I was looking forward to the start of this small league held over five venues over the next couple of months, With Lewis & myself both fishing we agreed to travel together as normal only this was altered late yesterday as he was having a few bevey's & I wondered what state he would be in' thankfully a good one & keen for breakfast at the fishery, With a couple of late entry's we were up to 18 & we would all be on match lake which didn't mean their would be many empty pegs so was hoping to the extra bit of room, Into the draw & I found myself on peg 6 on the point of the spit between the two islands, Already their seemed to be signs of fish tight to the island behind the small patch of reeds at nearly 16mts, & the odd fish along the mud line further to my right so it looked like my main line of attack?
I set up a 0.2g AS1 on 0.17-0.15 & an 18 PR36 hook to fish tight to the mud & at 16mts in just a 18inches of water, A swinger" rig to linger line across, & a 4x12 Chanti on 0.15-0.13 to fish at 7mts slightly right & finally the same float on 0.13-0.11 & an 18 silver fish hook to fish the same distance left to target silver fish over chopped worm & casters. I didn't worry about the inside lines as I didn't have much room with Mosella Boss Vic Bush on peg 5 & old Thyers team mate Mark (Bunt) Broomsgrove on peg 7. I started the day feeding a chopped mix on this line & fed a small amount of 8mm meat to the left. I was going to start here but it was to temping to miss snaring an earlier fish or to across, I started on a banded 6mm to the mud just feeding a few of the same via a cad pot.
It wasn't long before I connected to a fish, Foul hooked"& we parted company', After another quick spell here it seemed the fish had retreated the other side of the clump tight of the end bank,
I fed the same again slightly off the point but soon hooked & lost 2 more" I had heard lee say at the start it was a minimum of a 12" hooklength which I thought a bit odd & I thought he meant no shallower than 12' inches deep but more of that later, To say I was having a mare of a start was an under statement" I had lost five fish in as many try's & I was convinced if I could of had a rig set inches deep on a longer line I would be bagging??. I switched to feeding just a couple of hard 8mms via the cad pot with the same on the hook & finally I netted a fish of 4lb, In The Fin!". I did manage a couple in the mouth of a decent size but I just couldn't I just couldn't seem to get them to stay on the deck. I decided to have a re-think & have a look on my shorter lines which I had been feeding from the off. Starting on the worm/caster line with the head of a worm, I had a bite right away being an 1oz perch" followed by one not much bigger ten minutes later!, Over to the short meat line where I had been feeding the odd cube of meat from the off but ten minutes later I hadn't had a sign so it was back to fishing across.
This time I switched to cad potting just a couple of cubes of meat with the same on the hook, It took the fish a while to find it but after a disaster in the first 90mins I managed another 3 carp in as many put-ins, Just as I thought I had sussed it was back to nothing as the fish had spooked, I kept trying the mud line but I had to wait ages for a sign but again they turned out to be foul hooked. It seemed the fish were coming into the peg when I was pinging the odd few pellets across but as soon I missed what appeared to be bites I would spook everything, Mark had managed a few skimmers & some early carp off his mud line was now suffering with foul hookers' & Vic had managed some early F1's across in the slightly deeper water. Another look on the shorter lines didn't produce anything, Again back to cad potting a few hard 6mm's with the same on the hook produced a couple more in the but it was more a case of hook three lose two".
Vic had tried with a slapping rig but that didn't produce so had switched to cad potting chopped worm & soil tighter to the mud line & was taking the odd carp so decided to switch to doing the same against my mud line, I did hook one straight away in the wrong place again & soon came off. & with only one small perch in the next ten minutes the fish wouldn't come to this side of the reeds, It was frustrating to say the least with just the odd fish in the mouth but I still managed to lose two near the net in the mouth!. I kept trying the short meat line, but it wasn't until the last hour or so I had my first carp on it after Vic had taken a couple off it including a decent fish in the fin". I lost another 5mins later which seemed to kill it so with time running out I decided to try feeding a good amount of the worm soil mix again against the mud line & went straight over it with half a worm, It was instant & I added a 6lb fish & after cad-potting some more on the next go hooked another only for me to lose it again close in". Nothing followed so with minutes to go tried the meat line again, I missed a bite & was just re-baiting when the all-out sounded'. I new it would be close between Vic & Me but felt his F1's between his carp could make the difference, Mark had only managed a couple more carp across but had a decent fish down the edge losing another under his platform". When the scales arrived 77lb was the top weight from peg 3, Vic had 19lb odd of F1's to go with his 50lb of carp to finish with 67lb odd, my carp went 62lb odd with a massive 3oz of silvers added" & Mark finished with 39lb odd, Nick Harvey was below him on peg 8 & weighed even less so at least my normal £1 side bet was safe, I followed the scales around & it was that lad again my traveling partner Lewis who showed us all how its done from corner peg 13, Ok he did have an empty peg to his right & a nice bit of room but you still got to catch them, fishing over to the islands on commercials Is his forte & he's very good at it so well done mate another good performance,
Some close back up weights followed so it fished well really. It wasn't until we were packing up & we got talking I asked Lee how shallow I could of fished convinced he would say no shallower than 12inches, As shallow as you wanted to he replied" I was confused until he explained that the 12" hooklength applied to anyone fishing the feeder !!" I was gutted' I'm convinced I could of had some fish really shallow which could of helped my weight but its my fault as I saw lee before the start & I didn't question it, Owe & sorry mark as he also followed suit after I mentioned it to him" I didn't get it clear that it was your combined silver & carp weights which made up your total points so my 3oz wasn't hard to beat". If I had taken it all in before the start I would of fed a micro/expander line to try for some silvers but hey ho". The next round is in two weeks at Chiltern Trinity's Wildmarsh Lake, I haven't fished this for years & when I did the matches were often hard so we will see how things have improved"? Off to Shiplate Farm tomorrow for a match on Hawthorns Lake, I'm Going to try something different tomorrow but if it fails I will resort to fishing for the silvers as I enjoyed it here last time.
Full Results -
1st Lewis Jones (Drennan Thyers) peg 13, 101lb 4oz.
2nd Paul Nichols (Clevedon A.A) peg 21, 90b 12oz.
3rd Brian Slipper (Sensas Thyers) peg 17, 81lb 14oz.