Walking for the Pike

The last few of my recent fishing trips have been to the Grand Western Canal after Pike. The venue is great for when everywhere else is rained off as seems to have been the theme for the last few weeks – the canal seems to remain clear…ish and fishable no matter what the weather, even if some parts are clearer than others.

Yet more bad weather this week saw me heading back to the Tiverton Canal, this time with my fishing buddy Jason. I would be fly fishing for pike, and he toting the lure rod with a selection of shads and plugs. We hoped to tempt a few pike, even though we knew that realistically the chances of anything big were not that high. Still – even the jacks are fun on light gear!

We met up at dawn and headed over to the Greenway section near Halberton. After depositing one car at the Dudley Weatherley Jubilee Bridge we drove back to the Greenway Bridge at Halberton and set off on foot. This way we could walk the whole big loop of water between the two cars without having to back track at any point. It turned into quite a walk as I hadn’t really appreciated just how big a loop of water this was.

Things started promisingly with an early take on a small fly retrieved slowly. A little later I landed a tiny pike that most satisfyingly, had taken the fly that my youngest daughter had helped me tie up recently! What a relief! … and in this case the size was irrelevant, I knew Isobel would be delighted!

Tiverton Canal Jack Pike

Isobel's Pike Fly

The weather was seemingly perfect with no wind and still, overcast, mild conditions. Very nice for just walking and exploring the water. A couple of other takes, including a fish lost to both of us followed pretty swiftly after the first fish and things were looking up. A good bit of action in the first hour and plenty of time left! We began to wonder how many fish we’d actually get to bank….I certainly expected a couple more fish in the remaining time. It wasn’t to be however as for some reason the bites dried up and we fished and fished with no more takes, despite persevering for a good few hours more.

Even though the flurry of fish I’d expected after the first hour, didn’t happen, I left at the end of the day with the satisfaction of christening Isobel’s fly and maybe more importantly for future, having seen some different and interesting looking stretches of water that just invited a return visit at another time.

Christmas is fast approaching, so maybe I’ll have to drag myself away from the Tivvy Canal of the festive break and visit somewhere else.. Just need some favourable weather.

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