Sunday, 28 August 2011

Tony Rixon's Float Only Viaduct

I was guesting in the league today and was travelling once again with Glenn Bailey. We were a little jaded after spending most of the previous day drinking beer (Cider for Glenn) whilst watching the T20 cricket finals at Edgbaston. I really enjoyed the day and the semis were both tied leading to a cracking 1 over smash off!

I was really hoping for a draw on campbell and despite being near the back end of the queue managed to pick out 119. I have had this peg once before about 6 years ago, then I had 50lb of tench, but today I thought would be all about carp. Glen had drawn corner peg 73 on Lodge and was also going to have hopefully a carp day. For company today I had Dave Evans on peg 118 and Gary Etheridge on peg 121, so no pretty faces but good anglers lol! I saw two main options, paste at 9mtrs using a 0.2grm Hill Billy float with 0.18 Exceed to a size 10 Drennan Carp hook, and banded pellet to the end bank with two rigs one for 6" deep on a dibber and 4x10 Durafloat 10 for on the deck. A rather positive approach but I just thought that would be best.

On the whistle I cupped a pot of 6mm pellets out at 9 mtrs and another pot of the same at 16mtr to the end bank. I was feeding against the little point trying to stay away from the tree in the corner which looked like trouble! Out on the paste and it was a slow start for me, Dave next door had 5 carp in as many casts to my 1 but then he suffered foulers and it slowed. I think I had 3 carp after the first hour, and had lost 3 foulers, which whilst not great I wasn't worried about. I took another couple on paste and then went to the end bank with the deck rig. On my first 6 drops the float went under and I missed all of them, lucky 7 worked and out came a fouled 1lb carp. So out went the shallow rig but this never produced a bite, and I took the deck rig and shallowed this up a tad and then hooked a carp and lost it in the tree! A couple of carp later and the indications stopped, and in truth I stayed on this too long.

Back on the paste and it was still very slow and I just seemed to get a bite out of the blue, I had mainly fed Mike Nicholls style (through a pot) but started to up the feed to try to improve things, it made no difference. Two hours to go I had a decent run of fish off the end bank but also lost a couple in the reeds / tree. I wasn't having the best of days, losing to many and having foulers, but the last hour saw me land 5 carp all 6lb to 8lb on the paste. However, and I do not know why I did this, but I landed a carp of approx 7lb after the whistle and put it in my silvers net!!! So I then tried to retrieve the carp and put in one of my other nets, this all went well until the carp decided to flip and go back in the lake, what a twat! Still Neil Mercer made me laugh out loud when he decided to jump into the lake. Neil hadn't decided to take a dip for the fun of it, his keepnet had fallen in and the only way he could retrieve it was to jump in after it. I gave him 6.8 for the dive.

I knew Gary Etheridge had soundly beaten me from peg 121 (he had 153lb) but thought it would be close between the rest of the section. I weighed 117lb and Dave next door had 107lb after a good late run of margin fish.As Gary would frame there was a chance of the default section coin, but that went to Bob Gullick who had 124lb on peg 126, so the lost carp could have cost me, double twat! Tom Magnol next to Bob had a fantastic start to the match catching carp shallow, but they drifted off and he was 3rd with 155lb. Anton Page must have fished a very good match to win from Carey peg 77, he had 191lb of carp shallow on the pole and pellet, fishing 16 to 17mtrs out. Timmy Clarke on peg 112 was 2nd with 169lb and in the process gave a lesson to Tony Rixon in the art of paste fishing (see Tony's blog!) lol!

I sum today up as a missed opportunity, I think the peg was worth 150lb, although Andy Lloyd did say to me the peg is never as good as it can be when they peg 121. I think I needed to swap between my two lines more regularly, when instead I was trying to get one line working well. A good days fishing though and the ability to learn from it makes it always worthwhile. Got the county champs on Saturday next week at Landsend, let's see who turns up, and then the Commercial House on the Avon at Keynsham on Sunday, need to make some rigs!

Friday, 19 August 2011

Sept 1991

Not fishing this weekend so here's a very quick step back in time again.

Sept 1991 saw the beginning of a Wed league called the Veals Classic League which was to be fished at Newbridge. I was lucky enough to have enough holidays at work to be able to book off the necessary Wednesdays, wouldn't be able to do that with my job now though! Round 1 saw me on peg 37 which is on the straight, I wrote in my diary "Fished like a prat, didn't do it right!". 3lb 12oz wasn't good with most anglers weighing 8lb+, I did though decide to watch Clive Branson next door catching on the pole and I had my eyes opened. Clive is a big bloke and he stood up fishing 11 mtrs of pole (they were heavy poles back then!) for 5 hours. I had to make up some new pole rigs as I was using all the wrong floats etc.

Saturday 7th saw me on an open match at Shearwater lake, I drew peg 1 on the roadside and once again showed my lack of ability on the pole weighing 16lb 4oz. I fed gbait for skimmers but only caught carp. The following day by contrast I fished the Bristol Docks at St Augustines, fishing gbait and caster I caught 9lb of roach to win my section! An 18 to 2lb was the only tackle I recorded using.

The next round of the Veals League saw me on peg 3 in the little field, a peg I knew little about but was told there were plenty of roach to be caught. I was drawn next to Jeff Reasons and we started the match differently, Jeff on the pole, me on the waggler. I only had a few bits on the wag but did lose a good chub. However, when I came in on the pole, with my new pole rigs, I bagged up feeding bronze maggot for roach at 11 mtrs. I managed 2nd in the section and a much improved performance from last time. I beat Jeff by a few ounces by the way!

Saturday saw me on another different venue, Durleigh reservoir, this was how it was years ago you didn't fish one commercial continually! I drew end peg 60 a massive walk for me and it was in the teeth of a gale! I set up a 4AAA waggler for 3.5 ft deep peg and fed balls of gbait and maggot by hand for 3 hours catching skimmers. The wind got so bad I chucked the feeder out which was a good move as I caught 5 bream! My total weight of 22lb 8oz was 3rd overall giving me £60. The following day was the first round of the Commercial House on the Avon and I drew Swineford, just a short walk to the gas pipe in the 3rd field. I will always remember this match! I was drawn actually on the gas pipe in amongst all the reeds and wasn't that happy, my girlfriend came to watch me for the first time, although she brought a book! After struggling for 2lb of bits on a wag in the fast water I tried fishing 4 mtrs to hand in the dead water behind the reeds. I had been feeding bronze maggot here and it was solid with eels, I could get a bite every chuck, then on one cast the whip bent over double and I shit myself! After about 2 minutes I saw the culprit, a bream of at least 5lb, and then it came off! I shouted every swear word I knew and my girlfriend was shocked, and a couple of pegs away Tony Rixon was pissing himself. A little later though I hooked another bream on the whip, this one about 3.5lbs and I felt a lot happier! When the scales came along I remember anglers being shocked at the amount of eels I had, my total weight was 12lb 5oz, I won the section and was 4th overall! I never expected to do any good from the peg before hand, it shows we never know what can happen. It was the practice for previous Nationals catching eels that helped me bag up on them. September was turning out to be a very good month for me and there was one weekend left, I'll save that enjoyable match for next time though!

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Super League Round 5

Today I was pleased to meet an old friend whom I haven't seen for a long time, THE RIVER!

Mark Harper had rang me mid week to ask if I could fish for the team at Newbridge. I had stayed away from rivers due to having a small hernia after my op, as it is hard graft carrying all your kit and tonnes of gbait for long walks! However, the team were short, and with the promise of a short walk and pre mixed gbait I couldn't refuse! So it was I found myself (eventually, after a long wait for brekkie at Wetherspoons) at the Rugby club in Salford with the Super League clan, lots of talented anglers and Glenn Bailey's new Bathampton team mates, only joking lads!

Thanks to the generosity of the organisers I was allowed to swap pegs to have a short walk, thank goodness for that as peg 65 would have been a right sweat! My home for the day was peg 107 right in front of the arch, it did mean a bit of abseiling to get into the water but once in it was fine. I was going to ball it on the pole at 13 mtrs (no shit Sherlock!) and assembled a 1grm pencil float with 18 B611 to 0.11 exceed, a 2.5grm Preston Silvers thingy (rugby ball shape) with 16 B611 to 0.12 exceed. A 1.5gm rig for chopped worm (no more about this), a waggler (no more about this) and a gbait feeder with 0.14 to 14 B611. I must say at this stage I was very humbled by the many anglers who enquired as to my well being, it was nice that so many people were pleased to see me again.

I was just about ready for the start, and on the whistle I made 10 casts with the feeder across to get some bait in, then threw in 10 big balls of gbait containing some caster and hemp. Picking up the 1grm rig to begin I was soon thinking maybe it was too light a float as the upstream wind was getting up, and it got worse during the match. After an hour I think I may have had 1.5lb of small roach and small perch, this was way behind the anglers either side of me. I tried the heavier rig but caught the same small fish and bumped more as I was on a double bait. Back in on the pencil float and things started to improve, with caster on the hook I was now catching roach of 4oz steadily. This kept up for the 2nd hour before it went iffy and so I started to loose feed hemp and caster. The bites in the 3rd and 4th hour were much less frequent but the quality was good, and I had 2 roach over 12oz. Most of the time I was getting bites as soon as the float settled (on the drop), and it was almost impossible to get a bite with the rig just running through. I kept changing depths and the way I laid the rig in to try to fool the roach, and fishing off bottom for me was best. I did catch a few on maggot when bites went quiet but in all honesty caster was best.

The last hour was not so good and I even had a few casts on the feeder which produced a perch and a roach, so I stuck to the pole where I was catching now smaller roach but at least I was putting something in the net! When the match finished I thought I had 10lb, Dave Haines, who had watched me for a bit, thought I had more than this. I was indebted to Dave as he helped me get my gear up the bank afterwards. As the scales approached Dave Wride below me was leading with 11lb 3oz (a net of big roach) thankfully my net of more but slightly smaller roach went 13lb 1oz and was enough to win the section. That was a good thing as it is £70 for winning a section in this league! I was 5th overall to so not a bad return on my first visit back I guess? Interestingly the guys either side of me caught well in the first and last hour, whilst I caught best in the 2nd, 3rd and 4th, you work it out!

Back at the results and the word was peg 140 had won, 15lb of bream and 20lb of roach, there was a 16lb of roach on peg 16, and team mate Ian Pauley had 15lb 7oz of roach from peg 49. It had certainly been a day when the roach had fed fairly consistently, and the skimmers were conspicuous by there absence! The team had a few bad results, but at the end of the day still hold an 18 point lead going into the last match (next week) on the same venue. Unfortunately I cannot fish as I am away with the family, so for many of the lads next weekend will be a double header, as they have the Div 2 national on the Basingstoke Canal on Sat.

I must just finish by saying this, I really enjoyed being back on the river today and it was lovely to be fishing flowing water. I enjoy both commercials and rivers (and canals) but to be honest 13lb of roach today was great fun and I was in my element.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Chilton Trinity - Wildmarsh Lake

I got back home on Saturday from a very nice holiday in Jersey (hence no fishing last weekend) but had picked up man flu. I rang to speak to Glenn Bailey and he had done me proud by getting all my bait and gbait (mixed) ready for Tony Rixon's float only match at Trinity. To be honest I felt awful and had thought of cancelling, then I had a bad night being unable to sleep due to blocked sinuses. Come Sunday morning I over dosed on some tablets (accidental) and picked up Glenn. We had a very good breakfast in the Hill Top cafe and I caught up on the previous weeks news with Matty Toomes!

Although Glenn had been a tremendous help I really didn't feel mentally prepared for this match, and when I drew peg 62 and Tony just laughed at me making me think I really should have cancelled! I got to my peg to find Glenn pegged opposite me on the island, so we both had poor pegs (and so did Bela Bakos who foolishly asked Glenn to draw for him lol). I had a chat with the anglers nearby and it seemed many had been in this area in the previous match, Mike Nicholls was on 64 and said it was crap, and the best I could get was to aim for 8 to 10lb of silvers. With that in mind I set up a 4AAA waggler with 2 no 8 and 1 no 10 down the line with an 18 to 0.11 for fishing out about 20 metres+ where I would feed caster. On th pole at 14.5m I would feed gbait, worm and caster and set up a 0.8 gm rig and 0.4gm rig, both with 18 to 0.11. I had a bulk down and 2 no8 droppers on the 0.8 rig, spread shot on the other. I also set up a paste rig for a line against the lily pads (never had a touch here).

So to start I cupped in 6 balls of my gbait and cw&c, and went over it with the 0.8gm rig, it was solid with blips! I tried various hook baits but bits of worms were best to avoid the blips and attract the odd 1oz to 2oz roach! I was soon behind my neighbour Kev Moulten when he landed a 5lb carp (after it had gone through my peg and into next doors!) and after 90 mins I might have had just about a 1lb. I picked up the waggler and hoped it would be ready for action after I had fed it with caster regularly. Um no, 1 roach and 1 eel in about 30 mins. This was going the way my last match went here!

Not much else happened for me in the next 2 hours except for getting wet from an enormous thunderstorm. I held onto my brolly to take shelter, but then as the rain eased I dropped the brolly onto my pole smashing the no 5 section. There was a moment as I got off my box when I thought about packing up, especially as Glenn had said a little earlier "I'm ready to go when you are", but I had seen Mike Nicholls catch a couple of carp on the pole and paste, and so I set up a new rig for 13 mtr at 11 o'clock, fed a big cup of 6mm pellet and dropped the paste in. Twenty minutes later I had a 6lb common, and 10 mins after that a fish around 11lb. This got Craig Edmunds worried who up until then was winning my section, and got me excited. However, the carp drifted away and I tried lots of feeding variations to get them back, then finally with 10 mins to go I had 3 bites but connected with none. Ten minutes after the whistle the peg was a mass of fizzing, oh how I laughed.....

The two carp weighed 17lb and and my bits 3lb, and my 20lb was 2nd in the section to Trig who had 25lb (including 6 carp on paste and some skimmers.) Mike Nicholls ended up top weight on the bank after a good last two hours on the paste (see his blog) and the match was won by Tony (see his blog!).

Would I have caught more if I had fished the paste for longer / fed the pellet earlier? Well I think so and I was to negative today, but we will never know for sure I guess. Sorry if this isn't as in depth as usual, still feeling lousy!