How it all began

Back in March 2019 I took my family to Hartlepool visiting Grandparents, we stayed at a lovely little retreat called Abbey Hill Cottages near Dalton Piercy. This small and peaceful cottage location houses a central fishing lake to allow guests and visitors to enjoy a lovely day's fishing, something we witnessed during our stay. One kind angler happily allowed my son to release a small roach he had just caught whilst talking us through his set up. It was this brief encounter that started my mind on the path of Angling glory

As soon as I returned home my first kit was ordered from Amazon, a typical impulse buy with little research, the below is what I received:

  • 10ft Rod
  • Reel
  • Landing Net
  • Tackle Box
  • Seat Box
  • Keep Net
  • Bait Box
  • Rod Rest and bank sticks
  • Waggler Float Set
  • Hooks
  • Shot
  • Catapult
Basic Coarse Angling Kit from Amazon

It was at this stage I thought I was all set and just needed to get my licence and off I go.... I was very wrong.


Close Season and how it influenced my learning

I understood I needed a fishing licence from the Environment Agency (https://www.gov.uk/fishing-licences) however one thing I failed to appreciate is the way freshwater is managed and maintained within the UK. I live by a rather nice river and was hoping to take my new "beginner kit" for an outing fairly soon. Little did I realise that during the months of March, April, May and half of June rivers are pretty much out of bounds. I initially saw fishing as two areas, Sea and Freshwater however it is clear to me now how deep the sport goes and the variations on particular types of fishing. As an example, Specimen angling sees people attempting to catch the largest beast they can however Match fishing is all about the volume.  

The timing of me starting to learn has most certainly influenced my research and passion for the sport, as I then had to focus on commercial fisheries, I began looking into the best tactics for the species resident in the local area's commercial options. This led me down a more match fishing route with quick catches and volume of action on my mind.

There is one final element to my initial fishing trips that pushed me toward a more active and high paced style, I was taking along my  5 year old son. As any parent knows keeping a child entertained for a prolonged time is a challenge and keeping their interest in a sport would be near impossible when what you are aiming for might not come along for hours and hours or even at all. My first two outings were blanks (no catches at all) and could have totally ruined my son and I's interest however things got better....

Gareth

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