Pike fan club gains recruit

Pike are again under the spotlight on the River Thurne, where beginner Ralph Taylor of Gorleston has bagged nine splendid specimens since he was introduced to predator fishing in the autumn.

Pike are again under the spotlight on the River Thurne, where beginner Ralph Taylor of Gorleston has bagged nine splendid specimens since he was introduced to predator fishing in the autumn.

The 32-year-old's latest catch was a personal best 24-pounder.

“My friend, Mark Rumsby, got me into pike fishing and I love it,” said Taylor.

“I have learned that a big dead bait like a herring, legered on the bottom, is most favoured by the bigger specimens, and I am now seeking my first 30-pounder.”


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The popularity of pike fishing appears to be rising, and, fortunately, there is a wealth of pike fishing available in East Anglia.

Some of the top venues (marked out of 10 for potential) are:

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Boat venues: River Bure from Coltishall to Horning and connecting broads at South Walsham, Wroxham and Ranworth (9 marks); tidal river Wensum, Yare and Rockland Broad (8); tidal river Ant and Barton Broad, tidal river Waveney and Oulton Broad, Trinity Broads (7); Fritton Lake (6); River Thurne, Hickling Broad, Horsey Mere (5).

Bank venues: West Norfolk and Cambridgeshire Fen waters (8); non-tidal rivers Bure, Wensum, Yare and Waveney (7); lakes at Swanton Morley, Swangey, Blickling, Gunton, Lenwade bridge, Lenwade common, Kingfisher, Catch 22 (6).

Pike fishing on all broads and rivers is closed between March 14 and June 16, but some private lake owners do allow coarse fishing to continue without a break.

One of the more action-packed techniques of pike fishing is employing artificial lures while on the move.

This can produce excellent sport on waters like the Trinity Broads where more than 100 pike of varying sizes were boated during the first week of the present coarse season.

More recently, small to medium pike have been reported from the River Bure between Coltishall common and Wroxham, taken on lures, but for quality the expert regulars there say big dead baits like herring and mackerel are tops.

On the specimen carp lakes there has been little action with the two best fish both coming from Swangey Lakes - mirror carp of 27lb for Lee Nobb of Norwich and Mark Davis of Felixstowe.

Well-known bream specialist Glen Hales of Norwich reported several slabs to over 10lb from Swangey, with float fished maggot the most effective technique.

t On the open match circuit, Rod Finch (Deben) won the Willow with 49lb 10oz, while Colin Stevens (Oddfellows) headed the Melton card with 49lb.

Quality roach to 1½lb featured in the net of Tony Gibbons (Norwich), who won the river Wensum open at Riverside with 15lb 10oz.

Along the beaches, the North Norfolk League warm-up at Weybourne was won by Overstrand's Ian Wells, with 12lb 7oz of quality whiting and flatfish.

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