Fernandez Bags Monster Barbel on Roach Gear
On a recent trip to the River Itchen, Matt Fernandez banked more than he’d hoped for, landing this beautiful 15lb 4oz Barbel on a size 18 hook and 3lb line. He reflects on this special trip…
“When I set out to fish the river Itchen with my 14ft Drennan match pro float rod coupled with a small Daiwa reel loaded with 3.2lb line, a Dave Harrel 3g float and a size 18 hook and some maggots my initial target was to catch some roach. However, after catching a couple of roach the bites dried up so I moved down stream to fish an area where I knew some big roach lived.
After feeding the area with a pinch of maggot for about fifteen minutes I had my first trot. As the float glided along a far margin snag the float sunk under and I immediately knew I’d struck into a Barbel…
With a light set up aimed at catching roach, I knew I would have my work cut out. My friend Jim was upstream, he ran down after I gave him a shout and the pair of us were both buzzing and anxious at the same time. When we both saw the Barbel, and knew it was a monster fish! Then the pressure was really on…
Thankfully, luck was well on my side and after a lengthy battle of back and forth Jim slid the net under the Barbel. He ran and got our friend Chris who was fishing upstream whilst the Barbel rested in the net.
We prepared everything and weighed the fish which went 15lb 4oz! A true monster for such a small river and to be caught on such light tackle, it was a real pleasure and a nightmare at the same time. My heart went into overdrive!
A happy moment shared with good friends indeed!”