Correct! The attentious reader already noticed that there are some training days missing in the blog-sequence. There's a, little bit humiliating, but simple reason for that. The missing training days in the blog were simply days without us catching any fish and therefore days we want to forget as quickly as possible. (Even though there were perhaps valuable lessons learned.)
Back to reality, training day 9.
We hear about people catching fish at the Moerdijk bridge (and we see a lot of boats under the Moerdijk as well), but we need different spots. We did our homework the evening before and start at a what we think is a promising spot. Quite shallow water that has been warming up the days before.
But as promising as this spot may seem..... for the first hour it remains nothing but a promiss.
After covering quite some area I get a take far out from the boat, but unfortunately that fish doesn't stay on. When we want to switch spots a boat approaches and it's one of our friends from my homewater the Maas. He's doing better as he already caught two nice zander. That sounds like music in our ears because it means that at least some fish is active. Now we only need to find them! So, we wish each other luck for the rest of the day and part ways again.
Arrived at our new spot we continue our quest for zander. Preparing for the tournament we believe we have to become proficient in fishing with a passive side-rod. We were already using side-rods for a little while, but now finally a fish found the shad noteworthy and Ruud can land the first (small) zander of the day.
Luckily I took this action picture because in the next seconds the fish manages to escape Ruud's 'solid' grip and auto-releases himself back into the water.
But after the first zander, the action starts picking up and more fish get to see the insight of the boat
Very slow fishing seems to be the key, where Ruud gets a lot more action on his rod than I.
Actually we should leave this spot now and try to test some other locations but with the fish being active it's really difficult to quit fishing over here.
I don't get any takes anymore but Ruud manages to reel in two more fish.
And then I get my already last action of the day which Ruud beautifully covers in some live-action-photography....
With a satisfied fisherman as a result!
But tempting as it is to continue fishing this place, we have to find more spots, so with pain in our hearts we start the engine and leave.
Other new spots however don't deliver much fish anymore. Ruud catches another small one that also autoreleases itself once Ruud has taken the hook out.
And just before we go home we join the other boats under the Moerdijk just to see if we can catch a fish there as well. I miss one and Ruud gets perhaps 7 or 8 takes of which finally one falsely hooks himself and comes into the boat. Number 10 to end the day.
I get the feeling that Ruud isn't into small fish, because this fish also manages to jump away as soon as Ruud unhooks it....... I pick the poor chap from the floor and after a quick photo he can swim again.