Back in 1969 Michael Palin and John Cleese performed the Dead Parrot Sketch as part of a Monty Python TV show. What on earth has that to do with piking? The link is tenuous to say the least! Read on...
I took the opportunity to have a couple of hours on my secret venue last night just as the light was fading... as I approached the venue I passed a car on the unmade road and we both opened our windows I asked how it was fishing. The response was that yesterday it wasn't so good BUT today it was excellent! T'other chap asked me what I was after and I said that I was after pike, on the fly. "Oh you're the bloke that had two last week" was the reply... notoriety... at last!
In contrast there were few carp fishing albeit conditions were better... apparently. I had a chat to a couple of chaps sitting fishing for roach and they told me that one of them had had a 5lb pike on a roach as he was retrieving the silver fish... good news indeed.
I spent 40 minutes working my way up the swims until I met a group of lads going home and they commented that pike had be chasing the roach in their swim a couple of pegs up fom where I was. OK... give it a go.
The large peg was littered with the ends of bait and I saw from the bank a small shoal of roach hanging around in the shallows. Mmmm... promising. A few casts parallel to the bank retrieving one long and two short with a pause of varying lengths and bang I was into a fish!
After a short fight the jack yielded... I was ready today with the handle of the net close at hand and slipped it under the fish... there was no escape for young Esox today. The first hook of the tandem had caught him fair and square a centimetre or so back from his bottom jaw... those Ad Swier hooks are so easy to remove... a large treble there and I would have had to have used a pair of snips to take the point and barb off. I didn't bother weighing the fish but gave myself 3 - 4 lbs based on the length of the fish... approximate length judged by the width of the bottom of my net... I actually don't care about the weight... it's just all about catching pike!
Hooks extracted (in the net) my quarry wanted to return to the murky depths of the lake... what an utterly fantastic sight these fish are... I feel a certain honour that I have found the secret in catching them... and to see them swim off unharmed and with vigour... fantastic!
I'm looking forward to Monday night and to test driving a Harrison 9ft 9 weight blank... a rod in the making!
Oh I almost forgot... the parrot... in the still balmy air I heard one of the two anglers after the roach comment, "must be like casting a dead parrot on that rod" My retort across the water was that it was the mother-in-law's budgie! There was a ripple of laughter and sniggers that echoed around the lake as night fell.