Fish location

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NSW77
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Fish location

Post by NSW77 » Thu Jan 24 2019 00:02

Hi everyone, just wanted a bit of advice as I’m fairly new to pike fishing. My syndicate water is a reservoir that is stuffed with big bream roach etc but I’m not sure about the pike I’ve had a few to 8/9lb and my mate’s seen a huge one around 30lb but it’s location I struggle with. The reservoirs 140 acres 8-9 feet deep in most places except the dam where the depths up to 35ft. I was thinking the dam wall’s the best area at this time of year but it’s featureless except at either end where it shallows up to 4/5 ft. Do I head for where the dam shallows up or even try an area away from the dam which I’d rather not as the gates are locked so I can’t drive round in winter. I know I’ve gone on a bit but it’s daunting and would love any advice. Cheers.

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Re: Fish location

Post by Burt » Thu Jan 24 2019 02:58

Hello mate newb myself round these ends so nice to meet ya :handshake:
Sure there will be some lads far more qualified than myself along soon!
Big pits can be daunting places but sounds like your doing ok to me and getting into a few :thumbs:
The dam seems a pretty good place to start to me and assume you’ve been catching there anyway the area where the depth drops off particularly assuming it’s castable/drift able. Would always have at least one rod on a float and experiment with depths as pike spend a lot of time looking up, twitching baits back also covers a lot of ground.
Also if you can find them bream and roach shoals you can bet your bottom buck the big girls won’t be too far behind, early morning/late evening reccys might give them away also fishing birds grebes and dare I say cormorants working.
All the best mate and like I say sounds like your already doing well and will soon be into the bigger fish! 🎣

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Re: Fish location

Post by suffolk si » Thu Jan 24 2019 09:25

First thing I would say is get there for dawn and dusk and look for bait fish topping, grebes working etc. maybe invest in a cast able fish finder if you are bank fishing? As said above be mobile at first until you find some fish. Generally deeper areas in cold conditions, a lot of people suggest getting where the wind is blowing to as a starter also. The other on thing I would say is start where your mate saw the thirty! 😀

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Re: Fish location

Post by Mike J » Thu Jan 24 2019 12:44

Welcome aboard :handshake:

Your water isnt big, just middle-sized so dont be put off.
If you haven't fished it much, dont THINK, just arrive and chuck out a couple of baits anywhere you like and its a pretty sure bet you will catch.
Newbies on a water are usually more successful than regulars, atleast for their first couple of visits or until they start thinking!

Recently Ive been catching from water that wouldnt go over my wellies so dont think too deep, but in the past Ive caught January fish from 65ft so who really knows.

The two approaches;
The stick, soak and hope something will find your baits.
Or keep moving and find the fish, at 10-15mins per stop you could easily cover half the lake in a day. When you catch that is the time to spend a hour or so.
Dont worry about feeding times or fancy baits, go when it suits you, keep it fresh and simple and if they want it they will have it make no mistake.

Search this forum and you will find lots of posts on how to.

:thumbs:

NSW77
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Re: Fish location

Post by NSW77 » Thu Jan 24 2019 15:55

Thanks for all your friendly advice, I can’t believe I didn’t start piking earlier it’s great fun and there’s also a great mystery which you don’t get fishing for other species I will put your handy tips to practice on Saturday, cheers

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Re: Fish location

Post by davethehawghunter » Fri Jan 25 2019 19:16

Just keep leapfrogging your rods around the water and see what happens. Regardless of how big a water is it’s biggest natural feature are the margins ! You don’t need to cast to the horizon to catch big pike and you will get a good feel of the place as you go.

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Re: Fish location

Post by keith the piker » Mon Feb 04 2019 09:15

The big mistake I made when first fishing bigger waters was to cast to the horizon and also to ignore shallower water. As someone else has said, looking out for evidence of prey fish is a very good thing to do. Roach and bream will show by priming or rolling on the surface and grebes will be diving for them. Find the prey fish and you'll find the pike. As we get nearer to March don't be surprised to find pike grouping up, sometimes in very shallow water right in the margins.

The most successful pikers are those that deliberately don't follow the crowd and do their own thing!

Also as someone else has said, if a very large fish has been seen, try there! 140 acres isn't big in truth. I fish waters that are measured in miles long, not in acres ... You'll soon build up a picture of the place - my last point is that it will really help to keep detailed records of where you fish, the conditions (wind, temperatures, etc). I find it important to record all takes, not only fish actually caught, as that is the main indication of the presence of fish.

Good luck!

NSW77
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Re: Fish location

Post by NSW77 » Wed Feb 06 2019 22:09

keith the piker wrote:
The big mistake I made when first fishing bigger waters was to cast to the horizon and also to ignore shallower water. As someone else has said, looking out for evidence of prey fish is a very good thing to do. Roach and bream will show by priming or rolling on the surface and grebes will be diving for them. Find the prey fish and you'll find the pike. As we get nearer to March don't be surprised to find pike grouping up, sometimes in very shallow water right in the margins.

The most successful pikers are those that deliberately don't follow the crowd and do their own thing!



Also as someone else has said, if a very large fish has been seen, try there! 140 acres isn't big in truth. I fish waters that are measured in miles long, not in acres ... You'll soon build up a picture of the place - my last point is that it will really help to keep detailed records of where you fish, the conditions (wind, temperatures, etc). I find it important to record all takes, not only fish actually caught, as that is the main indication of the presence of fish.

Good luck!
Thanks Keith, it’s funny what you said about the shallower areas as I’ve been fishing on the dam wall all winter, I’ve had a few but nothing reaching double figures yet. Thing is it’s so uncomfortable as it’s so steep and slippy I’m dying to try the shallow areas but as a pike novice you hear they go deep in winter and I’ve just been reluctant to try anywhere else. Using my deeper has shown the dam has actually been devoid of the massive shoals of roach/bream I know inhabit the place maybe because it’s been so mild??

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Re: Fish location

Post by Duncan Holmes » Wed Feb 06 2019 22:41

NSW77 wrote:
keith the piker wrote:
The big mistake I made when first fishing bigger waters was to cast to the horizon and also to ignore shallower water. As someone else has said, looking out for evidence of prey fish is a very good thing to do. Roach and bream will show by priming or rolling on the surface and grebes will be diving for them. Find the prey fish and you'll find the pike. As we get nearer to March don't be surprised to find pike grouping up, sometimes in very shallow water right in the margins.

The most successful pikers are those that deliberately don't follow the crowd and do their own thing!



Also as someone else has said, if a very large fish has been seen, try there! 140 acres isn't big in truth. I fish waters that are measured in miles long, not in acres ... You'll soon build up a picture of the place - my last point is that it will really help to keep detailed records of where you fish, the conditions (wind, temperatures, etc). I find it important to record all takes, not only fish actually caught, as that is the main indication of the presence of fish.

Good luck!
Thanks Keith, it’s funny what you said about the shallower areas as I’ve been fishing on the dam wall all winter, I’ve had a few but nothing reaching double figures yet. Thing is it’s so uncomfortable as it’s so steep and slippy I’m dying to try the shallow areas but as a pike novice you hear they go deep in winter and I’ve just been reluctant to try anywhere else. Using my deeper has shown the dam has actually been devoid of the massive shoals of roach/bream I know inhabit the place maybe because it’s been so mild??
I have always found it to be one of the biggest fallacies in fishing, for most species.

Years of winter scuba diving in lakes and pits, i never saw concentrations of fish in deep water. More often than not they were sitting in shallow water, but not always close to the bottom.
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Re: Fish location

Post by keith the piker » Fri Feb 08 2019 20:25

In some waters the presence of actively hunting cormorants has led to prey fish seeking the deeper water to avoid them. The problem is that they can dive and feed to fairly tremendous depths - I have seen them picking fish up from prey shoals at 50 feet deep. Therefore, there is no hiding place for the prey fish in waters that are shallower than that, other than seeking out areas where it is hard for the cormorants to hunt - where there is extensive weed, structure, rocks etc. These areas are likely to be in the shallower water in any case ...

If you have grebes on your water they can be a really good sign of a prey fish shoal - you'll see them consistently diving over one area and you may even see them popping up with fish in their mouths.

Travel light and move around a bit until you locate the pike. The NE corner of a water (especially if it is of a fairly circular shape) is often good as that will be where the prevailing wind will be blowing food items and that part of the lake is also protected from the colder winds. For these reasons the prey fish will feed there, attracting the pike and predators in turn.

As we get closer to the spawning season, the pike will begin to group up close to the spawning areas. These are usually where there is water of around 3 to 6 feet in depth with weed and/or tree roots/structure. If your water varies in height a lot and if this happens quite quickly, the spawning areas may be in deeper water.

Once again, good luck in your quest ...

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Re: Fish location

Post by Jason Skilton » Mon Feb 18 2019 14:45

NSW77 wrote:
Hi everyone, just wanted a bit of advice as I’m fairly new to pike fishing. My syndicate water is a reservoir that is stuffed with big bream roach etc but I’m not sure about the pike I’ve had a few to 8/9lb and my mate’s seen a huge one around 30lb but it’s location I struggle with. The reservoirs 140 acres 8-9 feet deep in most places except the dam where the depths up to 35ft. I was thinking the dam wall’s the best area at this time of year but it’s featureless except at either end where it shallows up to 4/5 ft. Do I head for where the dam shallows up or even try an area away from the dam which I’d rather not as the gates are locked so I can’t drive round in winter. I know I’ve gone on a bit but it’s daunting and would love any advice. Cheers.
I have three rules for reservoirs, fish the margins, fish the drop off's and fish over the deep water.

Reservoirs whilst they may have been created with little features, over the years of water movement will create there own.

149 acres is a fair size of water and hopefully locating the bait fish will be easier by watch the grebe's diving for silvers.

If have the chance to boat fish it, do so with a finder and it will open you eye's to a number of under water features.

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Re: Fish location

Post by David Vaissiere » Sat Feb 23 2019 07:33

140 acres is big but it's manageable and you shouldn't be put off by this.

One of the big questions though is what the fishing pressure like for the pike? Does it see a lot of anglers through the winter? And if so do they only concentrate on the dam wall as its easy access and deep water?

Personally if its getting lots of pressure I would lighten the load and walk up towards the far end and get away from the pressured areas.
Also, even if the prey fish are sat in the deeper water the pike from my experience won't be sat in amongst them, they will be sat a little way off them.
Also, even in the depths of winter don't be put off by shallow water, I have caught pike from 12 inches of water whilst it's been freezing around me, infact I would say for me on the pits shallower water is more productive then the deeper water.
And don't ignore the margins, as has been said above most new anglers to big waters get obsessed with casting baits as far as they can, but the margins are a very reliable spot and mostly ignored on big waters.

As for tactics, biggest thing to do is plumb the lake, or use a castable fish finder or baitboat with one attached and map the lake looking for any other features like slight depressions or humps etc
Stay mobile and cover lots of water, eventually you will start to put a picture together of the more productive swims.
And if you can use a nice livey then do that, usually gives you instant results.

Good luck
Some people believe football is a matter of life and death, I am very disappointed with that attitude. I can assure you it is much, much more important than that. YNWA

NSW77
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Re: Fish location

Post by NSW77 » Sat Feb 23 2019 13:22

David Vaissiere wrote:
140 acres is big but it's manageable and you shouldn't be put off by this.

One of the big questions though is what the fishing pressure like for the pike? Does it see a lot of anglers through the winter? And if so do they only concentrate on the dam wall as its easy access and deep water?

Personally if its getting lots of pressure I would lighten the load and walk up towards the far end and get away from the pressured areas.
Also, even if the prey fish are sat in the deeper water the pike from my experience won't be sat in amongst them, they will be sat a little way off them.
Also, even in the depths of winter don't be put off by shallow water, I have caught pike from 12 inches of water whilst it's been freezing around me, infact I would say for me on the pits shallower water is more productive then the deeper water.
And don't ignore the margins, as has been said above most new anglers to big waters get obsessed with casting baits as far as they can, but the margins are a very reliable spot and mostly ignored on big waters.

As for tactics, biggest thing to do is plumb the lake, or use a castable fish finder or baitboat with one attached and map the lake looking for any other features like slight depressions or humps etc
Stay mobile and cover lots of water, eventually you will start to put a picture together of the more productive swims.
And if you can use a nice livey then do that, usually gives you instant results.

Good luck
Thanks for the advice I actually took the plunge regarding the shallower water last weekend and I walked to the shallow areas of the reservoir everyone else was on the dam wall. The bailiff called me brave because all the fish were near the dam! Thing is I had 5 dropped runs, I know this isn’t a productive session catch-wise but everyone I spoke to had nothing apart from 1 who had a dropped run. Incidentally all the runs came in water no more than 15-20metres out in 4-5 ft of water.

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Re: Fish location

Post by David Vaissiere » Sat Feb 23 2019 14:37

NSW77 wrote:
David Vaissiere wrote:
140 acres is big but it's manageable and you shouldn't be put off by this.

One of the big questions though is what the fishing pressure like for the pike? Does it see a lot of anglers through the winter? And if so do they only concentrate on the dam wall as its easy access and deep water?

Personally if its getting lots of pressure I would lighten the load and walk up towards the far end and get away from the pressured areas.
Also, even if the prey fish are sat in the deeper water the pike from my experience won't be sat in amongst them, they will be sat a little way off them.
Also, even in the depths of winter don't be put off by shallow water, I have caught pike from 12 inches of water whilst it's been freezing around me, infact I would say for me on the pits shallower water is more productive then the deeper water.
And don't ignore the margins, as has been said above most new anglers to big waters get obsessed with casting baits as far as they can, but the margins are a very reliable spot and mostly ignored on big waters.

As for tactics, biggest thing to do is plumb the lake, or use a castable fish finder or baitboat with one attached and map the lake looking for any other features like slight depressions or humps etc
Stay mobile and cover lots of water, eventually you will start to put a picture together of the more productive swims.
And if you can use a nice livey then do that, usually gives you instant results.

Good luck
Thanks for the advice I actually took the plunge regarding the shallower water last weekend and I walked to the shallow areas of the reservoir everyone else was on the dam wall. The bailiff called me brave because all the fish were near the dam! Thing is I had 5 dropped runs, I know this isn’t a productive session catch-wise but everyone I spoke to had nothing apart from 1 who had a dropped run. Incidentally all the runs came in water no more than 15-20metres out in 4-5 ft of water.
This time of year the dish start moving to the shallower water in preparation for spawning, but stick at it as despite the frustration of the dropped runs the bigger fish will turn up there and you may get a chance.
For me, when I join a new water I know nothing about I fish well away from the well fished areas as that where in my mind I would be if I were a pike
Some people believe football is a matter of life and death, I am very disappointed with that attitude. I can assure you it is much, much more important than that. YNWA

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Re: Fish location

Post by keith the piker » Sun Feb 24 2019 19:38

You are certainly in the right area if you are getting runs, even dropped ones ... It takes a lot of confidence to fish where others are not, but definitely the way to go, especially as they weren't catching in any case!

Stick at it!

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Mike J
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Re: Fish location

Post by Mike J » Mon Feb 25 2019 10:21

Water depth isn't important, I have stood on 2-3" thick ice and seen pike underneath, not little fish either!
This time of the year if you can find one you will often get more, when it often becomes a question of wading through the doubles before you contact a better fish.
Your in the right place, stick with it and whatever you do don't tell anyone ...... especially the Bailiff, what your catching or about any takes!!
Also,
Wet your net and if your asked why is it wet when you haven't caught anything just say you like to keep it permantly wet as your learning and don't want to harm the fish.
The same reason why I used to carry a dry net and land everything by hand when I fished populated waters.

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Re: Fish location

Post by Fordey » Wed Apr 03 2019 20:28

Mike J wrote:
Welcome aboard :handshake:

Your water isnt big, just middle-sized so dont be put off.
If you haven't fished it much, dont THINK, just arrive and chuck out a couple of baits anywhere you like and its a pretty sure bet you will catch.
Newbies on a water are usually more successful than regulars, atleast for their first couple of visits or until they start thinking!

Recently Ive been catching from water that wouldnt go over my wellies so dont think too deep, but in the past Ive caught January fish from 65ft so who really knows.

The two approaches;
The stick, soak and hope something will find your baits.
Or keep moving and find the fish, at 10-15mins per stop you could easily cover half the lake in a day. When you catch that is the time to spend a hour or so.
Dont worry about feeding times or fancy baits, go when it suits you, keep it fresh and simple and if they want it they will have it make no mistake.

Search this forum and you will find lots of posts on how to.

:thumbs:
That's great advice Mike. Seen "novices" myself, roll up and fished areas that made us snigger knowingly, until they pulled out big fish... It's so easy to become robotic in your fishing, and fish to a set menu. Met a couple of them last week, in an old hired lough boat, no finder so they didn't know what depth they were in, old fashioned gear. Met them the next day, with a picture of a fat 132cm pike (they were Austrian). Fish was easily in excess of 35 lb, maybe 40 lb. Ho hum... :cry: :cry:

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Re: Fish location

Post by Mike J » Thu Apr 04 2019 09:17

Fordey wrote:
Mike J wrote:
Welcome aboard :handshake:

Your water isnt big, just middle-sized so dont be put off.
If you haven't fished it much, dont THINK, just arrive and chuck out a couple of baits anywhere you like and its a pretty sure bet you will catch.
Newbies on a water are usually more successful than regulars, atleast for their first couple of visits or until they start thinking!

Recently Ive been catching from water that wouldnt go over my wellies so dont think too deep, but in the past Ive caught January fish from 65ft so who really knows.

The two approaches;
The stick, soak and hope something will find your baits.
Or keep moving and find the fish, at 10-15mins per stop you could easily cover half the lake in a day. When you catch that is the time to spend a hour or so.
Dont worry about feeding times or fancy baits, go when it suits you, keep it fresh and simple and if they want it they will have it make no mistake.

Search this forum and you will find lots of posts on how to.

:thumbs:
That's great advice Mike. Seen "novices" myself, roll up and fished areas that made us snigger knowingly, until they pulled out big fish... It's so easy to become robotic in your fishing, and fish to a set menu. Met a couple of them last week, in an old hired lough boat, no finder so they didn't know what depth they were in, old fashioned gear. Met them the next day, with a picture of a fat 132cm pike (they were Austrian). Fish was easily in excess of 35 lb, maybe 40 lb. Ho hum... :cry: :cry:


Thats happens so many times Fordey.
Ive always thought there seems to be something in being a regular that blocks us from being as successful as a newbie who rocks up and hauls out a decent fish first shot. Ive done it myself, just choosing a spot I thought looked decent and getting into a big fish without further thought and (in my case) wiping the eye of a couple of 'names' who were blanking nearby.
Perhaps the fish get into our brains and read our thoughts, whereas a newb is an unknown and catches them offguard.

:shrug:

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