Vantastic Lukas: Start on the Elbe

Vantastic Lukas: Auftakt an der Elbe | Hammer Tackle

Back in Germany

After I spent the first week in Germany with Alice in her homeland, I was supposed to go back to my hometown after 5 months of “overwintering”. One of the first things I did - how could it be otherwise - was to buy an Elbe fishing card. I've been looking forward to spring on the Elbe for a long time, as I only rediscovered my old love of the river last year. Coincidentally, my friend Starki was on vacation at exactly that time. So we set off together in the first week. We intuitively looked for a shallow groyne that we had never fished before. We fanned our rods out onto two consecutive groyne fields. After the first barbel actions, I was able to outwit my first barbel fish of the year on the second evening. The bite was tentative and had us guessing another barbel at first. But after a short fight the scaler came to the surface. We celebrated the fish together because our expectations weren't particularly high at this place.

Move into the depths

Because the water was expected to rise and the air pressure and temperatures to fall in the following days, we decided to move to a deeper area. An area on an outside curve where the current was also stronger. I became particularly aware of this because of the flotsam that constantly drifted into the line. Because of the debris that collected in the line, effective fishing was almost impossible. Clumps of weeds collected on the rigs, which enveloped the bait or caused the rigs to move. Contrary to the weather forecast, we were also surprised by the best spring weather. That's why we decided to go back to the spot we fished before. The fishing was much easier there again: no flotsam that made fishing difficult for us. Once again I hooked some barbel. We were amazed; While we have rarely caught barbel in recent years, it now seemed as if the barbel were extremely present. After the second night, on the last day of fishing together, I was woken up by a full run. After a short drill we were able to net another Schuppi.

Where have the fish gone?

The next week passed with significantly less action. After Starki and I finished our session with my Schuppi, I went to another section of the river. There I caught some bream and barbel straight away. The quick whitefish action surprised me a bit and made me and Wiel, whose birthday we celebrated on the Elbe this weekend, optimistic for the coming hours. To our surprise, none of us were able to outwit a carp, even though they made their presence known by jumping in the groyne. I continued fishing steadily throughout the week, spending every night on the water. However, there were no actions at all. I didn't even have whitefish action anymore. I suspected that the fish had started spawning or were at least gathering at certain points to prepare for it. The weekend when Starki and I got together again to go fishing with my friend Bruno for two nights was also quiet. Apart from a small piece that Starki was able to land on a single hookbait completely unexpectedly last night, nothing worked. My opinion that the fish are spawning somewhere hardened.

Persistence is rewarded

But I couldn't really let the fishless last few days sit with me. Since arriving home, I have felt significantly more motivated to fish on the Elbe than has been the case in recent years. As long as I still had time and this “drive”, I wanted to take advantage of this. So I went again to the spot where I had previously only caught whitefish with Wiel. Something made me return to this spot. I felt that the carp couldn't be far away. This time I fished a little differently and was able to catch my first carp that evening after just two hours; a small mirror who fought like a big one. The next morning I was woken up by a few beeps. I took my time, first emptied my bladder and then went to the rod. Then I saw my line making large circles in the groyne field, only a few of which reached the bite alarm. I made contact and quickly found myself in a carp fight. A few minutes later I had the Schuppi in the net. My guess that the fish were not far from where they had previously fished was apparently spot on.

I realized that my momentary euphoria about fishing on the Elbe again made me more adept at fishing. I put more effort into the rigs, thought more about feeding and chose my fishing spots consciously. I felt a little more “watercraft” again, which I had partially lost in the past.

Since there will be some manual work on the agenda soon in the form of a new camper conversion, I will probably have less time to write on the side. So I'm taking advantage of the peace and quiet on this Monday morning, when spring is in full swing around me.

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