blanked. I failed to see any other fish caught. This, coupled with those scumbags drawing at Sheffield Wednesday have left me so depressed that I'm considering moving to Bridgend.
* This is the bottom line____________________________________________ ouch!