Monday, 30 September 2013

Plantation Lake Two Dayer. Sat & Sun 28th and 29th September 2013

I had considered my options for this match and decided to just take meat, pellet and corn, so any sort of silvers coin was not going to be a factor. Arriving at the venue I notice that they have now banned keepnets, another one to tick off my list of venues I won't pleasure fish (not that I have been pleasure fishing for ages).  As it was my Birthday on the Friday, I went steady on the celebratory London pride and felt in fine fettle arriving in the car park in time for a walk round the lake before breakfast.

There was also a net dip, but I must admit, it didn't smell too strong, I do fully understand the owners trying to protect their fish stocks though, so complied with the request to dip nets.  Karen from Bullock Farm Cafe has taken over the catering and bar side of Plantation, so for the first time in a while I had a Breakfast there.

19 of us fishing the two days, so 2 sections of 10 and pot luck which peg wasn't drawn, we'd have a free draw the first day and fish the other section the next day. A decent bit of banter and piss taking before the draw and it was a delight to see Darren 'Nuddy' Vowles face light up when he heard there was a fresh tub of goose fat gently warming.............

In fact for me, the banter and catching up with a few old friends was the best bit of the weekend, into the draw tub and out comes peg 3, immediately I was deluged with commiserations - "how do you do it, it's the worst peg on the lake".... "you won't win F all from there".... etc etc.

Off the the peg a bit down hearted, but still determined to give it a good go, I set up 3 rigs, a pellet rig to fish banded pellet on the deck at 14m, a meat rig to fish at the bottom of the slope and a rig to fish, what really isn't a margin, it's too short and too deep, but you never know...... ( that's bullshit, I knew I wouldn't catch carp from it, but I was being positive and optimistic).  I also set up a straight lead and a waggler to fish at depth, both to be fished out as far as I dare without interfering with 'Nuddy' on point peg 38.

I cupped in a few pellets at 14m on the all in and some meat, starting on the pole, to no avail, all the positivity and new found confidence was still in place, but the lack of any sign of fish activity was chipping away at its thin veneer. Paul Nicholls on peg 1 and Rich Lovering on peg 4 were suffering the same fate.  I started fishing the waggler further out, and feeding 8mm pellet did see some signs of fish, it wasn't exactly effervescent bubbling, but was at least some sign of life. The final tally was margin nil bites, meat nil bites, pole a couple of dinks, no fish, waggler 3 carp, one of which was 10lb and straight lead 1 carp, all on 8mm pellet.

The usual pegs produced fish, but weights were down on what is usually expected, talking to Rod Wootten afterwards, he struggled to catch on pellet as well, Rod usually teases a decent weight from most pegs on pellet, so perhaps it wasn't me.  My 4 carp went 27.14, beating the two pegs either side of me, but as expected the 'flyers' trumped the less favoured pegs.

Paul Faiers and Steve Mayo had a good head to head on silvers, both catching over 40lb, it did make me wish I'd taken groundbait and caster, but I still think that would have been an impossible ask from peg 3.

Saturdays Results.

1) Simon Jones 83.02 peg 7
2) Kev Perry 74.08 peg 39
3) Lance Tucker 67.00 peg 31
4) M Warne 56.14 peg 26
5) Glenn Calvert 55.05 peg 8
6) Paul Faiers 54.02 peg 23


1) Paul Faiers 48.00 peg 23
2) Steve Mayo 45.00 peg 25

So, onto Sunday, same MO today, except I didn't waste my time taking meat, today would be all about fishing pellet.  Into the tub and peg 29 reveals itself. It has an island chuck, probably the longest one on the lake and it is set back behind its neighbours, by virtue of the shape of the lake and bank erosion.  (I notice that the day tickets for Plantation are now £8, for that I do feel that the swims should by now have some nice solid platforms installed).

Two pole rigs today, a pellet rig for on the deck and a margin rig, although I had the length of margin, it was again, deeper than I'd like and I didn't get a bite there, so no more about it. I also set up a pellet feeder to fish to the island ( and Fairzy had given me some white chocolate band 'ums, which apparently is the bait to use - at least if it was crap they might taste nice...). As I had time, I set up two wagglers, one at depth and one to fish 18" deep.

Starting on the pole, it wasn't long before I had a bite and a foul hooker charged off into peg 28, which had Glenn Calvert in as my neighbour today, it swirled next to his float and led me a merry dance, before I landed it and found the hook snugly nestled in the RH pelvic fin, a welcome bonus that was touching double figures. It also started a day that became more and more frustrating, I could not get another bite on the pole, so tried the feeder to the island, this resulted in 3 small carp in an hour, my first fish on white chocolate bait!!

Back on the pole as Glenn was catching and also hooking, if not landing, fish steadily now. I had been feeding the pole line all the time I'd been on the feeder, but still could not get a bite. This carried on and as the frustration built, I walked up to Glenn to see what he was catching on - 8mm pellet was the answer.  Glen was a couple of metres further out, but surely that alone couldn't be the reason for him catching and me not even getting a bite??

I had tried both wagglers, but a left to right wind was skimming round the island making presentation so bad it wasn't worth persuing.  So with 2 hours to go, I was virtually ready to pack up, put the gear on ebay and search for the golf clubs, then the wind dropped and I could present a float to the island and I managed a few fish, but was too far behind to catch up, as the wind toyed with me for the 2 hour period, I did give the pole another go for 15 minutes, as I was in virtual disbelief that I couldn't get a bite, whilst Glenn was getting a fish or a fouler most put in's.

I had somewhat disinterestedly clicked 42lb and I thought I had missed a fish or two, but knew I was a long way behind Glenn. At the end I took my topkit up to his peg and laid it along side his, different float patterns but, virtually identical depths, shotting pattern and banded hook. he'd been feeding about 10 pellets regularly through the catty, so had I.  He did say, " did you see that float, it spent all day circling between Paul (Nicholls on peg 27) and out to the point of the island"  I hadn't seen the float, but it did suggest the main body of fish seemed to spend the day circling between the boundaries of pegs 27/28 and I managed to catch a few when conditions let me get to the point of the island, where they turned and headed back.

My fish went 52lb for a mediocre mid section finish, my positive and optimistic adventure ended in tatters, I am still at a total loss to explain why I couldn't draw any fish from Glenn's peg onto my pole line, which apart from the very early foul hooker, produced nothing for the second day running.

This has to be one of the peggiest venues in the South West, I think that at least 75% of matches I have fished on here have been won or the the peg has framed from 7. It won both days this weekend again, is there a more consistent peg (all year round) than peg 7 on this lake?

 The silvers again produced two 40lb+ weights for Paul Faiers and Steve Mayo, with Paul taking the crown again.

Sundays results.

1) Lewis Walker 107.6 peg 7
2) Paul Nicholls 107.00 peg 27
3) Glenn Calvert 96.12 peg 28
4) Simon Jones 71.00 peg 38
5) Darren 'Nuddy'( "is the goose fat up to temperature yet?") Vowles  69.00 peg 5
6) Kevin Perry 56.13 peg 1


1) Paul Faiers 42.08 peg 19
2) Steve Mayo 41.12 peg 8

Overall Result:

1) Simon Jones 4 Points 154.02
2) Glen Calvert 4 Points 152.01
3) Kevin Perry


1) Paul Faiers 2 points 90.08
2) Mark Broomsgrove  2 points 52.02

Friday, 27 September 2013

Viaduct Open, Silvers Only. Wednesday 25th September 2013

I must admit to not knowing much about Spring lake, which was the venue for todays silvers match, so apart from knowing the high teens are considered the best skimmer pegs, at least I couldn't get too depressed by the draw..... which saw me sat on peg 24.

I had spoken with Tony Rixon and he was fairly convinced that pellet would be the best bait for amassing a winning weight of skimmers, so I took 4 and 6mm pellet, some micros's, a few soft pellets, as well as worm and caster, topped off with a handful of maggots.

I set up a small cage feeder, a waggler and 3 top kits, one to fish banded pellet at 14m, another to fish worm/caster at 11m and a small Colmic pencil to fish caster short.  On the all in I put 4 balls of groundbait with CW&C in at 11m to the right, 3 balls of groundbait with a few micro's and 4mm pellets in at 14m and loose fed caster short.

Starting short on caster, saw a couple of roach in the net, then a perch, but it was slow going, they weren't there in any number and no fish visible coming up in the water for the casters. After 15 minutes I had a look on the CW&C line, no fizzing on either long pole line and the lack of skimmers was evident as the first couple of fish on worm were perch. A look on the 14m with banded 6mm pellet resulted in a totally motionless float and no signs of fish over the groundbait.

Back on the short line and more perch, then the float buried and the single caster had accounted for an unseen large cypry, which tore off at speed, round the point of the spit and the Colmic pencil exploded as it returned at full stretch of doubled 4 elastic.  Another rig went on and now the short line was as quiet as the long lines, so back out of the worm and two tiny skimmers were netted before another vermin took a liking to the worm and also the hooklength.

A switch to the pellet line saw the float dip and a 2lb+ skimmer netted, then 2 3oz skimmers before a double figure carp latched onto the pellet and instead of taking the hook, he decided to come in and wreck my small Drennan landing net, bending the arms completely out of shape.

This was then the way of things for the rest of the match, I am now 4 Colmic floats light in my float collection as they really don't stand up to the rigours of carp fishing and one Colmic thats had some surgery, I think I've saved it.  I lost about 20 hooks, as I managed to hook one or two silvers, small ones at that, before a double figure carp muscled in.  At 16.50 (match finished at 17.30) I had re hooked all my rods and kits and put the feeder out over where I had been loose feeding caster, this resulted in two small roach, before a vermin took the hook.  Next was the waggler, by now the vermin were swirling on the top for the loose fed caster, second cast, another large double hooked and hook gone, so both rods down. Next was the banded pellet rig, that didn't see any silvers action before a carp trashed it. The worm rig managed a 2oz skimmer before being relieved of its hook and tangled beyond repair, last rig with a hook on was the short caster rig, so a single maggot on that and it landed 2 roach before it too was hookless. The time now was 17.10, so 20 minutes to hook and lose 5 carp and that was enough, I really couldn't be arsed to put another hook on any of the rigs or rods that were still in a fit state, so packed away all my sodden gear - they didn't forecast the 2 hours of pouring rain!!

 My section was won from another lake, I really do think that sections should all be on one lake, as my 14.13 was a long way from the section winning 42.12, maybe a few more silvers might have got their heads down if there weren't so many carp about, but  three of the lowest weights were me and the pegs either side of me, so it appears that the skimmers weren't in residence.

1) Scott Russell  46.01 peg 18
2) Mark Poppleton 42.12  peg 38 
3) Dave Romain 29.14   peg 1
4) Tim Pallant 29.12 peg 5
5) Steve Kedge 29.09 peg 19
6) G Skarba  27.10 on peg 37

Monday, 23 September 2013

Avon Angling Open, Trinity Waters, Woodland. 22nd september 2013

I was looking forward to this match, but on the morning, with the warm still conditions, I wasn't convinced it would fish too well, this lake benefits from a ripple, as the fish do stay shallow for large parts of the year and with 25 anglers and no ripple, it was unlikely that the fish would stay feeding shallow for long.

I wasn't too bothered where I drew, except for 3 pegs on the top bank ( I have won and framed from both sides and the bottom bank, but have never won so much as a section from pegs 16-21).  My heart sunk as 19 stared back at me from the swimcard, slap bang in the middle of the top bank.  All of my instincts told me to go on one of the other lakes pleasure fishing, but I decided to give it a go and fish positively for carp.

The very slight skim on the water had pushed the algae bloom up to this end and there were far less signs of fish showing than the opposite half of the lake. I set up a rig which would suffice for the LH and RH margin, which due to the set back nature of the peg, is short, too close on a day without ripple and so it turned out, I didn't have a bite from either margin, not even a liner.

I set up the now obligatory meat rig, but decided to fish this at 11m, which was the bottom of a very slight slope. This didn't produce a bite either.

A shallow rig - no bites on that........

A full depth rig, to fish soft pellet over softened 4's, this produced a 4lb carp second drop in and that was it for carp, a couple of foulers which came off, but very little in the way of indications, even liners.  The line did produce a few skimmers, but most were dropping off due to having to break down twice. With 2 1/2 hours to go, I swapped topkits and landed a couple of skimmers before fouling a carp, which took the rig so far into the rushes to my right, that pulling to get it back, snapped the elastic.

With that, I packed up with an hour and 15 mins to go, went to the pub and the Indian, which was much more enjoyable than being sat on a peg which I knew I shouldn't have bothered with.  I spoke to Rich Lacey on peg 21 as I went, he had a carp, a tench and two skimmers, these pegs really benefit from a wind into them (but not in the winter) so as usual when he draws near me, we're in a poor area.

Listening to Rich and Tim Ford, returning to the rivers is becoming an attractive proposition, if only it wasn't for the long walks and fence climbing!!

With any luck, the weather will start to turn colder soon and the silverfish fishing will start to become viable, but at the moment its not consistent.

See Tony's blog for the results.

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Avon Angling Open, Landsend. Wednesday 18th September 2013

The title says Avon Angling Open, but it was more a knock up really, with just 7 of us there, its madness really, 3 matches within a 15 mile or so radius, although one is a series.

I had both options covered today, i.e. to fish for silvers or carp, the silvers would be my preference, but if the peg was full of hungry carp I'd fish for them.  The draw seemed to settle it, as in form  Craig 'Trigger' Edmunds drew peg 11, with me as his nearest neighbour on 7, so a silvers attack it was.

I did set up a rig to fish pellet across, just in case, and a meat rig that would suffice for 5m and by shallowing up a float length, the near margin. A simple silvers rig consisting of a NG Gimp, with a 0.14 hooklength and a 16 Red Carp Maggot, with a bulk and two droppers to fish worm over groundbait/CW&C at 8m. The same rig would also let me fish short, where a couple of bonus fish usually come from during the match.

On the all in I fed two balls of groundbait with a few casters and chopped worm in at 8m, loose fed caster just in front of the keepnets and catapulted 6mm pellet to the far shelf (which was about 14" deep).  Second lay in of the rig and a 2½lb skimmer graced the net, taking half a small dendra. It was a bit of a false dawn as it took a while for the next bite, a small perch.  By now there were signs of carp on the far shelf and all through the match a huge mouth kept coming out of the water and sucking pellets from the mudline, the fish was a very big double.

It did tempt me and the pellet rig was swung into action and as the pole approached the far bank, the fish disappeared, I foul hooked one, that came off almost immediately and I knew that my island pellet dangling skills were no where near good enough to beat Trigger who was catching a few fish on peg 11.

Back to the silvers and swapping between the 8m line and the topkit kept a few small perch and roach coming. I topped up the 8m line with another ball of g/bait and left it 15 minutes, first drop in saw a big ide in the net, next put in another 2lb+ skimmer, then the vermin moved in, blowing and bubbling over the groundbait, I hooked and landed two who took the worm and foul hooked some. I spent the rest of the match short, catching perch and roach.

It was an interesting experiment to see how the fish reacted to groundbait, but it might just too early for the worm and caster to work properly, as my hard work for silvers was wiped out by Rod Wootton who managed to get a decent net of skimmers on 8mm pellet.  I did pick up the silvers by default, as Rod took second place behind....... do I need to say, Trigger!!

The results board had disappeared by the time I got back to the car park, but it was something like this:

1) Trigger, 140lbish peg 11
2) Rod Wootton 63lbish peg 21
3) Ron Hardiman 53lbish peg 5
4) Alan Oram 52lbish peg 15
5) Chris Fox 27.04 peg 9
6) John Bradford 15lbish peg 17


1) Rod 28lbish
2) Chris Fox 18.04
3) John Bradford 15ishlb

Monday, 16 September 2013

MFS CL Match, Viaduct Campbell lake. Sunday 15th September 2013

Working what feels like 24/7, 7 days a week at the moment meant no preparation for this match, just as well the last match I fished was on the same lake, hopefully the same rigs would suffice and the waggler rod was already set up.

I assumed that it would be a bit of a fish race, so took 8mm, 11mm pellet, 8mm and 10mm meat.  As an after thought, I chucked a few slices of bread into a plastic bag.  It just goes to show that a bit of up to date information is essential, as the colour had dropped out and the fish had reacted to this.

I managed to pull out a short walk and I wasn't too upset with 112, although the match had been won from 125 the day before, for company on my left I had Roland Lucas who was also pleased with his draw, especially when 110 wasn't drawn.

I set up a lead rod, I had a few chucks with it in the first couple of hours, had a couple of tentative liners and one lost fish that I think was foul hooked, so it went where it usually does, up the bank and was forgotten about. I set up 4 topkits, one for the margin, which didn't produce a bite, so no more about that. A meat rig to fish at 6m, 0.2g MW slim to fish pellet at depth, but with a slow fall, at 14m and a paste rig, that did not get used,  A full depth waggler completed the set up.

I started on the waggler and it took 15 minutes before my first fish was netted, a lively common about 4lb, another half an hour on the wag produced nothing, so a quick look on the meat line produced a 7lb fish, but that too was a lone fish. After 2 hours I had another 4lber on the wag, making 15lb in two hours, not a good start, but I wasn't alone in struggling.

I got off my box, had a rummage in my gear and found a box of 6mm pellets, staring a new line at 14m towards 113, the 6mm produced an almost immediate result, 2 fish in two put ins, I had a run of fish taking me to about 60lb, before this line died off.  it was if the fish had moved through the peg, feeding as they went.  By now there was the odd bubble from the meat line, so I dropped in on that, feeding 4 pieces of meat through a tosspot, this produced several 8lb fish before a fouler killed the line off.  Back on the waggler and a fish straight away, then another, before a fouler (I assume) ripped the rod round, snapping the main line just above the hooklength ( I think it went over a sharp fin or something). With 15 minutes left, I went back on the 14m line and tangled the rig, so it was the meat line left, which saw another 8lb fish take the meat seconds before the whistle, being safely netted a couple of minutes after.

I had clicked 55lb for one net and 51lb for the other, once again I was out on this lake, but not by too much, as my fish went 114.10 for third and a section win. It was a close match, one of the closest I think I have fished on this lake, which is how it should be. Some of the names below are MFS forum usernames, as I don't know their real names. I have gone down further than the usual 6 just to highlight how tight the match was, no silvers payout, but even so the top weight was 3.03, they didn't feed.

1) Snoose 122.01 peg 125
2) Roy Worth 115.08 peg 116
3) Chris Fox 114.010 peg 112
4) Dave Britain 110.03 peg 119
5) B Richards 106.15  peg 131
6) Poolfodder 106.10 peg 127
7) Roland Lucas 105.04 peg111
8) Maver Callum 105.01 peg 114
9) Merce 104.09  peg115

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Float Only Round 6, Viaduct. Sunday 1st September 2013

I've had a little break from blogging, it has been impossible to get up any enthusiasm after some pretty disastrous days, that combined with working far too much.  The disasters were drawing peg 119 on Campbell at Viaduct in a short pole match, no matter what bait I put on the hook (even 11mm pellet) it was ravaged by tiny roach and rudd.  I managed just 5 carp before packing up with an hour to go.

Next match was worse, Trinity Wildmarsh, I drew peg 20, a poor draw, but I had plenty of water to attack. I had decided to fish for carp, so set up a waggler for 8mm pellet, a lead rod complete with Preston pellet feeder and a rig to fish meat in the margin. After 3 hours without a bite or liner, I had a walk, went back to the peg and set up a rig to fish caster, 0.06 and a 22 hook, under a 0.3g pencil float, this also resulted in a motionless float. A blank, on a commercial in summer, another early bath as I packed up an hour early again.

Third depressing outing was the last in Clevedon's Saturday series, to be fished on a lake I like, the top lake at Acorn. A match win could see me win the series, after a win and a 3rd, but Mark Broomsgrove and Rod Wootton were also right in contention. Acorn had been suffering with low oxygen levels and had pumps and aerators running on all lakes.  As soon as I drew, I knew that my series was over, as Mark drew one end peg and Rod the other, as for me, peg 6 by the bridge in the narrowest part of the lake. I managed about 15lb, mostly skimmers, which is a poor weight from this lake, I only had 3 carp, they just didn't want to feed.

Anyway, back to the match in the title, I drew 114 on Campbell, in a strong section (of 5) with in form Tom Thick on 112, league contender Shaun Townsend on 111, Lewis Greenwood-King on 115 and Bela Bakos on 110. I can't recall drawing this peg before and I think Mike Nicholls took pity on me after my recent torrid times and gave me some advice on fishing the peg.  As I haven't got to Viaduct nearly as much as I would have wanted to this summer, I wasn't sure exactly what would work, so set up two wagglers, one shallow (not used), one full depth. 5 topkits, two for banded pellet shallow and full depth (not used), a meat rig for 5m, a paste rig and a margin rig for banded pellet.

My back has been playing up lately, so 6 hours of slapping a shallow rig, especially competing against youngsters like Tom and Lewis, was not on the cards. I started on the full depth waggler and in the first 45 minutes had 37lb on the clicker, it slowed down, just as I was thinking it wouldn't be too difficult to do 40lb an hour........  Lewis on my right was struggling, whilst I could see Shaun catching consistently, Tom was taking odd fish.

I had an early look into the LH margin and had one fish, an early look on the meat line was a waste of 10 minutes, so back on the waggler and I managed a couple more fish, but by now was falling behind Shaun and Tom had a run of fish from his margin. I rested the waggler line again and first dob in with paste had an 8lb fish, that was it, every other put in on the paste resulted in a liner. I tried the shallow pellet rig over the paste line, to no avail.  By now Lewis was losing his head as he foul hooked a fish virtually every put in, as was Paul Elmes behind him on Cary, as the whole venue was aware via Triggers running commentary.

I spent most of the last couple of hours in the LH margin, each time I was thinking 2 more minutes and I'll try the waggler again, the float buried. Tom thick by now was getting a fish a chuck fishing shallow and long, Shaun had been steadily catching, whilst the rest of us had quiet spells. I didn't catch a fish on meat, not sure why, plenty of others did and Shaun caught 50/50 pellet long and meat short, I didn't even have any 'bonus' silvers, my carp went 145.04 for third in section, behind match winner Shaun and match second Tom, for a double default section pick up.

Full Result:
  1. Shaun Townsend 228-14-0 peg 111
  2. Tom Thick 196-05-0 peg 112
  3. Keith Masheder 180-06-0 peg 105
  4. Mike West 172-0-0 peg 125
  5. Tony Rixon 164-08-0 peg 95
  6. Scott Puddy 161-03-0 peg 116
 Top Silvers:
  1. Gary Etheridge 44-11-0 peg 86
  2. Leon Hubbard 26-03-0 peg 99
  3. Keith Masheder 22-13-0 peg 105