Snipe Lake was very low on water, 18″ down from it’s normal levels, but I was confident in getting into a few fish. We set up on the house bank, right outside the owners front gate. We had mountains of lilies around us, an island in front and loads of features to work.
Martin went for a pellet approach and I went for lob worms popped up about a foot. Martin baited up an area just off the pads with pellets, bits of fish, mushed up luncheon meat all soaked in halibut oil. A large pellet hair rigged was fished over the top of this, a sure fire winner if ever I saw it.
Midnight and my rod is off, a slow take with the fish picking up the bait and trundling off, not aware it was hooked. I struck firmly and the fish still didn’t tear off, just took line as it wanted and went through 3 sets of pads to really mess me up.
After 20 minutes of heaving and messing about trying to get out of the snags I put the rod down and left it to see if the fish would move out on its own accord. Half hour later and it wasn’t having it, so a bit of pressure on the fish to try and move it and the 30lb line snapped like cotton!!!
A few muttered expletives and I went to re tie my rig.
No more action during the night but the ducks made sure we didn’t get a lot of sleep…Duck a l’orange was sounding pretty good at this point.
Next night and the same tactics were in place, again the worms proved to be the best option with a screaming take at Midnight. I struck into a fast moving fish which tried to run into the pads to my left but I soon had it well in control and under my feet ready for netting. Not a big fish at 16lb but it was very welcome. That was it for the night and a better nights sleep was welcome after the Ducks attentions the night before.
Friday morning and I was after catching a few live baits for a different approach, see if we could get into one of the larger residents of this lake. I soon had half a dozen Roach and Rudd in the net and Martin and I set up dumbell surface fishing rigs. Tonight was an all out attack, worms on one rod and live baits on another.
Again I got a screamer from just off the island on worms, not a huge fish but certainly a decent lump. A great fight for 10 minutes then the pressure I was exerting started to tell and I had it right in front of me, nearly ready for netting. A last ditch lunge and it kited to my right and just made the lily pads, getting me right into the roots. I kept the pressure on and got the fish back to the surface, only for it to dive back down again. Now I was in trouble! Martin tried a few tricks he has used to get Barbel out of snags, but this wasn’t budging! Not wanting to let the pressure off at this point, I kept leaning on the fish to see if it would come back up when there was a resounding “crack”. The line parted! More expletives!!!!
I called it a night and reeled in as I was off early in the morning to fish the Avon at Salisbury.
In the morning, Martin’s live bait was 30 meters from where he had put it. Not a sound from the alarms, not a mark on the fish…but nowhere near where he placed it the night before. Now..Rudd are resilient little things, but to drag a 4oz weight 30 meters over night!!! Martin must have had a pick up from a cat, which then dropped the bait because it could feel the weight and they hate resistance. All I can think of is the line had sat just out of the rollers hence no audible warning from the take.
A difficult session, a result in one way, but losing 2 fish in the pads was very annoying and as there are so many pads in Snipe now, I don’t think it is fair on the fish or the angler trying to catch them. I will be back…but not until they cut the pads back