Whilst visiting the Lake District last week we attended this year’s Lakes Rover Kayak Competition, like most kayak comps but with a difference, you can pretty much fish any lake you like. This brings it’s own issues as some lakes fish better than others for certain species so you have to have a plan of attack and play to the various lakes different strengths. That might be a simple thing of better shelter from strong winds our some have a better population of Perch or Roach, you might fish one lake in the morning for Pike then a different for the Perch but it all adds to the charm of the comp.

Now last year I was very fortunate to win this comp but wasn’t sure if I could do it again but would try my best! I was fishing with my fellow JK teammate Graham Shaw, we formed a plan of attack and crossed our fingers it would pay off! 4am on day one I woke up to very heavy rain! It was forecast to do this all day long, it was going to be a miserable day!!
We hit our lake of choice for the first day, we had a good day on there during the practise day but today was a different day. For starters a LOT of water was running into the lake from all the rain to the point that the 4 mile long lake went up by 5″ during the day!!!


All this fresh water had moved the Pike, they had moved to deeper water where the temps were more stable. they obviously weren’t in the mood because I pretty much done a full lap of the lake before I landed my first fish! Not a bad Pike at 94cm, big relief to catch that and gave me some hope!

Later in the afternoon the weather improved and so did the fishing, ok no more Pike for me but we did enjoy Perch fishing. Nothing massive but most welcome after the day I had! We didn’t fish until 10pm, 18hrs on the water and 16 miles peddled on my Cruise FD. I was a broken man!! My burger n chips and garlic bread seemed like the best meal I’ve ever had after that day!! 🙂

Day two and it’s 6am (I had a lay in!), different lake today where there is a better chance of bigger Perch and more Pike (though maybe not as big). Graham went off in search of Roach where I targeted Pike and Perch, we both hit our target. I was very happy to improve my Perch and Pike totals with Pike up to 84cm and Perch to 43cm. I swapped with Graham, he went off for bigger Pike and Perch and I searched for Roach.
Because we couldn’t use maggots before June 16th here we had to improvises, Graham caught his on bread whereas I was using very small worm sections, we were scratching for tiny 4″ roach. After a lot of concentrating found the two I needed!

One of the highlights was watching a shoal of Perch hitting fry (or maybe Mayflies) on the surface, working as a pack like Mackerel! Great thing to witness.

Well it was crunch time and long story short I’d done it again, I won and I retained my title so very happy 🙂 Feel for my JK teammate though, he finished 2nd place and missed out on the biggest Perch prize by 2mm! Sorry Graham 🙂