Sunday, 30 August 2015

Lindholme Lakes Open Match

The last couple of months have been fairly hectic with work and Fire Service matches covering the length and breadth of the country. During this time I have had no time to get my backside to Lindholme. I decided that enough was enough and I had to get there.
After Fishing the Sunday open match on Loco, in which I had around 60 - 70 lb for nowhere in the match, it gave me the Lindholme bug back and with a vengeance. With this in mind I made my second trip of the week to fish the Thursday open on Bonsai. I was hoping that a couple of trips in close proximity would soon have me back in tune with the venue.

At the draw all the familiar face were in attendance so a decent draw was essential. Out of the bag came peg 67, which I wasn't disappointed with as this can be a productive area.
 On arrival at the peg, I was faced with a steady cross wind from left to right. I did notice that the gusts seemed to be coming directly at me, which should make holding a pole possible. The peg has plenty to offer with the left hand end of
the island directly in front of me at around 25 meters. There was also the open water in between the islands, which can sometime be a great place to target. The margin to my left looked spot on as I could easily reach the next peg which was empty.

My Plan
I decided on a 4 pronged approach. The main target area would be the end of the island, which due to the wind would mean using the bomb, as a waggler would end up been blown all over the place.
The second target area was a deck rig at 13 meters, I decided against setting a shallow rig up as well for this line, as I thought the wind would hinder the presentation to much. My third line was at a top 2 plus 3 distance at an 11 o'clock angle, as this stops me bringing fish from other lines over it. The 4th and final line was a margin line to the platform to my left.

I had a really simple bait tray consisting of some fishery 4 and 6mm pellets for the bomb and pole lines plus some groundbait and corn for the margins.

Bomb Rod
  • Rod - Browning Sphere 10ft Bomb 
  • Reel - Browning Black Magic Burner 
  • Main line - 0.18 Browning Cenex ABR 
  • Hooklength - 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hook - Size 16 Kamasan B911 eyed tied with a knotless knot with a hair rigged band. 
  • Bomb - Browning Distance lead 14g 
13 Meter Line and Short Line
  • Pole - Browning Champions Choice Silverlite 
  • Elastic - Yellow Browning Stretch 7 Hollow 
  • Mainline - 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hooklength - 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hook - Size 16 Kamasan B911 eyed tied with a knotless knot with a hair rigged band 
  • Float - Scotthorne 1  0.3gram 
  • Shotting - Bulk plus 2 droppers  
Margin Rig
  • Pole - Browning Xtreme Margin 
  • Elastic - Green Cenex Hollow 
  • Mainline - 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hooklength - 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hook - Size 14 B911
  • Float - Scotthorne 3  0.3gram 
  • Shotting - Spread bulk 

The Session 
I started the session on the bomb and 6mm pellet, casting tight to the end of the island. I started by feeding a couple of 6 mm pellets over the top via catapult. It only took a matter of a minute before the tip flew round. 30 seconds later a small Mirror Carp was safely landed. The first 30 minutes was really productive and I was catching pretty steadily, but for some reason the bites soon dried up. 
I altered feeding patterns but this never altered anything, so I switched to the short pole line to give the bomb line a rest; I had been feeding the short line like all the others from the start.
 The switch did the trick as I was soon back into the fish. I was catching some proper chunk F1s, but after a few fish again the bites disappeared. In a bid to keep things moving I switched straight back to the bomb; I thought this was going to be one of those days were switching lines would be the only way forward.

In Short
To be fair this is how the day progressed, I managed to keep fish coming all day, but not at a fast enough rate to compete with some others that I could see. 
At the end of the match I totalled 88lb 2 oz which I was pretty happy with. It was nowhere near enough to win but I was happy that I had managed to keep fish coming all day. 

Saturday, 1 August 2015

Viaduct Fishery - Fire Service National

Every year the FSSAA, which is the national sports and welfare body for the fire service, organise a national teams of 4 competition. This years match was held at the beautiful and wonderfully scenic Viaduct fishery in the heart of Somerset.                                                                                            
This was to be our first outing since our Humberside Fire team joined forces with Browning. We decided due to the 4 and a half hour drive to get to the fishery from Hull, that we would travel down the day before. On our arrival in Somerton we headed straight for the fishery. The plan was to try and get a feel for how the venue was fishing and what areas would be best; however within minutes of our arrival, we managed to get collared into helping weigh-in the part of the open match that was been held over a number of the lakes.

The section we weighed in was Cary Lake, which is renowned for its huge resident Carp.  On weighing in this became even further evident as one angler weighed-in 2 fish for 38lb! After the weigh-in and a bit of a chat, we completed a circuit of the lakes before making our way to the hotel.
Morning arrived and after a hearty full English breakfast, we made our way to the venue. The weather though was terrible and we were due rain all day. Oh and it did nothing but, all blooming day!

Draw Time
Draw time arrived and we drew 3 pretty decent pegs (from what we had seen the previous day) and 1 we didn't have a clue about. I drew peg 43 on the Match Lake, John Holness drew 123 on Campbell, Ian Ralph drew 76 on Cary and Mark Davies drew 22 on Spring (the peg we didn't have a clue about) On arrival at my peg I was pretty pleased as I had loads to go at. An island, open water and a really fishy looking margin. What more could I ask? Apart from the weather to book its ideas up!

The Plan
After chatting to a local lad the day before, I knew the lake contained a huge stocking of F1s, which suited me down to the ground. With this is mind I decided on a 4 pronged attack. Firstly a bomb to the island, with an island been such a fish holding feature it would be suicidal not to target this area. The second and third line of attack was to be a pole line at 13 meters aiming slightly to the right, both on the deck and shallow. The reason behind aiming slightly right was so that I wasn't dragging the bomb over the pole line all the time when retrieving it. The 4th line was to be to the reedy margin to my right hand side.

Bomb Rig
  • Rod - 10ft Browning Sphere Bomb 
  • Reel - Browning Black Magic Burner 
  • Mainline - 0.18 Browning Cenex ABR
  • Hook length - 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hook - Size 16 Kamasan B911 XS tied with a knotless knot with a hair rigged band. 
  • Bomb - 14 g Browning Distance lead (free running) 
Deck Rig
  • Pole - Browning Z12 
  • Elastic - Browning Stretch 7 (white)
  • Mainline - 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hook length - 0.14 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hook - Size 18 Kamasan B911 tied with a knotless knot with a hai rigged micro band 
  • Float - 0.2 Scotthorne 1 
  • Shotting - Bulk set just above hooklength ( no droppers due to the shallow depth, just over 2 ft) 
Shallow Rig
  • Pole - Browning Z12 
  • Elastic - Blue Browning Stretch 7
  • Mainline - 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hook length 0.12 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hook - Size 18 Kamasan B911 tied with a knotless knot with a hair rigged micro band 
  • Float - 0.2gDrennan Crystal Dibber
  • Shotting - 3 X no10  set just above hooklength 
Edge Rig
  • Pole - Browning Z12 
  • Elastic - Green Browning Cenex hollow 
  • Mainline - 0.18 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hook length - 0.16 Browning Hybrid Power 
  • Hook - Size 14 Kamasan B911 XS
  • Float - 0.3 Scotthorne 3 
  • Shotting - Spread bulk set just above hooklength 
The Session
I started the session on the bomb with a banded 8mm pellet. I casted it nice and tight to the island and started firing 3 or 4 8mm pellets over the top. In-between firing the 8 mm pellets, I was also firing 6 mm pellets onto the 13 meter pole line. My hope was to get the fish nice and settled on the pole line before going on it.  After a couple of casts on the bomb, a liner was suddenly followed by a proper wrap round. The fish kited immediately left and straight under a overhanging tree, where it shed the hook into a branch. Bugger one nil to the fish. The next cast saw it two nil to the fish, this one snapped me. Fortunately I had 2 identical bomb rods set up, so with no time wasted I was back out fishing right away. Straight away after casting I was getting indications that fish were in the swim, a minute later the tip wrapped round and this time I was not going to let the fish anywhere near that bloody tree. This resulted in a proper chunk F1 around the 3 lb Mark.

I decided to give the bomb line a rest for a while and have a look on the pole. I baited up with a 6mm hard pellet and shipped the rig into position. Seconds after the rig settled the float dipped, a quick lift of the pole and a steady stream of white elastic emitted from the top kit. Another decent F1 was soon landed. I had a couple more fish before the bites started to become iffy. A switch back to the bomb saw me into fish straight away. The rest had done the swim wonders. This was to be my tactic for the majority of the match.
Towards the end of the match, the rain lulled for 20 minutes and my constant feeding saw the fish start swirling. For 20 minutes I couldn't get the rig in quick enough I must have had 12 fish in 12 drops, with a couple of the fish been proper Carp. The rain soon put a dampener on this again as it decided to proper hammer it down, this seemed to unsettle the fish.  I remained on the shallow line for the remainder of the match just picking up odd fish as the other lines just stopped producing. I did give the edge line a few goes but I could not get a bite.

At the weigh in I was really pleased when I weighed in 80lb this was enough to win the lake. On return to the carpark, the other lads told of their days. John had 105lb Ian had 37lb and Mark had really struggled as he had 12 lb. At present I still don't know where we actually finished as we left before the presentation, as we had a supposed 4 and a half hour drive back, which actually turned out to be nearer 7 due to the blooming M1 roadworks. I will update you when we get confirmation of the result.