I started fishing like most when my dad took me to a local lake when I was around 8 years old fishing the maggot, we progressed onto the river Dove where we spent most of our time. As I didn’t have waders dad used to carry me and my rod and maggots onto a gravel island where he left me trotting the maggot with my 10ft diawa and Mitchel 204 reel after dace and grayling with the odd chub thrown in. In winter we used to use maggot feeder again for the grayling. We also fished a free stretch of the Severn near Atcham where we would get out first catches of barbel, this is where I first realised how much power a barbel has for its size.
Great memories also of our annual trip to Caven in Ireland where we would fish for the bream. Great times and in the evening the local folk in the pub would looked after me playing pool and buying me pop and crisps while dad and my uncle went prebaiting.
I spent quite a bit of time after Tench too as I got into my teens, another great looking and fighting fish per pound. The River Dove continued draw me back trotting the maggot but the dace seemed to disappear, the grayling became scarce but the chub became plenty and were great sport.
Around 10 years ago that I really started to target barbel. I went to a few barbel society meetings and I had a day on the river with Dave Mason and a day with Ade Kiddell. Now that opened my eyes with two completely different approaches, both work well in the appropriate river. Back on the Dove I now had the confidence to stalk the elusive barbel on bright sunny days in crystal clear water, although challenging there was never a more satisfying feeling when it came good.
In recent years I began visiting the upper and middle Trent with the thought of good sized fish being a possibility and in Feb 2016 I did manage to land one of the lumps that are know to be around the Clifton Bridge area. I’ve had more blanks than catches on there but when the reward can be a specimen fish it’s worth the effort.
I spent time on the Severn too, with a fair chance of catching throughout the day it was a good and safe place to take my twins Emily and Ben along with Dad.
I have been known to chuck size 3 vibrax spinner across the river Dove on an ultra light set up after the trout with some success.
So that’s it really, I spend my time fishing between the Dove and the Trent with the occasional visit to the Severn.
Tight lines and enjoy your fishing