This Months Guest Feature Shaun Harrison – November

This Month’s Guest Feature is by Shaun Harrison

(which was Original featured on his website (



Most will know me as a carp angler, but in reality I see myself very much as an all rounder. There are few weeks that pass by where I can’t be found at some stage of the week fishing for something other than carp. I might have slipped out after dark in pursuit of chub or barbel, I might have decided to grab a couple of hours to trot a float down a river or I may decided to spend the last few moments of daylight trying to entice a perch.

I simply love angling too much to be able to go for very long without indulging. Yes, I’m a total addict with no intention whatsoever to try and find a cure for this strong addiction. I have survived with an obsession with fish for well over 40 years so I very much doubt I will ever kick the habit. At least it keeps me out of the pub and away from the idiot box and at the same time fills my lungs with fresh air whilst pulling me along to some incredibly beautiful places.

I guess all in all I’m happy to be an addict.

I had the chub gear sorted yesterday evening. I knew we were in for a lot of rain last night which was due to start around 6pm. I had my small canvas bag packed with the absolute minimum of kit, just enough for me to be able to sneak out in the dark for my fix. I needed to feel the pull of a fish mouthing my bait, that sudden live connection where the lifeless rod starts to come alive and tells you there is life down there in the liquid world.

I was ready to leave but then felt the annoying prangs of hunger and realised I’d not fed myself for quite some time. Forgetting I only had 30 minutes before torrential rain was forecast I made the decision to prepare a quick meal first, after all, I had all evening and it would save carrying any extra clutter such as food.

Dinner on my plate and then the rain started with what sounded like the theme tune for Eastender’s on my patio doors next to where I sat at my dining table. By the time I had finished my meal the rain was really driving in against a window. I opened the door and turned one of the outside lights on. Was I really that desperate for what would only be a mediocre sized fish on the river I was going to pop down to?

I pondered, then thought the river would be out of sorts over the next couple of days with the promised weather we had in store. I shut the door and went and put the waterproofs on. I opened the door again and bottled it. I had a good book winking at me from the corner of the room, I had just got the fire going and Brook my ever faithful carp dog was settling herself down snuggling into her sheepskin rug inside her soft bed. I bottled it, removed the waterproofs and sat with Brook in front of the fire. The fish would wait so long as the otters don’t finish their lives too prematurely.

This morning during my usual pre-work head clearing walk I went down the river with Brook and was confronted with a river totally bank high the colour I like my tea. Well, that’s the chub sport probably written off on this little river for a few days.

Last week-end I had fished for Grayling on the River Dove due to the sudden and severe frost on the Saturday morning. I had enjoyed it that much I went back again on the Sunday. Grayling have been on my mind through the week and I have had my thoughts on another stretch I have not previously fished. This rain will have messed

that river up as well though I guess as it has risen from 0.39m yesterday to 1.23m this morning. Hardly ideal conditions for trotting a float down the Dove I am guessing.

As much as I love my carp angling, my mind is on other species at the moment. I was just starting to get my barbel head back together, catching a few before I had a series of pre arranged events that didn’t allow me to get back after them.

So, chub off the list, grayling off the list, carp not calling me at the moment although the conditions are fine for

catching a decent fish. Perhaps the barbel are enjoying that big flush of water from last night but I need to get out to see if it was a warmer flush or a cold flush. A cold flush at this time of the year usually upsets them a little.

I have been promising myself a go after the perch again for ages now. It is some time since I targeted perch but love catching them. Perhaps that is what I should fish for this week-end?

Oh, the frustrations of an all round angler with too many choices.

Best fishes
Shaun Harrison


About richardhandel

I would like to give a brief snap shot of my life and introduce myself; My name is Richard Handel and was born in 1965 in Suffolk. I have worked as a UK Operation & Intermodule Manager for a shipping company. I live in Hampshire now and am married with 2 young children, both girls so I am a bit outnumbered even the cat is a girl! I have been fishing since I was about 7 years old. I started on small local rivers in Suffolk, then moved onto gravel pits and then carp fishing. My personal best is a 39.08 mirror, over recent years I have started river fishing again, on the Hampshire Avon, this is a nice break from the carp lakes. My life has turned a big corner this year, the company I was working for relocated their Operation centre to Estonia. I was offered a job at the head office in London. This would have meant a 5 day commute and working in Stratford. As a family, we did not fancy this, as I would hardly spend any time with the children (and the Mrs). So after 22.5 years, I was given a nice redundancy package and with my wife is working full time. I became the house husband. This has meant a complete turn around in my fishing, as I can pick and choose when I go. I have found a splendid new syndicate to fish this year, which includes 5 lakes and some 8 miles of river with only 150 members. It's an amazing change to the way I am able to fish. I am now trying to start my own tackle business and make a bit of a name for myself in the world of fishing, as I have retired from real work. Richard
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