|The oldest of my three Mitchell 300's. Flaking paint and that "lived in" look - still a perfectly usable reel.|
Chub - a fairly common species in the local stretches of The Stour but not one I've pursued with any conviction. My best from the river is a very respectable 5 lbs 2 oz, yet there are fish which could easily add two pounds to this weight lurking in the depths. Benno has a six to his name, therefore my target is to match that weight, or better it?
Carp - probably the most straight forward species to achieve any type of target, given the wealth and variety of local fisheries. My only stipulation is "no boilies" - floaters (crust) or particles/naturals only. I might even, on occasions, use a float instead of that Heron bite alarm, just to make things even more authentic. I'd love to take a double figure wildie from the local drains; although, ultimately, I want to beat my 23 lbs 14 oz PB using this kit.
Pike - I only have two venues in mind where this rod might be suited. I won't be slinging my usual "big baits" but, instead will scale down to allow small 1/2 Sardine/Bluey to be presented at relatively close range (less than 20m). I will be doing this for two reasons - firstly I have no desire to place undue stress on the rod and second, I want to be able to set the hooks on the strike. A double will see this part of the challenge done and dusted.
Perch - Dick Walker was the record holder, for a time, with a 4 lbs 12 oz fish from Arlesey Pit in Bedfordshire. It is, therefore, only fitting that I use the rod which bears his name to seek these wonderful fish. Again I am spoilt for choice with the local venues where I have a realistic chance to take fish of two pounds and better. I have no target weight, as yet.
Barbel - just one fish from The Stour, that's all I want - size is unimportant.
There you have it - my rough plan for the rest of my angling life. I won't cease using my regular gear but, instead, will pick and choose the tackle best suited for each situation, as they arise.