Everything is as usual: loading boats, motors, tents into cars, night transfer. We arrived early, complete darkness, pouring rain. On the fifth attempt we find ourselves in the desired clearing on the banks of the Volga. The Volga section in the vicinity of the town of Myshkin formally belongs to the Rybinsk Sea, but it has changed little after the creation of the reservoir: the banks here are high and the river remained practically within its natural boundaries. It is a stone’s throw from coast to coast, from dump to dump a maximum of 150-200 meters, and in some places even less. The forecast promised a sharp cooling, snow, but the first two days the weather was relatively warm: during the day about 3-5 degrees, although it rained regularly, with short breaks. The pressure is slightly below normal, the water temperature on the surface is 7-8 degrees. Only on the third day did the north piercing wind blow.
The water level in the Volga dropped dramatically: more than one and a half meters by eye, which is incomprehensible, because they promised to “keep”! But, thank God, they still gave the fry to grow up, and he had already managed to move out of the grass to deeper places. And I must say that I have not seen so many fry here for a long time. Floats of nets are clearly visible in front of our camp. They block the entire bay. And here the owners of the nets appeared: on two inflatable rowboats they confidently sailed out to check the catch. Our boats are not assembled, we cannot interfere with the process. We went ashore, started yelling at them to take our nets and bring them down in an amicable way, that we would call the fish inspection, took out cameras. Surprisingly, it worked! The men very quickly gathered the nets, blew off the boats, got into the car and drove away.
These places are familiar to us: in ten years of fishing we have studied them well. There were years when a huge amount of bleak and sabrefish came from the sea into the Volga in autumn, and after them flocks of asps, pike perches and pikes followed. But this is all in the past. We managed to get on the accumulations of medium-sized, up to two or three kilograms, pike in September-October a year ago, but no one has heard about flocks of asp in recent years. The entry of both predatory and peaceful fish into the Volga from Rybinka is due to many factors beyond the control of any logic, and the success of fishing depends to a large extent on whether there is fish in this area or not. As a control, we throw a dozen circles baited by perches at different depths. We ourselves go on two boats to look for fish.
The first point is right next to the camp. Here, a cable was laid along the bottom, excavation was carried out. So much has been dug up that you can’t figure out where which pit begins and ends. A clear, deep ditch of a flooded river juts out into this “lunar” landscape. We turned on the echo sounder. At first, I thought that the device had deteriorated or was operating in the “do not show fish” mode. After 20 minutes of cutting circles, it became clear that “our” fish simply does not exist, and there is very little white. We move to the left side of the channel. There, too, the relief is difficult, with hillocks. There is no fish. We go down the river, almost to Myshkin. Cargo dock with huge supports. Excellent hiding places for fish, near the depth and border of a strong current. Sasha has a clear bite on the twister, and my perch – on the castmaster. At Edik, after casting, a pike sits along the supports, but comes off near the boat.
We go to the mouth of Yukhoti. After the discharge of water, sandy deposits are visible, and in some places islands have even been exposed. At night on the engine in such places you need to look both ways. Mentally I imagine where the currents of the Volga and Yukhoti converge. Anchor. The current is very strong, a weight of 30 g is immersed in 20-30 seconds. But the bottom is dense in places, good rebound in the hand. At some point I decide to change the bait and speed up the rotation. A powerful pull immediately follows. Sasha confidently sips my pike. It looks about two kilograms. Swallowed deeply, almost bit off the leash. But subsequent throws into the same zone did not give results. We moved under the high steep bank of the Volga. An almost vertical sandy cliff, green fir trees and birches and poplars burning with golden fire. It is not long left to admire such beauty in these places. Gradually, the coast crumbles and the forest slides into the water. All this is the result of destructive waves from passing ships. Already there was only a narrow strip of trees on the shore, the last line.
Large trunks washed out in the sand are clearly visible on the echo sounder monitor. Everything is fine, only there are no symbols of large fish. We start to catch. I got a goose bite, a little later at Sasha, both at the riverbed. Trying to throw closer to the shore – and at the same time both have hooks. Net? No, it was the breeders who put their banners on the stall. You can’t catch here anymore! At such moments, I no longer understand who I do not like more – networkers or bream workers. Constantly on all reservoirs we cling to their ropes with floats. Why not put away those buoy bottles after you? Our fishing was about the same in the next two days. On the evening of the second day I had only one bite, but what a bite! I had already brought the bait to the boat itself and made a long pause. The blow was so strong that the rod almost flew out of his hands. I hooked, but – a treacherous void. Get off!
On the third day Sasha Darmogray got up very early and decided to fish in the deepest hole near the camp. For three hours he did not see a single bite, despaired and finally decided to put on a yellow “Bass Assassin” 70 mm long. Either the pike began to emerge, or the fish really reacted only to a certain type of bait, but from the very first casting a pike weighing more than 3 kg took, and after a while another, slightly smaller, was caught. Dima Kostyukhin caught a lot of bleak, which he took on a sandwich from bloodworms and maggot from a meter deep. At the same time, no one coveted the worms on the feeders – they lay untouched at the bottom. We rolled the glue in flour and fried in boiling oil. Bold autumn bleak is something incomparable! And nobody touched our mugs in three days.