Wheel Of Fortune Turns

A typical local stream

After blanking on the River Irwell on my last four outings i was determined to catch fish today.

I decided the night before that despite the river being in fishable condition i was going to go for a bagging session at Bradshaw Hall near Bolton. AND BAG UP I DID!

I caught a roach a cast from 10am to 2.30 between 6oz and a pound fishing the pole at about 6m using red maggot as hookbait, starting the day catching on a size 20 hook and finishing on a size 14 with single maggot.

I also caught my first skimmer of the year (only one all day) and my first roach/bream hybrid.

Fishing a venue such as Bradshaw is a good confidence booster after 4 blanks but its easy fishing and there is no sense of anticipation and little sense of achievement when you know that you are going to bag up. The uncertainty of fishing more difficult venues is far more appealing in the long term.

That draw of the difficult led to me packing up at 2.30 and giving it a go on the brook that flows behind the lake.

I only fished one swim for half an hour - naturally without a bite- but i Ray has told me that he has had small brown trout and chub from this stretch in the past. It looks like a really great stream to explore, and i intend to give it a full mornings attention before the end of the season.
I am sure it would be possible to fish for the small trout on this stream using fly gear but at the moment that is way beyond my level of competence with fly tackle. However come mid-March i fully intend to extend my knowledge of this form of fishing.
I caught at least 40 roach up to this size (i gave up counting after 30)

My first bream of the year.

After catching a few fish i am now looking forwards to another trip out this weekend, with heavy rain forecast for Friday i doubt that i will be fishing on the Irwell and i might try Ogden Resevoir for some roach and ruffe or Maceys in Bury for an early season tench.