Travelled down with Tony Rixon today, so the usual stop at Shipham café, which was by its usual standards, very quiet, but the breakfast was very nice, so a good start to the day, sadly for me it just seemed to go downhill after that……
Into the draw tin early and wasn’t over chuffed with my peg, 103. One frustration for me on the day was the no shows, even with the last match paid for in advance. That meant an end peg with two empty pegs either side in my section for Steve Kedge, who took full advantage of it to win the section. Likewise behind me on Lodge, empty spaces and on Campbell as well. I appreciate you can’t force people to fish, but it does affect the final match when there are gaps that give an advantage.
Peg 103 has a large tree immediately to the left, with overhanging branches, this meant that I couldn’t actually get to any of the ‘free’ water to my left as 104 is left out. I had Bela for company on 102 and the pegging of these two is quite close, so little option to have different lines.
I decided against setting up a feeder, as the lake isn’t too wide at this point and with it being flat calm, with very little wind forecast, I wasn’t sure it would be right in the fairly shallow water. So a waggler and 3 topkits to complete the array of options for the day. One of the topkits for a rig to fish down the LH edge under the tree, in the hope of a bonus perch, tench or hybrid. This didn’t see a single bite or any sort of indication, so no more about it.
Two lines at about 14m and 10m both the same depth, so same rigs, a 0.3g rig double bulked and a wire stemmed float 0.2 with a standard bulk and two droppers. The waggler was a 4bb Drennan with two No8’s down the line and a No 24 swivel as the final dropper.
Fed 3 balls of GB with caster on the 14m line and 1 ball with caster and dead maggot on the 10m line, then started short on caster, using the same rig, as the depth was the same. Nothing on this, the shallow water and the flat calm meant I wasn’t too surprised. Out to the 10m line, again nothing, so onto the 14m line and finally a tiny skimmer. The roach were conspicuous by their absence; Bela was getting odd bites on the waggler and corn, which he was mostly missing, although he did have a couple of skimmers.
I gave the waggler a run out, loose feeding caster at about 18m, this gave me a decent skimmer followed by his smaller brother, but that was that for about 25 minutes and so followed the pattern of the day, take a fish, maybe two from one line and have to wait 20 minutes for a another bite. Had I been able to have another line off to my left, it might have given me enough to push for a section but the conditions and depth were against me. Section was won by Steve Kedge with 13lb odd and my miserable 10.03 was just enough for joint last (albeit with a no show, who was technically last) with Nige Bartlett. I seem to have drawn the wrong pegs on the wrong days this series and had a pretty dismal run through it, but as usual it was well run and I look forward to next year. Tony won the match from 126, see his blog for full account and results.