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An individual, of no great importance, who is unable to the see the natural world as a place for competition. I catch fish, watch birds, derive immense pleasure from simply looking at butterflies, moths, bumble-bees, etc - without the need for rules! I am Dylan and this is my blog - if my opinions offend? Don't bother logging on again - simple!

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Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Complicated - that's a Ten - Four!

I knew it wasn't going to be easy; barbel fishing the R. Stour has proven to be one of the toughest angling tests I've ever encountered. Certainly I've experienced a level of success yet, for the life of me, don't know why? What did I do right, on those four occasions, that I've failed to do on so many other visits?
Benno and I were back on the river for 18.00hrs - fishing within 15 minutes of arriving at our chosen swims. Both of us are using the same hook baits and fishing over the same bed of particles (ground bait) which has proven to be, partially, successful in reducing eel activity. I know that this is true because Benno didn't have any bait today, so used mine! Un-surprisingly, I fished in the swim where I'd taken the two 13lb+ fish; Ben opting for a swim which we have become certain holds a resident group of fish.
A cracking R.Stour barbel - our tenth fish since June 16th
I really fancied our chances tonight, the conditions were text book perfect. The river fining down after a couple of days' rain, a slight hint of colour and an overcast sky (in mid-September) what else could an angler require?  Well, as it happens, a decent weather forecast wouldn't go amiss. At 19.45hrs, Ben had a barbel of 10lbs 4oz (hence the post title) and I got a garbled walkie talkie message "fish on dude!"
As conditions were so perfect my message to Ben was that he should sack (ET pike tube) the fish and I would continue to fish my swim until 22.00hrs when I'd pack up and come along and get some photos. I phoned Simon, who was fishing for barbel on St. Patrick's Stream, to tell him of our latest "double". He asked if it was raining? "No mate" says I "It's bloody perfect down here - ring your nephew, he's just had another double!" Within minutes it was pissing down - Jonah strikes again. I'd packed up by 21.15hrs and made my way back to Ben, where we got some shots of the latest addition to our Stour barbel tally.
 
Benno looking rather stupid - well he is a plumber after all!
He now leads me 7 - 6 in the barbel league (I didn't fish the R. Wye - didn't get invited?)
I haven't had a bite in over three weeks, that's nine sessions! OK, so I only fish with one rod. It still doesn't change the fact that I've not caught a barbel since 21st August. I can't help feeling that my efforts to seek a solution to the eel issue haven't, in some way, led to a situation where my approach has been over complicated because I attempted to overcome problems that weren't there? 
The fish that Ben took is our tenth of the 2013/14 season, from the R. Stour. Quite what this represents, as an achievement, will only become clear when we learn of the results of other anglers who are also barbel fishing the R. Stour. The October regional Pike Anglers Club meeting will probably give us an idea?

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