Thursday, 19 October 2017

Is this my last crucian?

Time for a change........Is this my last crucian of the year? I think it might be as other species like perch, pike, roach, dace and grayling are calling. 
Keep up to date with everything I do each month by looking out for my monthly blog, usually posted within days of each month starting. 
I recently spent a day in the good company of Carl and Alex from Nash making another of their brilliant videos. Did the crucians play ball or was it a frustrating day? Keep looking on Nash Tackle's website for this exclusive video coming soon!

Short session specialist, or not?

Short session specialist!After so much time spent over the last couple of months learning the art of zig fishing I was hoping for on of those red-letter sessions and it came. I was hoping to hit a lake at the crack of dawn in order to get a catch of roach to complete a European magazine article yet a sleepless night had me rethinking as after rising somewhat leter just grabbed the carp kit and headed to Johnson's Lake. All I had was three and a half hours to spare but just twenty minutes in I found myself playing the first of seven carp, unfortunately one was lost! Usually they average around 20lb but today it was quantity not weight quality as they ranged from between 14lb and just over 20lb, yet it was proof that the art of zig fishing had been mastered. I think I may have caught another but a swan trailing line had me knacker deep in cool water, removing the line before chasing her up the path in my underpants to remove the last line from around her neck. Apologies to the anglers entering the fishery whilst I was doing this!
I had planned to meet my dad the following day for a spot of crucian fishing but I just had to let him experience such fantastic fishing, however after five hours of feeding and just a couple of signs of carp we threw in the towel. Time for a new tactic!


If you fancy learning the art of zig fishing in a day then make a date with me next year as unfortunately it time to move on to other species. I will be carp fishing over the winter but its going to be another new tactic I need to master. Will I do it?

If you fancy a days guiding for roach, perch, chub, grayling and possibly pike then these are the species that I will be concentrating on from now on.
Email me for more details - www.duncancharman.me.com

Monday, 9 October 2017

The famous Bridge Pool, Christchurch

The famous Bridge Pool, Christchurch.


A recent trip to the famous Bridge Pool at Christchurch with my good friend Lewis Deeks will certainly be one we will remember as we managed 26 sea trout and dozens of dace on the float.
For a full report keep an eye out for my end of month round-up....

Personal best fall on recent guided day.

Personal best fall on recent guided day.

A recent trip to Johnson Lake under the guidance of Duncan Charman saw Scott and Will both catch personal bests. Scott upped his carp best with a fish known as 'The Peach' weighing 29lb 12oz and Will smashed his personal best crucian with this stunner weighing 3lb 11oz.

For more details see my end of the month round-up and if you want more details on guided day cost/availability then please email me - duncancharman@me.com

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Monthly report - September 2017

Monthly Report September 2017

I don’t have to keep saying it’s been another manic month as is everyone nowadays. Looking at my statistics I been on the bank thirteen times either fishing for myself (8), creating features (1) or guiding (4) which is the sort of mix that suits me. Most of my fishing has been based around short sessions either zigging for carp or targeting crucians and both have been extremely rewarding along with introducing Alan Blair to an urban hotspot. The one feature that I created was on the Thames in search of a zander but although one never showed the predator action was simply explosive. The four guiding sessions have all been on rivers, one for perch and the other three on the Wye for barbel. All were successful trips, yet driving to the Wye and back in a day does take some doing!

                                                Day to Day events.

02/09/17 – Spent a few hours starting my weekly Anglers Mail ‘Where to Fish’ column.
03/09/17 – A wet windy day forecasted but after such a spell of hardly any wind and bright conditions just what’s needed to kick them into feeding. Fortunately when I arrived at Johnson’s to meet up with my dad we found very few other anglers fishing so headed to the railway bank as this is where the wind was pushing into. My good friend Mark was already there and had taken a personal best mirror of 26lb 8oz on his crucian gear (same carp I had the week before) along with a couple of crucians and with fish moving things looked good. Another mate, Barrie also joined us and with the rain not as hard as forecasted we all enjoyed catching a few fish. I seemed to be getting the lads back for taking the p... out of me on the Wye for loosing so many barbel and gave them a lesson in crucian fishing taking a dozen to 3lb 5oz along with the odd tench, carp, rudd and roach. Dad was struggling so early afternoon I wound my rods in to help him get his bobbins moving and he went on to take a couple of crucians including the best of the session at 3lb 11oz 8drams. Whilst helping him I couldn’t ignore that Barrie had borrowed one of my rods, inspected my rig and obviously learnt a trick or two as well as catching a few crucians to 3lb 6oz. Good angling mate! Mark seemed to be on a roll and caught steadily all day, maybe eight crucians to 3lb 10oz, another personal best! With the rain getting harder and the girlfriend to pick up it was time to wind the rods in come 3pm but what an enjoyable day.
04/09/17 – One of the reasons I am slowly getting into carp fishing is simply I can just grab
my kit and go and after dropping the lady of at work did just that. Arriving at an almost empty lake I dropped in the same swim fished the weekend before and soon had carp all over my baits. Didn’t
even have time to turn the second alarm on when a big drop back saw the first of four carp falling in just two
hours to my new found wonder rig. Unfortunately after the forth carp they seem to drift off and the next two hours saw absolutely nothing happen but once again I think I know the reason they left my swim. The four carp landed weighed 11lb, 18lb 2oz, 22lb 3oz, all commons and a 22lb 5oz mirror. 
05/09/17 – Complete day in the office.
06/09/17 – Slipped out for a few hours carp fishing this morning. Cast out at 8am but found the fish to be somewhat cagey. Worked at it till 11am and managed just one bite but it did come from a real mint common weighing 25lb 6oz.
07/09/17 – So annoyed at one particular angler
who didn’t read his Farnham Angling Society membership book regarding the third FAS barbel teach-in and then decided to ignore three signs clearly stating that the river was closed. The reason that the river is closed is to give time for the fish to settle and allow the six anglers the best possible chance in catching. Unfortunately one of my biggest edges that I explain to these anglers is the importance of being the first angler in a swim as once someone else has been there then the chances of catching are almost nil. Not only did this angler kill the bottom two fields but three poachers then killed the top field. Thanks!
08 & 09/09/17 – A couple of days in the office writing a European article, getting ahead of myself on my WFT Column plus sorting some kit for a carp session tomorrow.
10/09/17 – Headed to Johnsons at 8am to meet Chris for a spot of carp fishing. The weathers certainly not good for what we will be doing, zig fishing with a growing southerly, clouding over and rain forecast come mid afternoon. The lake busy so headed to a quiet
corner but after a couple of hours just couldn’t see any fish, let alone get a bite. Barrie was fishing for crucians on another bank and reported that the fishing in general seemed slow. Dad called to say he was on his way to join us for a few hours, however somehow dropped his front wheel of the track around the lake and we had to get him towed out along with around half a dozen strong lads lifting the front to free the wheel. It was going to be one of those days! Back in the swim and after another fruitless hour’s one of Chris rods was away and he managed a lovely zip-liner of around 11lb which was quickly followed by a mirror of 18lb to myself. Happy with the result and enjoying the banter with Barrie we weren’t expecting anything else and with the rain imminent decided to call it a day at 3pm, however one fish had other ideas and shortly before leaving Chris awas away again and after a lengthy battle slid the net under The Big Dink at 32lb on the nose provided him with a new UK personal best. Happy days...
11/09/17 – The last lay-in before the lady has a run of early’s so made the most of it before getting my head down to the standard Monday chores which included around four hours organising the tackle room, returning emails etc and getting kit sorted for a busy few days on the bank.
12/09/17 – On the bank at 7.30am to have a few hours with my dad crucian fishing. Can’t understand why some days Johnson Lake is so busy and then others, like today are almost empty? After having such a productive session a week or so ago we headed to the Railway Bank and although the skies were bright and cloudless and the temperature was just seven degrees it didn’t take long for the first crucian to grace my net. This steady action continued till early afternoon and come 1pm when we headed home we had taken sixteen crucians to 3lb 10oz and two tench. I quickly popped into the Apollo Angling as I left and found some brilliant inline cage feeders made by Guru which I will be putting into action tomorrow on the Thames as well as buying a fishing rod, the first in probably twenty years, a 12ft Drennan Acolyte Carp Waggler rod which I’m hoping is going to be powerful enough to tame the odd Wye barbel next week? Fingers crossed!
13/09/17 – On the road come 7am, this time heading to the tidal Thames. An hour and a half later I arrived, 30 minutes to do 26 miles then an hour to do 4 and then to find the tide right down which was strange as high tide was meant to be at 8.18am! Think it might have been something to do with the dangerously strong westerly wind which we under estimated and saw white water and waves heading downstream towards Richmond! It would have been so easy to turn around but knowing rush hour was upon us we madly set up and fished till 1pm in which time we managed a handful of roach, mostly around 12oz, a small bream and one clonking dace.
14/09/17 – Another early this time to meet Ian Joyce one of my regular customers and one I always look forward to fishing with. Chilly, just slightly and with a strong wind still blowing we were aware that winters on its way. First chuck in with a lobworm and a good bite was missed yet the second saw the hook find some flesh and a 2lb perch graced his net followed by one slightly smaller before the swim died. Heading downstream we tried another swim without any signs before dropping a float paternoster and a small minnow live bait in another. That didn’t take long to see a 4lb pike in the net that got revenge by dragging its teeth across my fingers. A couple more swims were tried for just one small chub before casting out in a big pool and straight away the float disappeared and the first of around ten perch to 2lb graced his net.
15/09/17 – The alarm sounded at 4am, yes 4am and come 5.30am I was in the good company of Alan Blair standing in pitch darkness next to a normally productive barbel swim. It’s always difficult introducing someone to a new river, especially to a river that I’m not that familiar with but I was so confident that first run down with a piece of meat would see him battling a hard fighting beard on his 6ft Shot-Gun, however come an hour later and still the rod failed to bend. I headed upstream and fared the same before finding Alan someway downstream, well excited having found some carp but also somewhat frustrated at missing two chances off the top. It wasn’t long though before he staggered into my swim with the smile of a Cheshire cat as in the folds of his landing net lay the most beautiful zip lenear you could ever which to catch. Never one to slow down he soon had another in the net, this time a small kio before the carp backed off into an area difficult to fish, however Alan wasn’t fazed and was soon in the river, risking getting a right boot full and following them but even these extreme measures weren’t enough. Heading upstream we located more carp but no barbel and after I managed a chub around 4lb on the float we headed back to our original position only to see Alan lose the same linear at the net and myself finding a swim absolutely stacked full of silver fish.
16/09/17 – At last a lay-in before a few fishy hours in the office.
20/09/17 – Been looking forward to my office backdrop toady as I would be aboard a small boat floating about on the river Thames with Jason Vorster, a great lure angler in search of a few oversized predators. Jason certainly produced the goods but if you want to see just what we caught then you will have to keep buying your weekly Anglers Mail magazine as the feature will be appearing here soon. If you are an avid lure angler take a look at – www.lucklurebox.co.uk Amazingly back in the office I was able to write the article up and get it off my mind as the next couple of days are to be spent on the river Wye.
21/09/17 & 22/09/17 – The alarm sounded at 4am and come 5am I was on the road heading to the river Wye in Herefordshire. Meeting my two customers, John and John who were staying with Sue and David at the really nice Sink Green Farm B&B come 7.30am and after a cup of coffee we were on our way to give them an
introduction to this majestic river. We were hoping to catch a few on the float but the river was up a foot or more and rushing through so it was a case of standing in the river and feeder fishing, sadly in the rain and a howling wind. I think it was a bit of a wakeup call for both as it’s a far cry from the short walks and comfortable swims of our local venues but I’m imagining a real adventure for them. It didn’t take long for the first bite and fortunately a barbel found the bottom of the net, a personal best for John who had never caught a flowing water beard. Unfortunately a snag was proving problematic, something the Wye is known for and a few fish were lost, however come the end of the day and in far better conditions they had taken another five barbel and six chub.
The following day I introduced them to a new stretch, one I hadn’t even fished before, one that a previous customer who now fishes the river on a regular basis had directed me too. Having good information is vital if you are to put yourself on fish and something that takes years to achieve, so thanks Mark, I owe you a free days guiding! Fishing from the top of a bank in glorious sunshine we were all far more comfortable and first cast a barbel graced our net. The action then continued for a few hours before slowing early afternoon but still the odd barbel fell. In total I think thirteen were taken, the best two going 7lb 15oz and 8lb 7oz.
As an angler I think it’s only fair that I inform you off good products and bad products and if you are heading to the Wye and stocking up on feeders you have two options. You can either buy feeders that are made by Wye anglers or go to your local tackle shop and buy ones that are mass produce. I recommend getting specifically made Wye feeders as they will last and are cheaper than the crap ones that simply shatter or break after a couple of casts. Paul at Woody’s Angling Centre makes his own as does Paul who is behind the FFF feeders, both reliable and brilliant feeders.
Sink Green Farm – B4399 Rotherwas,
Hereford, HR2 6LE. Tel: 01432 870223 – www.sinkgreenfarm.co.uk
Hereford and District Angling Association – wwhdaa.blogspot.co.uk – membership just £50 per season!
Woody’s Tackle Centre – 67 White Cross Road, Hereford, HR4 0DQ. Tel: 01432 344644 – www.woodysangling.co.uk
FFF Feeders – Fisky’s Fantastic Feeders Face book. Price list email Paul at - fiskysfantasticfeeders@yahoo.com
25/09/17 – Was hoping to head to the lake for a spot of carp fishing but due to heavy overnight rain thought I’d bring a trip to my publishers in Kent, Calm Productions forward to pick up some books that they have kindly offered me to sell? Was hoping they were by the door and that a fork lift would be able to load the two pallets into the hired Luton Van but sadly not as I had to load them two boxes at a time. Eight books in a box weighing 1.2kg each, nigh on ninety boxes, to say I was sweating come completion is an understatement but I did have someone to help one end and my poor dad the other end. I wasn’t that worried until I read that the Luton had a weight limit of 500kg, Ouch, work it out. As you can imagine it was a very slow drive home and missing the traffic each way was a blessing, but things were going too good, and a nightmare was about to hit me as after being distracted by my neighbour I forgot to lift the tailgate and crunch, yes it wasn’t pleasant as I drove out the drive. Fortunately the guy at the hire company needs to go to Speck Savers as he completely missed the scratches.
If you fancy a signed copy I can now offer them at reduced rate of just £10.99 plus P&P, (normally £25).  If you are interested then simply email me at duncancharman.me.com
26/09/17 – A rough night meant that I never made it to the lake until 10.30am and with just three and a half hours to spare knew that I would be up against it but constant feeding eventually fed the birds off and a few carp started to show an interest. Unfortunately the first bite saw a good fish kiting into the shallows and with the lead not falling saw the hook pull. I wasn’t expecting anything else but shortly before having to call it a day managed another bite which resulted in a common weighing 22lb 9oz.
27/09/17 – Spent the day writing up my weekly Anglers Mail ‘where to fish’ column as well as getting the tackle ready for a long days guiding on the river Wye tomorrow.
28/09/17 – On the road come 5.20am in heavy rain. I just hope it doesn’t stay like this? Luckily when I arrived at The Falcon B&B come 7.30am to meet Steve and Nathan the weather was much better, in fact to good as the skies were now cloudless and the sun already high. After last week’s success on a new stretch it would have been stupid of me to go anywhere else and fortunately the swim was free as when we arrived shortly before 8.30am. An hour after casting out all looked good as my customers had landed a chub and a barbel along with losing a couple due to a snag, however things then slowed and with the sun on the water we assumed this was the reason. Mark who had put me onto the stretch arrived a couple of hours later and setting up in the swim just thirty Yards downstream took a while to get off the mark, but then started to haul! Checking his rigs I knew we were doing nothing different, the only difference was his swim had a tree casting a shadow across it. Mid afternoon the shadow covered our swim and I was hoping the action would commence but sadly it didn’t so come 4pm I made the brave decision to move downstream of Mark some thirty yards and within ten minutes the first barbel graced there net,
followed by four more to 7lb and two chub! I had earlier mentioned to my customers about moving if no bites had come after a couple of hours but things are slightly different when you drop in a swim that’s produced the week before and then gets your customers off to a good start on the next trip. If we hadn’t got those early fish then I would have had no problem moving but I always thought the fish were in front of us, but they had moved. Lesson learnt but at least we didn’t sit in the swim all day. I just wish we had moved a couple of hours earlier. By the way Mark finished with thirteen barbel!

29/09/17 – Although it’s the Ladies day off, and tomorrow, I still managed to not only finish of this week’s AM column but also get well on the way with next week’s ‘where to fish’ piece. This is because I see another manic week approaching. Sunday I’m guiding, Monday and Tuesday on the bank with Carl & Alex producing another Nash video then on Wednesday heading off to the Kennet to produce an AM feature. This leaves Thursday and Friday to not only write up the Kennet feature, finish my ‘where to fish’ column along with feeing enough time up to see if the carp are still taking zigs and treating my mum to a well overdue 9 holes of golf before heading down to Christchurch on Saturday for a fishing treat. All will be revealed next month...

Friday, 29 September 2017

Ideas for Christmas?

Christmas is coming.....
I bet all you anglers struggle when it comes to giving ideas to the other half for Christmas. Well here’s an idea that will keep you captivated for hours and fire you up in getting out more and putting a few more specimen fish in your net. 
‘Evolution of an angler’ took me a full year to write and covers venues most will have fished, be fishing or might be thinking of fishing. Venues such as the river Thames, Kennet and Loddon to stillwaters like Frensham Great Pond, Yateley Split Lake and Westhampnett. Thirty-one chapters, 350 pages in full colour all for the stupid price of just £10.99 (usually £25) plus P&P and even better all personalized to include your very own message and signed!

I don’t have many left so if you want to take advantage of this fantastic offer then best email me – duncancharman@me.com


Another thought is that you could get the other half to buy a gift voucher for a guided day with me? These cost just £125* and will be posted out in time for Christmas.
*excludes 'there and back' day's to the river Wye which cost £160.

Celebrating a new personal best...

A proper glass of wine!
Just been reminded that I haven't celebrated my personal best French carp with a good drop of the red stuff, so found this rather nice bottle in the wine rake which was given to me by Tracey Curry a year or so ago, thanks. As you can see I keep my good french wines for the right moment! By the way the carp weighed 78lb 14oz and is known as The Grey Lady. Chris my fishing buddy wanted to know if I wanted to go back? We are booked up for 2019 and 2020!

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Guiding days on the river Wye.
Just returned from a couple of rewarding days guiding two customers on the River Wye. Fishing two different Hereford and District beats the first day was a real shock to the system as my two customers had never fished the river before and found themselves knee deep in the river feeder fishing all day in heavy rain and a howling wind. The river was slightly higher than I would have liked and flowing through like the clappers which counted out float fishing but come late afternoon, in far better conditions, they had caught six barbel and six chub along with losing a few more than they should have.
Day two saw us move to a new beat, even I hadn’t fished before, a section that a past customer who now fishes the river on a regular basis had pointed us to. First cast, again on the feeder saw the traditional drop back bite result produce a barbel. It was the start of steady action throughout the day in which the duo landed a further dozen barbel, the best two going 7lb 15oz and 8lb 7oz. Not a bad day which was made even more rewarding when we found out from the bailiff that others around were struggling.

If you want to read more about this session and all my others during the month of September then keep an eye out for my monthly blog on my website – www.duncancharman.co.uk


If you are interested in a guided days fishing then just email me – duncancharman@me.com


Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Sept starts in style

 September starts in style.
Just returned from a session at my local lake and my willingness to learn a new tactic is beginning to pay off as after just two hours managed to bank four carp including two twenties. 
Yesterday I also had a great session where me and my dad plus two mates took around two dozen crucians to 3lb 11oz 8drams along with carp to 26lb 8oz, tench to 6lb and rudd and roach over the pound. 
If your looking for a days guiding and catching a few fish then September is as good a month as any as the fish will start to feed up before the weather turns cold.
Email me for more details - duncancharman@me.com

Friday, 1 September 2017

Monthly blog - August 2017


Monthly Report August 2017

August, in my mind the worst month of the year for catching consistently and all I seem to hear from the anglers on the banks is, where have all the fish gone? If you think about it, it’s not difficult to work out. Firstly the water is at its richest in natural food and the fish can just gorge themselves on this high protein diet and totally ignore our baits. Another factor is the amount of bait that is dropped into the lake, which is probably at its highest due to the amount of anglers enjoying the sunshine, yet all this does is rot on the lake bed, deoxygenates and soar the water putting the fish in a somewhat uncooperative mood, but worst still is the weather. I might be wrong but when the wind has blown its seems to be on a daily swing and in my mind if the wind can’t make its mind up then the fish can’t make their minds if and where they want to feed. It’s a month that I could quite easily hang the rods up and get loads in the house or garden sorted, and although I have spent time doing this, in the small amount of hours I have been on the bank I have been learning the art of zig fishing. Believe me it’s quite technical but every session I have either learnt something or seen someone far better getting it right and can now say that I feel very confident that each session will see a fish or two grace my net. I’m going to keep at it through September and October but also need to start looking at other things, so it’s going to be a case of making more time to do more things and hopefully start to reap the rewards over the next few months. 

                                                Day to Day events.

01/08/17 – 02/08/17 Been looking forward to another carp session and arrived early to see if I could catch on zigs before dusk. Unfortunately I made the mistake of fishing a crowded railway bank and after three hours of feeling somewhat claustrophobic and only one tench on a 3ft zig to show for my efforts headed to the narrow swim on the end of the chicken bank. With carp showing all over the place felt that a few fish would fall, which they did, tench along with just one small common that may have scrapped 10lb. Chris fished in the board’s next door and took one tench and a 15lb mirror. Another mistake that I won’t be making again is fishing a zig through the night as this just doesn’t seem to produce.
03/08/17 – Long day in the office, 8am – 8pm getting ahead of myself on the WTF Column for Anglers Mail.
04/08/17 – Let’s be honest, August is probably the worst month in the year for an all year round angler so I can be excused for once again sitting behind the computer and tapping away on things that will free my time up for when the weather is ideal for fishing and I can just grab the gear and go.
05/08/17 – At last a lazy morning and come 1pm I found myself at Johnsons for a few hours carp fishing. Setting up half way along the railway things didn’t look great from the start as very few fish were showing. Casting a couple of zig rigs out and five hours later without a bleep decided enough was enough and headed home to get supper on and gain some brownie points. Looking back the reason it was so slow was the same old reason about the wind not making its mind up where it wanted to head and unsettling the fish. I also found myself sheltering under the brolly a couple of times as the heavens opened and unleashed hail, rain, thunder and lightning!
06/08/17 – Having such a slow day yesterday and the wind still not prominent from any direction decided fishing would be almost a waste of time (it’s never a waste of time, but sometimes you just know) so picked my mother up, gave here fourteen shots over 9 holes at Bowenhurst and gave a right good thrashing (she is 80)!
07/08/17 – Start off a busy week. On the road come 6am to meet up with a new customer Michael who had booked me for a spot of tench fishing. Meeting in Abinger Hammer at 6.30am we found ourselves on the banks of Lodge Lake (Newdigate Fisheries) come 7am. The weather looked good for a few fish but it took some time for the first fish to fall, a tench around 4lb. This was followed by four more, the best maybe 5lb plus five orfe to 4lb 14oz, however it was a frustrating session in the sense that maggots were being removed from the hook with ease from what I suspect were small orfe. My suspicions were 12oz orfe but if these were continually sucking maggots in on a two-inch hooklink then you would have thought one would be hooked however the smallest orfe was around 2lb 8oz! We did play around with our rigs and bait and finally found a solution, that’s why you hire a guide!
08/08/17 – Up at 5am and on the bank early, this time to give my good friend, and on occasion customer (this is what you get when you become a regular) an introduction to GAS Johnson’s Lake (FOC as I’m not allowed to guide on GAS waters).  His target was to beat his crucian best of 2lb 15oz from Harris so we headed to the railway bank, even though the wind was coming off our backs. In my experience, in August if you want a big crucian then head to the railway bank, it might mean less fish but the deeper water does seem to produce the odd big girl.  Two hours gone and I had taken two crucians of 3lb 10z and 3lb 3oz plus a tench and a small common whist Mark was still to get a bite! I had to leave due to an urgent call but I can’t have been out of the car park when Mark called saying he had just taken a crucian of 3lb, job done. When I managed to get back little had happened but things seem to liven up early afternoon with tench to 5lb, another good crucian for Mark, pesky rudd and a common of around 6lb. Come 5pm, and with little happening for a couple of hours and with rain in the air we decided to call it a day, well happy with our results as August can be a real head-banger on most lakes.

09/08/17 – The weather, or should I say the weather forecasters are once again doing my brain in! Today was supposed to be wet in the morning and then clearing early afternoon, so I rescheduled a morning guiding session to later in the week as I also had to attend a FAS barbel teach-in come 5pm and thought it might just be too much for one day, especially if it was wet. As I write this up, its 9pm and the rain is still lashing down outside. Luckily, after last month’s FAS Barbel teach-in’s washout I made the right decision and cancelled the event, albeit late in the day but mainly due to a couple of late cancellations! I’m certainly not a fair weather angler but running up and down a wet river bank for the best part of six hours in pouring rain isn’t fun and as I’m feeling somewhat chesty was definitely the right call. Sorry to the anglers that still would have attended but these events are supposed to be fun and in this sort of weather it would be the exact opposite. I will be rescheduling this event for later in the month or even late in Sept and will be in touch.
10/08/17 – On the bank of Richardson Lake at 6.15am to meet one of my regular’s Neal who wanted to see if he would like pole fishing. I still have a pole and a seat box and it was refreshing to dust everything down, re-elasticate etc and see that delicate float disappearing and the elastic stretching. Holding 8m of pole and not really knowing what to expect the bites came quickly which was surprising after the amount of rain that fell the day before. Meat over groundbait was are tactic as Neal wanted to hook big fish so when the first tench tore off, Neal was hooked and told me that the experience was going to cost him a few hundred quid due to having to buy a whole new outfit. A flurry of tench was followed by a lull in action mid morning and a switch to caster saw a few more fish landed. Having learnt loads and after having experienced a whole new side of fishing Neal left around 4pm which allowed me to have an hour and two bream and a tench followed along with a proper zoo creature that saw me struggling at 14m and elastic stretching to its max which finally saw the tiny size 18 pulling. Back at home it was once again a scramble to sort the feeder kit out for a session on Johnson Lake with another regular Adrian.
11/08/17 – On the bank come 6am this time to give Adrian a short morning session using the pellet cone on Johnson Lake. Things didn’t look or feel good on arrival as the temperature had dropped over night to an unseasonal seven degrees and very few fish were moving. Dropping in peg 27 it didn’t take long for the first bite which came from a 5lb plus tench. This was followed by three more to 6lb plus a roach around a pound and a small rudd before action slowed. Just before Adrian left at midday he landed another tench which gave me a couple of hours myself before having to leave. Action was steady with four more good tench falling, a crucian which might have made 3lb plus a number of small rudd.
12/08/17 – At long last a lay-in after an early night, bliss. No fishing today as I need the day to catch up on fishy paperwork and clean and organize kit for a much easier coming week.
13/08/17 – With a variable wind which was cold and high atmospherics should have stayed at home as Johnson Lake was just rubbish. A few fish were bubbling on arrival at 8am and we did manage two tench and a double figured common between us but come 10am it was just dead and nothing done could tempt so much as a bleep. Packed up at 2pm but knew we should have gone far sooner.
15/08/17 – A full day in the office getting back on track along with sorting the tackle for a day’s carp fishing and one barbel fishing on the Wye.
16/08/17 – Should have been up early and heading to the river Wye today but had to move this too tomorrow, so headed to Johnsons only to find a match was planned, so had to move to another lake, Tarn but watching the water for ages failed to see a sign of a carp and with the weather far from perfect headed to a stretch of the Wey just to hopefully get a bite or two. Managed to get a good bite on pellet but failed to make contact before switching to bread for a wild brownie. Even had a cormorant surface in my swim on a river I could jump over! What chance do we or the fish have?
17/08/17 – Up at 3am and on the road come 4am heading to the river Wye to create an AM feature. Absolutely chucking it down when we left but come 6.30 when we arrived it had passed. Good to see the weather forecast right for once! Barrie, a past customer but now good friend had fished the day before with another ex-customer Mark and between them had taken 17 barbel to over 8lb on the feeder, however today was all about catching on the float so without too much temptation we set about our task. All caught on the float throughout the day; however I had a right mare as everyone I hooked either saw the hook pulling of them hitting a snag. I think they all felt for me however it just goes to show we are all human and all have those days when things just don’t go right, however the day was more about all getting together and having a laugh.
18/08/17 – After a lay-in I met good friend Tom Aldous early afternoon to see if either of us could tempt a river carp. With only a few hours to spare in the afternoon and with thunder, lightning and heavy downpours all we had to show for our efforts was one modest chub, but I did have a couple of carp move through the swim.

20/08/17 – A full day in the office compiling my weekly Anglers Mail ‘Where to fish’ column along with making a start on a Catch More feature.
21/08/17 – Another day in the office, this time creating a European article, my first for a while.
22/08/17 - Kit sorted and on the Tidal Thames come 4pm. Rivers in the fields but still managed to get fish, albeit later than we would have liked but still caught loads of fish. Keep an eye out in Anglers Mail for a ‘Where to fish’ opener coming shortly.
23/08/17 – It doesn’t take much for a week to go ‘tits’ up. A feature deadline bought forward or a customer cancelling a guiding session at the last minute, but this week I’ve had both. Managed to get the feature sorted along with using the free time to take my mother for a game of golf.
24/08/17 – One of those days where I can’t decide what I fancied doing. Shall I go barbel fishing, crucian, no its carp fishing so headed to a local lake, however never cast a line as initially didn’t get the right vibes that it would produce then got chatting to an angler that literally was taking the place apart. I could have dropped in next to him, as my approach was very similar, but as he was so helpful didn’t want to crowd his space, so left feeling somewhat excited. Not a feeling I have had for some time. Popped in the tackle shop, bought a few bits then headed home to mimic what he was doing. The plan was to return nice and early the following morning, set up well away from him and drop a few in the net myself. In fact I was so excited I didn’t sleep much.
25/08/17 – On the lake come 6.15am and rods out before anyone else. Baited up and happy with my swim, now it was just a case of let the flood doors open! Unfortunately once the mist had cleared it was obvious that there wasn’t a lot of fish in front of me, in fact the whole lake looked dead. That was until I saw this angler I spoke to yesterday get his rods back out, bait up and then start hauling! It was simply that he had loads of fish in front of him and I had none. I don’t even think moving would have helped as a friend was on the opposite side and also said things weren’t happening. I was doing everything right, was happy with my rigs yet if they aren’t there you are not going to catch them. I did have three runs though, so all wasn’t lost. The first was from a duck, the second, a screamer saw nothing on the other end and just as I was calling it a day a double came along. It was a frustrating session but I’m close, oh so close and a few more tweaks to my set up and baiting and I know it won’t be long before I get the better of them. Roll on Sunday!
27/08/17 – On the banks of the Basingstoke Canal come 8am to meet up with Jake Lund once again to create a Catch More feature for AM. Keep an eye out for this one as it’s very interesting. Home come 11pm and on my way to a local lake for a spot of zig fishing all the time praying that the swim I wanted would be empty, it was. Chris was joining me and thoughts were on a red letter day as just ten minutes after casting out the alarm screamed and it was fish on. Ten seconds later I was reeling in a limp line as once again the hook had pulled and my run of dropping fish was to continue. You can imagine what I felt like when exactly the same happened an hour later and I was beginning to think that my luck was never going to change when the third carp hooked finally graced my net. On the scales she went 22lb 2oz and for the first time I felt contented. Later that afternoon Chris was away but bad luck was to strike him also as he too had a hook pull right next to the net. Thing s slowed and the fish seem to move as well as knowing what was going on, however I managed another one around 5pm, the biggest for me so far, an old leney of 26lb 4oz. That was the end of the action but certainly starting to put the pieces of the jigsaw together.
28/08/17 – Standard Monday in the office doing fishy related jobs.
29/08/17 - Tried to get out on Tuesday for another zig session but anglers in the area that I fancied and not wanting to bring attention to my tactics decided it was better not to fish. 30/08/17 - Wednesday I had a Farnham Barbel Teach-in that had been rescheduled in and once again it looked as if it was going to be wet, yet the rain cleared leaving an enjoyable evening, shame only two anglers made it!

31/08/17 – Another day in the office due to having a number of tradesmen booked in doing odd jobs around the house.

Saturday, 12 August 2017

This weeks guided sessions....

This weeks guided sessions

Its been a long week, especially with the weather constantly on the change but well worth the effort dodging the downpours and braving the cold mornings, 7 degrees on Thursday. More details of these can be read in my monthly blog that will be published early September but in brief Michael enjoyed a day at Newdigate Lodge Lake catching ten or more fish which included a personal best golden orfe weighing 4lb 14oz plus tench to around 5lb. 
Mark caught his target fish for the summer, a 3lb plus crucian when one of 3lb 2oz graced his net after maybe two-hours along with plenty of other fish. 
Neil wanted something different so the pole was dusted down and he's now well and truly hooked after catching some elastic stretching tench and bream and Adrian now knows how effective the pellet cone is having a short morning session interrupted by a number of tench to 6lb.
If you want a days guiding then just email me at - duncancharman@me.com