This blog follows me on my travels to try and catch specimen freshwater fish of all species including carp, tench, pike, barbel, perch, roach, rudd and chub. This blog also looks into the various tactics, baits and rigs sucessfully used to catch specimen coarse fish. I have also included a venue guide giving information on open access waters accross England. This is located on the menu to the right of this page under Choppedworm venue guide.
10 December 2009
Barden Pike October 2009
I have been fishing for over 15 years but never for pike so during the autumn 09 I decided to head down to Barden Lake in Tonbridge which belongs to Tonbridge angling society. I was a member there for two years and was on the waiting list for my night permit which I never received. I knew it held some decent size pike over 30lbs so it seemed the perfect venue. It’s a large gravel pit of around 18 acre and contains some massive carp to.
Out came my carp rods with dead bait traces legered with a float for bite indication. I decided to use dead roach as bait as that would be the predominant natural food for the pike in the pit. I also decided to take my spinning rod and a few lures.
I arrived at the lake at dawn and it looked fantastic as it always does. I was struggling and was unsuccessful for half the day until my spinning rod bent round and I was in. I landed a small male pike of around 3lb (below) but it was on a lure so I was as happy as Larry. That was my first fish on a lure.
The evening drew closer and after walking around the lake twice I settled in a quite bay. Within 10 minutes my float disappeared and I was in but not for long as the fish shook the hooks after a short battle. I returned the bait to the same area hoping the fish might take it again and within five minutes the rod bait runner sounded. After a short easy fight I landed what looked like a large pike estimated 16-18lb but this was not the case. After weighing her twice she went to 12lb but looked much bigger. The head on the fish was of a 20lb fish. I decided that the fish was down in weight and may have been slightly ill as the fight she put up was poor. However I was still a very happy fisherman as this was my personal best pike(below).
I made another trip to Barden in search of pike and had a great session catching three pike from the bay and losing two on dead baits. 13lb (below), 10lb, 9lb again beating my personal best for the species. I intend to do some more sessions on Barden for pike during the winter when the fish have filled out more and are in better condition. I am also interested in the large roach that inhabit the water so I will keep you updated.