First of all sorry I didn't drop in a report last week, I had no spare time at all. I now know I have some friends reading my blog as far away as Italy and China, so I better keep up the blogging. Martin, I'll get myself a cheap digi camera soon to add some photos so you can see the places I fish.
Friday last was a bit of rush, needed to get some work done, then pack and get all the gear together for the double header at Porth Reservoir near Newquay. Sometimes I think I may be a little psychic, as I had a feeling I was going to get to Thatchers in Wells and find no bait... guess what my 2 kilo of worms were nowhere to be seen! After a few calls 1 kilo was found but that was it, I thought is the shape of things to come?
A good journey to Newquay and parking space right outside the hotel (last one) cheered me up as the gear would be in full view. I bumped into the "young uns" Mat Parsons, Mat Cardwell and Andy Power and we all made our way to Wetherspoons to meet the rest of the lads. We had an Indian that night, the madras that Steve Tucker and I had was off the scale, Mat Cardwell tried some and disappeared to the toilet! As I hadn't slept to well during the week I was back in the hotel by midnight with a few others, whilst the rest found a club with dancers, Ian Pauley your a bad influence!
As usual on Saturday morning the draw was not done on time, and as my team was one of the last to draw I was worried about being set up on time. I should say that Thatchers had 2 teams entered, once called "thatchers" one called "All Stars" I was in the latter. My draw put me on peg 91 on the far side of the lake, a peg that Mark Brennan had the week before, catching 8lb. As a couple of teams had fished the lake the day before and bagged we were optimistic of a decent day. Unfortunately I could tell I was not going to be ready for the start and I was rushing, when the whistle went I decided to put some bait on the pole at least, cupping in my first big ball of gbait I snapped the no4 section, and proceeded to spend 5 mins trying to retrieve the cupping kit. (The section broke because of my fault, nothing to do with the pole.) I telescoped the section and cupped in 4 balls without issue.
Finally I was in on the feeder, but 30 mins in and with no bites I went on the pole, I managed to get a few bites and the odd small skimmer, but it wasn't great, but then it was slow for most. After 1.5 hours I dropped on the feeder hoping a few fish might of settled there, but one fish was the result of 20 min spell. Back on the pole and I had a little run of skimmers but then it was stone dead and the lake was flat calm. I was using a 1gm rig, with a bulk and 4 no 10 droppers, and most bites showed as hold ups. I'd started on an 18 PR31 hook to 0.1mm but had changed down to 0.08 to a 20 earlier when it was clear I wouldn't be bagging, but now I couldn't get a bite on this! Guy Manton was next door and as he was also not catching he went out on the waggler and was getting bites and odd fish, I had not set one up (due to time) but after 20 mins got off my box and set one up, much to Guys displeasure! As I was getting odd fish on this I stuck with it, but the guy to my left (out of sight) bagged on the feeder in the last hour to win the section with 15lb. My 5lb 11oz only beat 2 people and guys head start on the wag gave him 7lb 4oz and one point more than me. Nicky Ewers was the other side of Guy and he had 8lb+ for 3rd in section. For the last hour of the match I moaned about everything I could (I have mentioned before this can draw fish!) and to be fair Guy and Nicky took it in the good nature intended and were having a good laugh at my expense! I should say that two Thatchers Porth experts, Timmy Rowe (complete nutter) and Gary Webber both came last in their sections, so it proved the venue was rather peggy, and we'd got it wrong!
I was glad to get back to the hotel and get a cold beer, I found out All Stars had come 4th beating Thatchers who were 6th I think. Garbolino (Chaveys lot) paralysed it, they fished more negative and as the venue fished hard, they got it right. Muffy in our team (I don't his name cos that's what everyone calls him and it was on the team sheet!)won his section and framed on the feeder as did all the framers. A later night ensued as I decided to drown my sorrows, as far as I recall Gary O'Shea never bought a round!
I wasn't sure I wanted the breakfast, but knew it was a long time before my next meal so I got it down. As the draw was 9 o'clock sharp we rushed off, but yet again it was a late draw but at least our team was not last to draw. I drew the near side on peg 45 a long way up, the day before Mark Harper had 10oz of peg 44, brilliant... Half way to my peg I remembered the water and snickers bar in my car, so I walked back to get them (in waders I borrowed from Warren Bates) and then continued the trek. At least I had more time to set up and I was ready on time. I had Andy Power on the next peg, and both of us were getting bites and small skimmers on the tip straight away, this was more like it! 40 mins in I had a perch and no more bites, Andy caught for about 15 mins more than me then his bites stopped. After this it was worse than day 1 no bites on the pole at all, just the odd micro perch in close to relieve the boredom. I cast the feeder further out thinking I could find fish that had backed off, I did but only 2 in the last 3 hours. 3lb 2oz was my result, and I only avoided coming last thanks to the fact one team were a man down. Andy had 3lb 12oz for 1 more point than me and Nicky Johns with 3lb 14oz next to Andy meant we were the bottom three. It was a poor draw, a bad result and then I had to wait for well over an hour for the boat to come and pick up the gear. I was the last man out of the car park and decided to go straight home as it would be nearly 10 pm before I got back home.
Not sure of the final result, but I know Bathampton won on the day (well done lads) after coming nearly last the day before, Thatchers improved to 3rd and my All Stars were 4th, not that I had helped much! Garbolino are miles in front and I don't think can be caught. Team mate Matty Cardwell had won the match from the peg that had won the day before, but had to wait till late on before the bream showed.
To sum up my weekend, I spent a fortune, caught very little, got battered every day, but had a great couple of nights out on the lash with the lads. As I write this I'm knackered, so apologies if there are any mistakes in this blog!