“Switching spots mid-session transformed my results” – Dai Gribble

Good hit of tench topped by 9lb 12oz specimen...

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“When we fish a venue we know well, it’s easy to target the same tried-and-tested areas – but sometimes a change can make all the difference.

“On a trip to Hunt’s Corner Lake on Oxford’s Linear Fisheries I’d had a strangely quiet start to my tench session, but by re-evaluating and targeting a different area I managed a good hit of fish, including this 9lb 12oz specimen.

“I hadn’t fished the venue for years due to all the lockdowns, and things can change a lot over time, which sometimes you have to react to. There’s been a bit of work done on the lake, with a lot of trees being cut down in one part, which allows more wind to hit the water. While this should be beneficial to the lake as a whole, it can have an impact on the fish and their behaviour.

“I’ve had good catches in the past in a certain swim where there’s a hump 30 yards out. It’s a productive spot where the tench seem happy to feed, and on this session I decided to try it again.

“Right from the off, however, when I was having a lead about, I noticed something odd. There was much more silkweed than usual – a sign that the fish possibly weren’t feeding there. If they were, it’d have been clearer. Alarm bells were ringing, but having had such good results from the spot in the past I put two rods there at 9am, both of which were rigged with feeders and worm kebab hookbaits on helicopter rigs.

“I contemplated putting a third rod on a different spot, but didn’t want too many lines in the water, so I decided to wait and see what happened. However, by 11.30am I’d had no bites. In fact, I hadn’t seen any signs of fish at all, so I decided to make a change.

“There’s another spot in the same swim around 40 yards out – a bar where I’d caught bream from before. I figured this was worth a try, and after introducing a few Spombs of hemp and Sonubaits pellets, my feeders were in position.

“Sure enough, it wasn’t long before one of the rods was away, and a good run of tench followed. These varied greatly in size, from the nine-pounder right through to tiny little one-pounders – the smallest tench I’ve had from there!

“If I hadn’t changed swims, I might not have caught, so it just shows that by trying to read the signs and adapting to what was happening in front of me I was able to buy a few bites.

“It’s something I’d encourage you to try in your fishing, and the same thinking can be applied to more than just the spots you’re fishing over. Changing your baits, rigs or swims entirely can be worth doing if you’re not catching. Sitting bloody-minded on the same old method that worked before isn’t always the best thing to do!”

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