Pike on the Lure
For the past five years I’ve really enjoyed lure fishing for pike, but this season I have had unprecedented success with lures. I don’t know if my lure-fishing ability has improved or I’ve simply had great luck, but either way the lure has been my ‘fall-back’ method when my success is dwindling using other approaches. So, when I started blanking fishing for barbel, I decided to have a night exploring a new stretch of river with the lure rod to save my sanity.
I arrived on the river with only an hour and a half of daylight remaining, so I moved from swim to swim quickly, without spending too much time in any one place. I happened upon a very picturesque weir and decided to have a few casts into the fast water. After trying crankbaits for a while, I clipped on a fairly universal fast-water spinner – a Mepps Aglia Long no.3. On this I had the chance of Pike, Perch or Chub and the lure is quite stable and easy to fish, even in a fast current. As always, I used a long wire trace, because there was a chance of hopefully hooking a pike.
After a few casts I landed a small perch and lost a pike of around 5lbs from a very similar area, so I knew that I’d made a good choice to use the Mepps. As the sun began to sink from the sky I hooked what felt like a small perch, which came off after a second or two. I continued the retrieve and after a few more turns of the reel handle I connected with something very solid indeed. The reel spewed out line as the fish made its initial surge, but after a short-lived battle, I eased what I knew was a heavy fish over the landing net.
Immediately I knew I was looking at my biggest pike on a lure ever. The weighing of the fish confirmed a new lure-caught personal best for me; 15lb 9oz of beautiful weirpool pike!!! The fish is also the heaviest fish I’ve ever landed from a British river, and my largest pike from any venue since January 2000!!! I’m absolutely thrilled to bits with the fish and the fact that she was caught on a lure made the capture even more special.