Junior coaching sessions proving a big hit at Hunstrete Fishery
FISHING waters everywhere are cooling following a summer of erratic temperatures.
Fish are desperate to put on enough weight to see them through the approaching winter and now is a good time to bag a 'biggy' or a record-breaking weight.
Autumn seems to come earlier each year. Leaves started to change colour weeks ago and a fair few have already fallen at Bathampton AA's Hunstrete Fishery.
The lush, summer growth of marginal reeds have started to age and dry out and most summer visitors, including the Canada Geese. are long gone.
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The only constant at Hunstrete, besides a half-a-dozen ducks and two families of nodding moorhens, is the amount of fishermen who come weekly, no matter what the weather, to pit their wits against its well-stocked shoals of fish.
Records are challenged and new marks struck almost weekly by both experienced and beginners of all ages.
Fish weighing well into double figures, whether stocked or grown on, are resident in each of Hunstrete's three lakes and any angler chasing his or her first double-sized carp or pike could do no better than to book a session with Keith Pope, Bathampton AA's top coach.
Every month, Pope and his band of qualified coaches, hold a coaching session for both members and non--members at Hunstrete's Withy Pool. The cost is £4 to members, £5 to non-members and includes the cost of bait and tackle hire if necessary.
Last week, on a sunny day, ten juniors turned up to be taught the rudiments of fishing and water craft by four of Bathampton AA's qualified coaches.
Pope said: "We can comfortably accommodate between 18 and 25 juniors at each session. We teach everything from setting up tackle to netting, unhooking and returning fish unharmed.
"Many of our junior members have already won or framed in senior matches and proved to be superb ambassadors for the club. Past and present members who have learned their trade on Bathampton AA waters include two members of Drennan Team England, a junior World Cup holder and several high-ranking executives of the tackle trade.
"We welcome any junior and his or her family to come and join in the fun. It's a fantastic, fun day out, and with tackle and bait provided, you can't go wrong."
The next Bathampton AA Junior Coaching session is at Hunstrete's Withy Pool on Sunday, November 11.
Fishing is between 11am and 3pm. if you want to give it a try, ring Keith Pope on 01225 742 109 or 07754 031 429.