I had been hoping to get out for a few hours this Sunday, but to be honest when I saw the weather forecast said heavy rain I made other plans. As such as I have dug another diary out of the loft and will recall what went on 19 years ago, and bugger me if starts off similar to last week lol...
January 4th found me on the 5th round of the ATWL which was to be fished on the K&A canal around Bath. The weather had been poor in the lead up to this match, and on the day winds of up to 80mph were forecast. Team draw put me up at Claverton, and I had a great day... not! I was blanking until the last hour when I managed to catch 2 small perch on chopped worm for just 2oz. Amazingly this gave me 8 points as the section had fished pants (some things don't change). I am not 100% sure, but this could have been the match when Craig Edmunds caught a few carp to win the match, the rest as they say his history. My team won the day and were in 2nd place overall.
The following Saturday I fished an open at Moorlands Farm where I drew on Island Pool. I had a torrid time with wind and rain in my face and caught very little, but I was pegged next to Ken Giles and as he also caught very little we had a good chat and I learn't a lot about how he approached the venue. I should have been fishing the final match of the mid week league on Weds 14th January, but I could not get the time off work. Luckily for me you could drop one result and I had a call later that day to say I had still managed to come 2nd overall in the league.
The final round of the ATWL was again on the K&A canal, this time I found myself at Warleigh on what I called then the "concrete stretch". I had a few fish early on punch and odd small roach on pinkie over gbait, but I got a lesson that day on punch fishing and recorded in my diary that I should fish much more positive. 3lb 8oz got me 9 points, the team ended in 2nd place overall.
Sunday 24th January and we were back on the river after it had been in flood for nearly 3 weeks. This match was the Rod Hill Memorial fished Swineford to Crane, I drew one above the beach peg at Swineford. It is (or was) a peg that was a long way above the beach and so plenty of room. However, on the day the river was pushing through and only a feeder could be used. If I was going to catch anything it would be chub, and I started on a gbait feeder with double maggot on the hook. I always liked to start this way even on a chub peg, and after 90 mins I had 4 chub in the net, but then it all went dead. Below me on the beach Andy Floyd had also caught some chub, but above me Shane Caswell was blanking but he had lost a chub which snagged and snapped him up. With my peg seemingly dead I cast my feeder a long way downstream and in the last hour I had another 2 chub. One of the chub was in and out of snags all the way back and how I got it out was a miracle as the 0.12 hook length was in a right mess. When I landed the fish and unhooked it I saw another hook in its mouth with bait still on it. I shouted up to Shane "did you lose that chub on a bit of lobworm and bronze maggot?". Of course Shane said "how the feck did you know that?", he was confused and came down to see me, and as he did I smiled at him and placed in his hand the baited hook and said "I just took that out of a 2lb chub". I won't write what Shane said to me, but he covered most swear words lol! That chub had come from 50 yards upstream and gone another 40 yards below me. I had a good day, never missed a bite and pulled out of one chub. My 6 fish went 9lb 2oz which was enough for 3rd overall and a nice pay day, Andy below me won the match with 14lb.
In the here and now if I am to get back on the bank again next weekend it will have to be Saturday, so I will have to keep an eye on the weather and likely venues to consider. I cannot fish Sunday as I have to prepare for a colonoscopy the following day, this entails fasting on Sunday and drinking 2 litres of a laxative called "Moviprep". To be be honest I think the person who came up with the product name was taking the piss. Mind you if it is anything like the "Picolax" I had to take before my first surgery (6 years ago) it will be fun. Picolax should come with more of a warning as once that stuff kicks in you cannot dare get off the toilet until you are empty, think volcano in your guts, lol!