Monday, 17 September 2012

River Soar barbel - double figure result

Tuesday August the 28th

After Saturday's result I quite naturally headed back to the same stretch after work, three swims had received a small amount of bait for the previous five days bar one and I was feeling pretty confident of another barbel.

My starting point was the swim I caught the 9lber from and I quietly swung out two rigs with small bags of pellet hooked on, no need for any other free offerings. Within a few minutes one of the rod tops pulled over and I was into a fish, no cigar this time though as a bream came kiting in, not what I really want to see after a spell of prebaiting but never mind it could be a one off. In fact it was a one off, two chub came to the net in the next thirty minutes though and you don't have to be a rocket scientist to work out that in fact my baiting had probably worked against me rather than in my favour.

Barbel kit

Those fish told me it was time to move and I made my way to the most upstream of my chosen spots, again it wasn't long before the rod tops were knocking away and eventually despite the long hair rigs that I use with the intention of trying to avoid hooking chub one was hooked and made far too much disturbance for the shallow swim, I had to move again.

The last of my three baited spots was on the way back to the parking area and I had to pass the first swim I had fished on the way so I decided to give it another quick try. Yes you guessed it, another chub was hooked in short time but as I was playing it in it suddenly shot into a shallow near bank bay and there was a big swirl followed by a shower of scales floating down though the water in front of me. I scooped up the chub which would of weighed about three pounds and looked down in astonishment at the state of it. This looked like no pike attach I have ever seen, no obvious jaw marks just one flank of the fish from dorsal to tail root virtually stripped of skin with some of the loose skin actually hanging down beyond the tail. I really wasn't sure if it could be a pike at all and am still none the wiser, answers on a postcard please. Whatever it was the fish was a mess and I left it on the reeds while I went to find a suitable piece of wood to dispatch it, it obviously wasn't as bad as I thought though as by the time I returned it had found its way back into the river.

Well there certainly wasn't any point at all in recasting and so I moved down into the last of my swims which really did look the part, no more than five minutes and another chub was hooked. Sometimes no matter what you try to do to avoid them the chub just go on a munching mission and you can't do a thing about it and so at that point I called it a night.

Wednesday August the 29th

I decided to have a little go on another piece of the Soar new to me and on arriving was very happy with what I found. it really did look like barbel heaven. One bait was lowered under the rod top in the lee of a nearside tree while the other was flicked a few yards down to another overhanging tree. No sooner had I settled down in my chair when there was a splash, I peered downstream expecting to see fishy ripples but all I saw was a soggy spaniel swiming through my swim! A shout managed to stop the bloody thing's ball being thrown a second time thankfully and to be fair I was tucked away in the undergrowth so it wasn't the owners fault, nevertheless hardly conducive to catching fish and my confidence dropped rapidly.

I suppose it was a half hour or so later when the close in rod tip started to bounce gently as the lead was moved by a fish heading downstream. The fight was carried out right under my feet and due to the nature of the swim had to be a case of full on pressure on my part to keep the fish away from the tree roots. It certainly looked a reasonable fish and pulled the needle around to 10lb 1oz, I fired off a few self takes with my new camera and back she went no worse for her visit to fresh air.

I gave it another hour or so in another tasty looking swim further downstream and then had to head for home to sort out things for work the next day but I had certainly taken a shine to the area and planned on giving it a bit more attention.


  1. Nice clean fish and worth the effort. Well done.

  2. That's a brilliant looking Barbel Rob, it looks fresh as a daisy.

  3. Cheers gents, coming from where it did it has most likely been a rare visitor to the bank

  4. Good looking fish, looks bigger than 10lb 1oz, nice one Rob