New season hopes
Years ago, before commercial fisheries were so widespread, I was ambivalent about the closed season. On the one hand, it was a shame to have to stop fishing for three months, especially if I’d had a good final few weeks in March. On the other, it was a chance to catch up on the domestic jobs and chores, perhaps even a major household project, and get them sorted before it all kicked off again on the glorious 16th. Not to mention an opportunity to go through all your kit, cleaning, replacing and renewing various items. Even though we were always able to fish canals and stillwaters I never bothered, but that’s all changed now. As commercials gained momentum they at first provided a haven in the supposed three-month lay-off from the rivers. Now, though, I and many others, find ourselves fishing commercials as the default starting point all year. This is sad and this year I’m determined to do something about it, not least because of some inspiring river articles in IYCF. You’ve really whetted my appetite for running water and I will be regularly baiting a few spots for a couple of weeks and renewing my acquaintance with the River Welland. Let’s just hope I’m not too impatient and am tempted to move if I haven’t caught a fish within five minutes of setting up, like I expect to on a man-made hole in the ground. I’ll let you know how it goes!
Michael Piper, via email