This year’s weather left no choice for local spinning enthusiasts: the almost continuous rains that had been charged since March overflowed and disturbed our main river, the Syr Darya. Water flooded the approaches to the usual places of spring fishing, and there is no particular desire to approach it: well, what can be caught in a red clay-water suspension? Therefore, most spinningers in search of prey go to small channels, where the water and in such unusual weather for our region remains transparent. Of course, decent asps rarely go into small channels, but the chance to catch at least one and a half kilogram red-faced handsome also warms the soul.
Usually the largest asps come across at the very beginning of the season – in February-March, but this year they somehow bypassed me. But they did not bypass other, more successful fellow enthusiasts. Perhaps it’s the bait. I really like to catch on turntables, and although last fall I also caught fishworms, but I still did not feel full confidence in them. But in vain! All more or less decent asps, the witness of which I was caught this spring, were seduced precisely by hesitations.
In the first place is the mastermaster. And not small, but bigger, grams for twenty, or even for all forty. In the transparent, through the sun shined through the sun Shuruzyak radiance of this monster almost half a foot in length is visible from coast to coast. It would seem that such a lure can scare away all the asps in the district, which I hinted at without much political correctness to a young colleague who was fishing for this bait. But by the end of the day the score was 3: 2, and not in my favor, and the size of the asps in the comrade’s catch was noticeably larger. The castmaster was tempted even by a small snakehead, a rare prey for early spring.
Another bait that has fully confirmed its professional suitability for spring asp is cicada. In our stores, cicadas appeared last fall. In the Chinese version, this bauble is called "Condor" and, compared with the original, costs four times less. The price was attractive, therefore, not particularly trusting the brand, I still bought “for every fireman” several copies weighing from 7 to 20 grams. In the fall, the Condor was mostly lumpy, so I mentally recorded these original vibrations in the category of pike perches. It never occurred to me to try them on the spring asp, but one of my comrades, upon arrival at the canal, immediately began to catch the condor cicada. And he did not lose: the largest asp in this spring season was seduced by the lure, for 2 kg in weight. One could consider this a coincidence if several more chubs of the same weight category were not caught on the same bait.
In cool weather, when the asp activity increased, the usual small and medium sized vibrations were out of competition. Particularly successful was the 15-gram "Shtorlek" Chinese-made. After replacing the tee with a smaller one and decorated with sparkles, the game of this old model became irresistible for perches "per kilogram". True, this wide track-beam can no longer be led too quickly or against the tide: its game gets off and goes into a random rotation. But with slow wiring down or across the stream, it is especially effective.
Day of the big asp
Not everything new and fashionable is good. I have repeatedly been convinced of this before, and this spring I felt on one of my unsuccessful fishing trips. Having seen enough directories with baits, after reading the Internet and experiencing an irresistible craving for experimentation, I decided to make several new turntables equipped with single hooks. Indeed, many well-known companies produce such spinners equipped with odnarnikami. What is not an argument for the new design of the spinner for channel asp? Why for channel? Because one of the main problems that occurs when fishing in warm, clear and relatively shallow waters is algae. The odninnik, in my opinion, should have radically helped in the implacable fight against hooks for aquatic plants. Based on these considerations, I made several medium-sized silver lures and equipped them with single hooks of the seventh number.
The experiment began on one of the last days of April. Casting into rather overgrown places and wiring in clean corridors along the algae showed that the “anti-stickiness” of the spinner is quite satisfactory. After a few casts – a confident bite of a medium-sized asp that ended in a quick descent. After another dozen casts, he again took the asp, but came down when pulling it out of the algal bush, where he managed to hide.
The gatherings spoiled the mood, but I did not change the bait, because asps react positively to it. Walked over to one of my favorite places. The canal there first widens to forty meters, and then it is divided into two arms: one relatively wide and shallow, the other, only five meters wide, fast and deep. I throw the lure along a narrow channel and with tension I drive it against the stream past an elongated underwater bush. A large asp hit from under the algae like a real pike and, after several powerful jerks in clean water, hid in a life-saving bush. Soon, the jerking of the fish ceased, and from the underwater thicket I tore the litter out without catch. Conclusion: a single hook on the spinner does not detect fish. Maybe it’s about the size of the hook, maybe there’s some flaw in the construction of the bait or hook, but for now, I will refrain from rigging the baits with a single.
The day that did not start too well should have ended just like that, which actually happened. There were no bites on other baits, although I put both proven turntables, and small masters, and wobblers that were suitable in appearance. By evening, I reached another of my favorite places, the next narrowing of the canal, where the stream hits the right bank and swirls with an extensive whirlpool. The asps always stay there – sometimes they managed to catch four or six specimens on the spot. I used to catch from the opposite bank, but this time I couldn’t get there: the old bridge over the canal was destroyed. Casting could be done only against the stream and from only two very uncomfortable places – the entire coast was overgrown with a continuous wall of tall reeds. If you manage to toss the bait to the very shore or to hold it along the reed thickets, then the grasp follows immediately: channel asps like to hunt from ambush.
It has always been so, but not this time. Despite the most seductive wiring of turntables and wobblers right at the edge of the coast, they were not interested in any of the predators. Almost desperate, I decided to check out the self-made “Shtorlek” once again. The cast downstream is very successful – the lure flopped half a meter from the edge of the reed wall. Although miracles do not happen, but this time it happened – a large asp caught a spinner after two turns of the coil. The blow was very strong, but the friction clutch did not work, and this alerted me. It turned out that it was not in vain: after a couple of powerful pulls, the 0.25 mm monophile, which had never let me down before, burst safely. I returned home without a catch, but, as is now fashionable to say, with a positive. There are still good asp in our channels!
You won’t surprise a beginner spinning player in the middle lane with a pike: it is precisely from catching the ubiquitous shoelaces on toads that a conscious spinning life usually begins. In our area, pike is rare, and therefore especially honorable. Some lovers of catching this toothy predator go after her to distant steppe channels, where there are quite a lot of pikes. True, the steppe pikes belong to the light weight category, it is not important to be caught and only in the fall. On the other hand, the spring of this year brought some pleasant surprises to spinning players who were catching asp in the "home" Shuruzyak. With the first rise of spring water, pikes also entered the channel. And by no means the smallest – networkers showed beauties and "for a dvushnik", lucky spinning players came across copies of 1-1.5 kilograms. There were several meetings with the pike and mine.
The first pike was seduced by my bauble back in March, and she grabbed it on the very first cast – the predator lurked right at the mouth of a very small canal that flows into Shuruzyak. And although the toothy was about a kilogram, her blow was very strong. A pike emerged directly from under the coastal algae thickets and grabbed a small asp aspicus on the counter. It is a pity that the struggle did not last long: after a couple of small candles and twitching with a toothy mouth, the predator came down. The most interesting thing is that in this place every year either I or one of my colleagues is surely undergoing an attack by a toothy predator, but so far only one pike has been caught.
One of the days of the beginning of May became a real pike day: my baits, designed for asp, were seduced by two pikes. One of them, about two kilograms in size, lurked in a rather deep and wide whirlpool, completely overgrown with algae, in which the fast flow of the canal made several narrow passages, relatively free of thickets. Such passages are very fond of asps, as small fish making their way along them become their easy prey. I already caught a couple of asps, but unexpectedly my green twister disappeared into the mouth of a spotted predator – in clear water I perfectly saw a pike flying out of the algae. The fight did not work: the twister was safely bitten off. After a dozen casts, the situation repeated itself, though this time I lost my catchy spinner.
Now, when the water began to warm up noticeably, the pike disappeared somewhere, and the asp became less active. But the more difficult the catch, the more it captivates. There is still about a month for experiments with perches, after which it will be possible to switch to summer fishes – grouse, catfish and snakeheads. The most interesting catch, as always, is yet to come.