Who am I?

An individual, of no great importance, who is unable to 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!


Wednesday 17 June 2020

Into the unknown

The tidal Stour project starts this evening, as Benno and I make our first casts, of the new season, into this wonderful river. I really hanker after a barbel from our chosen section, Benno is a bit more open minded about what we should be targeting. We know that there are carp present, some rather large individuals have been caught over the years. Bream might feature and, if this is so, a double from the tidal waters would be an exceptional fish by any standards; then there are the chub. What size they might attain in these conditions, who knows? One thing's for sure, my 5 lbs 2 oz PB is very beatable and, again, such a fish from the new stretch would be most welcome. 
Under these circumstances it will be very difficult to gauge our results until we've spent some time learning the ropes. If our time, during 2013/14, along the Willow Close stretch of the river is anything to go by, then we're in for a tough ride. That being said, the rewards were so much more appreciated when they came along because of the effort involved in achieving them. I'd like to think that we've evolved a fair bit, as anglers, in the intervening years and that extra experience might help us avoid the mistakes we'd made during the previous campaign?
Exciting times ahead? I really don't know if it's excitement or trepidation that has me itching to get started on this latest journey into the unknown? If you don't try, you won't fail but, you won't achieve anything either. My philosophy is if you haven't tried, you'll never know your limits or experience the joy pushing the boundaries of what's possible. Is the tidal Stour a venue where dreams become reality? Only one way to find out! 


  1. Good luck with the venture Dyl. Just a thought on the tidal stretch. Along with the fishing being free of charge, wouldn't the fact it being tidal meant the close season didn't apply?

    1. The Stour is tidal from the obvious estuary, at Pegwell Bay, inland for several meandering miles to the sluice at Fordwich. Canterbury & District AA control the huge section from Fordwich to Pluck's Gutter after which The Wantsum AA have a section which used to be followed by another, on the opposite bank which Sandwich & District AA controlled. Close season restrictions applied to all of those club stretches, despite them being subject to tidal influence. The closer to the sea, the more noticeable the rise and fall of the water levels and the powerful currents created by the constant change. thus why Sandwich have now given up their lease.
      I don't really understand how the EA work out where is, and isn't, covered by their angling license under these conditions but I do know that all the drains that connect, via very primitive sluice devices, into the tidal river are subject to exactly the same close season rules as all other freshwater river systems

  2. Dyl, as I understand things, the 'free for all' covers everything from the estuary up to the first designated barrier be it a lock or sluice gate.
    That includes close seasons.

    The situation is only different as regards access. The tidal areas are free of all restrictions but from the sound of things, clubs are not only controlling the access but also the terms of the access. Hence the close season where technically none exists.
    I guess they own the ball and if you don't stick to their rules, then you're not playing.

    Personally speaking, fishing coasts and tidal stretches suits me fine. Well they do in New Zealand. Not only do I have the whole place to myself. But the nature of tides means the actual fishing time is of short duration. That keeps the interest.

    1. If the controlling club insist on the traditional close season being observed, then I'm fully supportive of their right to do so. There are still a, very, few still water syndicate venues where these same traditional dates are an accepted part of the membership package. It didn't do us any harm on Tring and, today, that midnight ritual still fills me with anticipation as I embark on the next stage in my adventure.
      So, despite the technical legality of the situation, June 16th is absolutely fine with me as a starting date for new projects, wherever I choose to pursue them.
      Thanks for the comments, certainly a very interesting legal conundrum should a club member decide to fish the tidal reaches during the March 15 - June 15 shutdown. Broken club rules doesn't mean something illegal has occurred under these circumstances? All very confusing.