Back to Viaduct fishery in Somerton for the second day of the pairs With team mate Donald Sutherland and as soon as I took a peek out the curtains when I woke this morning my worst fears were confirmed as everything was white from the overnight frost" After a bit of chasing around on-route to get something warm inside us before the day ahead we arrive at the fishery to find the temperature was -6 Degrees and all the lakes had a covering of a couple of inches of ice' It was my turn to fish Cambell lake today so after wrapping up to the hilt to stay warm I went and took some pictures of what we were greeted with.
(Pitures of Cambell lake)
Well there was nothing we could do about it and with the forecast of the temperature forcast to stay below zero all day we were all in the same boat meaning nobody would be fishing the waggler or feeder today. The best weights the lower end of this lake yesterday or the pegs either side of the spit on the opposite bank so I was hoping to avoid the shaded area at the top end where Don was yesterday but it wasn't to be and I found myself on peg 118 which is behind the tree meaning the chances of me seeing any sun was minimal", The weights were lower here yesterday with Don Having 3lb odd from peg 116 which was enough to beat the pegs either side of him but just to make things a little harder for company I had England Ace Des (Smiley) Shipp on 116 today! (No Pressure Then!?).
The first main task today was to clear the ice as far as possible as the hope of catching anything short was going to be impossible, Don have a look around the van to see what he could attach to some rope heavy enough to break through the ice whilst I cut what I could out with my landing net handle, 30mins later and I was still doing my best to sling it as far as possible after having to borrow one as Don's Attachments disappeared to the bottom of the lake first chuck!, It was a bit hairy though trying to give it some welly whilst perched on the end of a slippery platform" Put it this way I wasn't cold afterwards whilst I set up with just 30mins to the all-in.
I Chose to make just one new rig up being a 4x12 Chanti on 0.11-0.08 and a 20 63-13 hook where I plumed up at 13mts straight in-front of me which was a couple of feet from the ice, this would be my main line but I could go a couple of feet to the left and right in search of fish away from my bait if need be as I chose to make a wider channel in the ice than some had although the pegs on the opposite bank seemed ok but needed some work.
(45mins later my swim")
Quite simple at the start' One small ball of ground-bait with a couple of dead pinkies and casters added onto the 13mt line followed with a sprinkling of pinkies over the top! Mega positive today then". I wanted this to settle for a while so start by cupping in a nugget of ground-bait next to the ice at 10mts and going over the top with a single red pinkie on the hook. As expected after 15mins I had know indications so switched to the long line again with pinkie on the hook, It wasn't until we were 50mins in I had my first bite being a 1oz roach which was a bonus as des was yet to catch as were the guys opposite, I had just a pimple of the float showing and struck at any small movement which got me a few more small roach before I had a welcome 10oz skimmer out of the blue and at this point I was getting excited as we were over an hour in and I hadn't seen anything caught".
At this point I hadn't fed anything else so attached a small cad pot to the pole and fed around 6 pinkies and a couple of casters over the top of the rig, this did bring me a couple more small roach before it went dead so I had a swap around between baits just in case there was something bigger around? after trying caster on the hook without a sniff I switched to a single white pinkie and was soon attached to something much better' after taking my time to steer the line away from the ice I still hadn't seen it but it was trying to dive under the platform so was hoping it was a tench so was pleased to net a 2lb plus fish! Bonus.." By now we were halfway through the match and from what I could see most were struggling for as much as a bite and after searching for another better fish I was back catching what I could being the odd small roach by working the rig over another small ball of ground-bait cupping in tiny amounts of pinkies via the cad pot.
In order to get any indications I had to play around with the way I put the rig in as well as changing the depth a couple of inches at regular intervals but it got me bites when others were struggling, Des had managed a big skimmer and a few more small fish but was struggling so I kept at it which kept me from thinking about the cold so much. I Felt if I was to get anymore bonus fish it would be late and in the last 15mis I had two more skimmers one over a 1lb which boosted my weight. It was a very hard day but having Des next to me helped me to keep at it working for bites and although I took his scalp today I didn't know what had been caught on what I thought would be the better end of the section? I was first to weigh and was pleased to end up with 7lb odd and after a couple of lower weights Nicky Collins put 5lb odd on the scales meaning I had won the section picking up 1pt, It was down to Don now on peg 77 Cary and his small fish net of 2lb odd was enough for 2nd in the section picking up 2pts meaning are total of 10pts would be close for a top 3 finish in the pay-outs"?
Back at the results and as expected the lakes fished harder due to the ice but it was a surprize to find out that my weight was enough to take top place on the day pushing Don and me up in the weights for the overall positions, As expected it turned out to be very close with the winning pair going to Gary O'Shea & Bob Gullit with 9pts and a total weight of 22lb ahead of Andy Power & Lee (Peanut) also on 9pts but a lower combined weight of 18lb,
Again it was close for the final placing but my late skimmer helped us to pinch 3rd spot on weight by 8oz finishing tied on 10 points with Martin Preston & Phil Cardwell. A good end to the two days for the both of us with Donald picking up £30, me picking up £50 for the section and adding another £76 for 3rd gave us something to share, A hard but very enjoyable day in more ways than one'.
Bob & Gary.
Full results -
1st Dom Sullivan (Maver/Cadbury Angling) peg 118 Cambell, 7lb 8oz.