Angling, The never ending Journey


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For me it most likely began when a nine year old school friend said one day “Lets go darn Trent fishing” and that was it. Initially it was just something else to do and not be taken seriously. What tackle I had was cadged, borrowed or bought and very basic. As a teenager, I began match fishing, and that changed everything. I started to look what other, more experienced anglers, were doing and using, and took most of it on board. Back then the range of gear available was limited and most serious anglers augmented what could be bought, by making their own. This was something I began to copy. I made floats, tied hooks, even made myself a Spanish Reed rod. When I started work, as an apprentice engineer, I had more scope then and made rod rests, bank sticks, disgorgers, swimfeeders, leads and all manner of gadgets. Some worked, most didn't, but it got the mind ticking and channelled towards ever expanding and trying to improve my gear. This continues today and produces interesting off shoots. Rod bags tend to deteriorate, so I had a shot at making one. From rod bags I progressed to making a bait apron and wallets for floats. I made leatherette cases for my fixed spool and centre pin reels. This sent me off on a sewing tangent and I had a go at making a man’s shirt. So from a modest beginning, my angling journey has taken diverse twists and turns and because of it I have acquired skills I would not have expected. So far, I am happy to say, the final destination is nowhere in sight, so I continue to continue. Where has your sojourn taken you? Pete.

John Keane

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From a pond in the middle of a field catching sticklebacks on bits of worm to the River Spey catching salmon. Along the way, coarse fishing in ponds, canals, rivers. Diverted to fly fishing for trout and learned to tie my own flies, turned my hand to beach match fishing and to boat fishing in the sea. Enjoyed pike fishing and barbel fishing in all weathers and now don’t go fishing in any of the weathers I did as a younger man!


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A few perch from the cut and some trout from a local lake and then apart from mackerel, horrible dog fish from the sea, it was a blank until 2015. It's still a journey and with far too much luggage. I've got the gear but still no idea. One of the guys in my local AD said most things in the shop were not bait for fish but for anglers. He told me in the vernacular" it's no good having the fanciest trunks at the swimming baths if you can't swim"

I have deleted the expletives for the sensitive souls among us. I always say it is better to arrive than to travel ; I'll make an exception for fishing.


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I only started a year ago.

I'm almost 30 now and my dad has always been a fisherman.

He always offered to take me and I went a few times as a kid but he said he didn't want to "ram it down my throat" as some fathers do with their own interests like football and the such and wanted to leave it to me to decide if I wanted to fish or not.

Now I'm a bit older and I'm pretty much "hooked" on angling, I can't help but feel a bit of regret about all the years missed.

At least I'm experiencing it all now though and dad's still around to give me advice.

Last year I went at least once a week, it's slowed down through the winter but I'm keen to get going again for this new year and see what's in store.

I've got a few achievable goals for the year so let's see how they come along.

Sent from my SM-G965F using Tapatalk

ian g

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I started as a kid with a bit of help from my uncle who was a keen angler. No one else in my family when I was growing up but I was always interested , even when I parked it in my twenties . I fished those great farm ponds with lovely little crucian carp as a kid plus a bit of trout fishing in the local brook . Now I just love fishing rivers and probably enjoy fishing as much as I ever did . I feel a bit sorry for people who don't have an interest outside of the ordinary to get excited about.

ian g

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Mostly fish the Severn and Vyrnwy now , used to fish the Dane a lot plus the Weaver . The Severn is my favourite , plenty to go at.


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Was introduced to angling as a kid by my Dad. Dad happened to be the manager (glorified gopher, logistics and fixer as far as i could see) of the Leicester Likely Lads during the early seventies heyday of Ivan Marks et al.Dad was not just keen, he was bloody obsessed with fishing and a very good matchman in his own right. I used to feel sorry for kids who had to learn it all by themselves without any guidance. We went everywhere-the fens, the trent, ouse Soar etc. but what stuck with me was the local river Wreake-a tiny river which punched well above its weight and this is the fishing I do to this day-roving with light bomb rod and stick float set up for chub, roach etc. Do i have any ambition to branch out to other disciplines? Frankly, no-I have what I want and that will do for me. Cannot imagine life without fishing.

The Sogster

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Interesting post Bracket, certainly got me thinking.

I started fishing in the early seventies with cane and centrepin before progressing to a woolies special fibreglass spinning rod and fixed spool.

Since then I have been fortunate to fish many places in India and Thailand, I once fished under the bridge on the river Kwai.

As for fishing leading me elsewhere in life. Travelling in the Himalayas on some of the World's most dangerous roads, seeing the war graves in Kanchanaburi and the way other cultures live their lives has certainly had an impact on mine.

They have both also taught me the true meaning of the phrase "necessity is the mother of invention"

Having said that, a palm sized roach will do for me any day.
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I think mostly it is the places it has taken me to, valleys in Scotland, off beat places in the middle of nowhere with strange names or sometimes they don't have a name, normal people don't go there, windswept remote beaches, the middle of the English channel. I would never have experienced these places if it wasn't for fishing.
Also,like Pete, it has led me into making things and not just floats, trying different ideas etc. And we think about science a lot more as well maybe without realizing it, physics, motion dynamics, chemistry, Archimedes etc so, we learn more than just how to catch a fish; certainly it is journey without an end.
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60 years of fishing since being a young boy. I love it, still totally obsessed, but with some regrets. As a young lad I fished Stanmore Common ponds catching big roach regularly to 1lb 14oz. The fishing there then was amazing, knowing no better I took it for granted. The ponds produced both big tench and roach but now (I think?) fishing there is no longer allowed. The river Colne was a fantastic roach and chub river now mostly only a shadow of its former self being narrower and with reduced flow.

Like others on here I make a lot of tackle: rods, feeders, floats, bite alarms, rod pod, rod holdall, hair rig tyers, rod rests, lead weights, etc, etc. Also make very silly inventions.

I have a large collection of fishing books (approx 170) and fishing diaries and bait recipes going back to the '70s.

I tell my wife that one day I will take up fishing seriously!


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I became excited fishing as a young man after my mother helped me catch sunfish using a worm and a float. There were no places to fish near where I lived so unless I walked down to the Hudson R. where I rarely caught fish, I didn't fish too often. Then happened the Vietnam War and the draft.

My orders for 'nam were canceled at the last minute and I was stationed in Texas where there were ponds and large lakes close to the base I was stationed. At first I caught carp with live bait by myself until another angler in my unit invited me to go. The more you fish with someone who's more experienced, the more you learn and catch. The learning curve was steeper than ever and I started investigating more sources for ideas.

TV and fishing magazines were the main source and though much of the shows hyped tackle and lures, hopes started soaring that one day I could do as well using the same stuff for the reasons the pros insisted were bible.
After my discharge, I continued to watch TV but still rarely caught fish using live bait. Not until I joined a tournament club did I really start to get exposed to every facet of fishing unknown by me for many years - especially lure usage. Unfortunately it was too easy to sort through fishing catalogs for gear like a kid in a candy shop with money to burn after which I began to accumulate junk I would never use again that were found wanting.

Fortunately I discovered lure craft and went down the path one I'm still on today. No longer interested in buying stuff advertised as the greatest since the hook was invented, I started making my own lures. When I caught fish on them, I started wondering why fish struck them and continued to disprove and dismiss all the hype I learned from angler celebrities- except for a few. I haven't used live bait in over half a century and daily wait for the inspiration to discover unique design, especially Frankenstein lures - lures made using parts from different and combining them. Some of the junk bought for the wrong reasons years ago, I will investigate their possible uses and prove they have value. When it comes to fishing, you never know...

Now fishing is no longer just fishing off a bank waiting for fish to come to me and drag my float down. Now it's the journey to discover that which motivates fish to strike an unnatural looking object that moves like nothing that ever lived. The journey is never ending to add to the list of lures that catch fish.
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Been fishing about sixty years now, mainly game fishing at first as the farm we moved to when I was four, had the loverly river hodder as our boundary just two fields away, started following a chap that fished here, aptly named mr Fisher it was great watching him catching salmon and sea trout, there were loads in the river then, used to fish for trout when I’d got some tackle to go fishing myself, could always catch a few on worm for tea.

When I started work I got more tackle and came to an arrangement with the local pub that I could use one of there day tickets if I showed the river to anyone that stayed at the pub to fish, just a pound a day then for quality game fishing, still took me five years to catch my first salmon. enjoyed it though, and game fishing fitted in with my other hobbies of shooting and ferreting which I could do in the winter game fishing close season.

Later on after I got married for the first time, we moved to Clitheroe were I generally fished day ticket stretches, before I joined a local game fishing club to fish within walking distance of my house, it was there I met a good friend of mine who fished for game and coarse fish, and so one day I asked if I could go barbel fishing with him, as I’d read about them and fancied trying to catch one, so the next weekend we went and I caught three barbel around seven pounds, and I was hooked and after that me and mick, my fishing buddy of some fifty five years now, started coarse fishing with him, including being with him the day he caught a thirty four pound pike from the ribble.
Andy’s big pike.
He sadly died a couple of months later of a heart attack at the young age of forty six, a damn shame he was a very good friend will always miss him.

Me and mick carried on fishing together, and still do and as we got older and the salmon runs got less and less on the ribble we got more into coarse fishing, and about five years ago we gave up game fishing and decided to just coarse fish, haven’t regretted it for a minute, new challenges and more variety of fishing, enjoying our fishing even more now we have retired, and try to go twice a week when the weather is suitable,particularly like tench and carp fishing, but I’m not bothered what we catch,just nice to be out fishing.
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Fishing as been part of my life for 60 years. For nearly twenty years it ruled my life, fishing after school, than after work and weekends, holiday spent fishing then other hobbies and life took over. Although I did less fishing I took on club roles such as Chairman, Treasurer etc but gave up that side when others thought they could do better job.
The last 30 years have been a mixture hobby wise of music, photography, bird watching with fishing now taking more of a back seat (I haven’t fished since last July) with me now being a fair weather or can't be bothered type angler.
Caught plenty of fish over the years but remember my best days were when the River Roding held plenty of fish and trotting a float down the Hampshire Avon at Britford and catching mixed bags of fish. Now it's leave most of the gear at home and walk the banks lure fishing, when I go that is.

What fishing gave me, apart from a shed full of unused tackle was a place where I could be on my own or with a group of like-minded anglers and not worry about the rest of the world.


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We went everywhere-the fens, the trent, ouse Soar etc. but what stuck with me was the local river Wreake-a tiny river which punched well above its weight.
I have a few fond memories of the wreake, I still fish a lot at the complex’s at Frisby. Might give it another go in the summer.

Anglings a journey that started for me when I was young maybe 9 years of age. Stopped when I got married now the kids have grown I have more time to myself. I’ve I’ve had to teach myself more or less everything I know. I honestly don’t think I’ll ever know it all, there’s always something new to try. I still struggle to catch any great quantities of fish, but it’s all in the journey.

Never tried match fishing, I was tempted a year or two ago when I was in a tiny club.

Even now I make odd bits of kit, usually when I go into a tackle shop or online and think “how much!” But that ability to tinker and make, mend, whip eyes etc has served me for many years in many different situations. My wife was trying to tie a piece of string onto a stick the other day for the cat with no luck till I whipped it on rather than just tying a knot.
So the knowledge we gain is useful lol

Sometimes though it’s just the time to escape and unwind from all the carp that life throws at us.
If it wasn’t for angling I think I’d have lost the plot years ago.


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and not worry about the rest of the world...
Other than catching fish, that reason above all others is a priority especially having to deal with -sometimes daily - frustrations and upsets. Also retired, the only frustrations and upsets I have to deal with are marital related.:eek:mg:
Nice to have a basement workshop I can retreat to, smoke my pipe, sipping good coffee while watching TV and discovering new lure designs until I can retreat to my local waters in spring. Seems to make the cold winter days pass by faster until then.

(Good thing the wife never reads my posts!)

Rich, if you have soft plastic lures lying around, you might want to try combining the parts of two or more to create something new. Check my posts for ideas (photos) - they WORK! All you need is something to make a clean cut, a candle to slightly melt the ends and a steady hand to join the parts together. Lures of all kinds catch fish - especially those you would never think could - limited only by the imagination. In fact, one time I discovered how to make a catch-all-lure using a ceramic floor tile as a mold. That's where my user name came from after stirring hot plastic with a teaspoon.
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It appears my fishing experience is similar to that of John keane, apart from the fluff flinging that is.


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I was lucky to have my dad take me, also to Stanmore common ponds when I was a kid to catch my first perch with inherited gear and no idea, we then learned together how to float fish rivers, we were together when we caught our first barbel on the float and our first two pound roach. Lots of water under the bridge since then but we still enjoy our time together, even more so now.

He only fishes with me now in the warmer months and I am still so so lucky to have that


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it has led me into making things and not just floats, trying different ideas etc. And we think about science a lot more as well maybe without realizing it, physics, motion dynamics, chemistry, Archimedes etc so, we learn more than just how to catch a fish; certainly it is journey without an end.
Couldn't have said it better !

From the beginning where live bait was the only thing I knew to use to the present creation of new lure designs, the journey has meandered in different directions. Sonar has made finding fish a bit easier, but ultimately adapting to conditions and versatility is an ongoing challenge.

Knowledge is a great thing but “the greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge.” Illusions of knowledge have been pandered via the media for decades and anglers have bought (literally) into it. But part of the journey for many of us is discovery followed by surprise and satisfaction. Current fishing media prompts me to yawn; coming up with a new lure designs makes me want to run out and try them immediately.

Granted, fish biology facts and new findings continue to fill books, but the mystery is ongoing why fish bite what they bite and when they bite, especially where it concerns lures that look nor move like anything that ever lived. In fact the more I fish the simpler it is to catch fish minus all the media bull and misinformation. Catching fish is one of many challenges branching from it resulting in the peace of mind knowing that the journey is never-ending and that no one can take that away from us.
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My angling path is about to change again,new clubs(well around 18 years since last a membership),different waters,new challenges,all makes Alan very keen,certain species that have been lacking a bit will hopefully be more prevalent,happy days(hopefully)