Sunday, 26 June 2011

June / July 1991

I was booked in to fish Tony Rixon's open at Viaduct Match lake, but both me and the wife were feeling unwell and I cancelled, plus I have to travel to the Houses of Parliament Monday so the rest was best.

After a a few skimmers and eels for 5lb 5oz and 4th in the Flowerpot evening match at Frys I was preparing for a practice with the rest of the team on the river Axe. I fished to my strengths (with no other info) which was the wag and maggot, and had a nice 7lb bag of roach, plus a few eels on the pole. On the Sunday I was back on the Avon at Newbridge in the Skanderborg challenge and found myself drawn towards the bottom of the trees and not a good area (back then). Twenty one teams fished this event and I think the top 10 went through to the next round. The river was very poor (although quite normal for Newbridge early season) and I only managed 1 small chub a handful of roach and 2 eels for 2lb 2.5oz. Wag, pole and maggot feeder were all tried, but my efforts only gave me 8 points. However, the team came 8th and we progressed to the next round. I noted in my diary that 55lb of bream won from peg 53, and those bream still live there don't they!

A bad draw on the next round of the Flowerpot series at Jack Whites messed my head up, I had about 10 yards trot and 2lb 2oz was pathetic. A pleasure session at Jack Whites (to get my head sorted) on the bread and crowquill produced a 3lb chub, roach and hybrids, and 8lb of skimmers. Sunday I was back on the River Axe for the Sundridge Super League match (my practice weight having gotten me into the team) and I left the house in brilliant sunshine wearing shorts and a T Shirt. By the time we got to Bleadon the sun was gone and I spent the whole day shivering in drizzle. To make matters worse I could not catch on any method and I weighed 2lb 2oz (see a pattern forming on this weight?) for 3 points out of 11. I was feeling rather down about things, I could go pleasure fishing and catch but in matches I was struggling. Guess what, a 4lb 4oz (oh well double the usual!) on the Flowerpot match at Chequers for no where was then followed by 16lb of hybrids pleasure fishing at Jack Whites after a tide. Always fish after a tide for bream, I think it disturbs the bottom and the bream seize upon the moment to eat some freebies.

My run of appalling results in July was to continue, in the next round of the superleague, on the K&A at Whaddon, I weighed a huge 1lb 11oz thanks mainly to 1 tench! Still it was worth 8 points so not a complete disaster. Then it was onto Castle Ashby Game Fair in Northampton. At the time the team I fished for was known as Bristol Sensas, and Sensas Supremo Trev Tomlin asked my captain Andy Floyd if we would go and fish this invitation match. The guest house we had booked was run by Albinos who kept giving us funny looks and seemed to by eyeing up our car, but once we put a tray of maggots under it they screamed and took no further interest! The rooms were less than adequate but we were stuck in Northampton now. Andy and I headed off out to find a pub, and after what seem like an age we finally found one. I think we were in there for about an hour before we clocked it was a gay bar for both sexes! Andy wanted to leave, but as there were no other pubs about I said as long as we sit together we'll be safe, plus it was rather fun to watch a couple of lesbos kissing and canoodling! Onto the match and there were many angling starts present, including the one and only Ivan Marks, and I only went and drew next to him! He told me this part of the lake was poor and I could see why, it was 18" deep and after about 10m was solid with weed. I fished next to the weed for tench and managed to lose one foul hooked, I then came in on a closer line on maggot for 2lb of bits until I hooked and lost a monster that I couldn't prevent from getting into the weed! Ivan just beat me fishing for bits all day with bloodworm, but it wasn't about the result more about the chance for the visitors to see fish being caught. For some reason Ivan attracted a bigger crowd than me (lol), and it was a day I will never forget.

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Landsend Match Lake

Leighton Palmer was running an open match on Match Lake and I fancied this rather than take a place at Chilton Trinity. I'm wondering if I was right?

I arrived early and took the opportunity to walk around the lake, the first third of the lake had the wind blowing into it, the further up you went the flatter it got, so I fancied a draw from pegs 1 to 5 or 19 to 24. When the draw finally started (Leighton and crew arrived after the 9:30 draw time) Anton Page drew for Leighton and handed him peg 19, whilst Anton could only pull peg 10, not good. I pulled out corner peg 12 as far away from the wind as possible. I did not fancy it but I have seen it produce both silvers and carp in the past so wasn't giving up. Anton mentioned that we keep drawing next to each other, and that he hadn't yet beaten me off the next peg!

With peg 11 not in I had a bit of room, and I decided to have a soft pellet swim at 11.5 mtr at 10 o'clock in the open water (0.3 grm PB inter 0.14 to 16 B911), meat at 6mtr with the same rig as above, a pellet rig for the aerator at 14.5 mtr, and a margin rig both with 0.16 to 16 PR36. Oh and a caster rig for 3 mtrs. A lot of rigs and swims but not all fed to begin with!

On the whistle I was not quite ready, and by the time I filled my pot with meat Anton was already into a carp! I fed the meat and pellet lines with a pot and threw some casters in. I started on the pellet at 11.5 mtr and missed a bite first drop but then had no signs for 15 mins, I saw a few bubbles in the meat swim so dropped in with an 8mm cube, I hooked a decent bream but it came off as I reached for the landing net. It took me another 10 mins to get a bite here and I landed a carp of 2lb. An hour and half into the match I added a skimmer, but my two banker lines were not showing any signs of fish. Anton was miles in front of me as had taken 4 carp in the first 30 mins but he was now struggling. I came in on the caster line and caught a few perch from 1oz to 10oz, but this line died quickly and I only took another 3 perch of this line all day!

I was really struggling and I tried the margin, early than planned, where I had been loose feeding pellets, I didn't get a bite here, but did clear the swim of snags! I managed to foul hook a couple of skimmers, one each from the meat and pellet swims and that was the extent of the middle of my match. I had been feeding to the aerator with the catty and 6mm pellets all day and with 90 mins to go it started to bubble. I couldn't catch on the banded pellet rig, so I swapped to the soft pellet and caught a couple of skimmers and a carp. Then in the last hour I had 3 more carp and ide on this line and that was it. Although this last spell was better I was still waiting a long time for bites and I don't think the fish were there in numbers.

Anton threw back around 20lb (and so his jinx with me on the next peg continues) and I weighed 20lb of carp and 12lb of silvers for no where. As I thought the bottom pegs were much better than my end, and the match was all over at the draw today.

1st Leighton Palmer 98lb 70z peg 19 meat, mainly down the edge.
2nd Martin Rayett 87lb 3oz peg 3 meat across in 1ft of water.
3rd Rich.... 76lb 4oz peg 21
4th Alan Oram 55lb 14oz peg 24. Won the silvers with 19lb.

Only peg 1 down that end of the lake did not weigh, that was old Plip Plop, not sure what the Keynsham Angling boss did to avoid them lol!

Saturday, 11 June 2011

R.I.P. Eddie Perkins

I have heard the news tonight that Bitton's finest angler Eddie Perkins has passed away after a long illness. Eddie was one of those guys that I looked up to as young angler making my way into river fishing. Eddie was simply deadly on running line tactics, especially the float. I've lost count of the number of times he pulled out his keepnet full of roach or chub when those around him struggled.

We have lost a gentleman, and an angler from a generation quite different to ours when anglers fished rivers, and the float ruled the river, and the cream rose to the top. With his passing much knowledge is lost.

I hope your at rest now Eddie, sitting on your favourite peg with hemp and tares, RIP.

Viaduct Saturday Open

I was booked into my nephew's christening on Sunday, and so it was off for a Sat match at Viaduct. Having not fished there for a year I guessed I was likely to be pools fodder to the locals unless I had a good draw. I had gleaned as much info as I could from Glenn Bailey, Tony Rixon and Mike Nicholls who have fished Viaduct a fair bit lately. I had an open mind as to fish for carp or silvers depending on where I drew. My home for the day was to be 111. I was told to forget silvers where I was as with both 110 and 112 in I would not have much room, so carp it was then!

Arriving at the peg I could see the odd carp moving / cruising and a few fizzes here and there, I was pleased with this after all the rain we had yesterday. I don't like to set up loads of gear, normally I like to fish positive on just a couple of methods, but as I had heard the carp were not giving themselves up easily I decided to cover many bases. A straight lead and shallow wag for out by the aerator, a 4x12 durafloat with 0.16 to 16 PR36 for banded pellet at 13mtr, a paste rig for the same line 0.18 direct to size 12 B911, another 4x12 for meat (not a bite again!!) and a paste rig for the margin same as above but shallower! No shallow rig for the pole was set up as I had a plan!

At the start of the match I cupped in about 40 8mm pellets at 13 mtrs, a cupful of 4mms in the margin to my right, and started feeding a few 8mm pellets out by the aerator. I started on the pole with 8mm pellet and I had a great first hour and 15 mins, I think I may have had 40lb in this time mainly carp and the odd skimmer. This line then went funny and it was just the odd fouler. I shallowed the rig up and slapped in the pellet (my plan) and I had 1 skimmer (my plan failed). Back on the deck and I couldn't catch so I thought the aerator would be solid and out went the shallow wag, after 20 mins I was on the lead! I had 2 carp in the first two casts and then nothing for 40 mins. By now Martin Preston on 115 was catching well on the lead, as were the anglers on pegs 128 and 132.

The middle of my match was a torrid affair, just picking up a couple of carp here and there, but I did get a few skimmers. I had tried the paste long for just one carp and also one tench and a carp in the margin, but with 90 mins to go I stuck to the paste rigs for the remainder of the match. By feeding about 8 pellets and a couple of pieces of paste at 13 mtr I had a few carp, but they would back off and so I went into the margin. I caught one or two in the margin and then had to go back to the 13 mtr swim. They wouldn't settle and it was a case of picking them off. I did lose what I think was a fouled double figure fish on the 13 mtr line, it was in the bay between me and 112 in a flash and I thought my pole ws going snap, I hung on for about 2 minutes until the hook pulled, I was kind of relieved!

When the match had finished I though I was not going to get any coin as the guy on 110 had taken more carp than me (on the lead) but they turned out to be smaller than mine. Terry Leney on 112 DNW as he had struggled all day. My silvers went 20lb and the carp 105lb for a total of 125lb 13oz, although I went over the 70lb limit by about 8lb in my first net, when I genuinely thought I had no more than 60lb in it...... I hoped it wouldn't cost me!!!

Martin Preston did win the match with 154lb, on the lead with mainly bread. However, the guy on 132 had 7lb to much in one net and that meant he only weighed 151lb to come 2nd. Third place was another 151lb off peg 128 which was just a tad more than Steve Jackson on 127 who had 63lb (lol). I think I finished 4th and got my section money which I was very happy with. Silvers was won by Nigel Barlett off peg 114 with 40lb of skimmers and roach, Dick Bull had 35lb of tench for 2nd off peg 119.

My thoughts after the match were that I had a chance to do 150lb today, I think I should have swapped about a bit more as that might have kept fish coming a bit steadier, I think the first hour gave me a false dawn. The fish certainly don't seem to want a lot of feed, I only fed 3 pints of 8mm and maybe 1.5 pints of 4mm all day. Anyway, it was a very enjoyable day and looking at the weather forecast for Sunday I'm glad I went today! Viaduct are running a charity match next Saturday 18th June, so if you can fish it get down there.

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

May / June 1991

No fishing last Sunday, and PC blew up so hence no blog!

May 1991 was memorable for me, it was when I met my wife for the first time, at a fishing club do!

From the fishing point of view I made one trip in May to Tiverton to fish on the canal, this was the nearest bit of coarse fishing available in the close season. I drew near Old Tivvy Bridge and I never had a bite! Not good when you've got up at 3:30 in the morning. However, I was not put off and the 9th of June saw me back on the canal again. I couldn't believe it when I drew the same area and blanked again, in the 25 pegs around me there was one 2oz fish caught. I didn't go there again for a very long time!

June 16th was a Sunday and so my first day on the river was a Bristol & West match, and I drew at Swineford one below the gas pipe. This was a chub peg so not the best place to be early in the season, but you make the best of it don't you? I started on a crowquill with bread and no feed and had 4 chub in 4 casts, and no more. After a few pups on the wag and mag the peg died and I weighed 8lb. Bream dominated the frame with 55lb from between the bridges, and 30lb at Jack Whites.

Tues 18th I fished the first of the Flowerpot evening series, I had a short walk as I drew peg 3 just below the outfall. I went all out for bream on the gbait feeder but only managed 1 plus a few other small fish for 7lb 3oz and no good. I wanted to get some practice in on the crowquill and bread so I went to Jack Whites on Thursday night. I fished for just 2 hours and it was solid, a hybrid or a small skimmer every cast and 3 bream in between. It was the best 2 hours I ever had on that method and I estimated I had 25lb. I only packed up cos it was ro dark to see the float.

Saturday saw me visiting Durleigh reservoir for the first time, I had little idea of how to fish it but had heard it was roach on the wag. I drew peg 33 and the wind (strong) was off my back so I could cast a 4AAA wag miles! I fed maggots and for the first couple of hours it was rock hard with some anglers blanking at this stage. I kept going and started to get the odd small skimmer, by increasing the amount of feed things improved and by sticking to double maggot on an 18 my catch rate improved all the time. By the end of the match I had a little audience as my bank had fished very bad, I weighed 14lb 3.5oz and the next weight was 6lb. On the opposite bank there were two better weights on the feeder, but I was really happy to come 3rd and win a weeks wages (those were the days!). The following day I was back on home territory, Jack Whites, and a peg in the middle of the length that didn't inspire me. We'd had a lot of rain overnight and the river was picking up pace and colour and that all added up to me fishing for bream! A medium Drennan gbait feeder with a 16 to 1.5lb maxima was the tackle, and 3 red maggots was the hook bait. After 3 hours I had 6 big skimmers and one eel, and after 5 hours I had exactly the same! The river really coloured up and it went stone dead, still my early catch went 15lb 5oz and that was 4th on the day.

As things go that was a good start to the season for me, and I hoped it would continue, but would it?