If you read my blog last week you will know that I had planned to go fishing on Saturday, where I was going I had no idea! Right up until Friday I was undecided, I had ruled out the river as it was flooded and my two venues to choose from were Hillview at Tewkesbury and Landsend near Wedmore. In the end Landsend got my vote simply because I hadn't been for ages and I knew I could get a couple of eggs on toast which is all I could have for breakfast. I rang Ken Rayner who fishes Landsend regularly and he gave me some good info and that was me sorted. I grabbed a pint of casters and a few maggots from Scotts, and changed some elastics as my river top sets were not needed! I also remembered to put in barbless hooks, and some suitable rigs.
Saturday morning and after a mild week I was hoping the fish at Landsend might wake up a bit, but it was a shock to see my car frozen over. After deicing and loading the car I was on my way, at Hicksgate it started to rain. Weird start to the day weather wise then! The drive down was fine, and I took it steady knowing it could be icy, pulling to the fishery car park the temp guage was still only on 3C. Going into the breakfast cabin I got totally confused as Mike Duckett starting talking to me about Gary and Double Deckers.... Eventually I twigged Mike thought I was Gary Flinders and he was asking me where was Russ Peck (Pecker / Decker get it!) lol. I was soon enjoying my eggs on toast and enjoying chatting to the lads, sadly there were only 8 of us fishing which is quite a bit down on recent matches I was told. Mike had decided to put us on Match Lake, and he put pegs 1, 3, 6, 11, 13, 15, 19 and 21. Ken was saying he did not like 3 and 21 was his favourite, I had no issue what peg I drew as not having fished it for ages they all seemed good to me, though Mike did say the carp were all around peg 9. Ken drew first and stormed off as he had peg 3, I went next and got peg 19 which is always fancied so I was happy. As Mike Duckett walked past me he said this is a good peg and if you come last from here you're crap, that raised a chuckle from the lads.
I got to the peg and there was a bit of colour in it from the weeks rain, that gave me a bit of confidence that the weights might improve from recent weeks. Opposite me on peg 6 was venue regular Rod Wotton (despite being a city fan Rod is a top bloke). On peg 21 was venue regular Russ Peck, and on peg 15 was venue owner Mike Duckett. Nice and easy then lol! Russ decided to call me Gary all day and it was funny as feck, in fact the banter was great all day even if most of it was either at Ken's expense or Rod mentioning about Matty Taylor!!!!
Rigs for me today were covering all bases, a strung out 4x12 with 0.10 to 18 PR412 for caster by the bush to my left, same rig but with 0.12 for fishing maggot off bottom at bottom of shelf. A 0.2 corby with 20 PR36 to 0.12 for fishing hard pellet at 14m bottom of shelf. I also set up a 4x10 rig for trying right across by the reeds and in the margin to the right, but I never had an indication on those lines.
The match started at 10:15 I fed a few 4mm pellets at 14m, some micros and maggots way off to the left and threw casters down to the bush which I did all day long. A carp had swirled not far from Russ before the start and he went out and caught one first chuck! He lost the next three he hooked foulers, meanwhile I sat there without any indications on any rig. At the end of the first hour I had lost two foulers on the off bottom maggot rig, at 90 mins I had a roach on this to break the blank but Russ had 3 carp and Rod had a couple of F1's. At this stage it was a struggle for all. I eventually hooked a carp off to my right at 14.5m on the maggot rig, this was in the mouth and landed it, about 3lb. No other bites came from here. The 14m pellet line was dead but I kept flicking in 3 or 4 pellets to keep something dropping through the water. About 2 1/2 hours in I had a common carp of about 7lb this was taken on the maggot rig over the pellet line. I had lost a couple more foulers but then all signs stopped across.
Earlier tries on the caster by the bush were a waste of time, but 3 hours in I started getting some small roach, also had a couple of 6oz perch. I gave it a good go but bites stopped and had to rest it. Going across and trying all over the peg was a complete waste of time. Back in on the bush and just a few roach but then I hooked a better fish, it was nodding like a big perch and it came up in the water and I was sure I saw a stripe of colour and I thought it was a bloody huge perch. Ten minutes later and I landed a 7lb common carp, not too much stick from the lads for my initial reaction. That carp stopped all bites on the bush. I tried feeding some micros on my pellet line as Rod was getting the odd fish on pellet over micro. I left it to settle and with no bites anywhere I was back on the bush. I had a 12oz hybrid and few more small roach then a 8oz perch which killed it again.
Going over the micro I had a couple of indications and hooked 2 skimmers which both came off! That killed it. Another carp from down by the bush and then I pulled out of a fish which I'm sure was a decent perch. Back over the micros and my one and only F1, then a tiny skimmer and then I lost another skimmer. With 10 mins left I went back on the bush and had a roach and then a 1lb perch.
The match had been much better for me in the last couple of hours although I only had a low weight, I thought I might have 25lb. Russ had 6 carp and a late tench and was admitting to 25lb. The scales came round from peg 1 and when they got to me the top weight was Mike Duckett with 23lb, my silvers went 8lb 8oz, and my carp 21lb 4oz, so 29lb 12oz in total. That guaranteed me 2nd with just Russ to weigh, luckily for me his carp were smaller than mine and he weighed 28lb 14oz.
Well it was only a small match but pleased to get the win on what was a hard day and the £50 was welcome. Not sure the last time I went fishing on a commercial but despite it being tough I enjoyed working hard all day. Everyone suffered lost fish on the day, and so the result could have been a lot different had one or two foulers stayed on. Top silvers weight was Rod with 11lb 10oz, mainly F1's and a few silvers on pellet.
Well that is it for me this weekend, and sadly no fishing next weekend as I am enjoying football hospitality next Saturday and have to have a CT scan on the Sunday, this is just a check up as I am now 6 years cancer free..... I am one of the lucky ones.