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Budget Angler – Friday Night Out

4pm on a Friday used to mean ‘Put the laptop in the pannier, and leave the office and head to the pub.’ Now since covid closed the office, 4pm on a Friday means leave it on the dining room table, jump on my bike and do some fishing. Which is exactly what I did on Friday.

I like to think of myself as an equal opportunities all round angler, I don’t discriminate fish species or size, and I try not to spend a fortune. So living so close to some of East London’s fishable water gives me the opportunity for any kind of fishing I fancy. Friday’s session took me to the iconic Isle of dogs, it’s just 18 minutes door to swim by bike so if I get organised I can be fishing by 4:30 giving me time for a really good session in these light summer evenings.

I arrived at my favourite swim on one of the deepest parts of the docks I’ve plumbed it at 26ft 2 rod lengths out which is where I tend to fish. My chosen method for this depth is the slider float, it’s a newish method for me having previously fished the feeder. While it can be a bit of a faff, I have really enjoyed it this summer and set up properly the lift bites from the roach and bream have been brilliant. I have some rigs ready made up using floats I made myself during lockdown. (I had to get my fix with fishing being banned and have made over 200 floats).

My chosen bait was good old white sliced bread, and it was often a bait I overlooked, until recently, and this summer it has accounted for all my best roach from various locations. It didn’t disappoint either, and after a few minutes my balsa and kebab skewer float shot under. With the water so deep and clear it’s almost unbelievable to see the thing sliding into the depths. I gave a good positive strike and could feel I was into a good fish, it instantly put a good bend on my springy budget 11ft float rod, and as I played it up, at about 10ft deep I could see the quick flashes of silver meant that this was not one of the usual skimmers. As it neared the surface the red fins gave it away as an absolutely stunning roach.
I suspect readers will want a weight, but I tend not to weigh my fish as I’d hate to be disappointed in a really good fish if it was 1oz off my PB. Apologies.

The 1st hour brought another 3 good roach and some skimmers, things went off the boil then and one of the challenges in such a massive body of water is holding the shoals. I was feeding with a heavy sticky mix of breadcrumbs, micro trout pellets mixed with a branded silvers ground bait that I can’t remember. (What ever is left from other sessions goes in the freezer and comes out on these little after work sessions)

As the sun began to slide behind the sky scrapers, a few more bubbles appeared in the swim, although as they taken 20 seconds to reach the surface if they’re coming up under your float you may be too late!

The next bite was a cracking lifter, it’s so positive and sudden to see the 1st 5inches of the float shoot straight up with onion on the surface. Again a good positive strike and again I felt I was into a good fish although, the tell tale docile flip flopping told me it was a bream, as I brought it to the surface, I could see it wasn’t one of the monsters that live in there but a decent fish and brilliant fun on the float set up.

Things continued in that vein for a while, I had some worms from the garden with me so I thought I’d put one on, on the 1st cast the float didn’t cock properly in the usual time, which is usually about 30 seconds for the shot to settle. I thought This was a bit weird and I’d probably lost a weight. It also occurred to me that something had grabbed the bait on the way down, so I quickly took up the slack and gave a tug, and low and behold, the feisty head shaking began, and of course as the fish neared the surface it was ckear the garden worm had nabbed the obligatory perch! An absolute beauty and a great ened to a Friday night out in the city!

Thank’s to Bailey for asking me to guest on this blog, I share most of my catch reports through YouTube, and Facebook, so if you want to see more of my urban adventures just Google The Budget Angler and you’ll find me.

Cheers Guys Fish On! 

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