The first ever fish that I caught was a tiny gudgeon from the Staffs/Worcs Canal. On the outskirts of the village of Wombourne in south Staffordshire, this fish will always have a very special place in my heart, for obvious reasons. The venue is called The Bratch and even now I only have to hear that word and the memories come flooding back.
Over the years I have caught many gudgeon of course, but I’ve never specifically targeted them in my angling blog. Until this week that is, six hundred and forty two weeks in. If you read my entries regularly then you will know I’ve done some ruffe fishing of late, and I don’t know whether I’m heading for a mini-species phase or not, but they’re certainly up there in my thoughts at the moment.
Times move on and the once huge gudgeon shoals of the aforementioned canal are not there any longer. The introduction of chub, I feel, is one of the main reasons and the new kids on the block have certainly grown big on the readily available food source. Whilst not as numerous as in years gone by, they’re still there, just harder to specifically target.
For my sessions this week though I headed for a stillwater where they are plentiful. Fishing with a small waggler, a rod’s length from the bank, it was comfortable yet very enjoyable angling. Most of my outings tend to be with a leger, yet back to when I was a kid, the float ruled my roost. It was great to look at an orange tip once more, especially when it disappeared beneath the surface, as it did many times.
The first outing saw me lose count of the fish that I caught – about twenty roach and more than one hundred gudgeon and small perch. I didn’t need the landing net very often but that wasn’t a problem, after all I was targeting tiny fish. Mind, speaking relatively, some of them were pretty decent. Regardless of size though, I thorough enjoyed myself every time the float dipped and I lifted another fish out of the water.
My second, and final visit, to the pool was another one of those ‘killing two birds with one stone’ things that have become a regular feature of my life in recent times. With an evening game at The New Saints in the Welsh League Cup ahead of me, I had to be there earlier than normal with some interviewing planned for the weekly podcast, plus I was scheduled in for a photograph session with the official photographer.
Not too far out my way though, I managed a short three-hour session on the basis that something is better than nothing. Again, I caught gudgeon, roach and perch. Nothing of any size. although having said that the target species are pretty decent in the venue. Regardless of that though, I enjoyed the session and that’s what counts. Finally, I publish a new blog entry every Saturday, why not click the ‘Follow’ button and stay in touch. Thanks. (Published November 7 2015)