Sunday, 31 August 2014

Superleague Round 5 Bristol Avon Newbridge

Got back Friday from a very nice week in West Bay, I think I should take up competitive crab fishing as I seemed to do well in the harbour, with 8 crabs in one drop my best haul. My nephew Liam below showing a good haul of crabs taken in an hour.

It was whilst I was in West Bay that I received a text saying I was now needed by Thatchers for the Superleague, and that meant I had to apologize to the Cardiff lads who I had said I would fish for. I started the day with another Wetherspoons' breakfast and hoped it wouldn't be the best part of the day. I didn't think the bream would show today, except in very few pegs, so a roach peg would be nice, peg 7 in the little field has been consistent in recent weeks, but Darren Gillman drew that. Team draw done by Liam Braddell and I was to spend a day on peg 79. Not normally a favourite but a couple of weeks Shawn Townsend had 11lb of roach from it, but Dave Micklewright told me he struggled for 5lb+ on it last week. The picture here of the peg was taken after the match when the wind dropped!!!!

In the car park loading my trolley I realised I'd left my waders at home, luckily Glen Calvert came to my rescue with a pair of wellies. I needed the boots to get my box in the water which was nice and comfortable today. Setting up today I weighed up the pegs in my section, the two below me are not always great but they have lots of room, those above me to the bridge hold bream, roach and chub, above the bridge roach and skimmers. I reckoned I was away from the bream and so really had to hope for a good day on the roach to do well. Pole rigs for 12m were 1gm, 2gm and a 4g flatty, a 1.5gm rig for chopped worm was also put up for fishing out about 4m. I set up a feeder rod initially with gbait feeder as it always worth a chuck.

I threw in 10 balls of gbait today a bit less than normal and with less loose feed in than I have recently, as I didn't expect a huge weight. I dropped straight over the balls with the 2gm rig and the float buried, sadly the 2oz roach fell off as it surfaced. Next chuck I bumped one, and again, the fish were off bottom I thought. Onto the 1gm rig now 9" off bottom and a roach was landed on the caster, and the hook was well down its throat. It was hard work but I was getting indications most casts on a caster, the roach were smaller than I hoped for, but I did net a couple of 4oz samples. Things went iffy, I was missing bites, and with the wind being a problem I went back on the 2gm rig on the deck and caught a few more roach and tiny perch before the bites died. Even the light float with a 22 to 0.08 was now not working and the odd bite I did have was from tiny perch or less than half ounce chublets! I now fed some chopped worms and casters in close as it looked like I would need to catch some perch.

The gbait feeder was dire, although I didn't really give it long enough as I wanted to try the pole again. The long pole was completely dead all bar 1 tiny perch. On my chop worm line I had about 6 to 8 perch from 1oz to 6oz in about 30 mins fishing, I never had another bite here all day! In fact a little like my last match the fish got the better of me and I couldn't raise a bite anywhere, sadly I was shitting myself more than fishing at this stage, not good and not nice... Bank runners asked me what I had and I thought I had only 2 1/2lb, it seemed most people (other than Richard Chave on 74) had caught more than that and I was looking like being last in the section.

I switched to a maggot feeder cast right over to the far bank and I could get bites here but it was from gudgeon, tiny roach and those tiny perch again. These weren't going to win me anything but I was hoping a chub or other bonus fish would get me out of jail. Despite some really good looking bites (which were all from gudgeon lol) I never did get that bonus and I ended the match not feeling to special.

The scales came from the top of the section and a 5lb and 6lb were recorded above the bridge, Chavey came last with 2lb 13oz,  then another 5lb+, then 4lb 11oz, and then I tipped 5lb 1oz on the scales which was double what I thought I had, oops!  The lad below me had 3lb+  and then the end peg won the section. So 4 points out of 8 for me, not good but 3 more than I thought I was going to get.

I wasn't going to go back to the results but Andy Ottaway talked me in to going back, but only after I had thrown another pair of pants away! The team had a good day, Nick Chedzoy, Martin Barrett and Andy Power won their sections, Ottaway was 2nd and Leigh Trevitt 3rd. Adding their points to Colin Dance, Liam Braddell and mine we had 49.5 points and won the day and now lead the league by 27.5 points. The last round is back here next week, should be a grueller then!

Darren Gillman did the business on peg 7 winning the match with 16lb of roach, in 2nd was Kevin Abigail on the other form roach peg last one on the trees with 14lb. As predicted very few bream were caught, and with roach not really playing ball it is a tough venue at present. Waiting now to see if I'm fishing or not next week.

Added a new blog to those I try to read and keep up to date with, this one is called 26 year itch, and is written by Cardiff Nomads angler Mike Davies.

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Bristol Avon Newbridge Open

Back onto the Avon at last, think it was Dec 2013 last time I gave it a go? This match was well attended as it was a practise match for the upcoming superleague matches, I think 50 people were in attendance. I tend to stay away from the Avon until mid to late August, this is to co-inside with the roach starting to feed otherwise you're fishing a bream lottery.

I went to Wetherspoons in Hanham for breakfast, you always know what you're getting there, but today some of it was a little on the cool side. The draw was at the usual Saltford Rugby club, and they were doing some fund raising when I arrived for the 10am draw, so I had my car washed for £3! Once again it was really nice to see anglers that I've not seen for a while, and I was humbled by their warm greeting and kind interest in my health. I had a joke with Kevin Dicks could I have a disabled draw in the trees near peg 124, he said no but I could have 107 on the arch, just banter. Into the draw tub I go and I pull out peg 109, a short walk and usually a good area for roach at this time of the year but I didn't think I'd get many bream. I had just walked through the arch and down to the river when I slipped on what was a patch of wet sycamore leaves, I turned right over on my right ankle. Shit did it hurt, it was that bad I felt sick, I limped to my peg and put my feet up but very soon I had an egg for an ankle.

My peg looked like this before the effing wind got up lol! I could have got down in the water I think, but the ankle was not going to take it so I sat on the bank.

Below me on peg 111 was Graham Hunt, he has fished here a few times this season, down on peg 124 and had lots of perch, roach and bream on pole and feeder. With the wind being very strong upstream I could only see the pole and feeder being used today. I set up the feeder with a 0.14 to 14 B611 and clipped up about 3/4. For the pole line I set up 3 rigs, my usual 1gm pencil float with 0.11 to 18 B611, a 3gm rig with 0.11 to 16 B611, and a flat float with 0.12 to 16 B611.

I was actually ready for the start of the match (midday start), and threw in 14 balls of groundbait with caster and hemp at 13m and had 10 casts on the feeder to get some grub in. I dropped in on the pole with 1gm rig with a caster on the hook and immediately the float buried, a small 2oz roach was the culprit. The next two casts I lost two small fish, they bumped off and I guessed they were very small so stuck a maggot on. A 2oz perch was swung in and that was not a good sign, but then I hit a better perch about 8oz which I pulled out of just before the net went under it, at least the rig didn't tangle. Back on the caster and a 4oz roach, but then not a bite, and maggot only got me a 1oz roach. I tried the 3gm rig to see if the presentation of the bait was the issue, I did put double maggot on as I was on a 16 and no bites came. I thought perhaps I was a bit gung ho, so I went "Gary Etheridge" and put a 22 to 0.08 on the 1gm rig and never had a bite!!!

An hour gone and I was on about 12oz and going nowhere, I popped down to see Graham to see if I was getting battered, but he was in the same boat as but was already on the feeder as he had seen 2 bream roll. The feeder was soon cast out in my peg and first chuck the tip hammered round and I missed it, the bait was mashed and it had been a chubby bite. Nothing more followed and then at 1:30 Glenn Bailey rang me from Ivy House where he was struggling big time, as we talked I had a lovely pull round bite and when I struck I felt a very heavy resistance. I knew this was a bream and a good one too and it's a lovely feeling when you play these fish and then see sight of a lid near the surface. As I netted the fish I reckoned it had to be 6lb+ and it had come at a good time. Next chuck the tip remained unmoved and when I picked the rod up I was snagged, new hook required. At 2pm I had my next bite, not a bream but a 8oz perch, not the best of signs but not to worry. Errm that was that! I never had another bloody bite for the next 3 hours on either tip or pole, what made it worse was that Graham had caught some bream in a one hour spell, and the guy on 107 had done the same, so obviously I was doing something wrong and ended up a chip shop sausage. With my section going back up to 79 and knowing a couple of anglers had more than my 7 to 8lb I chucked back and packed up, this picture enforces how few roach I caught (they're hiding behind the bream lol).

As it turned out the bream were very near me (I mean the main shoal), next to Graham on 113 was (I think this is his name) Jody Tocknell who had 58lb 3oz of bream, the next peg in the match was 118 and on here Roy Carter and he won the match with 59lb exactly, well done you old fart!

Some roach were caught on the day, with Kev Dicks having 14lb from the little field, an 11lb from peg 79, an 18lb from peg 144, and peg 46 had 12lb of roach on the feeder! Those roach always feed on the end pegs of the trees! Graham cut me a new ass weighing 24lb 12oz for 3rd, and the lad the other side of me won the section with 17lb, I can't remember getting a lamping like that for a while, shit happens! Just seems to be the way at the moment, I cant catch for toffee, never mind I'm sure I'll get back to catching a few sooner or later, I hope! Mind you I reckon I could have weighed in a pound of slugs, I had some huge buggers all over my kit, and my hands were covered in slime, next time fish slime please. Well a little break now as I take some time away with the family, I hope I can fish the superleague in a couple of weeks, I'm "not required" for Thatchers but hopefully can fish for Cardiff Nomads and by then the roach will be feeding, won't they?

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Summerhayes Midweek Open

After a brief intro tonight's blog will take a different layout than my normal..

Had a lift with Tony Rixon in his bluemobile (colour and language both fit) and shared the seat with Fabio and I felt like a rose between two thorns ;-)  A nice breakfast in Shipham and then onto the venue to see how many locals were there. I had not fished this place for a few years, and so bad was my prior experience I had vowed never to return, but as Bob Gullick told me 1 visit doesn't give a true picture. Drew my peg (24) and asked venue regular Jamie Rich (via social networking) what was it like, he said it was a carp peg so no silvers rigs today.

Arrived at the peg and it looked nice with a nice looking far bank and the wind blowing into it. (Took photo lost it due to new phone back up shit I don't understand!)

Also the near margin had a tree over the water, it gave some shadow over the water but did stop me from fishing further down the bank which would have been nice as I had lots of room!

It is pointless me telling you about the rigs I set up, here goes a sort of timeline as best I recall it, of today's events.

11:15 All in Fed some pellets to margin right, and across by island. Started on paste at 9m, no bites.

11:30 Try across tight with depth rig, miss lots of bites / indications and lose two foulers. Snag up on underwater reeds / roots.

11:45 Try shallow rig, a few indications but no fish or foulers.

12:00 Deep rig on again across but more missed bites and snags. Wind changes direction and blows from left to right.

12:45 Wind making it impossible to fish across hooking more snags, tried margin and had a carp less than an ounce.

13:00 Set up method feeder in desperation. Left some micros to soak fo rtwo mins, shit forgot about them soaked to long.

13:10 cast out 15gm method, realised it was too small as could not cast accuarate, changed to a 30gm. Also pellets all wrong on feeder so knocked up some gbait to mix in.

13:15 Two hours in pole blown off rollers whilst about to cast out. Need to bin tripod rollers!

13:20 gbait and micro mix works well and first cast a small carp is landed

13:25 second small carp on method

13:35 A 3lb carp on method feeder.

13:50 All indications on method stop

14:15 now bored with method and no bites feed pellets to margin left and go for a walk.

15:00 3lb carp jumps out of keepnet into gbait bowl and into lake.

15:15 3lb Carp first drop next to pallet

15:25 Lose a fouler next to pallet

15:35 Lose a fish under pallet

15:40 hook snag lose hook length

15:50 hook snag lose hook length

16:00 Right hand margin produces nothing, fill it in with the gbait / micro mix

16:05 hat blows in lake, try pallet again with paste rig, hook a snag.

16:10 try across in a lull in the wind, catch 1 skimmer on 8mm pellet.

16:15 into RH margin maggot gets ragged, steal some dendras off John Bradford and catch a small carp.

16:20 catch a perch.

16:25 3lb carp jumps out of keepnet, getting pissed off now.

Switched to paste rig in RH margin hooked about 10 carp landed 6, plus a skimmer.

17:15 match ends, chuck back fish and pack up.

Fabio was opposite me and had the wind in his face, he won the match with 72lb.

Time to give it a go on the river I think, at least there I can fish like a buffoon with nobody watching me lol!

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Chilton Trinity Short Pole Match

With Glenn travelling on his own to this series of matches I gave him some company this week by guesting. I spent a large part of Saturday evening watching the weather forecast wondering how bad ex hurricane Bertha would hit us, but in the end Bertha seemed to give us a wide berth!

Arriving at the fishery the ground was wet but clouds were clearing and winds were light, the latest forecast now suggested sunshine and showers and the wind increasing, they got that right! Getting into the draw queue I thought being on a corner peg would be a good bet, but I think I've had a few of them lately and today I drew peg 10 which is more or less in the middle of the far bank. Neighbours today were Mark Leader and once again Kev Moulton. There was a nice looking tree down to my right although the water was deep, I cleared the bankside vegetation in closer to the bank but I still found 3 1/2ft of water, in fact it was the same depth in the margin everywhere, I really felt I needed shallower. Rigs today were a 4x14 for pellet and the same for meat, only difference being one had a band with 16 PR36 the other a 12 PR478 (did set up a shallow rig but never used). A 4x18 pellet rig and paste rig for 6m finished it off.

I was a little late getting set up and on the all in I was behind my neighbours starting. As I finished feeding Kev had an 8lb carp, as I dropped in my pellet rig at 6m Mark had a carp! I fouled one and as the peg fizzed a lot I decided to drop the paste in, and this was a good move as I hooked 3 carp in 3 drops pulling out of the last one. The wind had now got worse and the lake was towing, causing my paste rig to not sit correct at all and I had to give up on it. Going back in on an 8mm pellet things were slow, with no liners but still some fizzes, I had to put a bit of depth on to try to slow / hold the bait still. After an hour I had just the 2 carp and a small skimmer, not much was being caught other than Paul Elmes opposite who was getting one a bung on paste. Mark next to me was catching roach shallow on pellet and had some real beauties. During the 2nd hour I managed a skimmer and a tench on pellet, the tench snagged me at 5m but when I let everything go slack it swam out.

During the third hour I had 2 skimmers. During the 4th and 5th hour I had sod all and walked up to Rod Wootten on peg 8 who had a decent amount of carp from his margins, Rod had shallow water and could see when the carp were in the swim. My margins had failed to throw up a single bite on either side (other than the odd tiny roach) and I was really hacked off with that. I was never going to win any coin now but was being bloody minded that I was going to catch another carp! In desperation I took my gbait paste and turned it into gbait, I fed this right in tight to the bank next to the pallet (it was still bloody 3 1/2ft deep!) and had to turn my back to the lake to fish this. With 40 mins to go I hooked a carp on this line only for it to get in between my keepnet and a platform leg and snap the hook length. Thirty mins to go and I hooked another which was fouled and came off quickly. 15 mins to go and third time lucky and I landed a good 8lb+ common, end of match.

The day had been a complete right off for me, we only had a couple of showers but the wind was really bad, terrible for the those further down the lake and some sections were broke / lost. Glenn Bailey and Neil Mercer had T shirts on up on peg 2 and 3 though. I've managed to come home with a nice sun burnt face!

My silvers went 9lb+ and my 3 carp 15lb+ for a lowly 24lb 13oz. Rod easily won the section and came 2nd overall with 81lb, and Mark Leader took the section by default with just 27lb, just one of those lost carp would have won me the section, hey ho. On the far bank there were more carp caught in the margins and Glenn also caught some in his margin, it seemed to me the carp fed in less than 2ft of water and those on deep margins really struggled.

Winner on the day was Chris Fox who after a bit of walking got his end bank margin to work and ended with 87lb, see his blog for how exactly. Tom Magnall won the silvers with just 18lb, even they didn't want to feed today! See Tony Rixon's blog for full results, but I know Glenn was 4th and first out the money for the third match on the trott, still he's picking up section money.

Yesterday the division 1 Nation was fished on the River Trent, with 42 teams taking part this year. The top sides dominated, with the order being, Barnsley, Shakespear, Dorking, Starlets. Three teams tied on 5th place, and one of them was Bathampton who took 7th on weight count back, a good result. Thatchers came 9th and they had two anglers in the the frame, Ian Pauley had 15kg of bream, and Mark Harper had nearly 13kilos of roach to come 6th. Sounds like the river fished well in places, good news.

Not sure of my venues for fishing this coming week, though I must say the river is tugging at me to give it a go....

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Avon Angling Float Only Sedges

Picked up by Glenn today and the journey down was absolutely great as was the breakfast in Hill Tops cafe. I was looking forward to this match, and arriving at the venue saw that the wind was blowing up the lake the usual way and saw drawing peg 11 again would be nice, in fact a peg with the wind not to bad would be nice. I ended up drawing peg 36 middle of Tile lake, and would face a tricky section as peg 40 is a good corner (Jerry Pocock) and peg 39 has won the short pole matches a couple of times (Jamie Parkhouse), on peg 37 was John Baker and on peg 34 was Jason Radford ( I couldn't see him as the reeds grow taller than him lol).

Setting up today the rigs for the pole were a 4x18 Preston Yellow for on the deck with banded pellet (about 7ft deep) with 0.16 to 16 PR36. A Tyson 3 for shallow / slapping, and a couple of 4x12 Durafloats for meat in the margin and at 5m (I had nothing on these two rigs). I also set up a pellet waggler but the wind was not looking favourable for it to start. To begin the match I wasted some meat, and fed a pot of 6mm pellets at 11.5m (as far as I dare go in the wind). I dropped in on the deep rig to start with and it only took a couple of minutes for the float to bury and a small 2lb carp was netted. Ten minutes later and another smal carp took a liking to the 8mm pellet, but then the bites went iffy, I realised there were some fish up shallow. Going out on the shallow rig I picked up 3 carp between 18" and 30" deep and I was thinking this was going to be a good day! The fish disappeared shallow and I tried deep again still feeding 6mm pellets by catty, just iffy bites again and 1 fouler.

After the hour mark I decided to brave the wind and give the wag a try, having done my best to feed 8mm pellets as far as possible since the start I was pleased when I had two carp on my first two casts. Sadly just like the pole that was that and I wasted another 30 mins thrashing and with the wind turning into my face I came off the wag, still after 90 mins I had 30lb. Back on the pole line deep and Guy Manton came along for a watch, he saw me quickly pull out of a fish, and then have some fun trying to land a 3lb eel! I had some funny indications and even the float going under fast saw me not connect with a fish, and then a 2lb skimmer was netted which was my last fish for 2 hours!

Trying everything I couldn't catch, the lads either side were faring even worse than me, and Bob Gullick on 32 had been for two walks! I tried casting the pellet wag to the island (couldn't feed that far) and I did manage to get one cast in the right place and had a carp, landed short numerous times and caught the reeds. I stuck on a heavier 5 swan wag and set up a new hook length on it too, chucked it out and straight into the island and I lost the lot, I put the rod down and decided enough was enough.

The pole line came to life, well their with fish in the swim but I couldn't hook any in the mouth deep and shallow was no good, I was pretty jarred off. The wind started to ease and I decided to feed a few 8mm pellets rather than 6mm and try and catch shallow, in the last 30 mins I caught 4 more carp and lost a couple more. Think I royally cocked this peg up today,  I let the wind get to me and I think if I had fed a few 8mm pellets all day trying to catch shallow I would have had a lot more than my 50lb 14oz. Jason had 36lb for last in his section, and John Baker had 20lb for last in my section.

Well that's a day to forget, funny as after 90 mins I thought I was on for a very good day but everything went tits up and I must have lost 12 carp, not all foulers either, although I wasn't alone in that with many others losing lots, even more.

Winner on the day was Martin Reyatt on unfancied peg 20 who had a torrid first 4 1/2 hours and had 2 walks, then he had 109lb on meat in the last 90 mins! Two pegs away on 18 Ziggy the Polish lad caught another 70lb of skimmers to paralyse the silvers. I was told not to mention that Glenn was on peg 19.

Full results on Tony's blog, I'm off to bed as I had to pain the skirting boards when I came home tonight, that was only just less entertaining than my day's fishing today lol!