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Thomas pays tribute to Paul’s tactical advice

After reading Paul Elt’s article on trotting, BHAA club member Thomas Finney was keen to try the method himself. Thomas fished a stretch of the River Ivel in freezing conditions with snow still lying on the ground, hardly the best of conditions. He was fishing only a short session and, after moving swims a couple of times, he had his first success, a 4lb 8oz chub. He returned to the river later in the week and found a really productive swim from which he caught a 4lb 2oz chub followed by a couple of smaller fish and was broken by another fish. Later, he moved to a swim from where a friend, Ollie Jenkinson, had caught two 3lb plus chub earlier in the day. He trotted his float through the swim and struck into a good fish which turned out to be a 5lb 12oz chub, a new personal best for the Sandy angler. He handed his rod to Ollie and he too caught another big chub, this time a 5lb specimen. He returned to the river the following day but only managed a single chub, a 3lb 8oz fish mainly because his rod rings kept freezing up making trotting nigh impossible. Instead, he opted for a bit of pike fishing and was rewarded with the capture of an 11lb fish. Early in the following week, he was back on the river where his very first trot down produced a fat 5lb 10oz chub for him. Another move of swim enabled him to catch a further three fish, the best weighing 4lb 12oz. Thomas said that he is now hooked on trotting and has targeted a six pound chub before the end of the season.

Thomas was concerned to have come across several anglers fishing for pike who were ill equipped to deal with any fish caught and who lacked all knowledge of how to handle them. If you are one of these anglers, please consider reading a good book on pike fishing or purchasing a video on the subject and do not attempt to fish unless you have the proper tackle with you including a good-sized landing net, unhooking mat and forceps. Otherwise, you risk damaging these delicate fish and depriving other anglers the opportunity of catching them.