At the appointed time, Igor arrived, and by his smile and joyful mood one could understand that he really missed this winter fishing and walking on the ice! The road is not close, and we entertained ourselves with talks about the latest news from the rivers, about fishing, discussed the story with the fishermen who had come off on an ice floe in the vicinity of the Armenian beach, on the Volga. The danger was not that the ice floe came off, but that the ice there at that time was very, very thin, only 6-9 cm, and with a strong current there was a real danger of ice destruction. It’s dangerous to go out on such thin ice, not to fish! In the Laishevo area, where we were heading, the ice is already strong enough, about 10 cm, but safety precautions are still necessary. Just in case, I put 20 meters of strong rope in my fishing box.
By the number of cars moving towards the exit from the city, it was clear that fishing “kurultai” on ice could not be avoided. We stopped at the Rotornaya stop, where they sell fresh tyulka at night, bought two dozen per brother – and off the road! Judging by the long line of cars on the highway, the choice of fishermen in the city of Kazan fell on a place called “Cape”. There, the Kama riverbed has a depth of 21 meters and there is a good road to the very shore, which is important. When we approached the river in almost complete darkness, there were already plenty of cars on the shore and new ones arrived all the time. The light of numerous headlights illuminated the surroundings, and after half an hour you would think that you were standing in the middle of the parking lot somewhere in the city center. First, in thin streams, and then in a wide stream, groups of anglers set off on the ice glinting in the headlights into the blackness of night. We were a little afraid to go out on the ice in complete darkness and decided to wait until dawn.
Dawn dawned on the horizon. The vague, barely audible at first, and then quite loud rumble of the motor made us peer in the direction from which it came. Really someone on the “Buran” on thin ice ?! And there is! Not at all afraid, a snowmobile drove from the shore to the channel! Naturally, all our fears disappeared, and we confidently stepped onto the ice! How nice to look at winter landscapes and fishermen walking in a friendly crowd. The ice is really strong enough already, in places up to 12-14 cm. Exceptionally smooth and clean, only in some places there are small piles of hummocks from the first short ice-freezing. Decent night frosts down to minus 12-14 degrees give an increase in ice by about 2-3 cm per day. Four days of good frost – and the road to ice is open! Navigator navigated the terrain. To the channel about 500 meters. Most stop and drill holes almost immediately on the riverbed, and we are a little further. Gone another half a kilometer.
Morning came into its own. The sun was slowly rising from the horizon, while the ice, reflecting the sun’s rays, seemed to just disappear. Amazingly beautiful sight! If it were not for the frost and winter clothes, then the surrounding could well be mistaken for summer fishing in full calm. It is interesting to check the action of the Admiral weighing 10 g at 60 rubles apiece. They say that an unloaded gun shoots once! I’m generally skeptical of factory spinners: they don’t have a master’s soul, they don’t have that one and only game. The sensations experienced by the angler while working with an exclusive lure are completely different from those that give the standard mechanical vibrations of serial models. But my friends insisted, moreover, they assured me that they only bite on the Admiral, and all the other baubles act as extras.
He put down the Admiral and, with a sinking heart, began to wait a little bit for a bite, playing with a little bauble. But the first bite happened at Igor. He gently pulled out the lump. Depth about 12 meters, decent traction. I add braids a little when my light spinner stops touching the bottom. I raise the gear by half a meter, looking for pike perch in the water column, but without bites. And Igor has another trophy, then another and another. I change the nature of the oscillations, then their frequency, I include all my knowledge. The answer is silence. After 45 minutes of unsuccessful searches for the style and method of fishing, the change of spinners and lures, after I got nervous and eventually messed up the braid on a new fishing rod, I decided to finally just relax and start all over again. My only trophy in this place was a ruff giant who pecked at a spider on a small bauble!
Igor by that time stopped to peck pike perch, and we decide to change the place. No sooner said than done. I radically changed the tackle by putting my favorite old home-made spinner weighing 12 g on a fishing line with a diameter of 0.22 mm. And that is what we love fishing for: a real rampant bite! It’s hard to say what worked – either the new-old spoon-bait, or a new place that has not yet been beaten by fishermen, but the bite was excellent! Two three short nods at a height of up to a meter from the bottom, then a light glider of 15 cm – and the repetition of the entire cycle of movements. The tackle is left without attention of the fish for no more than 15 seconds, then it shows its presence – sometimes with a gentle touch, and sometimes with a sharp blow. And always with the same result! At least half a kilo was hardly caught. Small bersh came across when there was no bite of pike perch for more than a minute. Soon, fishers from those who had not yet found their fish began to drill holes. But not everyone succeeded here, so for a long time we did not have to be in a big company.
Around noon, the nibble subsided a little, and we were pleased to warm ourselves, taking a walk with a drill. We drilled several holes, and without seeing the bites, we returned to the working holes again. We had another catch, but by one in the afternoon Igor began to freeze and went to the shore, to the car. About an hour later I caught zander and also started off towards the shore. It froze noticeably in the evening, but the car was warm and comfortable. Igor was already waiting for me to go home. I was quickly thawed, and when the car drove onto the highway, I did not notice how I fell asleep. To the noise of the engine and soft music, I recalled minutes of biting, nods, gnarls popping out of a hole, and the bright winter sun reflected in a mirror of solid water! This is true happiness! Thank you, Kama, for the opening of the season, for the pleasure of communicating with nature, for the fresh winter air, for the happiness of living next to the river!
author Niyaz AHMEDOV