I fancied a draw on 5 or 7 and wasn't too enamoured to see 11 stuck to my hand, although Andy Lloyd did say that 37lb of silvers came from it Thursday. Ken Rayner had come along to this one and with him drawing 7, I fully expected him to be the one to beat, so I had to try and work out how to get the best from the peg.
The higher numbers on this lake are wider than the lower numbers, being a full 16m, I had to use 16m and a dolly butt to get tight over. There was an old boy pleasuring fishing behind me on the other lake and he was spread out along his peg, with an extra chair and some other stuff - he wasn't doing anything wrong, in fact he was a friendly bloke, but I couldn't get anywhere to ship back with out breaking down.
I set up a rig to fish across in the shallowest water I could find - about 2', another for banded pellet down the track, a 0.2g and a 0.4g wire stemmed float to fish maggot/worm/corn. A rig to fish down the margin and a last minute rig set up a mugging rig as some cruisers appeared. Simple bait tray, maggots, pellets, corn and worms in the bag, as I tend not to start with these.
On the whistle there were still some visible cruisers, so out with the mugging rig, 3 maggots on the hook and had one straight away, two more followed, before they did a vanishing act. Across with the pellet rig to the far bank, but the old boy behind was up and down to see his mate on the next peg, so I was reluctant to ship back too far and I let it distract me and get in my head - rig tangled and frustrated, not his fault, mine, I shouldn't have let it get to me. I pretty much binned the long line and came short, this produced some small carp and I fed a line down the track.
I have never had fizzing on here before, but today every line fizzed. I could see Ken catching well on paste, I was falling behind, the guy to my right was also catching on paste. I was swapping between lines and baits to keep fish coming, very noticeable by their absence were the skimmers, I finally had one over some GB and worm, but it was small. I switched to corn and had another, this one was bigger, but no more from that line. I switched to 4mm banded pellet and had a couple more skimmers on a line off to the left at 7 sections, but this line was fizzing as well and bites were few and far between.
Just over halfway through I fed LH and RH margins, as the end peg had been catching well with good fish from his margin. The RH margin was not much cop, a couple of perch and a roach, the LH margin did colour up and a look in there saw a few of the small carp landed, no matter what bait I put on, the small carp nabbed it. I refed and switched back round the lines, by now the short line, as well as fizzing, had black detritus coming up of the bottom, where the fish were ripping it up. Catching one was another matter, had to wait for a bite and it was then a small carp - although I did have one tench about 1lb.
The fish were coming to the margin now and on more than one occasion I saw a couple of big tails or backs right over the bait, the float buried and a little black 4oz carp had taken the bait - either maggots or worm. I stuck with it and did manage to find a few better fish amongst the smaller ones.
I had 15lb odd of silvers, which I was sure would be beaten, 35lb of the small carp (42 on he clicker, a few weeks back 60 went 39lb so they are growing fast) and 34lb of bigger carp for 84lb, only enough for third on the lake, I think when the fish were ripping up the bottom, I should have set up paste rig, as I think they were eating the GB and not much else. Beaten by Ken with his paste approach and the end peg who had a creditable ton + with the bigger stamp of fish from his margin. At least I managed a silvers pick up, so that was some consolation, I think the bright sun and flat calm surface didn't help, as the lake is full of skimmers.
The sheet from the main lake match