Just returning to fishing this year (2008) after a short break of nearly 32 years without touching a rod. And my Mitchell 411 reels actually corroded away in
the cellar! Old school specimen hunter in my past ( initially Manchester Specimen Group but soon went independent). NASG records officer for a while. Still
water specialist: bream, carp, tench, roach, rudd, crucians, pike etc etc. Some barbelling on Hants Avon and Severn but rivers were never my speciality.
Have now to re-evaluate all my best fish of course: with the rich feeding provided these days, big fish are much thicker on the ground. The tench record was
just 9-1 when I packed up fishing, although one of my regular fishing partners, Alan Wilson, broke it soon afterwards. Biggest noticeable change: these days:
nearly everyone seems to go for big fish. Back then I annoyed quite a few people by claiming big fish were a lot easier to catch than most people thought.
Didn't think it would be proved quite so dramatically true.
Couple of interesting catches back then:
3 bream for 29 pounds: caught in 2 foot of gin clear water with the mid-afternoon sun beating down.
3 carp in a solo night session, including two twenties hooked simultaneously on my two rods: So both were in the landing net at the same time. On the same
night an owl landed on my head as I was sitting in my chair. Great stuff.
I have got the fanaticism out of my system now though, and am happy just to be on the bank, enjoying the wildlife, especially now that the local rivers are
cleaner. Ignoring still waters, at least for the moment. Never caught a Brownie, nor a Rainbow, nor a Grayling before this year!!!
I just hope that some of the stuff I contribute to the threads will be of interest to others.