Sunday, March 27, 2011

Perry St Pond - 27th March 2011

There was no official match this week but we all met out the pond to do some swim clearing and general tidying up. As a reward for all our hard work we had a little knock up afterwards. There were 11 of us and Les left out the corner pegs which would make things interesting although the end pegs on both banks would be good draws. Obviously I managed to avoid these and pulled out peg 16, which had done a decent weight last week so I wasn't too upset.

I had the usual side bets on with Picky and Janders although with Picky on an end peg (3) and Janders on last weeks winning peg (7), I was up against it. There was a nice ripple on the water and I really fancied fishing up in the water would work today. With this in mind I set up my usual little Trabucco dibber for up in the water and also for the inside line to my left. My other rig was a Carpa float but I never picked it up all day, so I won't go into too much detail. For bait I had maggots, corn, expanders, micro pellets and 6mm sinkers.

On the whistle I cupped in some micros and maggots on my 8.5 metre line and the same plus corn on the inside, 5 metres to my left. I put on a banded 6mm pellet, shipped out to 11 metres and started firing out half a dozen pellets every few seconds. As predicted the end pegs got off to a flying start with Les, Niblett and Picky all catching straight away. After about 20 mins I got my first carp of about 2lb and was getting regular indications. I had four carp after the first hour and was neck and neck with Picky although as he was fishing paste, he probably had bigger fish. Les had also weighed one of 8lb 9oz and was still getting odd fish, Niblett was sacking on paste and Oz next to Les was also catching well.

Steve Bush was next to me and as I hadn't seen him since the last spring league match it was nice to have a catch up, he had one carp but couldn't seem to catch up in the water. I had another three carp in the second hour and hadn't lost a fish yet, Niblett was by now miles ahead and looked to be on for a big weight. Me and Picky were still close and the pound could be headed in either direction, Jander's pound was looking a little safer as he'd only had one carp. In fact all the anglers directly opposite seemed to be struggling with just the odd carp being hooked.

Hour three was a frustrating one for me, I added two more carp but suffered a spell of foulhooking fish and lost two or three. I cupped in some more feed on my other two lines with a view to trying them if my long line died. Bushy had a fish from his inside line and had also discovered that the mice had chewed holes in his landing net (more of that later). The wind kept dying down and as the ripple disappeared, so did my bites. I had two more fish in the fourth hour, both foulhooked and I lost a couple too. Les wandered up and he had stopped catching and Oz had slowed up as well. Niblett looked like being a clear winner although for the other frame places, they were up for grabs. Me and Picky were still neck and neck and Hoff on my left was catching well now too.

With a little over an hour to go, I attached a little toss pot to my up in the water top three, put on a piece of corn and went up the edge. As I laid the rig in, it jagged under and after a lengthy battle, pulled out of another foulhooker. This happened next put in as well, next chuck I hooked one properly and netted a 6lb+ plus fish. With me not feeding the long line, Bushy started catching up in the water and I was in two minds whether to go back out but another good carp hooked under the chin from the inside line made my mind up to stick at it.

I was on 13 carp and Picky was admitting to the same, Bushy hooked a lump, only to net it and it went through one of the mouse holes in his landing net leaving his hook in the mesh as it went - whoops! I was still firing out some pellets to try and stop him nicking those fish but not feeding it all the time meant he was pulling them to his swim. I was still getting indications on the inside and lost another foulhooked fish. I had carp number fourteen and there were still 15 mins left but despite missing several bites I never added to my tally. Picky and the Hoff both didn't know how many they had with Picky admitting to 14 or 15 and Hoff said he thought he had 11, this could be close.

After packing up, the weigh in started at Picky and he had a mixed bag including a bream and a tench for 58lb 4oz and I didn't think I had anywhere near that, Butch had 22lb 11oz next door and then Mike Collins and Dave Lawrence didn't weigh. Janders weighed 16lb 11oz and handed over a nugget, which I gave straight to Picky. Niblett was admitting to 35lb (yeah right!) but actually weighed an excellent 79lb 4oz (he's worse than me!). Les had 39lb 2oz and I wasn't sure I had that and Oz had a level 35lb. Bushy weighed 29lb 9oz and then after two weighs my total was read out at 56lb 3oz, so for the second week running I was one fish short of Picky - bugger. The Hoff had 42lb 6oz which secured him fourth place. The pond had fished really well on the whole, especially after all the commotion we had caused in the morning.

Some really good weights

I picked up £40 for third place and was quite chuffed as this is my best weight at Perry St. My winnings for the year are still ticking along nicely and currently stand at £422 (shh - don't tell the tax man!). I've probably jinxed it now and will go on a long lean spell.

1 - Terry Green (Chard) - 79lb 4oz
2 - Alan Gage (Chard) - 58lb 4oz
3 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 56lb 3oz
4 - Mark Hollister (Chard) - 42lb 6oz

Next week the spring league starts, so tune in to see if I can carry on catching carp.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Perry St Pond - Winter League - 20th March 2011

With nothing on this weekend, I phoned Les on the off chance that he might have a space at Perry St, he said yes and that I could fish for Steve Osborne - result. This would be a good chance to get an idea of how the pond is fishing before the spring league kicks off in two weeks time. I got out the pond and it was great to see all the old faces, I predictably got loads of stick about fishing a carp puddle and they wanted to know where my jam jar was to put my minnows in! Oh they're a funny lot!!!!!

I picked up my bait from Les and arranged side bets with Picky and Janders and then it was time to draw, my luck at the draw bag hadn't changed and instead of a sexy corner peg, I pulled out peg 5 slap bang in the middle - oh well. At least I would have a good bit of banter as Janders was on peg 4 and Picky was across on peg 17 (apparently the worst peg on the pond according to him!). I set up two rigs, a Carpa float for fishing out at 11.5 metres and 8.5 metres and a Trabucco dibber for the insides and also for up in the water. Both rigs had Tubertini 808's in a size 18, 0.12mm bottoms and the long rig had a green Preston Hollow elastic and the other rig had Black Hydro. Both tops had little toss pots fitted.

My bait table was creaking under all the bait I'd brought with me, I had maggots, casters, corn, soft pellet, dampened micro pellets and 4mm sinkers - phew! Les blew for the all in and I cupped in some micros and maggots at 8.5 and 11.5 metres and the same plus some corn and casters on both inside lines (left and right). I started long with double red maggot on the hook. Mark Leahy on peg 1 was into a carp straight away as was Bish on peg 7 and there were odd carp coming out all around the pond. I didn't have to wait long for my first bite which turned out to be a small skimmer, another followed next chuck so I switched to a 4mm soft pellet.

I was feeding a pinch of micros and maggots through the toss pot every put in and missed a couple of bites, which could have been small fish. Loads of carp could be seen cruising and in the back of my mind I kept thinking I should be fishing up in the water. Picky had gotten off to a flier and had landed a couple of carp and it looked like my one of my pounds had bitten the dust already, the other was safe for now as Janders still hadn't caught. I came in on my 8.5 metre line and had a bite on soft pellet straight away, green elastic came streaming out before the fish came off (foulhooked?). A few more missed bites followed before the sight of all those carp near the surface became too much and I was shipping out my shallow rig with a banded 6mm pellet.

Picky now had five or six fish and Bishop was still bagging, the chap opposite had a couple as did the Pup. I was constantly flicking out half a dozen 4mm pellets and after about 15 mins by pole tip was dragged round and carp number one was soon netted, a good 5lb fish too. I was getting a few indications and over the next hour or so I added a couple more carp and was slowly clawing back the advantage Picky had. I got to four then suffered a run of lost foulhooked fish, that all came off. Bish was still catching, and Dave Lawrence had landed and weighed a 13lb plus fish on peg 11. I was still getting odd fish and got to eight with an hour to go, then the gentle breeze which had been creating a nice ripple died off and I couldn't buy a bite. Janders had a couple of carp on the inside so I went down to my right margin (where I had been trickling in bait all match) with double red maggot on the hook.

I missed a good bite before next put in the float buried and the strike resulted in a frog!! I then hooked two carp which I thought I had under control when the hook pulled out, I think they were foulhooked as I came back with a scale on the hook after the second one. I then had a small carp to put me on nine and it felt like there were quite a few fish there. I had another bite where I struck and a carp bow waved off before I swung in another frog! Picky lost two on the trot before catching another carp and then Les signalled the all out and it was going to be close between me and Picky for the £1.

I packed up and as I took my holdall back to the car, I asked how people had got on and most were admitting to three or four carp apart from Bish who had 14 and Mark Leahy on peg 1 had nine fish and I was starting to wish I'd fished up in the water from the start. Picky had six carp and a bream to my nine carp but he had a couple of lumps. Mark's fish went 43lb 10oz and I knew I didn't have that, Dave Abrams on peg 2 had 20lb 13oz and Janders had 16lb 5oz before my fish weighed 32lb 7oz and he handed over a £1 - cheers mate. Would I make it a double and claim one of Picky as well?

As the scales made their way round the pond they got to Bish and he took over the lead with a level 59lb, an excellent weight and he'd caught up in the water too. The young lad standing in for Chris Haines had 33lb 2oz from peg 9 (I should have weighed those frogs in!) and Dave Lawrence had 30lb 6oz from peg 11. I was hanging on in fourth place (Les pays four) until we got to Picky and his lumps went 35lb 13oz and I handed over the pound Janders had given me, easy come, easy go!

Back at the results and I won my section and picked up £20 which keeps the winnings ticking over and I was quite pleased with my first foray back on carp puddles and quite enjoyed it.

Some decent weights

1 - Steve Bishop (Chard) - 59lb
2 - Mark Leahy (Street) - 43lb 10oz
3 - Alan Gage (Chard) - 35lb 13oz
4 - Chris Haines's stand in - 33lb 2oz

A - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 32lb 7oz
B - Mark Mockeridge (Chard) - 18lb 13oz
C - Mike Bendall (Chard) - 27lb 14oz
D - Dave Lawrence (Chard) - 30lb 6oz

Mike Hosgood did enough on the day to clinch the league followed by Bish, Picky and Chris Haines. I think we're having a knock up next week so lets see if I can keep this good run going, tune in and find out.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Ilminster Canal - 13th March 2011

With it being the last weekend of the river season we should have been on the Isle but with no rain all week, Robin relented and put us down the canal and I couldn't wait! The day started nicely when at the draw he presented me with my £50 winnings for the Royal Oak winter league, now I just needed a decent draw today. I pulled out peg 5 which put me close to the near end with Leighton on the end peg to my right and Richard White on my left. When we got to the canal there were fish everywhere, there were loads of carp around the 2-3lb mark and skimmers and big roach could be seen basking in the sunshine, this could be a good match.

I set up two rigs, the first a light Drennan Squatt float with 0.08mm bottom and a size 20 B511 with a number four elastic and the other was a 0.6 gram Drennan Carp with 0.12mm bottom and size 18 B611 with number 6 Preston Hollow elastic. The lighter rig was for fishing down the middle at 8.5 metres with the heavier rig for fishing across at 11.5 metres. I chopped up some worm and caster and was ready for the off.

Rob blew for the all in and I cupped in some choppie at 11.5 metres in front of me and also at the same distance to my left. I had barely finished and Rich was netting a decent perch on my left. I baited up the light rig with single red maggot and shipped out before firing half a dozen maggots over the top. I didn't have to wait long before my first bite and the strike saw loads of light elastic come streaming out and I netted a decent perch of 10oz - good start! The next two put ins saw me swing in two small roach so I decided to try a caster and was soon playing another perch around the same size as the first. More roach followed before yet another chunky perch was netted.

The others were getting odd fish but mostly small roach and perch on the maggot, things started to slow on the middle line and I was itching to go over my far line. With an hour gone and around 3lb in the net, I went across with caster on the hook and I didn't even have time to fire some bait out when the float buried and I netted a good roach. It was a bite a chuck for the next hour with good roach and perch, all on caster. The carp were still swimming about and Leighton had lost one on floating crust but things seemed to have slowed up for the others.

Going into the third hour and my bites on the longer line started to slow as well, so I went to my other 11.5 metre swim to the left and had a couple of quick roach before that died as well. I was now on about 36 fish and reckoned I had 5-6lb. Rob walked down and said he was struggling but Neil on peg 2 was catching well, although he was getting lots of small fish. I started searching all along the far bank and even stuck on another section to fish 13 metres under a far bank tree to my left, I would get a couple of fish and then have to try somewhere else for another fish or two. I was bumping and missing quite a few bites on caster but as I was still sticking the odd quality fish in the net, I stuck at it. I did hook a nice roach and as I swung it in, leant back to catch it and fell straight off my box!, much to the amusement of the others and several people walking by with dogs!

Rich came down and he said he couldn't buy a bite on caster and from what I could see Rob was struggling and Leighton was only getting odd fish although he spent quite a while trying to hook another carp on crust. My bites were becoming more and more less frequent so I cupped in some more choppie and tried maggot on the light rig at 8.5 metres again. I could get a bite a chuck but they were only small perch and a switch to caster saw me not get any bites at all. I tried the light rig across with caster but surprisingly I never had a bite. I went back to the heavier rig and kept laying it in all along the far bank. If I didn't get a bite just after the rig had settled I would move it along a bit and was still nicking the odd roach and had a couple of 4oz skimmers.

Graham Bulgin turned up to see how we were getting on and when he came back from the top end, he said Neil was still catching small fish and Steve Parker on peg 1 was getting a few as well. I missed a couple of bites while he was there and then hit a fish which pulled out a fair bit of elastic and I thought it was a small carp but it turned out to be a 1.5lb tench which was just lovely, my first tench for ages. I then had a roach next put in and things were still ticking over nicely. With about an hour to go, Rich was up talking to me when I've hooked another lumpy fish from 13 metres under the tree to my left, this one turned out to be a nice 1.5lb skimmer and it was turning into a perfect day.

With a little over half an hour to go I was on 48 fish and really wanted to get to 50 and actually landed three more roach to finish with 51. I thought I probably had 7-8lb but would it be enough to beat Neil and Steve? We started weighing in at Steve and he had some nice fish but I was surprised when he only weighed 3lb. Then Neil had loads of small fish for 5lb 7oz and I was pretty sure I'd beaten that, Rich had 2lb 7oz and Rob had struggled for 1lb 6oz. I pulled my net out and had woefully under estimated again as my fish actually went 12lb 13oz! Leighton then weighed 2lb 14oz and if he'd landed that carp early on, he would have been second. So I'd won four on the trot (which I've never done before) and picked up another £45 and had a cracking days fishing.

Me with my winning 12lb 13oz

Neil had 5lb 7oz for second

Steve Parker was third with a level 3lb

Leighton came close with 2lb 14oz

And not far behind was Richard with 2lb 7oz

1 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 12lb 13oz
2 - Neil Dring (Ilminster) - 5lb 7oz
3 - Steve Parker (Ilminster) - 3lb

Like I said, a cracking day, I'd fish the canal a lot more if there were more matches as it's right up my street. At the moment I've got nothing on next week so will have to see if I can find a match to fish, tune in to see where I end up!

Sunday, March 06, 2011

River Isle - Crown Winter League - 6th March 2011

The final Crown (now Royal Oak) league match arrived and again there were only six of us at the draw. Neil had put in three pegs at Coxes and three at Ashford, I fancied 14 or 85 and possibly 82 but my drawing hand let me down and I pulled out the choice of 17 or 18 and I didn't fancy either! It had been cold all week with several frosts and no rain and on arriving at the river, I was shocked at just how low it was. I walked down and had a look at 18 and you could see every inch of the bottom and no fish! 17 wasn't much better but there was one slightly deeper hole by some overhanging branches so I decided to give it a go. I was pretty sure I wouldn't be getting my hat trick of wins today.

I made myself comfy and got Old Faithful out and plumbed up the deeper hole before having a quick coffee and then it was time to start. I just needed to avoid the blank to win the league so my opening gambit was double maggot to try and get a minnow. I shipped out and started feeding maggots and casters upstream and also down in the flow but couldn't get a bite! I wasn't too worried though as the river is full of minnows, after an hour I was still biteless and starting to worry somewhat! I finally started getting indications on single maggot and after an hour I had two tiny minnows, job done, league won!

I tried caster and lobbie but nothing and I just couldn't see me catching a proper fish. A fish did top down in the flow, so I spent half an hour trying to catch it but no such luck. Time for a coffee and a walk, I went up to see Steve Parker in 14 and he said he'd only had 7 minnows and while I was there Fieldy turned up from peg 24 and he'd only caught one minnow, this was going to be mega hard. Graham said he couldn't see him lasting out the full five and a half hours and I knew how he felt.

I went back and in between numerous cups of coffee, I went through the motions and stuck another two minnows in the net. It did cross my mind to try and catch more minnows than Steve in case it came down to a minnow count again but even they weren't really having it. With an hour to go I shallowed up to around 12 inches and decided to run the rig down through the flow where I had been feeding from the start. First put in with a single caster, the float dragged under and I struck more out of hope than anything else and my elastic shot out! After a spirited fight I netted a trout (which count) of about 10oz and I couldn't help wondering if that was the fish that had topped earlier.

I tried it for a bit longer before spending the last part of the much in the hole but I never had another bite. I quickly packed up and went to weigh Steve in (Fieldy had packed up and driven by a couple of hours earlier) and Steve had 15 minnows for 2oz, my trout and four minnows went 11oz and in the back of my mind I started to think that if Ashford had fished as bad I might sneak into the money (Neil was paying the top two today). I was loading the car up when Neil and Bob turned up and they were joint top at Ashford with 1oz!!!!! So I'd done it, a hat trick of wins and the league title to boot! I picked up £45 for the day's win and should have some more to come from Robin next week.

Once again a really poor days fishing and I can't understand what's up with the river, it fished well up until Xmas and then we had all the bad weather and it's been awful since. Well we have one weekend left and unless we have some rain I reckon we should go on the canal as we haven't fished it for ages and it's normally a decent days fishing, just need to persuade Robin now!

1 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 11oz
2 - Steve Parker (Ilminster) - 2oz
3 - Bob Hammond (Ilminster) - 1oz
3 - Neil Dring (Ilminster) - 1oz

Final League Positions

1 - Jamie Rich - 14 pts
2 - Neil Dring - 18 pts
3 - Graham Field - 21 pts

I'd like to thank Robin and Neil for arranging the matches and Steve and Cindy at the Royal Oak for supplying us with coffee in the mornings.