If you are shivering bank-side in double thermals, spare a thought for Steve Bull – trying to reacclimatise to the UK after the heat of fishing in sunny Thailand.
And what a trip that turned out to be with Steve (son of Olney’s Ron) bagging up on foreign monsters as though there was no tomorrow.
Among a shedfull of big – and, to some, downright weird – fish captures were the exotic looking 65lb Amazon redtail cat pictured, Siamese catfish to 90lb or so, and a 290lb arapaima which, in terms of people... scaled almost 21 stone!
All were landed from the popular Brit-run Gillhams lake fishery. Apparently Steve visits relatives in Australia and then calls in to Thailand on the way back as fishing is a lot cheaper there than in Oz.
Why doesn’t really matter? It just has to beat Furzton in January...
But everything is relative – and back home MKAA’s Bletchley boatyard section of the Grand Union was the hot-spot on Sunday as, despite the morning’s mega-frost, the top four shared well over 40lb in the association’s winter league opening round.
And that’s not counting a 13-9 pike which Mark Haynes landed...on a single maggot fished on a size 20 to 1.75lb BS hooklength!
Maver MK’s Steve Rose (picture courtesy of Gonefishin’s facebook page) netted perch to 2-8 and a small shoal of roach on pinkie and punch for 12-3 with Ernie Sattler (MK Vets Plus 1) totalling 11-8-8 of caster roach.
‘Young’ Mark Haynes – the ‘Plus 1’ in the Vets Plus 1 – made third with 10-3-8 of skimmers despite the time lost on landing that big pike, with Olney’s Kevin Osborne fourth on 9-6.
The vets were top team with 18 points followed by Maver 14 and Kingfishers 10.
Osprey were in baggin mode at Lakeside as Tony Winnock, fishing popped-up bread, tied with meat-basher Mick Darke on 116-4. Ian Millin had 105lb on corn.
At the other end of the scale Linford didn’t need scales for their ‘Morgan section canal sweep. John Hough had seven small roach, Roy Hefferon a small perch, and Mick Hefferon an even smaller one...
Dace dominated when Towcester braved the ‘just-back-in-its-banks’ Tove. Graham Martin won with 4-10 ahead of Mick Goodridge 4-6 and Les Goodridge 3-8.
On Itters pit John Weatherall topped Calvert’s do with 1-14 as Derek Bishop had 12 ounces and Dave Lewis 4 ounces. Game bunch week after week those Calvert lads.
Towcester vets’ midweeker on the Gayton arm cut saw Tosh Saunders net 3-14, beating John Balhatchett 3-3 and Graham Martin 2-11.
Flooded off the Ouse, MK vets found little solace on the ‘Morgan cut. Dave McLlennan walked it with 2-7 and Ian Greenhood had 1-6. But John Weatherall topped his section with just 3 ounces. Grim, or what?!