I have had a very nice week, it was my 50th birthday on Wednesday and I got to spend it with my wife and two daughters in Plymouth. The following day my eldest daughter had her graduation on the Plymouth Hoe, it was a brilliant celebration and I had a big lump in my throat. Saturday it was back to watch Rovers with my family and friends and after the win we carried on drinking as part of my 50th celebration. It was a very good day / night, and for this reason I had no plans to go fishing Sunday lol.
Back in August 1999 I fished the teams of four on the Huntspill, a well attended event back in the day, I was pegged 15 pegs up from the bottom of Gold Corner. It was a hot sunny day and no ripple so not conducive to a bagging session I thought. I am not 100% sure but if my memory serves me correctly I had Eddie Wynne on the next peg. I started as you would on the gbait feeder fished as far across as I could chuck accurately. I fished very light on the feeder, a 20 to 0.10 and I caught a 2lb skimmer and a 4lb bream on this when hardly a fish was caught on the tip. Coming on to the pole at 14m, where I had fed caster and maggots, I fished double maggot for eels. It was a struggle, but luckily I took three eels from here all around the pound mark. That was my lot, 9lb 4oz (4 kilo 200), but it was a good weight in the section it seemed. My team got 5th place and we picked up £100 each, nice!
On Tuesday 3rd August I pleasure fished at Century Pond (only the one pond then) and experimented using a swinging pole cup made for me by Tony Rixon. I fed pots of cubed meat and casters and caught 60lb+ of carp and 30lb+ of skimmers. I remember when I fed a pot I would catch carp then it would just be skimmers until I fed another pot, it was a good learning experience. The swinging pole cup wasn't perfect but it was the first time I had been able to feed large amounts of bait in the same spot.
Sunday and it was back on the Huntspill for the superleague, this time I was drawn at Withygrove on peg 81. The match was totally different for me than last time, although again small fish were absent. All of my fish came on the feeder, in total I had 11 skimmers and 2 eels for 9lb 10oz for 8 out of 10 points. I fed a lot of squatt and just a little caster through the feeder, and caught on either double or single red maggot on an 18 to 0.12. I did not record in my diary how the team did. I went to the Huntspill again the following week to fish an open match, and I was back at Gold Corner again this time 20 pegs up. It was another match where the feeder would dominate, and I snared a few more ending with 2 bream and 9 skimmers, plus 2 eels on the pole. My weight of 6 kilo 350g was enough to win the section and take home £50.
The Huntspill fest was to finish for me with another round of the superleague, and continuing the rotation I was on Withygrove peg 72. The section was tough and I only had 3 skimmers on the feeder, but I was able to snare 6 eels and a nice hybrid on the pole, single bronze maggot on the pole was the best hook bait. I was 2nd in the section with my 7lb 10oz and this ended a good run for me on the venue, it is still a place I do like to fish although it fishes quite differently now.
Into September and on Sunday 12th it was the final round of the superleague to be fished at Newbridge on the Avon. I was quite happy drawing peg 17 (no longer a peg) as the river was low and clear and I fancied it for a days waggler fishing. The day panned out pretty much as I expected and it was a tough match, I fed just 4 maggots and 4 casters every other cast and caught small roach on and off on using a 24 to 0.08. I weighed in 7lb 9oz which won me the section and was 5th on the day. The team came 2nd on the day but we ended the league in only 6th place.
I spent my birthday fishing a few hours at St Georges Park lake, 3 carp, a decent bream and 7lb of roach all on the waggler were very nice. After this it rained heavily and when we got to Sunday 26th for the first round of the Commercial House you could on just see the weir at Keynsham. Drawing just below the outfall at Swineford was really not where I wanted to be lol! I tried to catch bleak but what fish I caught were so small it was a waste of space, so I went with the gbait feeder with worms and caster in for eels. A lobworm tail was the only thing I had a bite on, and I ended with just 8 eels for 2lb 9oz. This was however enough for 12 points out of 14 and the team came 2nd on the day so avoided a disaster on a horrid river.
Next week I'm back on the river on the Commercial House, weather looks OK now and hopefully the rain we have had will have improved things. In fact I just heard that Jack Jones pleasure fished at Kelston today and he fished the pole and caught 28lb of roach!