Thursday, 1 September 2011

Carp fishing at the Vineyard

Good weather, good company and a shed load of fish. What more can a man ask for? Good coffee? Dancing girls?Well, take a flask and put bromide in your brew, that's what we did when we rolled up at the carp pool at Halfpenny Green Vineyards near Dudley in Staffordshire in late July (not really on the bromide - isn't that what they use for painting fences?)

Riviera Kid on fire!
Being the fairweather type, the sun had to be shining, and of course it was on this quiet, picturesque little pool tucked just behind a vineyard (yes - an actual English vineyard that makes nice wine and sells strong cheese!) The carpark is dusty and rough enough to knock out your false teeth but leaves you only with a 45 second walk to the pool, beautifully kept, with about 20 to 30 fishing pegs in amongst the trees and the reeds and the lilies.

You pay £6.00 for a day's fishing and although there are a few bait and tackle restrictions that seem a bit petty (no boilies, no floating baits, no tins on the bank, no action man T-shirts, size 14 hooks or smaller - which is too small!) all you need is a big slab of best value luncheon meat and you're away.

Jocky on the ocky
My comrade for the day, Jocky (henceforth known as 'Jocky') hadn't fished since the last milenium, and then only down the local cut as a lad where you'd be lucky to bag one or two gudgeon in amongst the whales (in the Black Country, whales is what you have on your bike, one at the front and one at the rear!) And let me tell you, he was blown away and hardly had time to sit down and drink his bromide.

From the moment his waggled luncheon meat on a size 14 hair rig hit the bottom, he was pulling in the carp, none of them smaller than 1/2lb and plenty in the 2 to 3lb range. The biggest we had that day was a four pound GIANT mirror carp (to me, of course) which I called Gary, although a chap further up landed and whopping 18lb mirror after about half an hour's dancing. The best place to fish seemed to be right in the margins, and the chap who collected the money advised me to fling sweetcorn violently at the water just by my feet to bring the fish running. By golly it worked!

If anything, the fishing was a little too easy with time between fish being no more than twenty minutes at any moment. You certainly become spoilt and it could give the newbie a dangerously false view of the joys of fishing.

However, who wants to go somewhere and catch nothing? Not The Fairweather Fisherman matey-boy. So all in all, a great day out and some nice bushes to go and pee behind. Next blog, first time fly fishing at Delbury Hall.

Riviera Kid, The Fairweather Fisherman