Saturday, 13 July 2013

Perch perfection.

If a picture paints a thousand words then this post may be the equivalent of Tolstoy's epic novel "War and Peace". I managed to get back to our perch loch the other week and this time I was determined to fish some dropshot techniques. My normal approach for fishing this loch has been to use a small Jackson Cymo vibe lure. This has proved really effective in the past with trout and char also keen to take it. However as effective as it is I have been thinking that I need to fish slower and deeper If I was hoping to get a better perch.

I must have got to the loch by 11:30 and it was a stunner of a day, warm with patchy cloud and a slight breeze, just enough to keep the midges at bay. Although I had been telling myself that I would be using my heavier set up and larger lures, I had to start with my LRF gear. The main reason was that it was already rigged with a light dropshot rig. An 8lb fluorocarbon leader #8 offset worm hook and a 7g dropshot weight, I rigged this with a Watermelon Pearl Lake Fork Live Baby Shad. I always like to have a play with the lures in the shallows so I can see how they are working and I was amazed at how the little lure reacted to twitches and lifts of the rod. Now it was time to see what the perch thought!

Two or three casts later I had my answer as I felt a couple of sharp pecks on the lure before the fish grabbed it, hooking itself in the process. I managed to play the fish through a couple of weed patches and quickly landed my first perch of the day.

A lovely fish and was the picture of health.
It was just over 26cm on The Lure Forum ruler.
I released it back to the gin clear water and managed to get a nice shot of it gliding back towards the weed beds.

The fishing continued in this vein with lots of perch gleefully attacking the lure and fighting hard for the weeds once they were hooked, I was in heaven!

Another pristine perch.
Spot the perch.

As I moved up the loch I had a nice fish of around a pound in weight and full of confidence I started to take pics one handed as I played the fish in. The perch took full advantage of my lack of concentration and quickly threw the hook, leaving me cursing my snap happy approach although I did get a couple of nice shots of it in the water!

Now you see me... you don't!

Every now and then I would swap over to my heavier set up with a Lunker City Swimmin Ribster mounted on a 7g #2/0 football jighead. I worked this back with a sink and draw retrieve but it only resulted in one fish  (which got off) after an hour of working it. I went back to my LRF set up and results were instantaneous with more perch greedily attacking the lure. I was really having fun with them but I was still hoping for a big one but time was running out.

Perch love these little minnow like lures.
Another lovely bronze coloured perch. Must be the slightly peaty loch water that makes them this shade.

I was concentrating on working the lure along a drop off when I felt a couple of little taps, these didn't develop into anything so I cast again to the same area. Again I felt a couple of little taps but the fish didn't seem to want to commit. I decided to rig up a fresh Lake Fork Live Baby Shad as I hoped the strong garlic scent may help. I recast and brought the lure into the same area where again there were a couple of taps before the tip of my rod lunged down as a good fish grabbed the lure. The fish bore down into deeper water taking line in small bursts before pausing to shake its head violently. My heart was in my mouth as I knew it was a bigger perch, as it rose up from the depths I could see it was a lunker! I had waded about ten foot from the shore and I had left the net back on dry land, so offering the mantra "don'tcomeoffdon'tcomeoffdon'tcomeoff" I walked backwards trying to reach my net. The fish shot off again back down over the drop off but I had my net now and I played it back towards me. It broke the surface and seemed to take an age to drift across the top of the water and into the landing net and as it nestled safely in it I let out a squeal of delight! Words can hardly describe the relief and sheer excitement at this hard won awesome fish. It was in absolutely perfect condition, a big and lean muscled perfect wild perch.

The fish measured 37cm on The Lure Forum Ruler.
Weighing 1lb 10oz it was my biggest perch for a few years.

I took my pictures in a daze surrounded by awesome scenery and holding this magnificent fish in the water, It was hard to say goodbye but as she gave a kick it was time. I watched her swim strongly back through the clear shallows and disappear into the deep black water of the drop off an image that will be with me for a very long time!

Time to go.
Splosh and away.

I was elated, so much so that for about ten minutes I just sat in the sun, grinning and drinking in all that had happened, it really was that perfect moment.

I only had about twenty minutes of fishing time left and manged to winkle out a couple more perch around 25cm before I packed up and headed back to Edinburgh.

Spot the Live Baby Shad. Now I know why they are Scott's favourite perch lure.
Stunning scenery. A great place to fish indeed.

For some time I have been hoping to get a bigger perch so to catch such a beautiful, wild, perfect specimen was an absolute joy and with the new approach working well I am hopeful of catching an even bigger one.

Tight lines, Schogsky.


  1. Beautiful fish! Love those orange fins... they're a different shade from the perch over on this side of the pond.

    1. Thanks Ben , they are lovley arn't they and in absolutley pristine condition too. One day I would love to compare the two types!

  2. A cracking post, and some fine looking perch !
    love those Lake Fork baby shads !!

    1. Thanks Mark, they are really nice wild fish from that loch and the lake fork live baby shads are brilliant lures,great for lots of species too!