Sunday, 26 May 2013

Acorn Pole Only series, Final Round

It was nice to wake up to wind blowing! Also the sun was shining and it looked like the Acorn series was going to finish with the best weather of any round. Glenn was picked up and we were on our way wondering what the draw tin would give us today. The league leaders looked out of sight (especially Pete Bartlett, Mike Nicholls and Tom Thick) but my best hope was to draw them in my section and stuff em up, well you can dream can't you! I pulled out peg 8 which is on the bottom bank and was where Mat Toomes struggled last round for 40lb (and he rang me before the match to remind me I owed him £1 from Viaduct last week, lol!). Rocking up next to me on end peg 9 was Pete Barlett (league over then) and when Mike Nicholls drew peg 6 and Tony Rixon peg 1 this section was looking hard, not to mention Bela "the rat" Bakos on 7 and Chris Fox on 4.

Glenn took my car off to peg 19 and I stood surveying peg 8, which is the biggest bit of open water on the lake, and there were carp shadows everywhere sun bathing. First rig set up was a mugging rig, then a paste rig, a 6x10 rig for meat at 4m and 4x10 durafloat 10 for banded pellet at 14.5m off to the left far bank. All rigs had 0.16 on them. On the whistle I fed a big pot of pellet at 11m for the paste, and a pot across to the 14m line, I fed meat by hand to 4m but will say now it only produced 1 tench all day! Starting on the mugging rig it was not really a mugging day as I could now not see a bloody thing! Bela gave me a clue as to where the fish were and I tried swinging the rig out in the right area, I soon had a 3lb carp in the net. After this I had a few false bites but nothing proper, I tried slapping the rig in but that did not work. A look across at 14m produced nothing, not even a liner, so I potted some more bait in and tried slapping again.

After nearly 2 hours I had 2 carp and 1 tench, Pete next to me had 3 small carp, but Bela and Mike had both had good starts. Bela then gave me the best laugh I have had in ages when he hooked a bit of rubbish on his paste rig, but as he swung it round towards me I could see it was a dead rat, lol!!!! It was a shocking start, the paste was a non starter and it seemed the fish were yet to want to feed, but then all of a sudden I had 5 or 6 fish slapping the rig out in the open water at 13m and thought it was sussed but then it died. Pete started catching shallow at 5m (!!!) and caught steadily here for the rest of the match. I managed to get the fish interested at 14.5m to the far bank, first on the depth rig until foulers became a pain. I went in with my mugging rig (now cut down) but to start had no bites shallow. The fish I was fouling seemed 6" to 9" off bottom, so I took a shot off the depth rig and fished a banded 6mm pellet off the bottom. This worked to a fashion, but then more foulers again, up shallow and a few fish but then nothing.

I put another net in with 2 hours to go in the hope of going on a bagging spree, and the carp were now tearing up the far bank, but could I catch them, well I could foul them, my elastic is now in need of cutting back it bottomed out so many times! It was very frustrating, and I was now regretting not going round to the far bank before the start and trimming back some pesky grasses. That said I could get bites up to a metre from the far bank but most were liners. Bela had a very poor middle of the match but got the fish back at the end, but was complaining he would be last in the section. The match finished and I landed a carp on my shallow rig after the whistle. Pete said I had beat him, but I knew he was wrong, and I could see Mr Rixon had done well off peg 1, Mike on peg 6 said he had 25 carp. When the scales arrived Tony had 1oz less than the ton, Mike had 73lb, then Bela upset Mike by weighing 78lb, my effort went 87lb (36lb in last 2 hours) and Pete cut my ass with 112lb, which I think came second in the match. Pete has really been consistent in this league, and I'll be honest I did not really know him before, but there is no doubting he is a very good angler and a very nice bloke too, congratulations on a great performance. I think I ended the league in 5th place, which ain't bad but the last two matches cost me being top 3, must try harder. I had to leave early as Glenn's Dad is in hospital and he wanted to visit him, so I am not in possession of the overall standings, but sure the other bloggers will have that. Well done to Chris Fox and Paul Faires for running this league, with the changes they are making next year I look forward to fishing it again.

Sunday, 19 May 2013

Tony Rixon float only league round 1 Viaduct

Funny night out last night, I went to a 25th Wedding Anniversary party, it was for one of my wife's friends and I thought I wouldn't know a soul. As soon as I walked through the door there was Roger Andonio, he was the brother law of the friend, small world!! I was late in deciding to fish this league as I knew I was away on holiday for one of the dates, but when I found out a reserve could fish for you I booked in. Mike Nicholls is my stand in for the round at the Sedges. Driving down to Viaduct with Glenn I told him I'd like to draw next to him today, the reason being he had a radio and he could keep me informed of the football results! After a sausage and egg roll it was into the draw tin, Glenn draws 87 and I draw 86, bugger me I must be psychic, lol.

I got to my peg and saw that in the section Tony Rixon was on 81, Gord Cannings was on my right in 85, and Adrian (fouler) Jeffery was on 88.

Setting up today I took out my two reels and realised that one of them was my river reel with 3lb line, only one waggler today then. Edged my bets with a deep wag with just two tens down the line ending with a 14 PR38 to 0.18. For the pole I set up a shallow rig 0.18 to 16 PR36, a paste rig 0.18 to size 10 Drennan Nu hook, and a 6x10 meat rig on 0.18 to 14 PR476. I didn't bother with a margin rig as I felt there was not enough room. I started the match by feeding 8mm pellets at 15m for the paste / shallow line, meat at 6mtrs and started on the waggler. Glenn hooked a carp on virtually each of his first 3 casts on the wag....and lost them all. I wasn't getting any bites on the wag whilst Glenn and Adrian had plenty of indications, then I hooked one and played it all the way in and then pulled out a scale, I could of sworn it was properly hooked too! I saw a fizz on my pole line and with no action on the wag I had to try the paste and this was better as I had two carp and that was my tally at the end of the first hour. Phil Harding on 90 had bagged on the wag to the corner bank, and then he snapped his rod.

Another look on the wag and I managed to finally land a carp, a small one at 5lb, small for Carey anyway. But again the wag just did not work for me. By the end of hour two I had four carp as another had fallen to the paste, Glenn was stuck on 1, Adrian had 2 and Gordon had three. I tried fishing shallow at 15m because I had notice a couple of fish swirl, but try as I might all I could get was the odd roach bite on a 10mm pellet. I dropped in on the meat line a couple of times and when I dropped in this time the float buried immediately  but like most of my meat fishing that was it. I felt my best bet was to stick to the paste line and hope the meat  would work later on, as I thought this Glenn had a run of fish on the wag and Adrian was still landing the odd fouler on the wag (one he got out went out to the middle then to peg 85, through mine and Glenn's pegs!).

The paste line kept my interest and I felt I had it sorted feeding and waiting for the one fish, then I hooked something which tore off and straightened my hook. I attached a size 10 B911 which I thought would be stronger and was glad I did when next cast everything bottomed out. After 10 mins I had what looked like a 16lb+ common on my top set and 5 mins later it snapped me. It did so only because I had pulled out so much elastic on the puller, that showed my rustiness fishing for munters! Mirrors are much easier to land and a big double made my landing net pole make a nasty sound! I took another big double on the meat, again the float buried within a few seconds of the bait touching bottom. In the last 30 mins I landed another carp on the  paste but pulled out of 3 foulers.

I'd ended with 11 carp (probably lost the same) , Glenn had 9 and so did Adrian, Gordon 6 but Tony had 13. Tony won the section with 125lb, Adrian 2nd with 98lb (3 of his fish went 41lb and that was without the stab vests) and I had 97lb, Glenn had 85lb and Gordy brought up the rear with 65lb.

Not the best of starts for me in the league, but not having fished for the Carey lumps for 2 years I'm not surprised, and these are wise fish! The match was won by Craig Edmunds on Campbell peg 132 with 160lb, a lot of his fish came to meat in the last 2 hours. Top weight on Carey was Dave Roper on peg 96 I think, he had 140lb I think mainly on meat. Not sure about silvers as we left before the results. Off to Acorn next week for the last round of the pole series, need a section win and lots of results to go my way to sneak in the overalls though.

Sunday, 12 May 2013

Acorn Pole only Series Round 5

After being badly sun burnt last weekend (and doing a good impression of a reptile shedding its skin) I made sure I put my annual bottle of sun tan lotion in the tackle box, and there it stayed this Sunday. Yes the weather has once again spoilt things and the fish must wonder what to do, last week the roach were spawning at Bitterwell. Arriving at Acorn with Glenn we could see the lake was not as coloured as on our last visit, and other then the bridge pegs no fish were topping not such a good sign I thought.

My section today would put me on what has been the best pegs so far, and I was confident of doing well as long as I could avoid pegs 1 and 3, with 6,9 and 40 being my favourites. Tony Rixon who has been having a bad run of draws here decided to have the last peg in the tin and that gave him peg 40 which won the last match, I pulled out 3 oooh feck! I was really not happy with this, and neither was Dave Wride happy with his peg 1 draw, well I think he wasn't happy it's hard to tell with Dave when he is actually happy! As far as I was concerned I needed a top 2 finish in the section to keep myself in with a chance for the league, but with Mat Toomes on 8 and Mark Bromsgrove on 6 it was going to be tough. I set up 4 rigs today; a 4x10 Big H with 0.16 to 10 B911 for paste down the middle, a 4x12 Durofloat with 0.14 to 16 PR456 for soft pellet across in 2.5ft of water, a dibber for shallow tight across with 18 PR36, and a 4x10 durafloat 10 with 0.14 to 16 PR456 for meat in the margin to my left (it was a foot deeper than to my right). I brought paste with me and despite taking it out of the freezer at midday on Saturday it was still partly froze. I dipped the bags in the water in my landing net, and this defrosted them but one bag leaked and I had a bag of porridge, lol!

To start the match I fed a big pot of pellets down the middle (shit or bust for paste) a small pot across and some meat inside. Starting on the soft pellet over I had 3 carp for 10lb in the first 30 mins, which was a very good start. All to soon this line dried up and I was more than a little surprised as I hadn't lost or fouled anything. I did manage a couple more fish from here but it just wasn't to be. I'd started loose feeding pellets right across into a little cut back and tried fishing just short of this but there was no signs. I went in with the shallow rig and soon had 3 fish before this went iffy. As I couldn't see a lot being caught (other than Tony) I kept working the far bank lines and feeding my other lines but with scant reward.

About 2 1/2 hours in I was well ahead of my neighbours but had really slowed, a look in on the meat brought a carp first dob in but no more (and I repeated this another 4 times during the match!). It was time to look on the paste line, the float sat there unmoved for well over 5 mins and I was just about to right it off when the float shot out of sight and a carp was hooked. The same happened on the next 3 casts, but then this line died, it seemed a pattern was forming! The next two hours were very poor for me and I struggled to get a bite anywhere, fish would slurp in the reeds but as soon as I went over with the pole they went! By now my neighbours were doing better than me especially John Osbourne on peg 4 who was catching well right over and down to peg 5 pallet, Glenn behind me on peg 38 was catching well on paste after a slow start. I concentrated my efforts on the paste and meat lines and picked off a few more carp, the paste line was the better and a few small bubbles and liners kept my interest but also frustrated me somewhat. The match ended and I lost a carp (came back with a scale on the paste) and I think I lost about 4 foulers all day so not too bad.

Tony Rixon had paralysed the section and he weighed 111lb to win the match, next came Mark Bromsgrove on peg 6 with 64lb including the top silvers weight in the section of 21lb (he's now won the silvers league with 5 section wins, hero!) I sneaked 3rd with 58lb 7oz and I never had 1 silver! John next door had 56lb 11oz (close) and Dave Wride 39lb. Mat Toomes struggled for 40lb and so I avoided having to pay him £2 (we were on double or quits!). I picked up 2nd in section money (£40) as Mark Bromsgrove took the silvers money, so I have at least got back all my entry fees and pools money with my league winnings to date.

I think my 3rd place today has now cost me a chance overall in the league as Mike Nicholls and Tom Thick both won their sections, and Lance Tucker was 2nd. I'll need a section win on the last match but even that might not be enough. Glenn's paste attack gave him a good 68lb, but he was beaten by 3 other anglers in his section including Tom Thick who had the day's other ton off peg 30.

Next week I'm off to Viaduct for the first round of Tony's float only league, not fished it for a long time (in the summer) and will have to try to get in the swing of things very quickly, and would like to avoid the Carey munters!

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Chilton Trinity Woodlands Lake

A run down to Hilltops cafe in the Bailey mobile today and a nice clean breakfast with good company. Glenn hadn't fished this lake before but I have twice and had not done very well! As the venue had been fishing well I was hoping for third time lucky. Tony Rixon had set this pole only match up and called the draw a little early as all were present, I pulled out peg 14 on the far bank and was told it was a good area for carp. Glenn drew peg 8 and had peg 7 empty which I felt would be beneficial to him. Unfortunately I had anglers either side of me, Phil (Fabio) Harding on 15 and Joe (I'm doing my blog again) McMahon on 13, and that would make the margin less likely to work I thought.

Like most people today I set up a shallow rig for banded pellet with 0.16 to 16 PR36. I set up a 4x16 Preston Yellow with 0.16 to 16 PR36 for meat at 5mtrs, a 6x10 float for the margin with 0.16 to 14 PR478. I also quickly set up a paste rig which I could use out long in case the fish were not up in the water. To start the match I fed some meat at 5mtr and a pot of meat in the margin to my left and then potted in some pellets at 14mtrs and started deep on this line whilst loose feeding over the top. After 10 mins I was on the shallow rig as no bites came deep, and within 5 mins I netted a carp of 4lb on a 8mm pellet. About 5 mins later I hooked a nice common but I pulled out of it, and then I had 2 more carp in the first hour. Joe was doing better than me on a shallow meat approach, but Phil like me was struggling. The 2nd hour produced just 2 carp shallow,and it was real slow going with no liners and just the odd bite from roach in between, that said nobody was bagging at this stage from what I could tell other than Mike Nicholls.

I had a look on my 5mtr line on the meat and was just about to give up when the float buried and a 3lb carp obliged, that was it though and no more indications. The long line was really hard going, I would get a fish shallow and maybe one in the next 5 mins but then nothing for 25 mins. Joe had forged ahead of me by now and I could see Glenn and Tom Magnall catching well, as was Tony Rixon. Fabio and myself were really struggling compared to most it seemed, we just couldn't catch regular, Fabio though was chuffed to bits when he caught his first goldfish! I took a tench and a small carp down my margin on meat but no more. I tried the paste rig a few times out long but it was hard to fish as there was a very strong tow going against the wind, in fact the shallow rig would belt through too! I took one fish on paste, it was only 4lb but I had a job landing it as I had no puller bung in and was waving 5mtrs of pole around, across the far bank they shouted "look out for those pylons" cheeky gits! I kept getting the odd carp shallow and by now Joe was now struggling.

With a bit less than 90 mins to go I had a look down the edge again and I added 3 carp and a tench and then  all I could get was motherless minnows! Martin McMahon suggested I put another net in, I didn't think I was anywhere near the 80lb limit but I took his advice with 50 mins to go. I caught another carp at 5mtr just as I was eating a pasty (it went everywhere lol) and the dreaded extra net jinx struck as I never had another bite!

Fabio had already packed up and chucked back, though on the other side of him on 17 Kev Moulton had caught well on, well, just about everything he tried! I thought I had 16 carp and knew I was off the pace but I weighed in and my silvers went 6lb+ and the carp 61lb for 66lb 15oz for nowhere. Joe had 19 carp for a great 93lb which won our section by default, and Kev had 98lb for 2nd overall. Tony Rixon won the match with 130lb (I'm sure his blog will reveal all) and Trig came 3rd with 97lb (he said he had 17 fish so they were decent size). Seems my fish were on the small side today, but I was still 4 or 5 fish behind most people. Glenn had 95lb for 4th taking most of his fish in the margin toward peg 7 on meat. I think there were about 7 90lb weights today, so a very good match! John Bradford won the silvers with 17lb of skimmers and tench.

Isn't it nice when a bank holiday weekend comes along and the weather is good, and isn't nice when you get home from fishing and know you don't have to go to work on Monday. It is not nice though when you forget any form of sun screen and end up as red as a lobster as I did today, OUCH!