Odyssey?? Ain't that what Jason and the Argonauts embarked upon? My angling exploits, of 2013, have to be considered in a similar context - a leap of faith, a journey into the unknown. As all "bloggers" head towards 2014, there is an un-written rule that a review of the year's highlights must be posted in the run up to January 1st. It is impossible for me to ignore the passing of my mother, a huge void remains, yet 2013 has been a good year in general terms. Work is steady, Bev and I celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary on 29th Dec and we had two new additions to our family - all very positive.
|My first 20lbs+ pike since 16th January 1990. A milestone event - just a few days after mum passed away!|
I am convinced that she was looking down and smiling - I was on my own and it was an emotional occurrence.
Fishing plays a small, yet important, part in my life. It is my link to the natural world, away from the Newland's Farm patch, that I consider my home turf. I have tried my best to select those, defining, events that are able to summarise the angling journey through 2013.
Our trip to Loch Awe was a phenomenal success - pike fishing of a quality that I've never previously experienced anywhere. The holiday was a fantastic mix of memories borne of being outdoors in the company of friends and family - happy days!
|Tom and Benno with a female Mallard that they caught in their "landing-net trap"|
She was released safely - no need to call the cyber police.
|Simon gazes at a magnificent 20lbs+ pike - Kilchurn Castle provides the backdrop|
|A mid-double; one of thirty eight caught during the week - hectic stuff|
Benno and I then planned an assault on the barbel of the Kentish Stour - what a mistake? Despite our best efforts, we came up well short of my expectations - it's the hardest angling challenge I've ever undertaken.
|Benno gazes at our first Kentish Stour "double"|
Being there, landing net in hand, ensured that I was very much a part of this occasion.
|A barbel beyond my wildest dreams - 13lbs 14oz|
Benno was on hand to grab a few record shots - magic memories of a crazy project.
Yes, we did enjoy our moments of success, but I feel that we never came close to unravelling the bigger mysteries posed by these fish. Benno and Simon think that I'm being hard on myself? I have my own reasons for being frustrated - opinions; it's what helps the world rotate!
|My best, so far, from the 2013/14 pike season|
The 2013/2014 pike season is upon us and, already, Benno is 7 - 1 up in the doubles stakes. This is a worry, until the very basic statistic of lbs & oz are considered. His best fish weighed in at 15lbs; my only double being 18lbs 9oz - job done! Well not quite - I'm back out tomorrow and also have a session planned for Sunday morning. Over the Christmas break there is a session at Wilstone to be enjoyed, so it's not over 'til the "fat lady" sings
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