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!