27/09/2021 - Ups and downs!

Have had some very rewarding days in September through the years, but it can also be very fickle with mellow, warm days in short sleeves suddenly giving way to rain, howling gales and the need for a decent set of waterproofs. The latter certainly seemed to be the case for later in the week according to the weather forecast, so it was now or never if I wanted to use up those maggots. 

A few short, sharp showers in the morning were followed by clear blue skies and a fresh breeze, so once again I headed off to the River Soar confident on two counts - that I could find somewhere to tuck in out of the wind and, given how low the river had been on my previous visit, that the earlier rain wouldn't have even touched the sides. Made my way through the wood, reminding myself to bring a bin bag and a thick pair of gloves next time to clear up an abandoned tent that was rapidly being covered by leaves - love nest, drug den or failed wild camping trip, who knows? Slid down the bank into the same swim as last time to find that the water level was indeed slightly higher, but that the clarity had been unaffected.

The bleak were all over it from the very first cast, snaffling the maggot on the drop and rocketing across the surface like tiny tarpon, so I was able to get the perch rod out and working at the downstream end of the swim from the off. Eventually the other usual suspects managed to get a look in and I started adding dace, chub, roach and perch to the tally. 

On the rare occasion the bait actually made it to the bottom a couple of skimmers and a handful of gonks also put in an appearance, further adding to the species count. Carried on in this vein for a couple of hours, my rythmn of casting, unhooking and rebaiting only interrupted by the occasional clump of the dreaded pennywort floating through the swim like a green iceberg. 
Had two chances on the perch rod during this time, both of which I managed to cock up. The first time I was a bit slow to the rod and the bait had already been ejected when I wound down - lack of scales and no puncture wounds suggesting a stripey was the culprit. Second time I was perhaps a bit too eager as I failed to find a hook hold and the rig came flying back minus bait completely. 

As the sun dipped a bit lower it started to feel a bit chilly despite my fleece so, having had a mixed bag of 70+ fish, I decided to treat the ravenous hordes to the remains of my bait apron and pack up. 

Was making the final trip back up the bank with the last of my kit when  my feet slid away from beneath me and I hit the deck, taking most of my body weight on my right shoulder. Had to take a few moments while the pain subsided before managing to finish packing up and heading back to the car. Shoulder was a bit painful during the night, but it was only in the morning that I looked in the mirror to see that it was very swollen with an obvious lump at the end of my collarbone. Fearing the worst, but not wanting to dash straight to A&E, I got the daughter to take me down the GP's for a quick examination. Thankfully he confirmed the collarbone was intact but that I had probably "disrupted" my acromioclavicular joint (ACJ for short!), prescribing anti-inflammatories, ice packs and rest. 

Something I can now afford to do as true to form it's absolutely pissing down outside!