Sunday, 16 April 2017

15/04/17 - Viaduct - Campbell

Weight - 142lb 11oz (19lb 2oz - silvers)
Catch - 21 Carp, 11 Skimmers, 5 Tench, 1 Perch
Weather - Sunny, but cool wind
Match - Open - 8th out of 45

Since buying my new Colmic F66 pole, I haven't had the chance to really test it, so fancied a day at viaduct. With 45 anglers booked in, we had Campbell, Cary and 2 banks of Lodge. Everyone wanted Campbell since it's fishing the best at the moment and I was pleased with p128 on the left hand side of the spit. At least I was in the right area with 138lb coming off the peg yesterday.

The breeze which soon changed to a wind was mostly blowing off my right shoulder, which meant plenty of flat water in front of me, thanks to spit protecting me from the worst, but couldn't help think having some ripple would be beneficial.

A very simple bait tray today, 6mm meat, plus a few 8s with a splash of Marukyu Liquid Krill and 6mm Amino+ pellets and some 8s if required.

On the all, some pellet was deposited at 14m and I started at 6m on the meat. After 30 mins I had 2 carp, but a further 15mins later added a skimmer. A switch to the 14m line were I had been pinging 6s and I soon caught a couple more skimmers and a tench on banded 6mm pellet, before landing an 11lber and then a 5lber. I had also been pinging meat to the spit and first drop in resulted in a tench, but it was slow and no carp.

2hrs in and I was level with Chris Davis on p127, but that changed when he decided to fish the straight the lead. I didn't follow, mainly because I wanted to catch on the pole and in hindsight that was a mistake. Instead I stuck with the long pellet line and caught a few more skimmers and a couple of carp, but moving into the 3rd hour that line was fading.

The 3rd hour proved to be a bit of struggle and I relented trying the lead, initially without success, but then had 2 quick fish, but felt I had switched too late. My long pellet line was now only producing small skimmers and a try shallow didn't produce either, so decided to abandon this line hoping my short meat line and the spit swim would come to life.

The spit proved to be best, by fishing 8mm meat and feeding 6s, catching mostly carp with a couple more tench and a big perch. My short meat line was real disappointment, with only a couple of fish coming from it, but overall felt I was in for a strong finish.

With an hour to go the wheels fell off a little. I was on 19 carp and thought about grabbing my 4th net once I landed my 20th. 5 lost fish later (1 bust me on the straight lead, because I was trying to bully it too much, 1 found the sanctuary of the brambles to my right and the hook pulled out of an 8lber at the net) I eventually put the 4th net in, but was only able to add 1 fish to it.

A really frustrating last hour. In hindsight had I switched to the lead earlier and landed those lost fish, bearing in mind I had only lost 1 carp in the previous 5hrs I should have had a 180lb+. That said it was nice to put together a weight of carp and I was lucky enough to pick up the section money by double default, thanks to a couple of anglers going over their net limits. Thanks Emma.

As for the pole, I have so much more confidence in it following today. Some of the fish hooked by the spit dived back towards the nearside brambles and the pole took on an alarming bend, but there no creaking or groaning. I was very impressed. I know there are some die hard Diawa fans out there, but genuinely if you want a strong, yet stiff pole take a look at the F66.

1. 206- 3 - Chris Davis (Yate) - p127
2. 190-10 - Jack Billet (Viadcut) - p129
3. 180- 8 - Jake Froggatt - p111
4. 174- 1 - Kieran Bailey - p110
5. 156-13 - Chris Davies - p116
6. 151- 7 - Roy Worth (Viaduct) - p80
1. 40-12 - Sam Powell (Preston) - p88
2. 35-12 - Steve Jackson (Viaduct) - p69
3. 30- 4 - Nigel Easton (Viaduct) - p64
4. 25- 4 - Dave White (Viaduct) - p131
5. 22- 2 - Nigel Bartlett (Sensas) - p102
6. 19- 2 - Ken Rayner (Colmic/Marukyu) - p128

Sunday, 9 April 2017

08/04/17 - Sedges - Tile

Weight - 23lb 12oz
Catch - 8 Skimmers, 2 Carp
Weather - Bright & sunny. South easterly breeze
Match - Coops Guru Series - rd 2 - 14th out of 20, 3rd in section

After my 2nd in section in the first round, I was looking forward to getting good points and a good days fishing this round.

I was happy to draw p25 and with the breeze blowing at me and later cross me felt I could be in for a good day. Well I just had one of those days when I couldn't make anything work.

After an hour I was still bite less having tried the method to the island, the waggler and the long pole. Fortunately not much had been caught in my section (21-25) and there was still plenty of time.

Since the carp weren't playing ball I spent the next hour at 13m fishing expander, priming a shallow line at 16m, as well as feeding 11s towards the rope. 5 Skimmers got me off the mark, but I really needed some carp.

Switching to the shallow pole I managed an 8lber and thought here we go, but no more followed except for an skimmer. Another skimmer on paste and I felt it just wasn't going to happen.

What was really frustrating was being unable to catch except for 1 carp on the waggler, particularly since Mark Wynne and Lee Thomas either side of me were both catching. It felt like I was in dead zone. In hindsight I think feeding 11s to get the distance in the wind was a mistake and I should have been satisfied with feeding 8s at a shorter distance, which I started to do, but lost the rig when I caught it in the tree behind me. Rather than waste time re-setting it, I stayed on the pole hoping the fish would turn up later in the match, they didn't.

Got a battering either side, but felt the fish were in pockets and not really feeding properly yet, which was echoed by a couple of others.

A disappointing day, where I tried to make something happen on a day I think being patient would have been better. Still managed 3rd in section which I hope will be my dropper for the series. Congratulations to Dave Romain for breaking the match record, I think there were a few fish down that end of the lake.

1. 311-15 - Dave Romain - p31
2. 102- 7 - Jamie Cook (Sedges) - p40
3. 98-11 - Tom Mangnall (Mosella) - p29
4. 96-10 - Mark Bellringer (Sedges) - p33
5. 85- 2 - Mark Wynne (Colmic) - p26
6. 77- 7 - Dom Sullivan (Mosella) - p30


Monday, 27 March 2017

26/03/17 - Lands End - Speci

Weight - 15lb 4oz
Catch - 25 Skimmer, 12 Roach, 1 F1, 1 Hybrid
Weather - Bright & sunny. Easterly breeze
Match - 1st out of 33 - silvers

The final round of the Winter League and I would have preferred to be competing for the overall positions, but a couple of poor early draws saw me targeting the silvers instead. With one round left I was leading the silvers league and there were 6 anglers competing for the top 2 postions. Rich Lovering was one of those, lying in 2nd place and we ended up in the same section, p33 for Rich and P31 for me. At least I could keep an eye on Rich as he was opposite me. This meant one of us was going to miss out, leaving the door open for Mike Duckett, who if he won his section was guaranteed to finish in the top 2.

Another cold night, an easterly wind was still blowing and bright sunny conditions meant the prospects for a good days fishing weren't good.

On the all in micros and a little groundbait was deposited at 14m, left and right. Starting on the banded 4mm amino+ pellet and toss potting a few at a time, I worked my way along the bottom of the far shelf hoping for an early big F1 or skimmer. After 30mins I did have a big F1 and a 12oz skimmer, unfortunately Rich got off to flyer, catching 2 F1s and quite a few skimmers.

To be honest I wasnt that concerned, because the problem with the p33 was the lack of space, which meant your options are limited, However Rich was doing well and kept catching over the next 2 hours.

A switch to a my main rig (SM chimp 0.4g) and 4mm expander, I started catching skimmers. By rotating left and right I kept them coming, slowly catching Rich.

I had been feeding caster at 4m, but only had 4 roach off this line all match, which was disappointing as I had hoped to catch more from here. Even feeding caster down by the left hand pallet failed to produce a bite, so I had to make the long lines work.

By refeeding new swims and continue rotating I managed to keep the skimmers coming, a number of which were in the 12oz-1lb bracket. Just as I thought I might have caught Rich up he landed a big 2-3lb skimmer, fortunately 5mins later I had one of my own.

The second half of the match saw me catch more fish, but Rich kept chipping away with the odd better fish, although he was now being troubled by carp. With an hour to go my swims were fading and started loose feeding 4s to my left, which was a risk with a number of carp moving around, but it is a tactic I've used in the past and caught some quality skimmers. Indeed I managed a few more skimmers to keep the pressure on Rich.
With 10 mins left a switch to banded 4mm pellet, hoping for a better skimmer. A 10oz hybrid was the result and felt I had enough to win, but then Rich nets another F1 and I really wasn't sure. Rich was first to weigh and to be honest he had more than I expected, fortunately that hybrid proved crucial I as weighed 7oz more. Without the hybrid I would have finished the league in 3rd and out of the money. Tight margins!

A special thank you to Andy Seery 'So Simple' for sponsoring the league and well done to all the winners.

1. 162-15 - Gary O'Shea (Preston) - p18
2. 119- 2 - Tony Rixon (Mosella) - p13
3. 79-15 - Lewis Jones (Thyers) - p27
4. 77-15 - Russ Peck - p29
5. 65- 7 - Steve Hutter (Marukyu/PR floats) - p34
6. 60-12 - Andy Hembrow - p55

1. 15- 4 - Ken Rayner (Colmic/Marukyu) - p31
2. 14-13 - Rich Lovering - p33
3. 14- 9 - Mike Duckett (Lands End) - p20

25/03/17 - Sedges - Tile

Weight - 35lb 1oz (5lb 7oz - silvers)
Catch - 5 Carp, 6 Skimmers
Weather - Bright & sunny. Cool north easterly wind
Match - Coops Series - rd 1. 11th out of 20, 2nd out of 5 - section, 2nd in silvers

Today was the first round of a 5 match series run by James Cooper and sponsored by Guru. All 5 matches will be on Tile lake with 4 sections of 5. My draw put me on p31, which was my first ever corner at Sedges and its a flyer with 3 tons coming off the peg in the last 4 matches. However, my initial excitement was tempered a little, because these weights came come when there was a south westerly wind blowing into the corner. This week has seen the wind switch around to a easterly and the last 3 nights has been close to freezing.

When I got to my peg it was flat calm and the general conconsus was I should be Ok for the section, however it was expected the fish would follow the wind at the other end of the lake.

Today was also the first outing for my new Colmic F66 pole (I will do a write up once I have used it a few times), I just hoped I would catch a few fish.

On the all in a few 6mm amino+ pellet (which smell lovely) were deposited at 13m and I started on the waggler and 8mm pellet, but almost immediately knew it didn't feel right because the wind was cutting across me, pulling the waggler through too quickly. By pinging 8mm pellet towards the aerator I did manage 2 carp later on in the match, but bites came almost as soon as the pellet hit the water.

A switch to the 13m line and a banded 6mm pellet I caught a couple of decent skimmers and bumped another. A switch to fishing expanders on a lighter elastic only resulted in smaller skimmers, but unfortunately they soon disappeared.

Down the end bank at 14m I fed some meat & hemp and eventually had a 12lber on meat, but it was a loner. A switch to feeding pellet resulted in another carp on 6mm expander, but again it appeared to a loner. I had wanted to fish longer down the margin, but the wind was proving to be a real pain cutting across me, pushing the rig away from where I wanted it.

With 2 hours to go, it was obvious the lake was fishing hard, in particular my section. Dave Romain next to me thrashed the waggler most of the day and only had 4 carp to show for his efforts, but it was Martin Heard on p33 who was leading the way catching mostly on the waggler in the ripple off the island. So far I had left the area down the bank towards the overhanging tree as a safe zone if needed and it was now needed. A carp on the straight lead and meat almost immediately,it looked like a good idea, but yet again it was a loner. Even tried the method fished as tight as I dare to the tree didn't produce. There simply wasn't any volume of fish in the swim and it was turning into a classic case of right peg wrong day.

Fortunately I managed 2nd in section so not a complete bust, but the real bonus was picking up £40 for 2nd in the silvers. 

Overall the lake didn't fish as well as expected and the recent colder weather left it mark.
1. 136-14 - Jamie Cook (Sedges) - p40
2. 132- 1 - James Cooper (Guru) - p37
3. 95- 2 - Paul Homewood - p39
4. 74-14 - Dave White - p30
5. 74- 4 - Dom Sullivan (Mosella) - p38
6. 54-13 - Martin Heard (Mosella) - p33
1. 6- 1 - Vic Bush (Mosella) - p29
2. 5- 7 - Ken Rayner (Colmic/Marukyu) - p31
3. 4- 4 - Jamie Parkhouse - p34

Sunday, 19 March 2017

18/03/17 - Sedges - Tile

Weight - 110lb 5oz (10lb 12oz - silvers)
Catch - 17 Carp, 7 Skimmers, 1 Goldfish
Weather - Windy, mostly cloudy and overcast
Match - Pairs Series - 2nd round - 4th out of 34 overall , 1st in section

The last 7 months has certainly been an interesting time in my fishing. Really proud to have been asked to be part of Colmic South West, which then triggered a 10 week period were I struggled to catch and string any results together! Fortunately since the new year I have started to pick-up again and now the Colmic team is sponsored by Marukyu. I have used some of their products in the past, such as the JPZ pellts and 131 groundbaits, and I'm really looking forward to using more of their products. I would also like to thank Mark Poppleton, because without his efforts the sponsorship with Colmic and now Marukyu wouldn't have happened. My job now is to do justice to both brands.

Back to todays match and following our disaster in the first round Mark and I were effectively fishing for pride. It was my turn to draw and put Mark on p19 (brick Lake) were 100lb came from last week and I was on p27 (Tile Lake) which was in a decent area.

My section included Ben Hagg on p26, Dave White (p28) and Nick Veale in the corner (p30), so a tough section. It was also a lively section with Jamie Parkhouse on the other side of Ben in the next section. Dave in particular kindly reminded me of my 10lb from the previous round - more than once!

One of the nice things about Sedges is the venue rarely fishes the same the following week. Today there was a strong westerly wind, which was blowing off my back, which would make presentation easier, however I was concerned the fish would follow the wind to other side of the lake. I set up a 4g loaded insert waggler, a small hybrid feeder, a straight lead and just the one pole rig to fish banded pellet in 6ft of water. A shallow rig was also set up, but never got used.

On the all in a half cup of 6s covered in some Marukyu Halibat boost juice at 14m and I started on the waggler & 8mm pellet set at 2.5ft. After 15mins and no bites, prompted a switch to the feeder, which produced a 12oz goldfish.

After 40mins this was my only fish, but everyone was struggling, except for Jamie who had a good start on his pole line.

A switch the pole, fishing banded 6mm pellet was slow initially, but my pinging 6mm pellet I started to string a few fish together including a couple of decent size skimmers and 2 carp, before the line died. This now put me roughly level with Ben, but Dave had yet to catch and Nick in the corner was being hampered by the anglers walking around the canal lake.

A switch back to the waggler were I had been pinging 8mm pellet towards the end of the island (wind assisted) resulted in catching carp over the next couple of hours fishing between 2-3ft deep. Fishing in the ripple was important, because when ever there was a lull in sport corresponded with the wind dropping. What was also noticeable, I caught most of my bigger fish in open water up to 12lb 12oz, away from the island were I was pinging pellet.

With 2 hours left I was now leading the section, closely followed by Ben, who fortunately for me had a smaller stamp of fish.

A couple more tries on the pole only produced a couple of skimmers and those carp just didn't want to come in, whilst the anglers opposite in the wind were all catching on the pole. Other than catching a few fish early, no one really caught consistently on the pole.

The last 90mins was a case of picking off fish where I could. A couple more on the waggler and a decent carp on the lead/meat.

Come the weigh in I felt I was close to a 100lb and was delighted to weigh 110lb, banishing my previous rounds result. Ben finished 2nd with 78lb and Dave had a tough day with 32lb. As it transpired my 110lb was the best weight on my bank, finished 4th overall.

Mark struggled in his section which was won with only 15lb, so not surprise he wasn't too happy. Anyway well done to the winners and looking forward to James Cooper series starting next week.

1st - 160- 5 - Nigel Garrett (Mosella) - p40
2nd - 116-12 - Martin Bilder - p10
3rd - 115- 3 - Keith Bilder - p33
4th - 110- 5 - Ken Rayner (Colmic/Maryuku)
5th - 99-10 - Paul Lock - (Sedges)
6th - 94-10 - Jamie Cook - (Sedges)

1st Keith Bilder and Jack Arpino 2 points 332lb 8oz
2nd Jamie Parkhouse and Paul Homewood 2 points 287lb 12oz
3rd Ben Hagg and Dan White 3 points 437lb 12oz

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

12/03/17 - Lands End - Johns Lake

Weight - 52lb 11oz (18lb 3oz - silvers)
Catch - 18 Skimmers, 8 Roach, 6 F1s, 2 Perch, 1 Rudd, 7 Carp
Weather - Mostly cloudy.
Match - Winter League rd 5 - 2nd out of 33 - silvers, 1st out of 5 - silvers section

After yesterdays match I really needed a good day today. This being the penultimate round of the Winter League it was my turn for Johns Lake. Holding a fragile lead on the Silverfish League I needed another silver section win to consolidate my position.

Whilst I wasn't too concerned were I drew, because at this time of year the fish start to spread out, however ideally wanted 1 of the bottom 4 pegs (41,42,68 & 70) because they are usually the most consistent areas for silvers.

Fortunately I drew p41, would have preferred p42 but I was happy enough. Rich Lovering who was just behind me in the league drew p66 in the other section, but was moaning about it being no good, until I pointed out that silvers was won from his peg in the last round.

2x rigs were set up to fish the open water, one for hair rigged pellet and the other for soft pellet. I had another rig to fish caster short and a rig to fish caster down each margin.

On the all in, I went out to 13m tapped a few 4s out via the toss pot with a banded 4mm pellet and was soon attached to an 8lb carp. Next put in I had a pound skimmer, then an F1. For the next hour so I tried various spots at 13-14m toss potting 4s and continue to pick up decent skimmers and a couple of F1s, before it slowed.

A switch to feeding micros/4s and trying to catch from the one spot with the expander rig resulted in another run of fish. Again I had to move around the peg, but I was catching.

The surprise was my short caster line, which only produced a couple of small roach, so gave up on it half way through.

I had also started feeding caster down each margin. The right hand produced a decent perch, plus a few roach and carp. The left hand side which was a little shallower only produced carp, but I wasn't too concerned because I hadn't seen anyone put together a net of silvers so the section points were secured.

Rich Lovering was moaning away, claiming he could only catch small skimmers and this would be his dropped result, however he managed 9lb of them which was just enough to win the silvers sections. He looked a lot happier.

Overall a much better day than yesterday, where I managed to stay top of the silvers league, but its incredibly tight with 6 of us potentially able to claim the top 2 pay out positions.

1. 179- 4 - Craig Edmunds (Mosella) - p33
2. 141-10 - Shawn Kitteridge (Thyers) 
- p18
3. 109- 1 - Tony Rixon (Mosella)
- p40
4. 103- 8 - Paul Elmes (Mosella) - p13
5. 88- 8 - Russ Peck  (Lands End) - p51
6. 80-14 - Pete Nurse - p18
1. 19-12 - Mike Duckett (Lands End)
- p34
2. 18- 3 - Ken Rayner (Colmic) -
3. 18- 0 - Rob Watts 
- p11
4. 17- 6 - Andy Hembrow - p5
5. 14-14 - Emma Drysdale (Legacy Tackle)
- p29
6. 13- 8 - Tony Rixon (Mosella) 
- p40

08/03/17 - Sedges - Tile

Weight - 40lb 10oz (15lb 3oz - silvers)
Catch - 6 Carp, 18 Skimmers, 1 Tench
Weather - Mild & showers
Match - Costcutter - 2nd out of 8

With the upcoming pairs series this Saturday and the individual league starting in 3 weeks time, I really wanted to have a practice to get back in tune with the place, because its been a nearly a year.

When ever you turn up at Sedges you cant help but be impressed at how well kept the venue is. Today there were only 8 of us, including Mark Poppleton, my partner for the pairs series. the concensus was the weather report of heavy rain had put off a couple from turning. So we could at least stay clean (relatively speaking) Jamie pegged us along the road bank of Tile and I ended up with p23. Mark drew next to me on p22.

I hadn't done much prep, particularly for my rods, so kept it simple with a straight lead rod and a small hybrid feeder. I did have a waggler rod already set up, but after a couple of casts it wasn't right and never got around top sorting it put properly. 2 pole rigs were also set up, both 0.14 bottoms, 1 to target the deep water at 13m and 6m, plus another to fish up the near shelf. I had considered setting up a proper skimmer rig, but to be honest with only 2 pay outs today carp needed to be my main target.

On the all in micros and few 4s were introduced at 13 and 6mm meat and hemp at 6m. Started on the straight lead and bread towards the island.

After 15mins I landed my first carp and was soon attached to another before the hooklength snapped. Schoolboy error, because when I was landing the first carp the line had snagged on its dorsal fin and I really should have checked it, but didn't. On the hour mark my 2nd carp was safely netted. With no further bites, a switch to 13m and 4mm expander resulted in a 3lb+ tench which was a nice start and I was soon catching skimmers, toss potting micros/4s every fish, but think I over did it as bites slowed.

Mark had also switched to his pole line, but catching more quickly by pinging pellet. More pinging and less toss potting brought the fish back and had a nice little run of skimmers up 3lb, before they backed off again.

A 3rd carp mid match on the lead/bread kept my total ticking over, but it was obvious the majority of fish were the other side of the rope. As for my meat line that was a complete bust, despite several attempts during the match I never had a bite. Fortunately 3 carp on the lead & bread by the island in the last hour helped, bring my total to 6.

I had seen a few fish being caught, but it didn't appear anyone was running away with it and when the all out was called was hopeful of framing. By the time the scales arrived 28lb was the best weight, which I knew I would beat since I estimate I had about 35lb. As it was I had more silvers than expected my weighing 15lb of silvers. Mark had 18lb of silvers, which was the best silvers on the day, but only 4 carp to finish with 32lb. The angler on the end peg had a good last hour fishing against the end bank, weighing 10lb of silvers, but his 5 carp weighed 33lb to beat me of by 4lb.

Overall an enjoyable return to the venue and between us a couple of pointers for Saturdays pair's match.

1. 44- 5 - Rob Dodds (Sedges) - p21
2. 40-10 - Ken Rayner (Colmic) - p23
3. 32- 6 - Mark Poppleton (Colmic) - p22
4. 28-11 - Nick Selway (Sedges) - p29