Guido Richard: Something new – pike fishing in the Volkerak

Guido Richard: Etwas Neues - Hechtangeln im Volkerak | Hammer Tackle

Since becoming an angler, I've been constantly looking for new ways to have fun. For this I need a goal and challenges - I want to create new feelings, explore new paths in order to satisfy my almost pathological desire for fishing adventure.

In the past few years I have had a wide variety of goals that brought with them major challenges. For a long time it was fly fishing in the form of national and international competitions, at least until the desire and fun for it faded away.

Overall, however, I missed the discovery and adventure. Although I got to know many countries and waters through the various competitions: everything was always planned, the routes were drawn and it was basically just a matter of making the best of the lot in the given time. For a long time I really enjoyed the technical aspect and the premise of adapting for the greatest possible effectiveness and that was all I lived for. But as boredom crept in over time, carp fishing became more interesting for me. Here it was a matter of searching and discovering - that's how I found the adventure in fishing again.

At the same time, plans for fly fishing were still developing in me. Specifically, it was about fly fishing in New Zealand. When I put this plan into action, I initially felt small, lost and without a plan in the first few weeks, surrounded by all the mountains and thousands of rivers. But it's exactly this feeling that I love when fishing! It gives me the energy, the motivation, the desire to lose myself in my fishing and to invest everything I do into it.

Now, a few years later, I had exactly the same feeling again when I rediscovered the Rhine Delta in Holland with my good friend Nico. On this beautiful June morning, before dawn, after a short boat trip, the Volkerak's floodgates opened. With the sun rising, we initially wondered where to start. Whether the pike were even shallower in the weeds or should we search deeper along the edges? Where were the whitefish just now? Admittedly, we were pretty clueless considering the huge expanse of water.

It slowly became light and there was this mixture of wild nature, huge waterway and fields with wind edges - even before we started fishing, I already knew that this was exactly my thing. The atmosphere was perfect, just like in New Zealand a few years before.

I don't want to go into too much detail about fishing there because I simply don't have the experience. But we had a whopping eight days ahead of us and, as with any new body of water, we first got to grips with it slowly. On the first two days we tried out a lot of different areas, we mapped a lot of water with the depth sounder and looked for whitefish at the same time.

We managed to save a few relevant points relatively quickly. Most of the whitefish were in the weeds relatively close to the bank, the bream were currently in the middle of spawning and of course: the pike were right there. The week flew by and was wonderful. Only the wind made fishing a little more difficult for us on some days, as it can quickly become uncomfortable in the boat on such a large expanse of water.

In the entire time we managed to land almost 45 pike. And even though there weren't any of the really big chunks, we were still very satisfied. Every day I fell a little more in love with this corner and wanted to explore more of it. It's simply one of those bodies of water that you'll want to move straight to and spend every minute there, because the possibilities there seem to be endless.

The end of our trip had come and we both knew we had to go back. So a new trip there was planned for the beginning of September.

When we came back, we quickly felt clueless again because everything was different. What was right in June was now wrong, we had to start everything back at the beginning. The fishing was generally tougher, the whitefish were everywhere and nowhere - and of course the pike. It was just too bitter, because just as we were starting to get a feel for the water again after several days, we had to go home again. But that's just how it is when you fish such a giant in such a short time. However, this has only made me love it even more and I can't wait to spend some more time there this year.

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