Through December, I was either too busy at work to fish, or when I had a day off, just too tired or needing to catch up on jobs around the house. After Christmas, when I finally had a few days off from work, snow fell making my area very tricky to travel in and the rivers high and dirty. As a last resort, to get a bend in our rods, Martin and I decided on a trip to a deep sand pit near Scunthorpe, The South Lake at Messingham Sands.
These pits used to be kind to Martin and I in the past. In the winter of 99/00 we used to catch some lovely big roach and chub, waggler fishing maggots set at 3 feet in over 12 feet of water. A few of the roach were over 1.8 up to 1.12, but we caught plenty well over a pound. The chub touched 5lbs, plus there used to be some nice rudd in too.
I also spent a day perch fishing there nine years ago, catching a couple of big 3lb+ fish on my first attempt. Sadly, I told a couple of other anglers about the day and the place was heavily fished for perch over the next few years. I never bothered, having learned my lesson, and fished for perch elsewhere.
Today though, we would just be fishing for roach because the weather was so cold. Most of the lakes were iced over as we drove into the complex and the temperature hovered between -3 and -4
To start with I had to fish very close in as the water was freezing in my rods eyes when I tried further out. There was no response, but I carried on sprinkling maggots on my normal waggler line. Martin was fishing a maggot feeder and was picking up some nice roach with the odd sample touching 12oz, but most around 4oz
Soon, the sun warmed things up and the temperature rose above freezing. I returned to my original waggler line where my white maggots attracted the lakes roach population and I was soon landing quality redfins to 14oz.
I set myself a target of catching one over the pound mark. It didn’t take too long as a lovely fish of just over 1.4 was eased into the waiting net. This formed part of a total catch of around 15lbs of quality redfins. A lovely way to blow the cobwebs off, get a bend in the rod, and see out 2014. Happy days!