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River Welland (29)

Fishing again - at last!

Arrival time: 09.45
Weather: Bright and at 15℃ warm for February, with a freshening wind.
Swim: Roving.
Tackle: 12ft Korum multi-feeder, Shimano bait caster, 6lb line, 6 hook tied direct. Three SG shots on a short link.
Baits: Luncheon meat
Fish: Three chub, best 3lbs 4oz

My grumbling back and resulting sciatica has put paid to golf, but this has spurred me into going fishing. My back, however, is also imposing some constraints on fishing, particularly at Stamford where the banks are difficult and crouching in tight spaces isn't easy when your mobility is reduced.

I was pleased to find that there weren't any other anglers on the stretch. There aren't many fishable spots and the chub are easily spooked. I started on the 'beach', where the dogs splash about. Fortunately the dog count was also down today.
  •  Chub 1lbs 12oz

    Chub 1lbs 12oz

  •  Chub 3lbs 4oz

    Chub 3lbs 4oz

  •  Chub 2lbs 4oz

    Chub 2lbs 4oz

  •  Winter chubbing

    Winter chubbing

  •  Chub 1lbs 12oz

    Chub 1lbs 12oz

  •  Chub 3lbs 4oz

    Chub 3lbs 4oz

  •  Chub 2lbs 4oz

    Chub 2lbs 4oz

  •  Winter chubbing

    Winter chubbing

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River Welland (27)

First trip for an awful long time.

Arrival time: 08.40
Weather: Misty and calm and little warmer than of late.
Swim: Roving.
Tackle: 12ft Korum multi-feeder, Shimano bait caster, 6lb line, 6 hook tied direct. Three SG shots on a short link.
Baits: Luncheon meat
Fish: Three chub, best 2lbs 8oz

My last visit to the Welland was on the first day of the season in 2015! My New Year's resolution was to go fishing more often and I've been waiting for the freezing conditions to ease a bit. The conditions today were almost perfect. The river was high but not flooded, with some nice deep glides. There was no wind to speak of and while still cold (it's January), it wasn't bitter. There was, however, an awful lot of mud!

I started at 'the beach', a popular dog-dunking spot, but fortunately there weren't too many dogs around. Three years ago I took seven chub from this swim, so it's always my first port of call. I cast across and downstream and got a pull almost as soon as the bait had settled. A beautifully conditioned 2lb 6oz chub (09.00), not big but a good start to the day. I weighed and photographed it, not because of its size but because it marks a long awaited return to the river. A recast and again almost immediately got a touch and a second chub was on. This one was smaller at 1lb 11oz (09.15).
  •  Chub 2lb 6oz

    Chub 2lb 6oz

  •  Chub 2lb 8oz

    Chub 2lb 8oz

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River Welland (26)

First day of the season - perhaps it was a mistake?

Arrival time: 09.20
Weather: Started warm and cloudy but became very hot when sun broke through.
Swim: Roving.
Tackle: 12ft Korum multi-feeder, Shimano bait caster, 6lb line, 8 hook tied direct. Two SG shots on a short link.
Baits: Luncheon meat, cheese
Fish: Three chub and a small jack pike. Best fish chub 4lb 5oz.

I can’t remember the last time I went fishing on the first day of the season. Probably when I was a lad. Actually we’re often away in June but this year we weren’t, so off I went.

On reflection going to the Welland at Stamford on the first day wasn’t perhaps a good idea. It’s not easy fishing and often I have the stretch to myself, or there’s only one other angler. Today of course it was busier, with at least four or five anglers walking up and down the stretch, a couple of whom were spinning. While that may not seem a lot, there are not many fishable swims and the chub are easily spooked. When alone you can dip in each likely spot and then move on, picking up a fish here and there, if you’re lucky. With a number of people doing the same thing the fish tend to become very fickle.
  •  Chub 4lb 5oz

    Chub 4lb 5oz

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River Welland (25)

Last trip before the close season. Managed three chub but it wasn’t easy.

Arrival time: 10.15
Weather: Sunny with a few clouds and a fresh light breeze
Swim: Roving.
Tackle: 12ft Korum multi-feeder, Shimano bait caster, 6lb line, 8 hook tied direct. Two SG shots on a short link.
Baits: Luncheon meat
Fish: Three chub. Best fish chub 4lbs 7oz.

I just haven’t done enough fishing this year. I’ve bemoaned this fact before and I must plan my time better to fit in a lot more trips.

With the river season ending on Sunday I decided I must get down to the Welland for one more attempt at the chub. It was a glorious day after the variable weather we’ve been having. Surprisingly the river was very low, my last trip having been thwarted by the river being in full spate. In fact it was at what I would say was summer level, although more coloured. Unlike in summer, however, I couldn’t locate any fish visually.

I decided to work my way upstream trying spots where I’ve found chub before. I’ve come to expect fairly quick takes if I drop into a spot where the chub are present, but today I didn’t get a touch as I worked my way along the river. I ended up at the large pool below the footbridge and actually stayed a bit longer there as it usually produces a bite or two, if not a fish - but today nothing.
  •  Chub 3lb 0oz

    Chub 3lb 0oz

  •  Chub 3lb 7oz

    Chub 3lb 7oz

  •  Chub 4lb 7oz

    Chub 4lb 7oz

  •  Chub 3lb 0oz

    Chub 3lb 0oz

  •  Chub 3lb 7oz

    Chub 3lb 7oz

  •  Chub 4lb 7oz

    Chub 4lb 7oz

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River Welland (23)

First trip of the new season to the Welland and best ever catch of 10 chub, including a PB.

Arrival time: 11.30
Weather: Bright start with a light breeze but rain was forecast for later in the day
Swim: Roving.
Tackle: 12ft Korum multi-feeder, Shimano bait caster, 8lb line, 6 hook tied direct. Three SG shots on a short link.
Baits - Luncheon meat and cheese (all fish caught on luncheon meat)
Fish: 10 chub. Best fish chub 5lbs 2oz.

I can’t believe that it’s almost exactly 12 months since I last visited the Welland. Only one trip last summer and with the horrendous winter I didn’t manage another trip. It was good to return.

I now have some regular spots that have produced fish in the past although in summer some of these are difficult to get at because of the vegetation both in and out of the water. On this occasion I was walking towards my first ‘spot’ when I saw some chub in a section that I don’t usually fish, just downstream of what I call the beach, a gravel patch where many of the dog-walkers let their dogs swim. My first few casts were from the high bank and resulted in a chub of just over 2lb. I then repositioned myself on the beach and cast downstream. What followed was a surprise, in that over the space of about three hours I caught another six chub. It’s very unusual, in my experience, to manage to catch so many from a single swim as they usually spook after the first fish or two.

Details:
2lb 4oz (11.35) : 4lb 6oz (12.30) : 4lb 0oz (12.55) : 2lb 9oz (13.30) : 3lb 3oz (13.45) : 2lb 12oz (14.00) : 2lb 5oz (14.25)
  •  Chub 4lb 6oz

    Chub 4lb 6oz

  •  Chub 4lb 0oz

    Chub 4lb 0oz

  •  Chub 3lb 3oz

    Chub 3lb 3oz

  •  Chub 2lb 9oz

    Chub 2lb 9oz

  •  Chub 5lb 2oz

    Chub 5lb 2oz

  •  Chub 3lb 2oz

    Chub 3lb 2oz

  •  Chub 4lb 6oz

    Chub 4lb 6oz

  •  Chub 4lb 0oz

    Chub 4lb 0oz

  •  Chub 3lb 3oz

    Chub 3lb 3oz

  •  Chub 2lb 9oz

    Chub 2lb 9oz

  •  Chub 5lb 2oz

    Chub 5lb 2oz

  •  Chub 3lb 2oz

    Chub 3lb 2oz

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River Welland (22)

First trip of the new season to the Welland and rewarded with 7 chub.

Arrival time: 10.00
Weather: Bright start with a light breeze but rain was forecast for later in the day
Swim: Roving.
Tackle: 12ft Korum multi-feeder, Shimano bait caster, 8lb line, 6 hook tied direct. Three SG shots on a short link.
Baits: Luncheon meat and cheese
Fish: Seven chub, best fish 4lbs 7oz.

I’m always amazed at the transformation of the river bank between the last trip in March and the first in June. Bare banks replaced by four foot high vegetation comprising predominantly nettles. Great cover for stalking although casual walkers do have a habit of coming up behind you as you’re crouched behind the vegetation screen, and standing bolt upright ask how you’re getting on. Dogs also find it amusing to seek you out and today one actually peed up against my bag and coat. The owner assured me that it wouldn’t smell as the dog was a male. Warped logic if ever I’ve heard it.

The water was low and clear and as the day progressed it seemed that the best chances of success were from the shallower glides where the fish could actually be seen. Some of the deeper spots that worked well in the winter didn’t produce any bites. I wondered if this was because spawning had been delayed as a result of the lower temperatures.
  •  Chub 2lb 5oz

    Chub 2lb 5oz

  •  Swim

    Swim

  •  Chub 4lb 7oz

    Chub 4lb 7oz

  •  Chub 2lb 15oz

    Chub 2lb 15oz

  •  Chub 2lb 5oz

    Chub 2lb 5oz

  •  Chub 3lb 15oz

    Chub 3lb 15oz

  •  Chub 3lb 1oz

    Chub 3lb 1oz

  •  Chub 2lb 5oz

    Chub 2lb 5oz

  •  Swim

    Swim

  •  Chub 4lb 7oz

    Chub 4lb 7oz

  •  Chub 2lb 15oz

    Chub 2lb 15oz

  •  Chub 2lb 5oz

    Chub 2lb 5oz

  •  Chub 3lb 15oz

    Chub 3lb 15oz

  •  Chub 3lb 1oz

    Chub 3lb 1oz

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River Welland (21)

Although not as high as on my last visit the river was still running strongly, particularly over the shallower stretches. Managed two chub but it wasn’t easy.

Arrival time: 10.15
Weather: Bright and although chilly when I arrived, it warmed up when the sun gained some strength.
Hardly any wind. A perfect day in fact.
Swim: Roving.
Tackle: 12ft Korum multi-feeder, Shimano bait caster, 8lb line, 6 hook tied direct. Three SG shots on a short link.
Bait: Luncheon meat.
Fish: Two chub, best fish 3¾lb

With only a couple of weeks of the season left and a favourable weather forecast, I decided to fit in a visit to the river.

It was still running fairly strongly although nowhere near as high or heavy as on my last visit. The level was perhaps down a good foot from then. It was still coloured although again nowhere near as heavily as previously. The gravel bottom could be seen along the shallower runs.

I headed first for the spot where I’ve managed a fish on two recent visits. When I got there three women dog-walkers were having a loud chinwag while their dogs were splashing around in the river just downstream of where I was intending to fish. By the time I tackled up they had moved on but I wasn’t that confident of success following the noise and disturbance, and I was proved correct. I decided to move on after about 15 minutes and would return later in the day.
  •  Chub 2lb 6oz

    Chub 2lb 6oz

  •  Chub 3lb 12oz

    Chub 3lb 12oz

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River Welland (20)

River still high with strong flow. Managed just one chub.

Arrival time: 10.45
Weather: Bright and frosty on arrival (3℃)
Later it was quite warm in the sun - no wind.
Swim: Roving.
Tackle: 12ft Korum multi-feeder, Shimano bait caster, 8lb line, 6 hook tied direct. Three SG shots on a short link.
Bait: Luncheon meat.
Fish: One chub 3¾lbs

With all the recent snow and high winds it’s been a few weeks now since I visited the river. It was still running high and a lot of water was coming down.

I started at a spot where I picked up a chub a couple of visits ago. On that occasion there were reeds that were creating a small slack near the bank but these were now below the water level. There was, however, still signs of slacker water. Second cast the rod top kicked and then pulled round and I was into a good fish. It went out into the flow and it took a bit of effort to get it back into the slacker water nearer the bank, where I could net it. On the bank it weighed 3¾lb. Not a bad start after only ten minutes!
  •  Chub 3lb 12oz

    Chub 3lb 12oz

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River Welland (19)

River recovering after floods. Three reasonable chub.

Arrival time: 10.45
Weather: Bright cloudy.
Moderate westerly wind.
Swim: Roving.
Tackle: 12ft Korum multi-feeder, Shimano bait caster, 8lb line, 6 hook tied direct. Three SG shots on a short link.
Bait: Luncheon meat.
Fish: Three chub, best fish 4lbs.

It’s been nearly two months since my last visit, although the lead up to Christmas accounted for the best part of December.

The river had obviously overflowed the meadow during the last deluge. There was a lot of flotsam laying around and the bank-side trees were decorated with various litter that had washed down with the flood water. Considering the banks are normally about six feet above water level, there must have been a lot of water!

I decided to make my way up the stretch and then back down again, dropping into likely spots. I started where I had caught a chub during my last visit, but today the water was in fact a bit lower and it seemed that the chub had vacated that particular spot.
  •  Chub 4lb 0oz

    Chub 4lb 0oz

  •  Chub 2lb 3oz

    Chub 2lb 3oz

  •  Chub 3lb 12oz

    Chub 3lb 12oz

  •  Chub 4lb 0oz

    Chub 4lb 0oz

  •  Chub 2lb 3oz

    Chub 2lb 3oz

  •  Chub 3lb 12oz

    Chub 3lb 12oz

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River Welland (18)

Second trip to the Welland this season. Must try harder.

Arrival time: 10.45
Weather: Bright morning clouding over in the afternoon.
Light south-westerly wind.
Swim: Roving.
Tackle: 12ft Korum multi-feeder, Shimano bait caster, 8lb line, 6 hook tied direct. Four SG shots on a short link.
Bait: Luncheon meat.
Fish: Three chub, best fish 4½lbs

Only the second time on the Welland this season. The forecast was for a mild day and they were right. About 13º C, which is good for November. The river was running quite strongly, which was good to see, as I can’t remember the last time that I saw a decent flow on this stretch. Hopefully it will clear out some of the debris and dead vegetation.

I decided to walk the bank today and had my new ‘Chub’ bag, which is a very small shoulder bag for essentials. I had my canvas bucket for bait and food. Other than this I was only carrying the rod, landing net, rod-rest and a light stool.
  •  Chub 4lb 8oz

    Chub 4lb 8oz

  •  Chub 2lb 14oz

    Chub 2lb 14oz

  •  Chub 2lb 8oz

    Chub 2lb 8oz

  •  Chub 4lb 8oz

    Chub 4lb 8oz

  •  Chub 2lb 14oz

    Chub 2lb 14oz

  •  Chub 2lb 8oz

    Chub 2lb 8oz

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