I had to be up at 6am on Tuesday in order to be ready to leave to drive up to Kingston Seymour and find a breakfast van that was close tot the fishery. All of my gear and one set of clothing was wet after the rain on Monday, the forecast today did seem a little more promising though. We all paired up for the journey and I squeezed my gear into Glenn's car, it fitted OK as you don't need trolleys at Acorn. We set off in front in search of grub, along the way it seemed the others couldn't keep up with Glenn and they forgot the directions we were given and went straight to the fishery! We rang them and got them to the van, though Mike was somewhat grumpy at Glenn for "driving to fast" lol. As we ate our food it started to rain heavily and the wind was picking up, not really a good recipe for Acorn which does get ravaged by the wind.
Arriving at the fishery we parked up behind Gabriel Skarba who was keen to talk to "Bailey". Gabe had left his wallet at home and asked Glenn if he would pay his pools for him. Then Gabe produced a little bottle of vodka and a shot glass and I had knocked one back, a tad early at 8:20 am!!! Gabe later convinced Glenn to have a shot as it was at least 9:45am by now PMSL! It was good to see the Acorn regulars again, and quite a few of them gasheads too. I have not fished this venue since the last holiday last year, so not up to speed and also not expecting to draw a bridge peg either. Actually we only had pegs 1 to 5 and then 18 to 40 as a club was also booked in, so it was to be tight pegging. As a group of 6 from the lodge I thought a few of us might draw well, but only Woody and Mike did OK with peg 1 and 37 respectively. Gordon had 25, Geoff 27 and Glenn 28 with me on 31, and that was really pants for them three, my peg can do OK. On bridge peg 34 was Gabe, and Mike Owen was on 33 and they were backed to do very well as were the island pegs. I asked Mike what was my target weight on 31, and he said he thought 40lb would be good, oh dear I said, or something similar. The angler on my right was regular Mark Walsh and apparently he does a lot of damage here on paste short.
Luck was on my side a tad as the strong wind was from behind and the farm building sheltered me from it for most of the match. I set up rigs for right across where I had 2 spots to fish, a shallow little cut back, and against some stick ups which were cut nicely back. A rig for top set plus one in front, and a rig for down toward pallet 32 which was empty , but I never caught on these two lines. I started the match by feeding 6mm pellets across to the far bank and started on the deeper stick up spot. Unsurprisingly I lost a fouler first drop, lost another and then had one in the mouth. After this there is not much more I can say about the first 3 1/2 hours other than I had caught 2 carp but only had one in the net as the other had jumped out. It was dire, with no liner or signs, Mark next to me was blanking! Glenn was doing the best up our end of the lake, with about 6 carp.
I had changed to feeding 4mm pellet in a toss pot to the far bank, and whether it was this change or the fact that all of a sudden there seemed to be active fish in the peg (topping and boshing) or a combination of the two but I started to catch carp. I could only catch from the stick up deeper area, but it was an indication every drop. I had to fish a 6mm in the band as an 8mm was simply no good, as most of my fish came on the drop. I probably had a good hour and then the fish went iffy, they were still there but not having it confidently. However, as most people were still struggling I stuck with it and got the odd one till the end of the match. Mark did catch but only 4 carp and he chucked back.
When both sets of scales got to me at the same time I was the last to weigh in, and Woody who'd admitted to 50lb was winning with 71lb 11oz, Ryan Jordan on peg 5 was second with 68lb 10oz and Gabe who had a bit of a torrid time was lying third with 59lb 4oz. I had the luck on my side again as my fish went 59lb 10oz and I just pipped Gabe into 3rd place and got another brown envelope. I was chuffed with that as it was, at least to me, really unexpected.
A drive from the fishery to the Brent Knoll carvery where we refuelled and left no room for dessert.
The sun had come out for the last couple of hours of the match and we had all dried off after yesterday, Gordon who had the wind and sun in his face was now doing a good impression of a beetroot head, it was a little sore and he wasn't the only one to be caught out today we all had copped it but not as bad as Gord. This may have been the night when after a few Thatchers Haze we got back to the lodge and enjoyed cheese, nuts, and brandy. I think Geoff and Glenn had about 8oz of cheese each, but my memory is a bit hazy of that night.