It is January 1st and I had planned to go fishing this morning as we are in a spell of mild weather and I hoped the fish were biting. However, I woke up after nine this morning feeling quite rough and no, it wasn’t the result of imbibing too much for the New Year Festivities but this sinusitis I have developed and by the time I was feeling half decent again the day was nearly gone so I decided to give it a miss.

So, what to write for the blog? Well, it is that time of year when people look back on the last year and forward to the next so I thought that I would do the same. I have now been fishing again for eighteen months at a number of different waters and have gained some experience  but am a long way from being an expert or even good at it. In fact I seem to be getting worse! Since the Autumn my catch rate has really dropped off and I haven’t caught much at all. Whether this is because of the conditions, weather, overfishing or something else, I don’t know. I am using the same methods and going to the same places that I went last year when I was having some luck but recently I have been blanking more often than not. When I first started fishing again I was impatient to catch a fish but have learnt that blanking is part of fishing and have become more accepting of it. The important thing is that next time I go out I am going to catch something and make it all worthwhile!

There were some high points of the year, landing a decent carp on my float rod with a single red maggot and size 16 hook was one of them, I thought that I was going to lose it every second until it was in the net and I still could hardly believe it. Neither could the young man who came round from the other side of the lake from where he had been watching me to see what I had caught! Another highlight and a first was catching carp on the surface using a bubble float and bread. Seeing the fish cruising towards the bait and then taking it is exciting and completely different from watching a float or quiver tip. Working with the club to open up a water which is just across the road from me has been a positive and although I blanked when I fished there a few weeks ago I think that I will do much better in the summer when the weed has been raked out and the water is more accessible. I am looking forward to going fishing whenever I have an hour or so and walking out of my house with my gear all set up and being on the bank in less than five minutes.

There have been some good moments that have not just been about fishing but being in the countryside. It is always great to see a kingfisher flash past and hearing buzzards calling to each other overhead was amazing. I don’t mind seeing a heron standing in the margins but am a lot less enthusiastic about cormorants! Then there are the sounds or sometimes the lack of them. Like many people I live where there is a background of traffic noise and am surprised how it can be heard even in the remotest places where I fish. Of course it depends on the wind direction and sometimes it is very quiet and I don’t hear anything but natural sounds or see anyone all day, it is good to get away from it all! Other sounds that I hear regularly are the children playing during their lunch break at a primary school, dogs barking in a kennels, they maybe even the local hunt as they send a shiver up my spine when I hear them, they sound like the baying of hounds after their prey which you see in all kinds of films!

So, what about the future? A good question and one that I haven’t got much of an answer for. Over the last eighteen months I have tried out different methods and bought all the gear that I need. Yes, I know that there is always something else to buy but I am trying to resist the temptation! I haven’t been grabbed by any one type of fishing. I like catching carp but don’t like waiting for a bite, I still like watching a float and I have got into using a quiver tip a bit more. I like it all really but not any one thing in particular that I want to specialise in so will keep on with ether a carp rod or feeder rod and a float rod out. One thing that I have made my mind up on though, you could call it my New Year’s Resolution, is not to keep going back to places where I have blanked recently just because they have fished well in the past! It may be that I will be successful there in the future but for now there are plenty of places that I haven’t fished yet and who knows, I might break some PB’s!

Anyway, that is it for my blog for 2021, I have enjoyed writing it and I hope that you have enjoyed reading it and will continue to follow me on my angling journey in 2022. Don’t forget if anyone wants to contribute to the blog as a guest writer then get in touch with me via the contact form. In the meantime have a Happy New Year and tight lines for 2022!

You can’t see the reflections in my head so I thought I would include a photo of some reflections in the river!

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