I had joined Mike, Glenn, Martyn and Geoff at Viaduct on Monday evening for beer and grub, it was good to be back in the Lodge again which really is like home from home. Apparently Glenn and Geoff had nearly ate a pound of Cheddar between them the night before, might have been the cider with no name they drank that gave them a strange appetite!
Tuesday morning and off to Acorn, my last visit here was I think last summer when I had a torrid time on the straight and just couldn't catch. I really hoped I would be improving on that, and also that my recent poor drawing would stop this week. The carp were spawning and I guessed that would knock the fishing but should be the same for everyone. I watched as one after another the "regulars" drew what I considered good pegs, my turn, 18 on the straight not where I wanted to be. However, I was cheered up when I was told Lance Tucker had taken 50lb from it on Sunday and won his section. Of the holiday makers only Mike got a noted peg (see his blog) and we weren't expecting great things.
For company today I had bridge expert Mike Chapman on bridge peg 21, and on peg 17 Dave Blakemore. I set up a paste rig for down by peg 19 pallet, a paste rig for down the track, and two pellet rigs for across on on top the ledge and one the second ledge. 0.14 to18 PR36 was used for pellet rigs as I was going to feed 4mm pellets and put either 6 or 8mm in the band. When the match started I cupped decent amounts of pellets on the paste lines, but was less generous across. Starting on the second ledge I expected to get some indications, but 15 mins in and nothing, and despite trying here a number of times this line was abandoned. Going right across I was soon rewarded with a carp hooked in the mouth, but by the end of the first 90 mins all I had added to that was 3 foulers I had landed. I'd not actually lost that many as there were few indications, and my neighbours at this stage had not had a carp, it was not fishing well! The paste lines never responded, and I feel I messed up the pallet line and should have loosefed lightly here. My next 2 1/2 hours were tortuous, I couldn't get indications for ages, and Dave then had a few carp on the method feeder. I went for a walk....
I saw Glenn up on 23 as he'd been catching well, he had a lovely gap to fish in, I moaned a lot and went back to my peg. I started to get indications right over but I was not hooking anything, I made a paste rig up for over (copying Glenn) and the float went under about 25 times and only once did I catch a fish. I took this rig off and put on another pellet rig (with a little Preston dibber) and just a few minutes before the 5th hour the peg transformed. I was now getting bites and they were sometimes hooking themselves, and it was a fish every put in, it was a great hour. Sadly it slowed and despite resting it the swim went back to as it was before and I only had 2 or 3 carp in the last hour. Meanwhile Gabriel Skarba had caught well for the last 2 hours over and had beaten me.
When the scales arrived Glenn was leading with 78lb, I had my carp split into two nets, 1 net was the fish from just the 5th hour, and that went 33lb. The 2nd net from the other 5 hours weighed at 22lb! As it turned out my 55lb was enough to come 4th on the day as many of the noted pegs failed to produce. I'm not sure I can remember a match like that, the 5th hour was so good it made up for the rest. Well done to Glenn for winning, Gabe was 2nd with 71lb, and Paul Faires 3rd with 62lb.
Dinner at Brent Knoll carvery was excellent and I was glad I had an elasticated band on my trousers!