Saturday, 20 October 2012

River Trent Perch - Back at the big girls

Wednesday the 10th of October

I had a hankering to get back at the river perching and after my zander session the Trent was the venue I had in mind, some friends have had some excellent results recently proving that the river holds a good head of perch and plenty of good sized fish over the 3lb mark and beyond. Three pounds plus is my benchmark for stripeys with a 4lber my ultimate target but I'll never complain at a "3", when perch get to that size they really do start to look big and though it's a tough decision I think they have to rate as my favourite species and rivers are by far my favourite place to catch them. My biggest perch came from a commercial stillwater and those venues are now well established as producing specimens. The downside is that the water in these venues is invariably constantly coloured due to the high stock levels of carp and as such the perch that live in them lose a lot of their vivid colouration, river fish rarely show this. River perching also usually means close in fishing which brings some intimacy, you can't beat watching the tip go round or float sink and then bending into a good fish right under your feet.

I didn't get to the river until about 4pm and with dusk falling at around 6.30 was anxious to get into a swim as soon as possible though I bumped into the bailiff just as I was about to leave the car park and ended up nattering for twenty minutes or so, another ten minutes walk to my chosen area followed and by the time I was set up and swinging the bait dropper out to the edge of a near bank tree time was getting on. On the smaller rivers I usually fish a light link ledger rig but with this swim being deeper and the current a little stronger I plumped for a blockend feeder which I filled with red maggots on each cast, chopped worm having already been introduced with the dropper and a lobworm impaled on the size four hook being the main course. I had my other rods that I use on Swithland with me and so decided to flick out a second rig which would be fished on an alarm and bobbin, that was positioned slightly further out on the edge of the flow.

I was feeling a little bit wound up after rushing to get to the river and then getting delayed but on the first cast the quiver tip knocked and then pulled round steadily and the stress soon forgotten as I hooked into a fish. A lively little tussle under the rod tip for a minute or two told me that it was a half decent fish but I wasn't certain that it was a perch until it surfaced right under my feet and allowed me to slip the net straight under it, at 2lb 9oz it was a good start in a new swim and a lovely looking fish too. I fired off a quick photo and slipped it back then got a bait back into position.

I was expecting more action from the tree but time passed by without so much of a twitch, then the Delkim on my other rod gave a few bleeps and I looked down to see the bobbin steadily rising, a small perch of about a pound was the culprit. To be honest that took me by surprise a bit, the quiver tip rod was in what I took to be by far the most likely spot to produce perch and the other bait was more of an afterthought. I kept both spots topped up on a regular basis but dusk passed without any other positive signs and it was fully dark just after 7pm when I checked my phone and started to think about getting packed up as I was sure that my chance had gone. The brolly was down and I was just putting the lids on the bait tubs when the bobbin rod signalled another bite and I struck into something much more energetic than the last fish. Another couple of minutes and I would have been on my way home but the flash of a substantial stripey flank in the torch light made me very thankful that I wasn't, the scales were pulled around to 3lb 1oz and again it was a cracking looking perch that put a smile on my face as I made my way back over the fields to the van.


  1. Excellent looking perch Rob,
    they do have bit of a habit of leaving it to the last minute to show, don't they !
    All the more reason for just one more, last cast :)

  2. Stunning fish buddy, well done. I love big Perch.

  3. Brilliant Rob and that last fish... you and Leo are having some beautiful Perch.

  4. Well done Rob, great fish indeed and my main target over the colder months, running water stripeys take some beating!