Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Two Day Charity Match on Chard Reservoir

Chard held the two day match on the resi on Sunday and Monday and this year over £200 was raised for cancer charity which is fantastic. Also fantastic was the fishing and on the Sunday Paul Blake demolished the match record with over 230lb of bream, an amazing weight. Paul had nearly 50lb on the second day to finish second over the two days. Ian Parsons scored a perfect two pointer to win over the two days. Full results below (click on picture to view it better).

Some fantastic weights

I'm at Dillington on Sunday and itching to get back on the bank (it'll probably be pants now!)

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Evesham 28th and 29th August 2010

Just got back from my annual pilgrimage to Evesham festival with Andy, there were lots of small fish being caught thanks to bloodworm and joker being allowed over the three days. The first day was won with over 22lb of bream and the top five all had double figures.

Simon Willsmore 'balling it in'

Milo Columbo

Sam Wildsmith landing a roach


The tented village

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Summerhayes - Evening Match - 26th August 2010

With the nights drawing in, this was to be the last evening fixture on Sellicks of the year and although the weather wasn't great it was better than yesterday. There was a rather depleted turnout due to several anglers getting a soaking at Durleigh yesterday, the stay aways included Alvin, Scotty and Bruce Hunt. I drew peg 9 and Roger was on peg 6 where I did well a couple of weeks ago.

I was determined to just fish down the track all night again and only set up a single rig, a Carpa 2 with 0.12mm bottom and size 16 808 with a toss pot fitted to my top three. The whistle went and I cupped in half a pot of micros plus a few expanders at about 9 metres straight out in front and also towards 10 'o' clock to my left, to give me another swim. I slipped a 4mm Bait-Tech expander on the hook and started out in front, after 10 minutes I had my first bite and netted a 2lb carp - good start.

That early fish proved to be a false dawn and apart from a couple of missed bites there was no more action for ages, the chap on my left had three fish quite quickly and I thought he might do well as the wind was blowing into his corner. I had a second carp just before the end of the first hour and I hoped things would improve in the remaining two hours. I then had two carp in two put ins to edge ahead of the guy on my left, Roger had two carp so it was looking good at this early stage.

There wasn't much fizzing going on over the micros and I reckoned 9 or 10 carp would be enough tonight. I had a small skimmer but the next half an hour didn't see me add anything else to my weight. I then had carp number five and skimmer number two just before the penultimate hour began. Normally the last hour is pretty productive but the air temp was quite cold and the persistent misty rain wasn't helping either. Roger asked what I had and said he'd had two carp, the chap on my left hadn't added to his early fish and was stuck on three so a good last hour could see me do well.

Bites were now few and far between, I had a sixth carp with fifty minutes to go and was still ahead of the anglers on either side. My lightly fed line to the left didn't produce a single bite despite trying it several times. Scotty turned up (and was dried out after yesterdays soaking!) and while he was stood behind Roger he had a really good spell and landed three carp in the last half an hour to put him on six carp. I felt I needed another fish but didn't get one and missed three tentative bites in that last period.

Scott came up for a natter and said two anglers on the other side of the pond had packed up!, it had been that hard. The scales didn't take long to reach us and the chap on my left weighed 9lb odd to put him in the lead! I knew I had more than that but wasn't sure I'd beaten Roger. My two skimmers weighed 9oz and my carp went 13lb 12oz to give me a 14lb 5oz total, would it be enough for a first Summerhayes victory?
No was the answer as Roger's carp went 15lb 4oz but it was enough for second as the bloke next to Rog weighed 11lb for third. Adrian Bishop won the silvers with 1lb 8oz.

Roger won with 15lb 4oz

Still I picked up £25 and fished a tidy match, only missing a few bites and landing everything I'd hooked, so I couldn't say 'If only?'.

1 - Roger Russell (Ilminster) - 15lb 4oz
2 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 14lb 5oz
3 - Jim Jenner (Summerhayes) - 11lb

Silvers - Adrian Bishop (Summerhayes) - 1lb 8oz

No match this weekend as me and Andy are off on our annual pilgrimage to Evesham, I'll stick some photos on if we don't get too drunk!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Dillington Pond - Summer League - 22nd August 2010

There was a good turnout of 13 for this one and I pulled out peg 17 and was well happy with that as it's a decent peg. When we got out the pond we had the added bonus! of the Festival of Yesterdays Farming taking place on the estate all around us, so much for a quiet days fishing! At least on the side I was on, we didn't have it all going on directly behind us. Roger Russell was on peg 16 and with the level back up, it looked nice, Steve Parker was on my left hand side.

There were loads of fish topping and it looked like being a good match, I mixed up some Dynamite Baits Roach groundbait before setting my rigs up. I set up the usual Drake waggler 4 metre whip rig plus a Drennan Roach for the chopped worm at 10 metres. I was going to set up a little Drennan Squatt rig for fishing past the whip line but I ran out of time. On the whistle I cupped in some chopped worm and casters at 10 metres before starting on the whip. Bites came straight away but a tiny roach followed by an even smaller perch wasn't what I had in mind. I switched to caster and started catching some quality rudd and roach. I was feeding hemp and caster with the odd little nugget of groundbait.

After an hour I had 28 fish for about 3lb or so and from what I could see most people were catching and at this early stage felt a good weight would be needed to do well. I was catching on the caster in spells and a switch to maggot saw my catch rate improve slightly but the average size of fish decrease but I was still getting the odd better fish. By the end of the second hour I had around 55 fish but the whip line was slowing. I cupped in some more choppie to keep the eels happy and would be trying it shortly. I struggled on for a bit but bites were now very few and far between.

The festival was in full swing and the chap on the microphone was giving out lots of interesting facts about vintage tractors and fire engines. The comments around the pond suggested that bites had dried up for most people so it was time for my eel line. I nipped a worm in half and shipped out, loosefeeding casters over the top and not neglecting my whip line. I waited ages for a bite and when the float slid away I was fully expecting lots of elastic to come out but was disappointed when a small roach was the result. No more bites left me scratching my head, there were still loads of fish topping so I went to holdall and set up a little shallow rig. This didn't work either and I only had one small roach.

By now several people were walking and it looked like bites had dried up for everyone, back over the choppie and a tiny perch was added to my net and time was running out. I tried the whip line again and had a run of five or six roach before that died. I stuck with it until the end and added one decent roach before the end to finish with 75 fish. I really wasn't sure what weight I had (for a change!) and was guessing at around 4lb, if the fish had all been the same size as the fish I was catching in the first hour I would have said I had nearer to 8lb.

As I was packing up I asked Roger what he had and he reckoned on about 3lb, Leighton wandered down and said that Malcolm Levy had won it off peg 1 as he'd caught four chub late on and also that Martin Heard had done ok on the small fish. Roger had the scales and started at Moses on peg 11, he weighed 3lb 10oz and I thought he'd done better than that, Robin had 2lb 2oz before Graham Bulgin had 5lb 7oz and I thought he'd struggled! Roger had 4lb 3oz and then it was my turn, it was close but Roger called my weight out at 5lb 9oz and I was leading the section with two to weigh. Steve Parker had 4lb 2oz and Leighton had 2lb 3oz, so I'd won the section!

As expected Malcolm won with 10lb 10oz from the other section but Martin ran him close with 9lb 11oz. Alvin was the next best weight in that section with 5lb 8oz so I'd actually sneaked into third place (and learnt loads about tractors in the process!). Also it was nice to ounce Alvin out of it for a change! although I wish I'd had a £1 bet with him now! Still he had the consolation of winning his section and Graham won ours. I picked up £25 to take my winnings for this year to over £900, although it will probably all go pearshaped now.

The 'Old Fossil' thought he was on the Trent catching chub!

Although the leading weights were decent it's still not great for six hours fishing and I still feel it could do with an injection of skimmers (and some more tench would be nice!).

1 - Malcolm Levy (Tiverton) - 10lb 10oz
2 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 9lb 11oz
3 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 5lb 9oz

A - Alvin Jones (Enterprise Angling) - 5lb 8oz
B - Graham Bulgin (Ilminster) - 5lb 7oz

Hopefully I'll get to fish the last evening match at Summerhayes on Thursday as I couldn't make last weeks.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Summerhayes - Open - 15th August 2010

With nothing else on, I booked into the open at Summerhayes, I had to pick Scotty up in the morning as he had a heavy night! The match today was on Longs pond and there are more silvers than Sellicks so I was looking forward to a good day. There were around 20 anglers booked in and I managed to pull out peg 39!, the same peg I had the only other time I've fished Longs. I had around 26lb then and was hoping to do better today, the trouble is, it either does very well or crap.

I had quite a bit of room with nobody on my right and the peg is in a bit of a corner with a walkway/bridge to the left. The level was down quite a bit and I was hoping this would help my plan to fish down the track. I set up a Carpa 2 for fishing down the track at 10 metres, a Drennan Carp for fishing towards the walkway and a Trabucco dibber for fishing towards the island (although I was hoping I wouldn't need this rig!). For bait I just had a few pints of soaked micros, corn and 4 and 6mm Bait Tech expanders.

The whistle went and I cupped in half a pot plus some corn on all three lines before starting down the track with a 4mm expander on the hook. I didn't have to wait long for a bite and my first fish was a lovely little crucian. I then started catching decent skimmers, small carp, a nice tench plus a couple of rudd and roach. In the first hour I had 16 fish for the best part of 10lb and it was all going to plan, I'd only lost one skimmer and missed a couple of bites. I was ahead of the anglers around me, including Alvin who was two pegs along on my left (and had placed the usual £1 side bet).

The start of hour two was ok, with a couple more skimmers and a small carp but the swim was slowing. I cupped in some more feed by the walkway in readiness for trying it shortly. By the end of the second hour I'd only added seven more fish and some of them had been small roach, it was now really hot and the anglers around me were struggling like I was, it was time to try swim number two (by the walkway). I fully expected to catch straight away but couldn't buy a bite here either! I briefly tried by the island but this was a waste of time too.

For the next three hours all I could get was the odd small roach, Alvin was getting some carp and I was sure he'd overtaken me (bye bye £1). Then out the blue I had a small carp from by the walkway, had they arrived? - nope! Back out at 10 metres I had another small carp and a small skimmer but it was hard going. I did manage two more carp (one foulhooked) from by the walkway to end with 32 fish. I knew it wouldn't be anywhere near enough today, I wasn't even sure I had 10lb!. Pete walked by with the scales and said they'd been bagging down the other end - great!.

I was last to weigh so started loading my gear in my car, quite a few people up our end didn't bother weighing. Alvin had 19lb+ and I knew he'd won a £1 back with that. I caught up with the scales with five or six people left to weigh, 44lb was top and there was a 31lb and a couple of high 20's. The only reason I was going to weigh was that Pete was paying two in the silvers pool today. There was a 10lb silvers weight and then Scotty had 15lb+ and I knew that was that. My silvers went a level 8lb and my carp weighed 6lb 1oz to give me a total of 14lb 1oz and I was well down with that.

Quite a disappointing day, the only good point was Scotty won the silvers yet again. Hopefully I'll be able to fish the Thursday evening match so lets see if my luck changes then.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Summerhayes - Evening Match - 12th August 2010

I was looking forward to another evening 'sprint' at Summerhayes and was determined to just fish down the track tonight as I was sure 30lb or so could be achieved and this is normally enough to get in the frame. Also you tend to catch more silvers down the track and normally between 5-8lb is enough to win the silvers pool. There were 13 fishing tonight, was it going to be an unlucky number for me?

We were going to start quarter of an hour early tonight as the evenings have really started to draw in. I was first to draw and pulled out peg 6, a decent peg and Martin was third off it last week with 30lb. I spoke to him about my plans to fish down the track all night and he said he did that last week but didn't have his first fish until after an hour! This deflated me a bit but the peg also has a big bed of lilies on the inside to the right so I would feed this as well and swap between the two lines.

Scotty had drawn peg 11 (a decent peg) and Alvin had 15 (a swim he's won off several times) and was keen to have a £1 sidebet. I agreed but wasn't confident as he's been on fire on Sellicks on Thursday nights. I was determined to avoid the far bank and when I started setting up and shipped the pole out to find the far bank was over 14.5 metres across, my mind was made up. It was pretty windy and it made holding the pole at even 10 metres fairly difficult so I wasn't going to struggle to hold 16 metres.

There were plenty of fish moving all over and it looked like being a good match. I just set up one rig, a Carpa 2 with 0.12mm bottom and size 16 Tubertini 808. There were only a couple of inches difference in the depth between the lilies and down the track so it would suffice for both lines, I just had to make sure I didn't trash it as I didn't have a duplicate (piss poor preparation again). Pete blew for the start and I cupped in half a pot of micros plus a few grains of corn on both lines before starting out with a 4mm expander on the hook (cheers again Scotty).

I had to wait 20 mins for my first bite but was soon netting a small carp and after an hour I had 3 carp and a decent roach plus a small rudd from by the lilies. I was a little shy of my five carp an hour target but this was better than the two carp I had across last week in the first hour. I had another go by the lilies and the float had barely settled before I was netting a decent carp. The anglers either side and the young lad on peg 2 were getting odd fish as well and nobody seemed to be running away with it.

I was swapping between the two lines and catching pretty well, I had four skimmers (including a flier!) and another decent roach plus several more carp. I had one decent mirror that was foulhooked and just as I was about to net it, the hook pulled out! I scooped for it and as I lifted the net it was in there! (was luck on my side tonight?). After two hours I had nine carp, four skimmers, two roach and a rudd and there was still the best hour to go and I'd only lost one foulhooked fish. The guys on either side were still getting fish but I felt I was just ahead of them, I could see Bruce and Scotty's elastic coming out at regular intervals too.

Then in hour three it all went horribly wrong, I lost a foulhooked fish at 10 metres down the track so switched to the lilies and then lost one in the lilies (the only fish to reach them all night!) before losing yet another foulhooker at 10 metres! I then had my tenth carp with over half an hour still to go. During this awful spell I was sure the angler on my left had caught me up and then I hooked a big fish which I played for ages and just as I thought I was winning the battle, the hook pulled out - bugger! It looked like all my luck had deserted me.

With the light starting to fade I missed three good bites in as many put ins and then with seconds remaining I've hooked another by the lilies, got it into open water and the bloody hook pulled out!!!!! That was the last of the action and Pete blew his whistle just as I was baiting up again. I really thought that last hour had cost me until I heard some of the comments from across the pond, people were saying they'd had three or four carp and one or two skimmers. Then Scotty walked past and he'd had ten carp but was claiming they were small and I said mine weren't huge either.

As I was packing my kit in the car, Alvin arrived and said he'd only had 5 carp so maybe it hadn't fished as well as I thought. The scales started with young Matt Sayer on peg 2 and although he didn't have loads of fish the 8 or 9 he had were good ones and he weighed 38lb 2oz and I knew I had nowhere near that. The next peg only had 5lb 8oz and then it was my turn. My silvers went a level 3lb and my carp weighed 21lb 4oz to give me a 24lb 4oz total but I wasn't sure it would be enough to frame. The guy on my left had 16lb odd and I thought he'd had more than that, Bruce only had a few carp but I was more worried about his silvers net, they went 2lb 8oz and I was still in with a chance of that pool.

When Scotty pulled out his net I thought he'd done me, his ten 'small' carp went 22lb 13oz but he only had two silvers to give him a 23lb total. Alvin had struggled and handed over a £1 and Martin Heard didn't weigh. Adrian Bishop had 4lb 9oz of silvers to spoil things but then Scotty said they were paying two in the silvers tonight! Roger was last to weigh and I thought he'd come close with silvers but he had 2lb 4oz and 15lb of carp for a 17lb 8oz total. So I came second overall and second in the silvers pool to pick up £48 (plus Alvin's £1) - nice, but I reckon this little run will have to end soon. I'd fished a pretty good match apart from the last hour when it all went pear shaped but luckily those lost fish hadn't cost me too much.

Scotty was third with 23lb

1 - Matt Sayer (Summerhayes) - 38lb 2oz
2 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 24lb 4oz
3 - Scott Russell (Yeovil and District Angling Centre) - 23lb
4 - Roger Russell (Ilminster) - 17lb 8oz

1 - Adrian Bishop (Summerhayes) - 4lb 9oz
2 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 3lb

With nothing else on Sunday I'm back here but on Longs pond where there are more silvers than Sellicks so hopefully it should be a nice day.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Dillington Pond - Summer League - 8th August 2010

I was at a bit of a loss how to approach this match as I can't seem to compete on the whip and targeting big fish is too much of a gamble. The trouble with the whip is that during the daytime matches the whip line fades as the match goes on, some people have been fishing the pole slightly further out to carry on catching but this hasn't really worked for me. As I had quite a bit of worm left from Hainsey's last weekend I decided to use this up, although chopped worm has been a bit of a non starter lately!

There were ten of us fishing and I pulled out peg 3, the level was lower than last match and as I was taking my kit to my peg, I noticed an open wasps nest behind my peg - great!, I hate wasps with a passion. I had plenty of room and the next angler along was Alvin on peg 5, I've had a real problem beating him lately and he was keen to place a £1 side bet, which I accepted as I had some loose change in my pocket. I mixed up some groundbait and set up two rigs, the usual 4 metre whip rig and a 0.5gram Drennan Roach for fishing the choppie at 10 metres.

With Robin not fishing today, it was down to me to yell the all in, which I did at 10:00. I cupped in a generous helping of chopped worm and caster on my long line before starting on the whip. I started catching roach and perch quite well without really bagging but was missing/bumping far too many. Everybody seemed to be catching well although at this early stage I think Alvin was a little ahead of me. At the end of the first hour I had 31 fish including a couple of better fish that I netted to be on the safe side. I kept trying caster and had a few fish but was missing some cracking bites. I also potted out some more choppie after an hour and a half.

I tried hooking the caster like a maggot and this helped to a degree, then out of the blue I hooked a lump which tore off and snapped 0.12mm like cotton! I guess it was either a chub or big perch. A few more roach and some nice rudd followed before I hooked another big fish, this time I stopped the initial run but then it went again and snapped me. Big fish 2 - Jamie 0. I ended the second hour with just under 60 fish, including two eels and I was still getting plenty of bites.

Leighton across on peg 21 shouted across to see how I was getting on, I told him and he said he'd had a perch of a pound and a half, so I reckoned he was up with the leaders. I tried hemp on the hook and had a couple of roach but they were no bigger than the caster or maggot fish. During hour three the whip line definitely started to slow down and from comments around the pond, it seemed to be the same for everyone. Alvin still seemed to be catching ok though and from what I could see Heardy was still swinging in fish regularly.

I struggled on, catching fish (and swiping at wasps!) in bursts but with two hours to go it almost completely died and I decided to try my worm line. I put on a worm head and shipped out, feeding casters over the top, I also kept feeding my whip line with the odd nugget of groundbait. I didn't have to wait long for my first bite, which turned out to be a tiny perch!, not the result I'd hoped for. I tried again and the next bite saw some elastic come out and I was soon netting a 6oz eel. Moses on the bottom bank had also landed a couple of eels and with Graham Bulgin catching fish quite well, it was still too close to even hazard a guess as to who might be winning.

I had two more eels of a similar size and another small perch but was having to wait longer and longer for indications. I had eel number six (including the two from the whip line) and it was stuffed full of worm, so I decided to put some more in and go back on the whip for half an hour to let it settle. I'd been feeding the whip line religiously but I only had one more roach off it so I was back out at 10 metres with forty minutes to go. I felt if I could get a couple more eels I might be there or thereabouts. Alvin seemed to be getting odd fish and I was sure he'd beaten me. I did manage one more eel and missed a couple more bites to end with 93 fish.

I really hadn't got a clue who'd done what, I thought I had 6-7lb but felt both Alvin and Martin had more, also Malcolm and Roger had been catching well apparently and then Moses had several eels as well. I was first to weigh and my fish went 8lb 10oz, then Graham weighed Alvin in and shouted over that there was two ounces in it! Thankfully his weight was called out at 8lb 8oz - phew! The other section was being weighed and Martin asked what I'd had, I told him and he said I'd win with that but I wasn't so sure. Graham Bulgin had 5lb 14oz in my section and I shouted across to ask Martin's weight and he said 8lb 2oz - so far, so good. Leighton had 7lb 12oz from peg 21 in the other section and all the weights were incredibly close and I was sure someone would pip me.

Malcolm then had 8lb 1oz and Roger 8lb 4oz so I'd topped the section and taken a £1 off Alvin (at last!). With Steve Parker only weighing 1lb 13oz in the other section, that just left Richard and Moses who weighed 6lb 6oz and 7lb 12oz respectively and I'd won! It had been incredibly tight with 1lb 10oz separating the top seven weights and a decent fish would have swung it for several anglers. Still I fished a tidy match and was glad those two lost lumps hadn't cost me, Leighton said he'd been done by three as well. I picked up £50 for winning my third match of the year (my second at Dillington) and the only downside of today was Man U beating Chelsea 3-1 in the community shield.

1 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 8lb 10oz
2 - Alvin Jones (Enterprise Angling) - 8lb 8oz
3 - Roger Russell (Ilminster) - 8lb 4oz

A - Malcolm Levy (Tiverton) - 8lb 1oz
B - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 8lb 2oz

After seven matches and dropping the worst result, Martin Heard leads with 10 points followed by Alvin Jones on 11 and Moses Holbrook on 15 (I'm way down on 22 after missing two matches).

Hopefully I'll be able to fish at Summerhayes on Thursday night, I bet Alvin gets his pound back then!

Friday, August 06, 2010

Summerhayes - Evening Match - 5th August 2010

With the Dillington evening league over I decided to fish a few of the Summerhayes evening matches so I can get my twice weekly angling fix! With the forecast being for a windy night, Scotty was in two minds whether to fish or not but when I arrived he was there! Of course I was pleased to see him but it also meant I'd have some expanders for the hook (cheers buddy!). While we were waiting for the draw, he showed me his Preston Super Feeder rod, as I need a new tip rod to replace my crappy Drennan. While I was having a play, Scotty managed to break the other two tips in their (not so) protective tube - whoops! Still it's not as if he doesn't own a tackle shop!

All the usual suspects were there including Heardy, Alvin and Bruce Hunt, also it looked like it wasn't going to be as windy as forecast, which was a bonus. I pulled out peg 19, which I don't think has a lot of form, Scotty pulled out 4, which has won several recent matches. I had empty pegs either side with Adrian Bishop the next angler to my left on 23 and a Summerhayes regular two pegs to my right. I set up a little Trabucco dibber for fishing across to the island at 14.5 metres and a Carpa 2 for fishing down the track at about 9 metres. For bait I had Ringers micro pellets, corn and those expanders (4 and 6mm). Alvin wandered around and was confident of another result from his peg, he suggested it might be worth me having a go for the silvers (which reinforced my belief it wasn't a great carp peg).

There were quite a few carp moving and I was looking forward to getting started, the wind was coming over my back but was quite blustery making presentation difficult. Pete signalled the all in and I cupped in half a pot of micros and corn on the long line and micros with a few expanders at 9 metres. I started long with a grain of corn on the hook and didn't have to wait long before my first carp, a fish of about 2lb. I was feeding micros and a few grains of corn via a toss pot every put in and getting indications but it looked like that early fish was a false dawn. Adrian and the chap on my right only had a fish apiece as well.

I had a decent roach but I had a nagging doubt in the back of my mind that I should fish down the track as I'd caught really well there last match. What stopped me was that there was none of the usual fizzing you get so I carried on battling the wind, which kept buffeting the pole tip. I was looking for around 15 carp (5 an hour) which is normally there or thereabouts and with nearly an hour gone, I was way off the mark. I had a second carp which meant I was keeping up with the anglers either side but it was hard work and I decided to have a go down the track for the silvers as I was sure the anglers on the other side would have been catching more than we were. I'd seen Bruce Hunt net several fish on peg 14 (a good peg) and thought he'd be up there with the front runners.

I slipped on a 4mm expander and filled my little pole mounted pot with micros and a few expanders and shipped out to 9 metres. There was still no fizzing and apart from a few digs, this line wasn't going mad either. I eventually had a bite and netted a lovely crucian which must have been close to 3lb, that was my mind made up, I was going for silvers. Normally you don't need a big weight as most people concentrate on the carp and sometimes 3 or 4lb is enough. I had a couple of decent skimmers and a nice roach and I was on my way.

The bloke on my right was starting to catch more carp but Adrian on 23 didn't seem to be doing much. Then I had a carp, followed by another and then another, in fact I only managed one more skimmer. With an hour to go I had five carp plus that crucian and silvers, I lost a big fish (foulhooked?) that I played for ages and thought I was going to land and also another foulhooker. In the last hour I had another five but missed three good bites in the last 15 mins when the light faded and it was a real job to see the float. I ended with 10 carp, that crucian, 3 skimmers and 2 roach, I knew I had over 20lb but was only really concerned with the silvers pool, I reckoned I had about 4lb of them and I didn't think it would be enough.

The scales started round the other side, Scotty had five carp early and then suffered a nightmare losing around 30 foulhooked fish! but still weighed 25lb+, Heardy had fished for silvers but like me, could only catch carp, he had 3lb something of silvers plus carp to give him just over 30lb. Alvin had 32lb of carp and 2lb of silvers, but had he done enough to win yet another match? No, was the answer as Bruce had 37lb which included a 7lb foulhooker which clinched the deal. The young lad next peg on had just under 20lb and then the bloke next peg to me had 4lb 9oz of silvers and 20lb of carp and I didn't think my silvers would beat that.

I pulled my silvers net out and Pete called out 5lb 3oz - phew, although there was still Adrian to weigh. My carp added 20lb 9oz to give me a 25lb 12oz total and I was left wishing I'd fished down the track all night as I reckon I could have been a lot closer to the leading weights. Adrian had 3lb something of silvers and was wishing he'd fished for them all night as he'd only had a few carp.

I picked up £18 to keep my winnings ticking over and I'm already past last years total (mind you I've probably jinxed it now and won't pick up a bean between now and Xmas!). I'm determined to fish down the track for the full three hours next match, to see what I can do. I'm at Dillington on Sunday and I'm just not enjoying it out there at the moment.

Bruce was thankful for a foulhooked 7lb fish

1 - Bruce Hunt (ALS) - 37lb
2 - Alvin Jones (Enterprise Angling) - 34lb+
3 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 30lb+

Silvers - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 5lb 3oz

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Chris's Pond - 1st August 2010

With no club or league matches, Les arranged a match at Chris Haine's pond at Clivey and I was hoping for a repeat performance of the win I had on my birthday (yeah right!). I had to pick Janders up and was most disappointed when I turned up and he didn't have a new hat for me to photograph (c'mon John, buy more hats!). We met the others at Cartgate services and off we went. I subjected Janders to the Dropkick Murphy's all the way up (sorry mate).

Les soon deprived us of all our money!

Oz and Bushy wait for the draw

After the hours drive we arrived and got some bait sorted, I just had half a kilo of worms and a pint of casters as I was going all out on the choppie. I really fancied drawing pegs 12 or 10 but pulled out 14, which was where Les won the last match so I wasn't too upset. Things got better when I had empty pegs on either side as there were only ten of us fishing. I had an island with an inviting bit of bare bank but I was determined to ignore it and just feed and fish two lines. My first line was at about 9.5 metres towards the open water in the gap between my island and the one Terry Green had to fish to on peg 12. The second line was by a lily bed on the inside to the left at the same distance.

Me on peg 14

I set up a Drennan 0.6 gram carp rig with 0.12mm bottom and size 18 808 and with plenty of time before the off, I made up another similar rig but with a 4 x 14 Carpa 2 float (see photo). Both rigs had little toss pots fitted to the top threes. I chopped up some worm and caster and had time for a quick chat with Steve Chant and Janders before the start. In these six hour matches, around 30lb is normally enough to frame (or even win), so I set my sights on trying to catch 5lb an hour.

My rigs for the day

Les blew the whistle and we were off in a frenzy of shipping cup loads of bait out, I just put half a cup of choppie and some casters on each line before starting with a worm head on the hook on the open water line. I started getting bites quicker than the last time I fished but they were from small skimmers and roach, I swapped to the inside and this brought a tiny perch! I did have two good skimmers and a couple of better roach from the open water line to end the first hour with 13 fish for around 3-4lb (so not too far off my target). I could see Les in the corner netting odd fish and the banter around the pond suggested most people were getting a few fish.

The view of the pond from the other side to me

The second hour saw me getting a few fish from by the lilies and I had a small carp plus a better one of 3lb or so. I had 9 fish in the second hour for probably 5lb so I was still on target. Terry Green on 12 was catching quite well but it seemed like most people were now struggling for odd bites. My open water line was fizzing well and I felt like there were a lot of fish there, I then lost two decent skimmers in as many put ins and things went quiet there for a bit (had those lost fish spooked the shoal?). Back by the lilies and I hooked a much better carp and gratefully netted a five pounder to keep me on target and when I hooked and landed another of a similar size I was right back in the hunt.

I only had eight fish in the third hour but with those two carp I had put 10lb+ onto my tally. Terry seemed to be the only other angler catching well and he was landing mostly carp of various sizes on paste from the island. I kept switching my lines to make sure some feed was going in both and I was catching quite a few 4oz skimmers and roach with the odd better sample thrown in. Then in hour four I hooked and after a lengthy battle landed my best fish, a carp of about 6lb and along with a couple of 'flying skimmers', probably had 9lb in that period.

Amongst the roach and skimmers I had a few small 'pastie' carp as well but Terry was really bagging on them and I felt he was a long way ahead. Dave Lawrence was the next angler along on my left and was catching roach steady and had lost a munter. In the penultimate hour I was still catching regularly but no more bonus fish and probably had 4-5lb. The last hour saw me still catching and again I probaby had about 4lb and I reckon in total I must have 25-30lb but was sure Terry had beaten me. I ended up with 71 fish (I had 50 last time but had more quality).

I packed up and hoped I'd done enough to frame, I was first to weigh and my nine or ten carp went 22lb and along with 17lb 5oz of silvers, I had a total of 39lb 5oz. Terry was next to weigh and when he only had 3lb of silvers, I thought I had a chance but his carp weighed 37lb 4oz to give him a total of 40lb 4oz to beat me by less than a pound - bugger. I'd lost fish (those two big skimmers sprung to mind) but then so had Terry, I was hoping no one else was telling porkies and I could hang on to second place.

Next up was Bushy who had 11lb 9oz and the lovely Chanter had 5lb 7oz (Steve also took some pics so as soon as he lets me have them I put them on here), Janders had 14lb 13oz and handed over a pound. Mr Consistent (Les) had 20lb 8oz to put him in third place, Oz had 16lb 7oz, Rocking didn't weigh, Butch had 11lb 6oz and Dave Lawrence had 13lb 3oz. I'd hung on to second place but Les reckoned there had been some complaints lodged due to me fishing pegs 14, 15 and 16!!!! (well there was no one in them!). At the results Terry was read out as the winner and he also gets my man of the match award, I was second and picked up £60, Les was third and Oz fourth.

Rocking had a bad day at the office

Oz sneaked into fourth place

So close once again!

Match winner and my 'Man of the match' - Terry Green

So a really good day and hopefully we can get back here in a couple of weeks or so, I will try a fish the Thursday Summerhayes match so will let you know how I get on.

1 - Terry Green (Sillybait) - 40lb 4oz
2 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 39lb 5oz
3 - Les Braunton (Chard) - 20lb 8oz
4 - Steve Osborne (Chard) - 16lb 7oz