Well there’s not much happening for us match anglers at the moment is there. But thank god we can still just pleasure fish. I haven’t had anything to blog about for ages. All anglers really do have a lot to thank the Angling Trust for getting the green light from the government allowing us to be still be able to go fishing. The angling Trust isn’t everyone’s cup of tea and the majority of anglers are not members of the trust but if it wasn’t for this great work they’ve done my mental health and wellbeing would be at an all time low. It least I can still get my weekly fishing fix staying within the guidelines and staying local. I consider my £3.00 subscription fee money well spent.
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Some fishery’s remain open for pleasure sessions during this Lockdown and I’m lucky to have Manor Farm Leisure on my doorstop so I’ve taken my weekly pleasure fishing fix there in recent weeks. But other local fisheries such as Woodland View have closed allowing them to make fishery improvements for when they reopen. So this Lockdown period has seen all my Spring/Summer match preparation completed but It’s only pleasure sessions for me at the moment.
A lot of match anglers say pleasure fishing isn’t the same as a match. This is true I miss the buzz of a match and meeting my angling mates at the draw but pleasure fishing really can be a benefit for when we can finally match fish.
It’s the time to practise different and styles and tactics. I fish matches where fishing the pole often dominates, setting up multiple top kits and leaving my set up feeder and waggler rods alone. During matches I’d sometimes throw out a rod for five minutes and then chuck it back up the bank returning to the pole when it’s not worked. So during this 3rd lockdown I’ve left the pole in the bag and used my rods more often. I’ve had some good days catching a few fish even in the depths of winter. Using these rods for longer periods of time has been an education. Trying out different baits and set ups. In fact its been a pleasure to do so without the pressure of a match, just trying to catch a big weight as quickly as possible. I’ve taken my time, enjoyed my day and not had to worry about getting left behind in a match. I’ve actually really enjoyed my fishing trips. We all know angling is a great pass time but I’d not being taking the time to enjoy the other experiences fishing gives you. Pleasure fishing during this lockdown has shown me the different side of angling that I’d long forgotten. Taking the time to actually enjoy the fighting fish while playing it and then looking and enjoying the fish I’ve caught which has been a revelation.
It’s the whole experience of the day I’ve enjoyed, from choosing my peg rather than drawing the normal no hoper. Taking the time to study my swim and deciding how I’m going to fish it. Rather than setting up all my kit in a rush before the ‘all in’ to the “one last cast” before I go home.
In fact it really has been a pleasure to pleasure fish after focusing on my fishing matches for the last 20 odd years and I’ll be doing more of it going forward.