Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Time Is Running Out - February 2018

Time is running out, at least as far as the current pike fishing season is concerned. That's how it feels for those of us who haven't, so far, been enjoying the best of seasons. Clearly time, or the lack of it, will not be weighing quite so heavily on the minds of those who have been enjoying success at their fishing. Oh to be in that situation?

SENPAC's February seems to have continued where January left off. Some really nice fish reported by some of our number, a complete lack of fish for many others and perhaps the worst of all, hooked fish refusing to stay hooked for others like me.

The one aspect of SENPAC's results this season that has gradually become apparent as the months have passed is that generally fewer fish are being caught, however, the average size of the fish being caught is increasing. Why that should be I've not a clue. We are fishing the same waters at the same times of the year and most other variables remain fairly constant so I guess it all comes down to the one constant that will always and has always governed our fishing. The influence of TAP. Now the science of the TAP influence is not understood despite the fact that it has an immense effect on all aspects of our everyday lives, not just our fishing. The guy who eventually works out the mechanics of how the TAP influence operates will be a very wealthy man as long as he keeps it to himself and the most unpopular man on earth if he shares his discovery.

The Tap influence, well, Time And Place of course. The difference between getting it right and getting it wrong is immeasurable depending on the circumstances but, as far as the fishing is concerned will always be the defining  influence as far as I'm concerned. Skill, perhaps, TAP certainly.

And so to those that were in the right place at the right time in February. The Region outing in February was north of the border this time and like the January outing was largely fishless for those that attended. Largely is the operative word here as one of our number unlocked the secret of our chosen water just as he did on the January trip ( skill perhaps?) with a belter of a fish. The journey home for Chris Graham will have seemed much shorter than it did for the rest of us with this to look at on his phone.........

Chris Graham's 23lb-12oz Belter 

A week or so later and on a small fishery on our side of the border, one of our lure fishing fans manage to repeat his January success with another lure caught cracker ( not skill surely?) this time using a yellow Spanish jellyworm lure as opposed to his faithful spoon. Spanish, well purchased in Spain on his earlier trip to the Ebro.

                     Dave Gardner's 20lb-8oz Lure Caught Fish

Dave Gardner, fishing for the first time in a long time with Son Wayne also managed a 7lb'er as did Wayne so no doubt an enjoyable bankside reunion for Father and Son.

As for the rest of us, well, the only other notable capture also fell to one of our lure fishing specialists, Steve Sandiford, not so much because of the size of the fish caught but more from where they were caught. Fishing one of our more local waters which has suffered one of its least productive seasons so far ( little or nothing having come out since early December) he managed to extract two fish in a morning session. Hopefully a good sign for the future.

Looking forward to the final month of the season and hopefully a busy month for the SENPAC troops. Menteith to look forward to in a few days for four of our number, weather permitting. As I write this it's snowing hard outside and with meteorological mayhem being predicted in increasingly emotional terms by those who are supposed to know about these things, that outing may well be in doubt.
However we also have our season finale to look forward too with our four day jolly boys outing to Scotland in the middle of next month. Hopefully right time right place will kick-in for all concerned on that trip. If not then I will just have to make do with keeping my new best fishing buddy entertained.....................................................


Friday, 2 February 2018

The Outing - January 2018

Back down to earth with a bump would be a fair description of the Region's January outing. Seven members turned out on the day for, as it transpired, a thankfully modest journey to the chosen venue. Six of those members were grateful for that thankfully modest journey home as their drive was not buoyed by memories of fish caught.

The only fish caught, Chris Graham's 13lb-8oz pictured in the previous blog. As for the rest of us, well, a lot of staring at the water whilst sheltering from a very mean wind and for at least one of our number the opportunity to break out the camera gear.

Monday, 29 January 2018

New Year Ramblings - January 2018

So January came and went in a mishmash of weather fronts, both warm and cold, the odd named storm and in between the occasional day when it seemed just too nice to go fishing. I'm joking of course as well as being confused. Up here in the north we seemed to go from days of sub-zero temperatures and snow, when we struggled to find somewhere to fish which didn't have a lid on, to days of double figure temperatures when the sun shone and the rivers raged and throughout it all you often had to find something to hide behind to avoid being blown into whatever water was in front of you. Definitely not umbrella weather Chris, wouldn't you say?

Despite all this confusion some of the SENPAC lads were out and about and fish were being caught by most, with one or two special fish included. Top of the special fish list for the month has to be Dave Greally's spanker of 22lb-8oz which is now starring on You Tube (see previous blog) and on Dave's toilet wall I understand?

Not far behind in the size stakes and only a week later in the month and our other Dave, Gardner, got in on the act with a Yorkshire lump of 20lb-12 oz from a water that was in the process of trying to freeze.
As for the rest of us well most had to settle for quantity as opposed the obvious quality of the previous fish although Chris Graham set his bar slightly higher than most with a  nice brace of doubles in a week, both from the same venue but on two separate visits. Nice way to avoid blanks that.

First 12lb - 4oz and.......

........second 13lb - 8oz

So all in all not a bad month for the clubs members speaking of which we welcomed a new member to the Jolly Boys during the period, another Geordie piker (ex Lincolnshire, not that any of us will hold that against him) so a warm welcome to Rob Brewis.

All of a sudden we are into the last couple of months of the season and some favourite swims will be on the agenda in the hope of a special fish, January got us off to a good start in 2018, let's hope it continues!

Monday, 15 January 2018

"I've never got a camera when I need one!"

Even in todays mobile phone centric world, how many times have you said to yourself whilst out fishing, "I've never got a camera when I need one".

Well just occasionally, very occasionally, someone is to hand suitably equipped to capture one of those special piking moments that come along every now and again.

As Mike hinted in last month's blog, a new "best of the SENPAC season so far" fell to Dave Greally early in the new year. This is the story........................................................


Monday, 8 January 2018


                                      Dawn Breaks On A Highland Loch.

A reasonably quiet December for most of the members of SENPAC. The dreaded flu bug hit some of the lads and they decided to stay indoors instead of venturing out on to the bank. Others survived and reported catching some small Pike to double figures. Best fish of the Christmas period fell to Peter Armstrong with a 17lb Pike caught on a drain during the third Club Trip championship match of the season.

Peter And His Christmas Cracker.

So into 2018 we go and hopefully some bigger girls will come along in the next three months. As I update this blog It has just been reported that one of our members in the first few days of the new year has caught a Pike in excess of 20lbs.

Thursday, 7 December 2017


                                                It's A Waiting Game.

 A relatively quiet month for SENPAC but even though no big fish appeared the members have still been out catching fish. Paul Proctor and three other members visited a Cumbrian still water and at the end of the session all four returned home fishless. Paul was back a couple of days later and once again the Pike did not show up. Not one to give up easily Paul returned three days later with Bruce Turnbull and this time he got the result he was looking for. Two fish on the day the biggest weighing in at 12lbs.

                                             Result for Paul.

Dave Gardner got a late call up as one of the reserves on the Lake of Menteith PAC event. Dave was unable to track down any of the lakes big girls on the day but still managed to catch a few smaller ones.

                                Another One From Menteith For Dave.

Dave Greally and Bruce Turnbull have been making frequent trips down into Yorkshire fishing various waters. They have both been catching fish. Pictured below Dave with a 12lb river fish.

Chris Graham has been fishing over the pond. Not one of our local ponds though. He has just returned after a three week break in Texas catching Perch, Channel Catfish, and Drum fish.

We are into December now and looking to pull out a few Christmas crackers. We take this opportunity in wishing all our blog readers from around the world a very Merry Christmas and many tight lines for 2018.

Friday, 10 November 2017


                                                      A Piking Dawn.

The region got off to a good start in October with the appearance of two good doubles. One caught by Dave Greally whilst fishing a loch north of the border. The pike weighing in at 18lb 12ozs must have been hungry because the next day it succumbed to Dave's offering again.

                           Not Once But Twice. Dave And His 18lb 12oz.

One of the highlights of the SENPAC year is the annual Jolly Boys outing which  usually takes place at the start of the pike season. Over the years the lads on the trips have caught decent fish and this together with the Geordie banter and laughs along the way has made it a very successful event. This year's trip has just taken place and once again nobody had any complaints. Six intrepid Pikers set off for the four day trip and everybody caught pike. Over thirty fish were landed mostly up to the ten pound mark but Dave Greally and Dave Gardner caught fish weighing 11lb 2oz and 10lb 2oz. Paul Proctor landed three fish on the same piece of bait. Bruce Turnbull had a 9lb 2oz and unfortunately Steve Sandiford and Peter Armstrong blanked on the Sunday pike match. Best fish of the trip fell to Mike Bell during the club match with his only run of the day providing him with a 19lb 1oz fish.

                                                 One For Paul Proctor.

                                               Another One For Bruce.

                                      Steve Sandiford The Lure Specialist.

                                                       A Piking Sunset.

                    Only Run Of The Day But Well Worth It. Mike And
                    His 19lb 1oz Which Turned Out To Be The Biggest
                    Pike Caught On The SENPAC 2017 Jolly Boys Outing.

                                              The Perfect End To The Day.