I haven't recorded every fishing trip on here but my blog does carry the essence of what the year has been like for me. It has been, for me, a very slow year. I have fished less than in any of the preceding ten years and my enthusiasm for barbel has most definitely waned. To be honest, this process has been developing over the last few years but I have tried to fish my way through it. I should have known better, fishing should never feel like a chore.
In the past, when my interest has swung from species to species, I have just gone with the flow as it were. But this time no particular species has jumped out at me and demanded my attention. Not, that is, until I went to Spain. Seeing those carp of such monstrous proportions was an epiphany. From that day on I have felt the need to land something really big.
The trouble is, I don't want my fishing to be 'size' driven. I enjoy my carp fishing and will undoubtedly be doing a lot more of it during the next few years but this whole single minded pursuit of 30's and 40's in self defeating and always short lived. I want to be able to cherish each fish and to take from my carp fishing the same sort of pleasure that barbel have given me in the past. A stalked 10 pounder should always be a thrill no matter what the water's potential may be.
Nobody really knows what the next year will bring but here is my game plan should health and finance permit. I shall of course continue to fish the river Wye, it is just too beautiful a river to ignore but, I shall look for different sections to try along with its tributary, the Lugg. I shall also be looking for another stillwater. The lake I was on this year is, at three acres, just too small. I love the intimacy of a small water but its just a little too easy to learn its secrets. I need somewhere a bit bigger where the mystery of unfound deeps and unseen monsters can grow in my head and inspire me.
My main target for 2011 is France. I want to visit that most appealing country on a number of occasions and sample some of the delights of her rivers. Nicky will accompany me on some trips whist others will be boys only. Ultimately, my goal is to contact something massive and to enjoy the learning experience along the way.
I've made similar plans in the past, I've even made new year resolutions but not for a long time as all plans and wishes have a tendency to to be just that - a wish. There are many things that can alter my course but, for the time being, I do at least have a direction and one that I am really looking forward to traveling.
To all of you that have looked in on my thoughts and recollections over the last seven months or so, I thank you for taking the time and hope that you have in some way enjoyed the experience. I have especially enjoyed the comments and encourage them - well, most of them ;-) feel free to make them in the future.
Happy new year to all of you and I hope that at least some of your own wishes come true.