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Fish you have seen that have blown you away but never caught

Terry Harman

Senior Member
Back in 2010 I was in a very well known syndicate eggetts in st ives cambs whilst out in the boat looking for some likely spots to fish I spotted what at first I thought was a carp.. as the boat drifted over the top of it in the crystal clear water I could see it was a tench it would have made a glass eye water I estimated it at the time at the very least 12-13lb
 

Mark Walker

Active Member
I used to go with my wife to Mottisfont Abbey in Hampshire. you can walk along the river Test there and in amongst the trout were roach that made me cry that no fishing was allowed. I fished the Test loads of times but never had a roach amongst the big trout and grayling
 

Dave Quinn

Senior Member
Back in the early 1980s while trout fishing at Grafham in early September, i saw 4 enormous trout well into double figures. We had been dapping with daddy long legs earlier in the day and had some success. Unfortunately, the wind had died completely and there was a flat calm. We tried casting a fly to the fish but couldn't get the boat near eniugh to them to cover them before they moved away further up Savages Creek. Boy did we pray for a breeze! When some breeze came up several hours later, we did drift across the area but no sign of them.
I used to fish for trout with my Dad at Grafham water a longtime ago, we did a couple of the pike days too. He had a 9lb bream which was a big fish back then, and on one trip I saw a huge carp leap out of the water
 

Richard Isaacs

Senior Member
Some much better pics today of a huge chub surface feeding.
Unlike the other one on the first page of the thread we ain’t gonna be busting any records here but it’s gotta be knocking on the door of 6 plus.
There was quite a few about taking big lumps of bread but she was the biggest and surprisingly the best at posing for the camera.
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B230064F-13B7-436E-A870-33865A0B954A.jpeg
 

Chris Fox

Senior Member
When I first moved to London about nine years ago I was walking a stretch of the Colne in early June when I saw some Barbel feeding on gravel. No doubles but all around 8lb I would have guessed. Then a chub dropped back from streamer weed just above this depression in the gravel. The biggest chub I've ever seen which was bigger than all of the Barbel. A known fish according to the stretch owners that they reckoned would go 9lb. Sadly, I didn't ever make contact with it!
 

Richard Isaacs

Senior Member
From my personal experience they’ve got to be one of the smartest clued up fish that swims in British waters when they get big.
A lot might disagree but from targeting and my personal fascination with them for decades they certainly seem to be wiser than barbel in many ways from my experience.
Barbel are more of a frightened fish and vacate the premises the moment they suspect you are around but chub fall back and stay close. They will still rob your loose feed coming down and ignore anything that looks remotely suspicious even though they are fully aware that you are there. You might not see them but they haven’t gone far.
If you catch a chub it’s a well known thing to pop it back well down stream because they go back and spook out all their mates.
I like to think they grass you up😉
They are the worst for heading in the snags no matter what colour the water is
They know how to test a bait and avoid getting caught on self hooking rigs. 1/4 of a tin of spam in the right conditions can really excite a barbel. Jack pot for them but to a chub that’s alarm bells ringing and they seem far happier with something that looks smaller and less conspicuous.
It’s all my opinion this by the way from just spending time observing and fishing for them. Who really knows what goes through their minds. One day I hope to catch an 8. I fish the right places for them so theres a chance.
 
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Theres a huge chub n barbel in our stretch in the colne. I've seen them and trying my best to catch them. River colne fishing is by far the hardest I've come across!
 

Dave Marrs

New Member
Nearly 5 years ago I returned in my boat to the marina on the river around lunchtime on a scorching hot August day. As I carefully manoeuvred my boat onto its pontoon I saw a couple of Carp (or so I thought) cruising near the surface, 4 or 5ft off the walkway. Nothing unusual about that I thought and threw a handful of floaters out to see if they'd come up to feed and then cracked on getting the boat in and tied up. Then it hit me that nothing was slurping up any of the floating baits and so I took a closer look.

The sight that confronted me almost made my legs go as sat right on the top of 3ft of murky water, right in the middle of a huge shoal of miniscule Chub wasn't a couple of Carp but a huge, huge Zander. Perhaps the very last fish you'd expect to see in that shallow, warm and puddle like water on a roasting hot lunchtime in August! A few weeks earlier I'd witnessed a good mate catch a 17.2 Specimen and this one looked every bit as big, if not bigger, it was simply massive.

Reaching for a rod, I put a deadbait right on its nose and watched the fish sit there as I waited. Slowly it drifted away, clearly uninterested in my deadbait and unable to get back that evening for another bash at it, I never saw the fish again. It was monstrous.

Kind regards,
Dave
 

Nicholas Cole

Senior Member
Not strictly the biggest fish I have never caught but last year I had a few days fishing at a small lake stocked with carp and a few kois. King of the pond was a known koi around 30lb.

On the middle day of the trip the fish showed a bit of interest in floaters but proved a bit tricky to hook. I spent quite a while putting my bait in front of the King koi who was very visible, easily recognisable and markedly bigger than anything else in there. Despite getting the presentation inch perfect it never showed the slightest interest and only took two free floaters all day. On the final morning it had warmed up a lot and the fish were more active on the top. Noon was kicking off time so it was a bit of a race to get fish up. After a couple of small fish early on I had another go at the top end of the lake which was popular with King koi. With 30 mins to go I saw a decent fish, probably around 20lb and got the bait right in front of it. Perfect take. Swish...... Missed it?! %@# not happy as it looked a sure thing.

10mins to go before leaving and King koi is approaching the bait. Stops dead and then slowly, so slowly lifts up in the water. It's gonna take it I thought. It just looks right. Mouth opens and it starts gobbling at the mixer. Steady boy, this is it. Slowly, the mixer bobs and twirls and bobbles towards the sucking mouth. It's gotta take it, surely its going to have it? And it did. Down it went. Steady, steady don't strike too soon. So I waited an eternity, much much longer than with the earlier take. And as the fish gently submerged I hit it. Swish...... missed, bait in the tree above me. Arrrrrrrrggggggghhhhhh. And then I went home.
 

Joe Winstanley

Senior Member
Not strictly the biggest fish I have never caught but last year I had a few days fishing at a small lake stocked with carp and a few kois. King of the pond was a known koi around 30lb.

On the middle day of the trip the fish showed a bit of interest in floaters but proved a bit tricky to hook. I spent quite a while putting my bait in front of the King koi who was very visible, easily recognisable and markedly bigger than anything else in there. Despite getting the presentation inch perfect it never showed the slightest interest and only took two free floaters all day. On the final morning it had warmed up a lot and the fish were more active on the top. Noon was kicking off time so it was a bit of a race to get fish up. After a couple of small fish early on I had another go at the top end of the lake which was popular with King koi. With 30 mins to go I saw a decent fish, probably around 20lb and got the bait right in front of it. Perfect take. Swish...... Missed it?! %@# not happy as it looked a sure thing.

10mins to go before leaving and King koi is approaching the bait. Stops dead and then slowly, so slowly lifts up in the water. It's gonna take it I thought. It just looks right. Mouth opens and it starts gobbling at the mixer. Steady boy, this is it. Slowly, the mixer bobs and twirls and bobbles towards the sucking mouth. It's gotta take it, surely its going to have it? And it did. Down it went. Steady, steady don't strike too soon. So I waited an eternity, much much longer than with the earlier take. And as the fish gently submerged I hit it. Swish...... missed, bait in the tree above me. Arrrrrrrrggggggghhhhhh. And then I went home.
Sometimes you can’t beat a bit of floater fishing...that sense of nervous anticipation when the fish starts approaching the mixer from the perfect angle...
 
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