Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Stainforth and Keadby Canal Match

A couple of weeks ago I got the offer to join the Army lads on their next match on the stainy and Keadby Canal. Seen as though I love fishing the Canal, it took me all of 2 seconds to make my mind up;
what would be more interesting was the fact that we could use bloodworm and joker. This is something I have never really done before, so I was looking forward to the challenge.

Match day arrived and I was really looking forward to another cracking day on the Stainy.
After a cracking breakfast at the Delves Cafe it was time for the draw. I drew out peg 161, which I was highly delighted with, as I had drawn the same peg a few weeks ago. I had a cracking days fishing then, and was hoping for the same again today. The only thing that could put a bit of a dampener on things could be the weather as it is meant to be pants today, with strong winds and showers predicted. I think everybody was relieved when we arrived at the canal to discover the wind right off our backs and it wasn't as bad as predicted "yet!"

After a short walk, I arrived at my peg, fortunately for me 161 is the shortest walk from where we park the cars . As I was getting my gear into place I saw a large pike break the surface close to the far bank.; in my eyes, where there are pike, there are plenty of fish. Well hopefully any way.

My battle plan
I decided on a three pronged attack for today's match, firstly a bloodworm line at 7 - 8 meters. I am expecting to catch small fish on this line, so the quicker I can catch them the better. The short distance certainly will help with that. The second line I plan to fish is at 13 meters. I am hoping to target the slightly bigger fish on this line, so I am going to use maggots and casters. The third line is again going to be fished at a short distance, but at a 2 o'clock angle. I am going to feed hemp and casters by hand on this line, with the hope of catching decent roach near to the end of the match. I had some good fish doing this last time on this peg.

Rigs:
Bloodworm Rig

  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Browning Cenex solid No4
  • Main line - 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.10 Browning Cenex
  • Hook - Kamasan B511 size 20
  • Float - Scotthorne 1  0.5gram
  • Shotting - An olivette bulk with 2 droppers


Hemp and Caster Rig

  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Pink Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line - 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.10 Browning Cenex
  • Hook - Kamasan B520 size 20
  • Float - Scotthorne 1 0.5gram
  • Shotting - An olivette bulk with 2 droppers


13 Meter Rig

  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Pink Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line - Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.10 Browning Cenex
  • Hook - Kamasan B511 size 20
  • Float - Tubertini Serie Pro 1 gram
  • Shotting - An olivette bulk with 2 droppers


The Session
I start the match by cupping in 4 balls of groundbait packed with joker on the short line, and 4 balls packed with Joker and dead red maggots and casters on the long line. I make sure the groundbait balls are tightly packed, as on plumbing up I noticed a fair bit of tow on the water from left to right. I decide to start on the long line with a live maggot, hoping to tempt a better fish quickly.

 Its takes around 15 minutes to get the first bite, which coincides with the tow stopping. A pristine roach is soon landed and in the net. I continue on this line for a further 15 minutes, but the bites are few and far between. I switch to the short line with a bloodworm on the hook; this gives me the instant response I am looking for, as the float doesn't even have time to settle before it buries. As expected the fish isn't big, but its another fish in the net.



The bloodworm is working a treat as I am now getting a bite every drop in, but the fish are small. In a bid to try and tempt a bigger fish I try the long line again. I am not disappointed as a chunky Roach is soon in the net. I am soon back on the bloodworm line as bites are too sporadic on the long line.

The first drop back in on the bloodworm line offers a nice surprise, a decent Skimmer, which is a welcome sight. To my amazement the next 2 drop ins also produce 2 decent sized Skimmers. I decide to top up the swim with a joker packed ball of ground bait, hoping to keep the Skimmers in the swim. Unfortunately this doesn't happen, but it triggers off  plenty of small Roach with the odd small Perch thrown in.

I try the caster and hemp line; which I have been feeding by hand for the last hour, but this doesn't produce a thing, which is disappointing as this line worked really well in the last match.
I spend the rest of the match on the bloodworm line, catching small Roach and Perch. No more Skimmers show, much to my disappointment .
The scales arrive and I weigh in 4 kilos 100 grams Approximately 9 lbs. This is not enough to get me in the frame, but I have had a lovely days fishing yet again on the Stainy.

Friday, 6 December 2013

Lindholme Lakes Tuesday Open Match - Bonsai Lake

Overview:
After a second place on Sunday on Oasis Lake with 44lb 12, I decided to try and go one better today on Bonsai,  "well fingers crossed anyway". The lake has been fishing consistently well, even though the temperatures have rapidly declined lately.
After a cup of tea and a lovely bacon and sausage sandwich in the on site cafe, it was time for the draw. Peg 35 was the peg to grace my hand; this is a peg I have not drawn before. On arrival at my peg I was highly delighted to find it was packed with features. It offers an island at a full 16 meters, along with plenty of open water and a reed covered margin to my left. There is also a gap between the islands to my right, which is slightly beyond pole reach.

My plan of attack

  • My first thoughts were to target the island, but after plumbing up along the full length of it, I didn't feel that the depth of water was quite deep enough. On average it must have only been 2 feet deep, so I removed a section of pole and again plumbed up along the length of the island. This offered me around 3 1/2 feet of water, which I felt was a much better depth to target. What was fortunate was the bottom was completely uniform, so everywhere I targeted with the rig it was the same depth. Its always a Brucey bonus when you can use the same rig for multiple swims!
  • The second area I planned to target was gap between the islands to my right. I plan to swap between the Bomb and the standard waggler My thoughts behind this are, the bomb gives me a static bait and the waggler gives me a slow falling bait. this gives me the chance to cover a lot of water and depths.
  • The third area was a reed bed 11 meters to my left, which has a depth of around 3 feet tight to it. As the temperature is cold and the water close in is quite clear, 3 feet of water should  give me the best chance of catching down the edge.


Bait

  • For the pole line I plan to swap between 2 and 4 mm pellets on the hook and feed fishery micros through a pole mounted sprinkle pot. I also have some corn as an alternative hook bait.
  • For the bomb and waggler line, my plan is to use 6 mm hard pellet and feed minimal amounts of fishery 6 mm pellets via a catapult.
  • On the margin line I am going to catapult small amounts of 4 mm fishery feed pellets on a regular basis, starting half way through the match.


Rigs
Pole Rig

  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Pink Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line - 0.12 (3.70 lb) Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.10 (2.0 lb) Browning Cenex
  • Hook - size 18 Kamasan B911 F1
  • Float - Scotthorne 1  0.3 gram
  • Shotting - A small bulk with 2 no 10 droppers


Margin Rig

  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Yellow Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line - 0.14 (5.60 lb) Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.12 (3.70 lb) Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook - Size 18 Kamasan B911
  • Float - Scotthorne 1 0.3 gram
  • Shotting - A bulk of no 8 Stotz set just above the hook length


Bomb Rig

  • Rod - Browning Commercial King 8 ft Wand F1
  • Reel - Browning Black Magic Burner 620
  • Reel line - 0.18 (6.10lb) Cenex Feeda line
  • Hook length - 0.12 (3.70 lb) Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook - Size 18 Kamasan B911 tied with a knotless knot with a hair rigged micro band
  • Bomb - 7 gram square bomb


Waggler Rig

  • Rod - Browning Force 11 ft Pellet Waggler
  • Reel - Browning Xitan HM
  • Reel line -  0.18 (6.0 lb) Browning Cenex Sinking Match Line
  • Hook length - 0.12 (3.70 lb) Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook - Size 18 Kamasan B911 tied with a knotless knot with a hair rigged micro band
  • Waggler - Browning Peacock Waggler no 2  3BB


The Session
I started the match on the bomb, casting to the right hand corner of the island. I feed 2 x 6 mm pellets every 2 minutes with a hope to attract fish, but not over feed them. For the next 30 minutes I continue to cast around the island and into the gap between the islands, but I don't even get a liner. "It is not looking promising". A switch to the waggler changes this as I foul hook and land a small F1. This is the only action this line offers.  To try and get something going I decide to swap to the pole, I start with a 4 mm pellet on the hook. I put a pinch of micros into the pot and ship out to 14 meters. I have lined up with the left hand corner of the island to ensure the small amounts of bait I am feeding stay in the same area. Its a good 20 minutes before I get a proper bite, but the wait is worth it as a decent F1 is soon in the net. On the next drop in I put a few extra micros in the pot, so that I can start prepping a second line directly in front of me. It takes around 10 minutes before I get another proper bite, this time its a Skimmer around 8 oz.



The next 3 hours are spent swapping between lines and hook baits, this is definitely doing me some good as every body that I can see seems to be struggling. I have had around 8 F1s and a fair few Skimmers. As the last hour ticks away, the guy in the next peg has started catching regularly, where as my bites have ground to a halt.
I decide to give the bomb another go but this time I am going to target the open water to my left. I am going to change bait as well to a bit of popped up bread. 5 minutes after casting out the rod tip pulls steadily round, a lift of the rod see's it bend round further. A small but extremely welcome Mirror Carp is soon netted. A few more casts see no further action.
The scales arrive, and on lifting my net out I'm surprised and pleased with what I have caught. I weigh in 27lb 1 oz which gives me enough for 3rd in the match. I am even more surprised when the guy in the next peg weighs in 18 lb. I personally thought he had beaten me easily. Looks can sometimes be deceiving!



Friday, 15 November 2013

Lindholme Lakes Thursday Open Match - Bonsai


I was really looking forward to today's match on Bonsai Lake, as I haven't fished it for what seems like an eternity. I have been fishing the open matches, but the matches I have attended have been held on the venues other fantastic lakes! On arrival at the venue the first thing I noticed was the wind was blowing quite strongly off the back of the pegs in their forties, seventies and eighties. All the talk in the cafe seemed to be about the pegs in the forties, and how well they had been fishing.

The Draw
At the draw I pulled out peg 84, which I was reasonably happy with. This peg has plenty of features, which it maybe be necessary to target in these cold and windy conditions. On arrival at my peg the wind was swirling a bit; mainly off my back, but from left to right as well. Taking note of this  I decided on a plan of attack.

The Plan
My plan was to have an open water line starting at 11 meters. I carefully plumbed the area surrounding this line; fortunately the bottom was pretty uniform, which would allow me to use the same rig, should I need to start a new line.The second line was going to be close to the island, which was around 14 meters away. After some careful plumbing tight to the island, I discovered that from the island corner and back 3 meters along the face of the island it had a depth of 3 1/2 foot . This was by far the deepest section along the island. My third line was to be close to the reed bed, 13 meters to my right,

Rigs
11 Meter Rig

  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Pink Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Mainline - 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.10 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook - Size 18 Kamasan B911 F1
  • Float - 0.5 gram Scotthorne 1
  • Shotting - Olivette Bulk with 2 No 10 droppers

Island Rig


  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Pink Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Mainline - 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.10 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook - size 18 Kamasan B911 F1
  • Float - 0.3 gram Scotthorne 1
  • Shotting - Bulk No 8 Stotz

Margin Rig


  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Yellow Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Mainline - 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook - Size 18 Kamasan B911
  • Float - 0.3 gram Scotthorne 1
  • Shotting - Bulk No 8 Stotz


The Match
I baited the 11 meter rig with a 4mm expander pellet and put a pinch of micros in the pole mounted sprinkle pot. I then shipped the rig out. tapped the pole so that the micros dispersed from the pot in the required area and slowly lifted and dragged the rig over the the top. After lifting and dropping the rig nearly a dozen times the float buried; after a short fight a nice sized F1 was safely in the net.



I baited up as before and shipped the rig out again; I tapped the micros out and dropped the rig over the top. I started again with the lifting and dropping, this time it only took 6 lifts and drops, and soon another F1 was safely netted. The next drop resulted in a missed bite, the drop after there was another F1 before bites disappeared, so I decided to add a section and start a new line at 13 meters. The response was instant, as within a minute I  was hooked into another nice F1.

Bites Dried Up
I had 1 more small F1 before bites again became almost none existent, this again prompted me to start another line, 2 meters to the right of the 13 meter line.  This produced a couple of quick fish before, yes you have guessed it, the bites disappeared. I tried the Island line but the wind made presenting a bait almost impossible and when no bites materialised,  I soon gave this up as a bad job.

From the beginning of the match I had been firing 4 or 5  4mm pellets towards the reed bed to my right
hand side. The time had come to give it a try. I baited up with a 4mm pellet and filled the sprinkle pot with micros. The rig must have only been in the water a few seconds, when the float disappeared, a small F1 was soon safely landed.



A Change Of Bait
After a couple of fish the bites started to become iffy, so I changed the hookbait to 2x, 2mm expander pellets. This had an instant effect, the bites where much more positive. I was now getting a bite every drop in and not having to wait long for the bites either. This change of hook bait had worked a treat. Fortunately the bites just kept coming right until the end of the match.

On arrival of the scales, I had 55 lb to beat and I thought it would be close. so I was highly delighted to weigh in 65 lb 10 which gave me the match win. Another cracking day at Lindholme Lakes!


Sunday, 20 October 2013

Stainforth and Keadby Canal

I always look forward to this time of year, when South Yorkshire Police organize a number of matches on the Stainy. Over the years we have had some fantastic matches; we have also had one or two hard ones as well. The main thing I love about these matches is the change from commercials and Carp, which are fantastic but a change now and again does you the world of good! This type of fishing reminds me of my upbringing in fishing, when I fished for Hull and District Juniors, were we fished numerous canals and rivers in nationals all over the country.

The Draw
The draw for today's match was held at the Delves cafe in the town of Thorne South Yorkshire. After a cracking bacon and egg sandwich we were ready for the draw. Out came peg 161, which I found out was an end peg close to Wykewell Bridge; what was even more fortunate was it was a short walk from where the cars where parked, because I had forgotten the wheel to my barrow. Plank!

A Quick Survey
On arrival at the at the canal I was even more pleased to find a proper tow path had been built down the side of the canal, which made it much easier than the cloggy mud bath it used to be. On finally getting all my gear to my peg I had a quick sit on my box to survey my peg. The canal at this point is roughly 20 meters wide, with it narrowing slightly as you head towards the bridge. As the water is flat calm I can see some weed growth just under the surface, which extends 3 meters from the bank.

The Plan
My plan is to set up 2 rigs that will cover 3 lines. The first line will be at 13 meters in the main track. I have decided not to fish any further as the wind is due to pick up during the day, which could make fishing beyond 13 meters extremely difficult. The second and third lines will be on a top 2 plus 1 section just beyond the weed bed 1 at an 11 o'clock angle and 1 at a 1 o'clock angle.


Bait 
  • On the 13 meter line I plan to feed ground bait with pinkies and hemp in the mix and fish maggot or pinkie over the top
  • On the 11 o'clock line I am going to feed liquidised bread and fish punched bread over the top
  • On the 1 o'clock line I am going to feed some chopped worm and caster and a small amount of hemp

Rigs
13 Meter Line:

  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Pink Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line - 0.12 Browning Hybrid power
  • Hook length - 0.10 Browning Cenex
  • Hook - Size 20 Kamasan B511
  • Float - Alan Scotthorne 1 0.6 gram
  • Shotting - Olivette bulk with 2 no11 droppers

The Top 2 plus 1 Rig

  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Pink Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line - 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.10 Browning Cenex
  • Hook - Size 18 Kamasan B511
  • Float - Alan Scotthorne 1 0.6 gram
  • Shotting - Olivette Bulk with 2 no11 droppers


The Session
I start today's match by feeding 2 orange sized balls of ground bait at 13 meters by pole cup. (I personally prefer to do this, rather than ball it in by hand, because it is more accurate and as I have live pinkies in the mix, there is a chance the ball may break up mid flight). On the 11 o'clock I feed a small ball of liquidised bread by hand, and on the 1 o'clock line I feed a small amount of chopped worm, caster and hemp.

I start the match on the 13 meter line; I am going to feed some loose maggots and pinkies over the top of this line by utilizing a small pole mounted pot. It takes around 5 minutes before I get my first bite, which is a welcome sight, A small Perch is soon in the net. This is the start of a good first 2 hours in which I am getting a bite nearly every drop in. I am getting a nice mix of Perch, Roach and Skimmers. The Perch and Roach are quite small, but the Skimmers are a slightly bigger stamp.




A Bit Of Alternating
After the 2 hour mark, bites tail of to almost a stand still, so I top up with another ball of ground bait. I decide to leave the line to settle and give the punch line a try. After a bite less 10 minutes I switch back to the 13 meter line. The fish are back and again I am getting regular bites, but this only lasts 30 minutes before the bites begin to slow. In a bid to stop the bites drying up completely I top up straight away. Whilst letting the line settle I try the worm and caster line, but I keep hooking weed. In a bid to sort this I add a section and re plumb the rig. I have noticed the guy in the next peg has started catching on hemp, so I decide to feed this re plumbed line with small amounts of hemp by hand, with a few casters every now and then.

I try again on the 13 meter line, but bites are now very sporadic, with a couple of quick bites then no bite for a few minutes. I give the line 20 minutes and eventually bites grind to a halt . This gives me no option but trying the hemp line. I decide to start with a caster on the hook. The float is only in the water 15 seconds before it buries, and I am hooked into a better fish. A Perch around the pound mark it soon in the net, which is a welcome bonus. The last hour is spent on this line and it seems to be getting stronger as the minutes go by. The Roach, Perch and Skimmers are a much better stamp on this line. On the all out, I am in the process of landing a chunky Roach.  On arrival of the scales I have 13 lb 11 to beat, which in my mind I am nowhere near; so I am highly delighted to weigh in 13 lb 5 which gives me second place. I have had a cracking days fishing, bring on next week!


   


Monday, 7 October 2013

Browning Cenex SLIP N SLIDE Pole Elastic Lubricant


Its not until recently that I started using the Browning Cenex SLIP N SLIDE Pole Elastic Lubricant, but its a product I wish I had discovered years ago!


This quality lubricant from Browning almost eliminates the horrible sight of sagging elastics emitting from the end of poles; which is usually caused by the elastic sticking to the inner walls of the top kit.

This lubricant builds an ultra thin film when used regularly, which minimizes friction and sticking between the elastic and the inside of the top kit. This ensures the elastic works smoothly and efficiently, resulting in less fish lost due to hook pulls and more fish in the net. The wear on the elastic is also dramatically reduced.

This lubricant has been specifically designed for purpose and will not corrode the elastic like some other products may. It is suitable for conventional, latex and hollow elastics.
  
  

Sunday, 29 September 2013

Lindholme Lakes Saturday Open Match - Oasis Lake

..... A promise to take the missus shopping on Sunday got me the green light to attend today's match. I have fished 2 other matches this week and I am away fishing for 2 days next week; well you don't like to take the piss do ya!

Overview
The Saturday matches here at Lindholme always attract good attendances, with today been no different. The match today is on the Oasis lake which is a 62 peg canal styled lake. The lake is relatively uniform with regards distance to the far side, this is approximately 14 meters. The lake contains huge amounts of F1s, Barbel, proper Carp as well as large quantities of Silver fish.

The Draw
At the draw I drew out peg 21, which is a peg I have never fished before. On arrival at my peg I discovered that I had a reed bed and a tree on the far bank, with some areas of bare bank to the left and the right of this. There was some bits of grass hanging over these areas, so a quick trip round to to a bit of gardening was my first job.

My Plan
My plan for today was going to involve 4 lines. The first line was to the far side near to the bare bank, this gave me under a foot of water, I plumbed up both sides of the reed bed and found  had the same depth at both sides. Great! I could use the same rig for both sides.The second rig was directly in front of me close to the reed bed, this again was extremely shallow at just over a foot deep. My third line was for the bottom of the far shelf in around 3 feet of water. The final line was the right hand margin towards a clump of reeds at a top 2 plus 2 length. On this line I had around 18" of water.

Bait
On the bare bank line to the right of the reed bed I plan to try some thing a bit different from pellet and go with dead maggots and ground bait. With things starting to become changeable, I am hoping this will give me an edge. For the bare bank to the left of the reed bed I will feed softened fishery micros and fish a 4mm expander pellet on the hook. For the line in front of the reeds I plan to feed and fish 6 mm cubes of meat. For the line at the bottom of the shelf I am going to cup in some micros and 4 mm fishery feed pellets and alternate between soft pellet and meat on the hook. For the margin line ground bait and meat were going to be the order of the day.



Rigs:
Bare Bank Rig
  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Yellow Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line - 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook - Size 16 Kamasan B911 F1
  • Float - Middy Grey 4 x12
  • Shotting - Bulk No 8 Stot

Reed Bed Rig
  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Blue Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line - 0.16 Browning Hybrid power
  • Hook length - 0.14 Browning Hybrid power
  • Hook - Size 16 Kamasan B911
  • Float - Middy Grey 4 x 12
  • Shotting - Bulk No 8 Stotz

Far Shelf Line

  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Yellow Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line - 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook - Size 16 kamasan B911 F1
  • Float - Shep Special 4 x 14
  • Shotting - Double bulk No 8 Stotz

Margin Rig
  • Pole - Browning Xtreme Margin Pole
  • Elastic - Green Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line / Hook length - 0.16 straight through
  • Hook - Size 14 Kamasan B911
  • Float - Middy Grey 4 x12
  • Shotting - Bulk No 8 Stotz

The Session
I started the session by cupping some micros and 4 mm feed pellets on the far shelf line. I baited up the Bare bank rig with 3 dead reds and filled the pole mounted pot with a few dead reds and capped it of with ground bait. I shipped the rig to the far bank, tapped the bait out of the pot and slowly lowered the rig in over the top. The response was instant and I was in to a small F1, which was safely landed.



That fish gave me false hope, as the next few drop ins resulted in tiny skimmers. A move further a long the bank again resulted in a small F1 before Skimmers again got in on the act. I decided to try the far shelf rig, A quick run of fish again gave me false hope as the float  then remained motionless for what seemed like an age. By this time I could see some movement on where I  had baited on the bare bank line, a change back resulted in 1 F1 before skimmers rudely re-appeared.

Drastic Action Required!
I decided to try the other side of the reed bed, this time feeding and fishing pellet. There were signs of fish straight away as the float was dancing about all over. I then had a run of 3 F1s in quick succession, but unfortunately it wasn't long before the skimmers returned. It was at this point drastic action was needed, so in went 2 big pots of ground bait down the edge with around 20 pieces of meat. After about 20 bite less minutes on the other lines, it was time to try the margins. The float was only in the water 30 seconds before it buried, and I  missed the bite! I lowered the rig back in and 1 minute later the float buried again, this time I managed to hook and land a decent F1.  I re-cupped in some groundbait and meat, and this time decide to try the reed line, which resulted in 2 small F1s in 2 drop-ins. Had I finally found them? Had I eck!!! The rest of the match was spent trying to pick up odd fish by regularly switching lines.

The Weigh-In
When the scales arrived at my peg I discovered I wasn't the only one to have struggled, as a few people didn't even weigh in. My  final weight was 30 lb, which was extremely hard earned; but it's guaranteed I will be back soon, as I love the place.



Friday, 27 September 2013

The Oaks Lakes - Sessay


One of the UK's leading fishing complexes
"The Oaks lakes at Sessay in North Yorkshire is home to lakes for both Match and Pleasure fishing. The Lakes originally opened in 1994 starting with the Willows Lake and over the years it has steadily grown and currently has 10 Lakes, Over 400 Pegs, A large Cafe / Tackle Shop and New for 2014 we will be opening a Caravan Park in a quiet corner of the lakes so that everyone can come and enjoy the North's most well known fishing complex."
 http://www.theoakslakes.co.uk

Today was only my 2nd ever trip to the Oaks; It was one of the venues I was most looking forward to on our club match calender. Over the last couple of weeks I have been checking out the match results in the angling Times, to see how it has been fishing, and the results have been fantastic!

After an hour and 20 minutes drive to the fishery from Hull we arrived at the venue full of enthusiasm. Today's match was to be split over 2 lakes, Ash and Beech. These are 2 of the 3 newest lakes on the complex. The lakes are rectangle shaped, and pegged on both banks. The banks are reed lines, and there are no apparent features, but these lakes have an underwater bar, which runs the full length of the lake. The bar starts at around 11 meters from each bank and the depth of water on the top of the bar is roughly 3 feet deep.


 




http://www.theoakslakes.co.uk/lakes/ash

After a quick call to Andy Hampson who fishes here on a regular basis I decided on a 3 pronged attack. My main line was going to be in the deep water at around 6 meters, feeding 4 mm fishery feed pellets and fishing a 4 mm expander on the hook. The second line I will concentrate on is the margins. I am going to start on pellet and feed pellet, but I have some ground bait and some corn should it be needed. The third line is going to be on top of the bar at 13 meters, this is a back up line as I have been advised that most catches have been caught on the short lines.

Bait
This is pretty simple, I have pumped some 4 mm expander pellets for the hook and I have some 4 mm fishery feed pellets for feeding. As I have mentioned above I have some Browning Lethal Feeder groundbait and some corn as a backup for the margins.


Rigs:
6 Meter Rig
  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Yellow Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line - 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook - Size 16 Kamasan B911 F1
  • Float - Middy Carp Grey 4 (4 x 14)
  • Shotting - Double bulk

Edge Rig
  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Green Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Mainline - 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook - Size 16 Kamasan B911
  • Float - Middy Carp Grey 4 (4 x 14)
  • Shotting - Single bulk

13 Meter Rig
  • Pole - Browning Z12
  • Elastic - Yellow Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Mainline - 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length - 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook - Size 18 Kamasan B911
  • Float - Durafloat 6 (4 x 12)
  • Shotting - Double bulk  


The Session
On the all in I fill the pole cup with a small ball of groundbait with some feed pellets, and put this in on the 6 meter line. I go straight over this line with the rig baited up with a 4mm expander on the hook. It only takes about 2 minutes for the first bite, which results in a small Carp of around a pound. I re-ship out the rig, tap the pellets out of the pole mounted pot and lower the rig in over the top. Again I only have to wait 2 minutes before a quick dip on the float, a lift of the pole and I'm in again; this time the fish is a little bigger approaching the 2 pound mark.

The next few drop-in's result in missed bites, so I add an extra shot to dot the float down to a pimple; this seems to help as I immediately hit the next bite. The fish in these lakes are predominantly proper Carp, but they give bite like F1s, finicky little buggers!

I spend the first 2 hours on this line before having a look on the edge line, which I have been feeding with small pinches of 4mm pellets right from the start. The rig is only in the water 20 seconds before the float buries and I'm attached to an angry little Carp, which thinks its 10 times its size! The next put in results in a few minute wait for a proper bite. I decide to try the 6 meter line again, which results in a nice run of fish, but I am having to wait a while for bites.

People further down the lake appear to be catching much quicker than I am???  This gives me a push to try the 13 meter line, which again I have been feeding from the start. I have been feeding a pinch of pellets every 30 - 40 seconds by catapult.  I am soon catching at a decent rate, but the fish are quite small averaging about a pound, but the bites soon slow.


In an attempt to make things happen I cup some groundbait, and a bit of corn in shallower water than I have been fishing down the side and alter the rig to suit. I give it 10 minutes before trying it; this seems to have worked as I am mow catching bigger fish and at a quicker rate. Every put in I am feeding a toss pot full
of corn, which keeps the fish coming till the end of the match.

When the scales arrive there have been some very good weights, I weigh in 90lb, which is enough for 5th place, which I am pretty pleased with. I think going with my instincts today and feeding the groundbait and corn has helped me massively!

Tip
Trust your instincts!

Monday, 23 September 2013

Lindholme Lakes Saturday Open - Laurels Lake


http://www.lindholmelakes.co.uk/lakes/laurels-lake
Laurels was the lake chosen for today’s open match; it has been pretty consistent for producing cracking weights this year. I was definitely hoping that trend continued today! A good turnout for today’s match meant that pegging was going to be slightly more restricted, hopefully this would not knock the fishing back.


The Draw
At the draw I pulled out peg 52, which I discovered is the first peg on the second spit on the willows bank. As I have never drawn this peg before I certainly wasn’t disappointed, as it looked spot on. The peg gives you a decent area of open water as well as a long margin bank to the left hand side. The right hand margin was restricted by a large tree which made this pretty much unfishable.


My Plan
My plan for today’s match is to fish a line at 13 meters at a 1 o’clock angle on the deck. I am going to feed 4mm pellets on this line and alternate between 4mm expander and 6mm meat on the hook. Most of the feed will be put in via a pole mounted pot, but I am also going to lose feed a few by catapult just in case they want to feed shallow. It is for this reason I am also going to set up a shallow rig to be utilised on this line if they do come shallow. For the margin line, there is a nice little cut out in the vegetation at around a top 5 distance, and after some careful plumbing up this also appears to be the shallowest area along the full bank. My plan for this line is to feed loose groundbait with some corn and meat so I can again alternate the hookbait.


Bait
As mentioned in the section above I am going to feed 4mm fishery feed pellets. I am going to slightly dampen them so that they sink quicker than if they were dry. I like to do this when fishing on the deck as it minimises the sinking time of the pellets. For hook baits on this line I have pumped a slack handful of 4mm expander pellets and cut up a tin of meat into 6mm cubes. I have also dampened some fishery micro pellets as a standby just in case the fish don’t respond well to the 4mm pellets. For feed on the margin line I am going with lose ground bait, which is Browning Lethal Feeder groundbait. For hook bait and for adding to the ground bait I have some sweetcorn. I am also going to utilise some of the 6mm meat on this line too.






Rig Set-Up
13 Meter Rig
  • Pole – Browning Z12
  • Elastic – Yellow Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Mainline – 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hooklength – 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook – Size 18 Kamasan B911 F1
  • Float – 4x16 Shep’s special @ www.carlshepherdsonstittletackle.com
  • Shotting – Double bulk set up No8 Stotz

Shallow Rig
  • Pole – Browning Z12
  • Elastic – Yellow Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Mainline – 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hooklength – 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook – size 18 Kamasan B911 tied with a knotless knot, with a hair rigged micro band
  • Float – Shep’s special 4x10 Chianti style
  • Shotting – Spread bulk No10 Stotz

Margin Rig
  • Pole – Browning Z12
  • Elastic – Blue Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Mainline – 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hooklength – 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook – Size 16 Kamasan B911
  • Float – 4x14 Nufish Diamond
  • Shotting – Bulk No8 Stotz


The Match
On the all in I potted in a ¼ cup of 4mm feed pellets on the 13 meter line, and went straight over it with the deck rig baited up with a 4mm expander pellet. It took a couple of minutes before the first bite, which resulted in a small Skimmer. The next put in, again I had to wait a few minutes before getting another bite, but this resulted in a decent F1. I shipped back out and before the rig had even settled I was in again and another decent F1 was soon in the net.

The next few drops produced some small Skimmers. This indicated to me that the F1s had backed off so I topped up with another ¼ cup of 4mm pellets. This had the desired effect as within 5 minutes I started getting F1 s again. This pattern seemed to continue all the time I spent on this line. After 3 hours I was still picking up small F1s, with the odd small proper Carp showing an appearance every now and then.


The action was not fast or furious but I was catching steadily. It was around this time that I started to see some movement in the surface layers after feeding with the catapult. A quick change to the shallow rig resulted in a run of 5 F1s one after another, but these bites soon dried up. I was picking up odd fish but they were a lot smaller than the deck fish.   

With 2 hours to go I put a big pot of ground bait in with a few grains of Corn sat on the top. I left this line for 10 minutes before going on it. I baited the margin rig with a grain of Corn shipped out and lowered it in slowly. 2 minutes later the elastic ripped out of the end of the pole, and the familiar hunt for a snag gave the identity of this fish away instantly, a Barbel, which was soon in the net. The next drop in resulted in a small F1, not quite what I was hoping for but at least I was putting fish in the net.
The rest of the match was spent on this line as I was catching at a better rate than on the 13 meter line. Unfortunately none of the resident lumps turned up today but at least I was catching and putting fish in the net.

At the end of the match I had had a good days fishing and when the scales arrived I totalled 67lb which was nowhere near enough to compete, but another cracking days fishing here at Lindholme Lakes!



    

Friday, 6 September 2013

Forest Lane Fishery - Alne Nr York

 

“Forest Lane Fishery is a mixed fishery, meaning that you should not be surprised what you catch. Forest Lane Fishery has a good stock of the normal breeds i.e. Carp, Tench, Bream, Roach, Crucian Carp, Ghost Carp, Chub and also others such as Barbel, Pure Koi, Pink and blue Orfe, Goldfish up to a pound. Some of the Carp are in to the late 20's and Tench upto 8lb's.”  
http://www.fisharound.net/location/public/3745/Forest-Lane-Fishery


Overview:
This was my first ever visit to Forest Lane Fishery, and the reports I had from people who had been were extremely positive. On arrival at the fishery; which took roughly an hour from Hull, a quick walk round was the order of the day. The lake at first glance is utterly stunning, containing two islands; one large island at the back of the lake, and a smaller one at the front.

There is a real mix of distances from the pegs to the islands, some are in pole reach and some are well beyond this. There is also an abundance of fish cruising around in the upper layers of the water, fingers crossed they will feed. The lake has roughly 40 pegs, and as there are 21 of us on the match today this will give us plenty of room.

The Draw
At the draw peg 17 graces my hand. On arrival at my peg, which is on the back bank of the lake I find that the large island runs parallel with this bank around 20 meters away. The island has some reed cover with some areas of bare bank. For margin lines the right hand margin is a no go, as I have somebody in the next peg and only grass bank down this side, but as there is nobody in the peg to my left I am going to target the small clump of reeds right next to the peg.

The Plan
I am going to set a bomb rod up for targeting the island on a bare bit of bank slightly to my left. The next rig is what’s going to be my main approach for the day, which is a shallow pole line at 13 meters. As there are meant to be large quantities of barbel, I will set up a rig for fishing meat at a top 2 plus 2 distance. The final rig is the margin rig for fishing next to the clump of reeds to my left.

Bait
 

There is nothing complicated about today’s selection of baits, I have:

  • 8mm pellets for the bomb
  • 6mm pellets for the shallow pole line
  • 6mm cubes of meat for the top 2 and 2 line
  • 8mm cubes of meat for hook bait on the margin line
  • For feed on the margin line I have some ground bait

Rigs:
The Bomb

  • Rod –  8ft Browning Commercial King F1 Wand
  • Reel – Browning Black Magic Burner
  • Mainline – 0.18 Browning Cenex Feeder Line
  • Hooklength – 0.14 Browning Hybrid power
  • Hook – Size 16 Kamasan B911 extra strong, tied with a knotless knot with a hair rigged band
  • Bomb – Free running 10 gram square

The Shallow Pole Rig

  • Pole – Browning Z12
  • Elastic – Yellow Browning Cenex reflex
  • Main line – 0.14 Browning Hybrid power
  • Hooklength – 0.14 browning Hybrid power
  • Hook – Size 18 Kamasan B911 tied with a knotless knot with a hair rigged micro band
  • Float – Shep special Chianti style 4x12
  • Shotting – Bulk no10 stotz

The Meat Line

  • Pole – Browning Z12
  • Elastic – Blue Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line – 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook length – 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook – Size 16 Kamasan B911
  • Float – Nufish Diamond 4x14
  • Shotting – Bulk No8 Stotz with 2 No10 droppers

Margin Line

  • Pole – Browning Z12
  • Elastic – Green Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Main line / Hook length – 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook – Size 14 Kamasan B911
  • Float – Shep special Diamond 4x12
  • Shotting – Bulk no8 stotz


The Session
I decided to start the session on the bomb with an 8mm hard pellet in the band. This was so that I could feed the shallow pole line regularly and give the fish a bit of time to settle. I have learnt that going on a shallow line straight away may give you a couple of quick fish, but then they will back away and sometimes never return!

The first bite came after a few minutes, which resulted in a nice F1 around the 2 1/2 pound mark. The next 2 chucks resulted in 2 wrap rounds but no hooked fish. After 20 mins I switched to the shallow pole rig and this resulted in an instant bite, producing a brightly coloured Goldfish. I re- shipped out the pole and slapped the rig over, the float disappeared, a quick lift, and a stream of elastic screamed out the end of the pole. After a 5 minute tussle I managed to land the fish which was a carp around the 6 lb mark.



Over the next 3 hours or so Things could not have gone better as I was catching at a rate of knots. I was catching a large variety of species, large and small. The main flurry of the catch was Carp and decent ones at that; one of them scraped over the 10 lb mark!

A Frustrating End
The 4th hour the swim started to slow and I was only catching small Chub and Goldfish. I decided to add an extra section of pole to fish beyond were I had been feeding, this definitely helped as I picked up a couple of small Carp in quick succession, then the bites went iffy on this line too.I spent the rest of the match swapping and changing between lines just to try and get a bite. I would just pick up the odd fish now and again.

On the all out, I knew I had a reasonable weight, and when the scales arrived my end result was 84lb, giving me enough for second place, with the winner Julian Griffin having 87lb. For me it was a match of 2 halves with a great start, but an extremely frustrating end. But all in all I have had a great day at a lovely fishery, and I am eager to return.








Monday, 2 September 2013

Browning Cenex Reflex Elastics

I have been using the impressive Browning Cenex Reflex range of hollow elastics in almost all aspects
of my fishing for a little over a year now; I have used other brands of hollow elastic in the past but find the Cenex Reflex is second to none, furthermore I would now be reluctant to use anything else!

There are 4 things I look for in my elastics, these are: strength, stretch, smoothness and life span. In all departments the Cenex Reflex seems out perform all its rivals with ease.

The Cenex Reflex Elastics come in 5 different colours, which differentiates the diameters and strengths as the table below shows.

Colour
 Ø/mm           
Rating
Pink
1.80mm
6-8
Yellow
2.10mm
8-10
Blue
2.30mm
10-12
Green
2.50mm
12-14
Orange
2.85mm
16-20

What I use it for:

Colour
I use for:
Pink
Silver fish, and Small F1s and Shallow for F1s
Yellow
Shallow fishing for Carp, as well as fishing for larger F1s
Blue
Most open water carp fishing
Green
Open water Carp, and for reedless margin fishing
Orange
Margin fishing

To complement these fantastic elastics I use the brilliant new Browning Xitan Gum Connectors; which are an alternative to the Browning Dacronnectors. The Dacron material is replace with power gum, which is kinder to the line than the Dacron material, and always stands clear of the end of the pole, eliminating wrap over’s.


How to attach both Gum and Dacron Connectors



1. Thread the elastic through the bottom end loop on the connector.
















2. Tie a figure of eight knot.
















3. Moisten the knot and pull tight (Moistening should prevent damage and also keep the knot central in the loop).
















4. Pull the Gummy sheath down over the knot.
















5. Trim off the loose end.
















6. The end product.
















Friday, 30 August 2013

Messingham Sands - Hollywood Lake

Overview
http://www.messinghamsands.co.uk/match%20lakes.htm
This is my second day in succession of fishing at Messingham Sands. Yesterday went pretty well with a second place finish on the Island pond with 114lb; hopefully I can go one better today, “well fingers crossed any way.” Today we are on Hollywood Lake, which is a canal styled lake approximately 30 meters wide, with 30 extremely well spread out pegs. The lake like all Messingham lakes is stuffed to the rafters with: Carp, Crucians, Skimmers, Ide and Tench.

The Draw
As I was the one doing the draw I would have to do with what was left in the bag; peg 6 was to be my home for the day. Nearly all the pegs on this lake are identical, so no real peg stands out as a flyer. On arriving at my peg, I was faced with flat calm water, but so was everybody else. There were fish topping everywhere on the lake, things definitely looked promising.

My Approach
For today’s approach I will be going with a 4 pronged attack. For the far side line I will be setting up both a bomb rod and a pellet waggler rod. The bomb will be the main far side approach, but the pellet waggler will give me an alternative method to try. The pellet waggler will also give me the option of fishing shallow short of the far side, which enables me to cover a large amount of water. On the pole front I will be setting up a shallow rig to fish at 13 meters. I will also be setting up a margin rig to fish down the right hand side, as there is a large amount of floating weed in the left hand margin.

Bait
For the far side line I will be using 8mm fishery pellets on both the bomb and pellet waggler. For the shallow line I will be using 6mm fishery pellets and for down the side my usual loose groundbait and corn approach will be utilized.

Rigs:
The Bomb
  • Rod – 10ft Browning Force Bomb
  • Reel – Browning Backfire BF
  • Mainline – 0.18 Browning Cenex Feeder Line
  • Hooklength – 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook – Size 16 Guru QM1, tied with a knotless knot with a hair rigged band
  • Bomb – 14 gram square lead (free running)

The Pellet Waggler
  • Rod – 11ft Browning Commercial King Medium Pellet Waggler
  • Reel – Browning Black Magic Burner 630
  • Mainline – 0.18 Browning Cenex Match Line
  • Hooklength – 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook – Size 16 Kamasan B911 extra strong
  • Float – 3.5g Drennan Crystal pellet waggler attached via a waggler adapter
Browning Black Magic Burner, & Commercial King Pellet Waggler













Shallow Pole Rig
  • Pole – Browning Z12
  • Elastic – Yellow Browning Cenex Reflex
  • Mainline – 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hooklength – 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook – Size 18 Kamasan  B911 extra strong
  • Float – Shep special 4x12 Chianti Style www.carlshepherdsonstittletackle.com
  • Shotting – Bulk no 10 Stotz set under the float
 Margin Rig
  • Pole – Browning Z12
  • Elastic – Solid 22
  • Mainline/Hooklength – 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power, straight through
  • Hook – size 14 Kamasan B911
  • Float – Shep Special Edge Diamond
  • Shotting – Bulk no 8 Stotz

The Session
I started the match by casting the bomb tight to the far side, and started feeding both the bomb and pole lines regularly. My intention was to fish the bomb for 30 minutes, then switch to the pole once fish had settled in the swim. The first bite on the bomb came after 5 minutes when the rod tip ripped round; a decent battle commenced, then a few minutes later the carp around 4lb was safely landed.

During the next 25 minutes I managed to hook and land another 2 smaller Carp. On the 30 minute mark I switched to the shallow pole line. I shipped the pole out and
slapped the rig over; before I even had time to feed, a bite, a quick lift and elastic streamed from the pole.

Keep The Swim Topped Up!
Before shipping the pole back I fed the swim to make sure there were fish ready for the next put in. After a good battle on light gear the fish was safely landed, a Mirror Carp around 6lb. The next 2 drops in resulted in 2 more nice Carp, and the next 5 drops after that resulted in small Crucians around 3 oz a piece.

All the time I fished the pole this pattern seemed to occur, I would get a couple of Carp then a few Crucians. In a bid to get the Carp feeding confidently and bully the Crucians out the way, I tried the pellet waggler; but I upped the feed rate on the pole line. The first cast on the pellet waggler resulted in an instant bite, another carp was on its way to the net. Two more casts resulted in 2 more fish, then for some reason no more bites materialised???

Time For A Change
A switch to the pole changed this, as upping the feed had worked a treat; I was now catching Decent Carp on a really regular basis. I did feed and try the margins, but this didn’t produce anything at all, but the pole line more than made up for this though.
At the end of the match I had had another fantastic days fishing; the scales arrived and after 5 weighs I totalled 133lb 4oz which gave me the match win, and another brilliant day at Messingham Sands!   
       

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Messingham Sands - Island Pond

On the way to Messingham, myself and my travelling buddy Bri Peck @ Fishing Republic Hull, were chatting about what peg we would want to draw today. I said I would be more than happy to draw peg 17, as this is where I had caught my personnel best weight a few weeks earlier, being 201lb, 13oz. On arrival at the venue, the banter started immediately regarding what peg I was going to choose today; anyone would think I’d been drawing well lately!

At The Draw
It was draw time and you guessed it I pulled out peg 17; this is when the banter really started. On arrival at my
peg, and with the smile still on my face I was faced with flat calm water, plus there were plenty of fish milling about on the surface. This peg gives you plenty of options; there is an island to left, which starts around 15 meters away from the bank and is around 40 meters long. There is also a bed of lily pads around 15 meters along the island. In front of me there is a good area of open water and to my right I have another island, which is a 40 meter cast. Down the sides I have overhanging trees and some reeds.

My Approach
My approach was going to be similar to my last visit; I am going to go with a three pronged attack. I plan to fish the Bomb to the right hand island and target the open water near to the lilies with the pellet waggler. For later in the session I plan to target the margins with a pole approach.
 
Bait
This is going to be as last time very simple, fishery 11mm pellets are going to be the main bait, as I am going to use these for both the bomb and the waggler. I am also going to mix up some ground bait; which I will feed loose through a pole pot down the edge to my left. I also have some corn for use on the hook for the margin line.

Rigs:
The Bomb
  • Rod – Browning 10ft Force Bomb
  • Reel – Browning Backfire
  • Main line – 0.18 Browning Cenex Feeder Line
  • Hook Length – 0.18 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook – Guru QM1 size 14, tied with a knotless knot with a hair rigged band
  • Bomb – 14 gram square lead which is free running
  • I have set 2 of these rods up and both have identical set up.

The Pellet Waggler #1
  • Rod – Browning 11ft Power Pellet Waggler
  • Reel – Browning Xitan HM
  • Mainline – 0.18 Browning Cenex Match Line
  • Hooklength – 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook – Size 14 Kamasan B911 extra strong, tied with a knotless knot with a hair rigged micro band
  • Float – 3.5 gram Drennan Crystal Waggler attached via a waggler adapter

Pellet Waggler #2
  •  Rod – Browning Medium Pellet Waggler
  • Reel – Browning Xitan HM Reel
  • Mainline – 0.18 Browning Cenex Match Line
  • Hooklength – 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power
  • Hook – Size 14 Kamasan B91, extra strong tied with a knotless knot and a hair rigged band
  • Float – 3.0 gram Drennan Crystal Waggler, attached via a waggler adapter

The Margin Rig
  • Pole – Browning Xtreme Margin Pole
  • Elastic – solid 22
  • Mainline/ Hooklength – 0.16 straight through
  • Hook – Size 14 Kamasan B911
  • Float – Shep special Edge Diamond http://www.carlshepherdsonstittletackle.com
  • Shotting – A bulk of no8 Stotz

The Session
On the all in I cast the bomb to the right hand island, and started feeding both the bomb and pellet waggler line with 11mm pellets. The reason for starting on the bomb was that I learned from the last match on this peg that the pellet wag line needed plenty of time to settle before trying it. My first bite came after 5 minutes and after a healthy battle, a Common Carp around the 4lb mark was safely netted.



I recast the bomb and continued my feeding regime, this time nothing for 5 minutes, so I reeled in and recast. This is something I like to do in the summer as recasting regularly can sometimes trigger the fish into taking the bait much quicker. After 4 recasts I hook into another fish and after another proper battle a Carp around the 6lb mark is safely netted.

I decide to give the pellet waggler line a try as I have started having signs of feeding fish whilst feeding the pellets. This is to no avail, which is extremely frustrating as I know fish are there. I give it 20 minutes, recasting every 30 seconds or so trying to trigger a fish into taking my hook bait; but unfortunately nothing happens, so I decide to pot in some groundbait down the left hand edge with a few grains of corn; I then retry the bomb whilst the pole line settles. Again nothing comes of it, so I decide to try the pole line.

I bait up with a single grain of corn and lower the rig over the baited up area; the float hardly has time to settle before it is gently pulled under, producing a decent sized skimmer. The next put in again produces another, then I am plagued with small roach. I change to double corn in a bid to deter the roach and this has the desired effect, as the next put in produces a Carp of around 3 lb. I re bait the margin line with a full pot of ground bait and switch to the pellet waggler.

We are now 3 hours into the match and I am really struggling, fingers crossed the pellet waggler line will start producing. I have kept feeding regularly on both the wag and bomb lines. The switch to the waggler line produces an instant bite and a much bigger fish is hooked. The fish tries it s hardest to get into the lily bed, but fortunately I manage to drag it away and into the net. This Mirror Carp is around 9lb, and is just what I needed! The next 3 cast all produce carp, which I mange to land; I then lose 3 on the bounce, which all drag me into the lilies.

The rest of the session is spent on the pellet waggler as the swim has really come alive. I manage to land plenty more carp and also lose plenty in the lily pads.
The whistle sounds for the end of the match, and after a number of weighs I total 114 lb 4oz, giving me enough for 2nd behind a very happy Gary Chadwick, who had won from the golden peg with a 117lb. Well done Gar!