I don’t know whether it is my age or it happens to everyone but I have lost a bit of gear since I started fishing again. There are the obvious things like hooking a branch when you might lose your hook length or if you are unlucky, the float as well. Another thing that comes into this category are swim feeders and method feeders, either because I have cast into bushes again or snagged up under the water. Of course I try everything to free them, jerking the rod, going left and right, high and low and sometimes it works but if not it just ends up with a hard pull and being lucky or not!
Then there are the things that you don’t expect to lose. The first was my disgorger, metal and has been with me for ever and when I went to use it, it wasn’t there. Luckily I also have a pair of small forceps and so was able to get hooks out during that session. The next thing was my phone, which I have related in an earlier blog and which I got back after a few minutes searching thanks to another angler phoning my number so I could hear it. Then there was a bank stick, I must have just left it sticking in the bank when I came home but the thing that puzzled and annoyed me most was my carp landing mat.
My club has a rule about having a landing mat of a certain size and I was able to get one off Amazon but it wasn’t cheap. It was a soft one, quite fluffy and probably filled with polystyrene balls or something to puff it out. Anyway, I had only used it a couple of times when I went to my usual lake. Now this lake is next to a farm yard, quite private and no-one about and I settled down in my usual swim. It was actually a windy day and I was getting cold and blown about and as I wasn’t having much luck I decided to move to the other side of the lake to try and find some shelter and some fish. I took a couple of trips round the lake and settled down for the rest of the session. When it was time to go home I packed up my gear and noticed that the mat was missing. I thought that it was strange but perhaps I had left it behind at the old swim so took my gear back to the car and had a look, nothing! So, back to the second swim and a good look around and it wasn’t there. I was on my own by now so there was no-one to ask so I walked round the lake but didn’t find it.
Now as far as I can work it out there were two possibilities, either I had left it behind at my old swim and someone had taken it or that I had moved it to my new swim and it had gone from there. I thought that I had put it up the bank behind me with my bag and other gear and it was next to a large field which had recently been farrowed and was quite smooth. While I was sheltered by bushes the field was exposed to the wind and blowing straight across and I think that it picked up my mat and blew it away. I thought about walking across the field to look but as I said it was big, actually it was enormous just like the American prairies and I didn’t fancy the walk of at least half a mile to the other side looking for something which might not even be there so I went home instead. Needless to say I have been more careful with its replacement and always peg it down or put something heavy on it if there is the slightest breeze!
No photos this week as I found it hard to take pictures of things that I haven’t got!