The biggest chub of the season, weighing in at 8lb 6oz, has been caught from a stretch of the River Lea in Essex.
Landed by retired lorry driver Keith Little, the specimen was taken while the 67-year-old was targeting the section of the waterway at Waltham Abbey run by the Fishers Green Consortium.
Keith, who lives just a few miles from the river, is no stranger to the large fish on this section, having previously taken chub to 7lb 14oz and barbel to over 15lb from the stretch.
“The chub on this stretch feed best after dark,” Keith told Angling Times.
“The big eight pounder came at around 6pm, not long after the sun went down.
“It was a positive bite and when I struck into it I thought I’d hooked a barbel, it went off with real power. I got it to the net after about five minutes, but it didn’t want to go in. Once it was over the lip of the net it turned, flicked its tail and shot straight back out again. I managed to control it, though, and when I got it on the bank I knew it was good, it looked massive.
“The first thing I did was call the head bailiff, Steve Evans, to get him to come down and see it,” Keith continued.
“He didn’t believe me when I told him the weight, until he saw it with his own eyes.” Keith’s tempted the big chub on semi bolt rig tactics, using a 1.5oz Grippa lead to present hair-rigged, double 10mm halibut pellets ¬ chamfered down and glued back-to-back on a straight hair on a size 10 Drennan hook.
With a large head of hard-fighting barbel also present in the river, Keith uses heavy gear for his chub fishing, giving him a chance of landing anything else that takes a fancy to his bait.
“The pegs around where I caught the chub are full of snags,” Keith added. “I fish with 15lb line and a 20lb braided hooklength because you need heavy gear just to stop them burying themselves in the overhanging branches and tree roots, but even on the stepped-up gear the bigger chub still fight like mad.”
See how Keith caught his monster in our video here.