Ouse shows signs of life on Ten Mile Bank

The Ouse had flickered briefly back into life, with bream and even tench showing for a few days on Ten Mile Bank.

But by last weekend, the fishing was back in the doldrums, with anglers struggling for bites in a downstream gale.

Some thought the roach would come on the feed as the colour began to drop out of the water. There were 20lb nets of them the week before.

Like everything else, they've come and gone this season. The most frustrating thing about the Ouse is you know the fish are there. On its day, it can probably outfish just about any other river whether you want variety or all-out weight.

I doubt many will look back on 2013/14 as a vintage season. But the amount of rain we've had should at least leave the rivers in a healthy state over the summer.

What to do after the dreaded March 14? The stillwaters have been doing well in the mild conditions, with Tottenhill, Shepherd's Port and Springside all producing.

Top secret bait on the former is apparently half a king prawn where the carp are concerned. All will shut up shop on March 14, but re-open on April 1, so not too long to wait.

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My plan is to have a look at perch on one or two of them before it gets too warm. I've never really fished for perch.

A rattling of the rod top whilst I was lure fishing the other day produced not a jack but a glorious great stripey that was quite the most beautiful fish I'd seen all season.

It wolfed down a 4ins shad, but I've now invested in some smaller rubbery grubs and things to see if I can catch anything resembling it on purpose.

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