It Was This Big!

Honest….

It Was This Big!....

“Caught” in the Enterprise Shopping Centre in Eastbourne, which has a number of nice little, independent shops, from crafts and health, to a fishmongers and a butchers. If you’re in the town, take the trouble to wander along and discover it yourself. You’ll find it up behind the railway station.

Shoreham Bridge

Situated near the mouth of the river Adur in West Sussex. The old bridge crossing the river was built in the 18th century and became a great addition to the history and colour of the area. Time and weather had taken its toll on the bridge and a Community Trust was set up in 2001.  After restoration it was officially re-opened on 23rd October 2008 by the Duke of York

 Looking up at the bridge from the airport (western side)

 Shoreham bridge

View downstream

 Shoreham harbour

 I crossed the bridge many times and was always keen to see if the tide was running in or out. For me this was of great importance, as I needed to make my plans for fishing. Others would stand and watch the flow, swans drifting with the current or wooden planks and logs going down with the tide and perhaps back again as the tide came in. Sometimes we would sit on the grass banks and look on with envy at the adults as they prepared their boats for a fishing trip. When the tide went out there were the mudflats to see and collect some bait.  Mud is such glorious stuff, designed for the express purpose of covering young children’s clothes and for sliding and getting generally very mucky. When the mud dried on your clothes you could crack it off and try to remove the stain that remained. The mud also had a distinctive smell which reminded you of the sea that was so very close. The water would flow toward the sea and cause whirlpools when it passed over a rock or obstacle and past a post. Gradually the boats would sink down and settle on the mud. The birds would arrive and wait by the waters edge until the mud flats became exposed then they would dash forward to catch worms or any bugs which had delayed departure. Cars passing in the distance were forgotten and we thought only of how the water moved and the fish we might expect to catch. Dreams would be disturbed by the sound of a small plane as it passed overhead to Shoreham airport and we would turn and watch the landing, then back to the mesmerising flow.  In the distance you can see Shoreham, a wonderful place to explore on foot. If you would like to know more of the bridge then have a look at the council site below. http://www.adur.gov.uk/tourism/old-tollbridge.htm

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Floating Pyramids

Note And Photo From :- Kelowna Trout Angler.

Floating Pyramids.

It was some years ago that I went down to Brighton seafront, walking along the promenade from Hove lagoon.

I can’t remember the event that was taking place but I have a feeling it was to celebrate an arts festival.  Perhaps it was the Brighton Festival.  However, these strange new toys were destined to become all the rage.  I was more impressed with the sailing that was going on around the show.

Pyramids At Brighton Beach

The people  would walk around inside the shape and hope that they would move forward. Well, that was the theory, but if the wind blew, then I guess that would be a different story. The crowds were appreciative, but perhaps they only looked on in amusement at a mild form of stupidity.

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Bewl Water.

Note And Photo From :- Kelowna Trout Angler.

Bewl Water.

Bewl Water has the distinction of being in "two" places. If you listen to the news from BBC  Kent, the newsreaders  claim Bewl belongs to them. I suppose the confusion arises because it has a post code which is for Lamberhurst, Kent. However, the reservoir is physically in East Sussex.

Bewl Water

It’s a great place to fish for trout, either from a boat or from the bank. I always hoped that one day they might allow fishing for roach. Perhaps a record might be caught there. Once I had the opportunity to see the huge roach which lie under the trout tanks found out on the water. As the feed was thrown in for the trout, huge shapes would appear from out of the gloom – big roach. They were ‘monsters’. I offered to buy a ticket there and then, but my guide around the water way appologised and told me the ticket was only valid for trout. What a shame. I stood looking at a potential record holder only a short distance away. They might just as well have been miles and an eternity away, they would never be mine. Oh how I wish I had worked for Southern Water in Fisheries, still one can always dream.

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A Lake In West Sussex

Note And Photo From :- Kelowna Trout Angler.

A Lake In West Sussex.

Whilst in England in April, I was invited to fish a small, day-ticket water in West Sussex. It was a pleasent experience to drive through the lanes of my youth and I was surprised at the lack of traffic. Perhaps it was to early or maybe the threat of a shower had made everyone stay indoors.

I had to stop off at a tackle shop in Pulborough as I didn’t have any floats. Somewhat strange considering the amount of tackle purchased over the years. However it was a simple matter to choose a few bodied wagglers and a small tube to protect the purchase. I even bought some maggots, haven’t done that for years. It was to be a relaxing day with an old friend ( not age wise in case he reads this ). We had planned to fish elsewhere, but the day had taken another direction and for two committed game anglers this was to be different.

There was a breeze which had an uncomfortable side in that the air was damp, but it made a change from 3 months  of temperatures down to -30C so there were no complaints. It is always strange to arrive at a new lake or complex and not know where to start. Worse for me as I’m not used to pay as you go fisheries. In British Columbia & Alberta there are probably over 100,000 lakes of over 10 ha and they are all free. Never mind, a fishing trip is always to be enjoyed.

We chose the pool to fish and settled down. T fished in the next swim to me, pitched at the corner of the lake. I’m sure we made the choice through some deep angling knowledge gained from years of experience, but older bones suggest we may have opted for comfort. T lit his customary cigarette and I tackled up the old John Wilson rod.( that dates me ).

Using a 4lb line and one of the new wagglers, the depth was checked. It was like going back years and memories flooded back of early mornings, tackle assembly, grounbait smells and all those essentials that are hard for the non angler to understand. When all was ready I put on the bait, maggot to start with, and cast out to await the action. For some time nothing grabbed the bait so I changed to corn. A few grains were put out for feed, but still no interest. I  must be losing my touch was an obvious remark from T. You must be getting soft with all that fishing on your door step. Two fingers seemed an appropriate gesture.  T came back with the suggestion that I might have more luck if I embraced the past and changed the JW rod for an old cane Kennet Perfection from B James of Ealing. From his bag he pulled an old rod sock which contained just such a rod.

Now, all cane users will understand that this was a definite improvement and the fish would now come dashing to my bait Couldn’t fail. Not quite that easy. I had to get used to slower action and the weight of the rod, but T needed humouring and he was catching fish. In fact the result was strangely positive. The float sailed gracefully out and settled purposefully onto the water, the bait was corn and a few grains were thrown in as encouragement. Disbelief, the float shot under and I had my first fish a Crucian carp. Haven’t seen one of those for years. Throughout the day I continued to catch fish, crucians, bream, roach and even a carp of about 4lb. It seemed like magic, especially when I tried to use my old JW rod and the fish just shunned the bait.

The Kennet Perfection

Kennet Perfection

And here’s the little crucian carp.

Crucian Carp

By lunch time I had amassed a good tally of fish. They were all released as I don’t own a keep net. I travel as light as possible.

Whilst we chatted over tea and sandwiches an angler on the other side of the lake suffered a slight loss. Actually it was possibly expensive. The chap had been fishing with two rods, one leger rod, but the other was a pole. Now all went well for a while, but he hooked a fish on the leger gear and when he went to net the fish he had a bite on the pole tackle. Unfortuneately the pole was sitting loose on the top of his tackle box and balanced on what looked like a large paint roller. We heard the slithering noise as the fish towed a few quids worth of gear into the lake. I expect the fish took it down to show other members of the shoal saying " look what I found lads "

I’m always amazed when this happens and often wonder why we bother to fish with more than one rod. Many old and talented UK anglers have raised such concerns down the years. Some have suggested that we fish better if all concentration and effort are bestowed on one set of gear.  Over the years I tend to lean toward this reasoning.

Well, we fished on into the early afternoon, but the weather became damper and the day started to lose some of it’s urgency so we decided enough was enough, time to head off. As we drove  away we reflected upon the day and compared the experience with days spent on other waters.

I do miss the English countryside and the rivers and lakes of my youth. Anglers understand that there is a distinctive smell and character which greets you as you pass through a gate to get to your fishery and there is an expectation which often fails to be fulfilled but never wains.  Perhaps it dies at the end of the day, but it will resurrect itself tommorrow for the next trip somewhere.

I hope to have a few more trips with T and others in the UK and perhaps I can show them the sturgeon and our fishing over here.

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