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The one pike

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The one pike


Post by ska1911 » Wed May 08, 2019 4:43 pm

i really enjoyed reading today's FP as it reminded me of the countless hours i spent fishing for a 1,10meter+ pike last season. in the last years my fishing approach on my home river changed from relatively unfocused fishing to targetting specific big fish. This strategy worked out great for trout the last 3 seasons, i learned a lot about the behaviour of big trout in my river, and catch them consistently now. But with pike, its an totally different story. Although there is an enormous pike population in some parts of the river, pike fishing is very frustrating most of the time. For example the huge pike that i was after last autumn and winter was totally predictable in his patrolling path along the bank. i encountered him 95% of my attempts, he always seemed interested in my flies but never took one of them. i tried everything,...larger flies, smaller flies, all kinds of streamer designs and colours, different steel traces,at morning, noon, evening, after dark, different retrieves,...the result was always the same: he chased the fly, adapting his speed to my retreiving speed but never attacked it. I don´t know how many hour i invested into that fish, but i abandoned an expensive language course and delayed finishing my masters thesis for that fish, i was some kind of haunted :D but i didnt´t get him. interestingly, i observed this or similar behavior for most larger pike in this river. last week i was looking for big post spawn pike in a shallow area of my river. it didn´t take long till i found them. all together i found 6 or 7 bigger pike, 2 1 meter+ the rest between 80 and 90cm. their reaction to my fly was quite the same as i decribed before. it`s not that i do never catch pike in this river, there are days when i catch 2 good fish, but in relation to the fish density and my time invested i think there must be more possible. Has anyone experienced similar behavior of big pike? Maybe there are some variables that i am missing, ...i am sure there are. the most plausible explanation for me as yet is that they can see or sense me (i am fishing from the bank most of the time, but moving really slowly and as stealthy as possible).

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Paul Arden
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The one pike


Post by Paul Arden » Thu May 09, 2019 6:51 am

I often get this behaviour with Snakehead, Ska. It could be that they are chasing the fly out of its territory, or maybe they are just thinking "what the fuck is that?" :laugh:

It's great when you get to know individual fish, obviously trout really lend themselves to this behaviour. Here Gourami do too. In the case of Gourami however I don't think I've ever caught the same fish twice yet (although it's possible the one I had last week when Stefan was here was one that I have caught before - I haven't checked yet). Two years ago I spent a whole season on one large Gourami, but never managed to catch it. Occasionally I get to know Snakehead too.

Cheers, Paul
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Bernd Ziesche
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The one pike


Post by Bernd Ziesche » Thu May 09, 2019 8:39 am

Hello Ska,
Thanks for your fine feedback and nice reading about your own pike experience.
In my experience it can happen, that pike migrate in circles in their part of the water without being in a feeding mood. Still they may have a look at the fly. Those fish are I think nearly incatchable.
Far more often I have seen other anglers getting several pike following their flies, lures and whatever, while I did find a key to prove these pike being catchable in a very high percentage.
Mostly if pike follow but don't take, they sense danger and are carefully.
First thing to try might be speeding up in order to force the pike exactly behind the fly. That makes it impossible to see the leader in front of the fly. Make sure the pike turns in (the fly it's path) far away from the fly. Mostly only very fast retrieving speed does the job here.
Then you may use a very thin leader. Using a fly of 50cm length may allow you to use 0,20mm nylon in front of the fly for example. Also thin titanium might do the job.
Having a flashabou fly drop in front of their nose and then wait for the pike to take it off the bottom can be a great strategy - especially if current keeps the fly alive. Tying the fly upside down helps...
Finally my best strategy for such situations: Pike learn fast. They often follow the fly, lure, wobbler and then wait in front of the boat for example. If the anglers just lifts the lure out of the water the pike returns in a significant distance. Most anglers won't even see the pike! If instead you keep the fly hanging below the tip and make it move just a little sometimes those pike suddenly hammer into the fly. That often happens after more than 10 seconds of hanging the fly. 10 seconds can be incredible long to wait here! It can really be fascinating to see how pike seem to perfectly understand, that baitfish never leave the water. The best thing here is, that you can see all takes right in front of your nose. :p I caught many pikes suddenly running into the fly from 8 - 12meters distance after hanging my fly 20 to 30 seconds! Pike come for flies from more than 40meters sometimes. I think they can sense the fly from much greater distances though.
If the water is warm and crystal clear I d start with an extra fast retrieve. This often is underestimated in pike fishing with the fly!
Please let us know, when you make new experience with those your pike!
Ok, have to give her another go. ;)
The first cast is always the best cast.

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