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Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Sedges, Brick Lake, 13 July (13 pegs)

A pity nobody told the frog!

A bit of a change in the weather today meant that after the long spell of hot and relatively windless days we've enjoyed through most of June we had a drop of rain overnight and we were greeted with slightly fresher conditions, cloudy with a bit of breeze that was blowing diagonally across the lake towards peg 20.
With this in mind and with 13 fishing, peg 1 went into the bucket along with the rest of the odd numbers on the central bank plus peg 10, and on the far bank pegs 13, 16 and 19 were left out which gave everybody a bit of space.
Ironically Adam Caswell drew peg 1 and I had to admit it did look like a good draw today.
The other corners were occupied by Darren North (10), Chris Szakacs (with much to prove in 11) and Mark Radford in 20 which was where I would have chosen to be but if I drew another corner today I think I would have been physically abused!
As per normal I took the last peg which gave me 17 which didn't fill me with confidence but Vic Bush (who was fishing the top 2 match on Tile) reckoned it was a decent draw as did Jamie the owner.
I was a bit disheartened though as the wind was blowing straight into the peg meaning the wag was going to be a non-starter.
My neighbourhood watch for today was Ron Hardiman on 18, looking tanned and toned after his luxury holiday chasing turtles in Zante, two up to my right was Lionel Legge who has an uncanny habit of drawing next to me at Sedges and up from him was Bridgwater's finest pools poacher Lee Williams.
The rest of my bank were out of sight but I was expecting to get battered from the two corners at least.
I did set up a shallow wag (a hefty one) and started off on that hoping to nick a couple early but as expected the presentation was rubbish and I had no indications on it.
Plan B was out on a full depth rig at about 9 or 10 metres with corn on the hook over 4mm pellet and this eventually produced a hand-sized skimmer but it was slow going.
Fortunately for me nobody else was really setting the place alight except for Chris Davis across on peg 3 who had been catching steadily from the start.
I couldn't make out exactly what he was catching but I could see plenty of elastic so I guessed it was carp although I found out later it was skimmers and plenty of them!
A change to meat on the hook was a bit more productive for me with a couple more skimmers and one that filled the bottom of the landing net but I was still struggling.
Halfway through I untangled a full depth waggler and had a play with that but with no joy and by now I could see Adam was "hooking" a few carp in peg 1 which was worrying and Chris was miles ahead of everyone else.
I did manage a few more skimmers from the deep rig including a couple more of those net-fillers that make your arse twitch a bit when you're bringing them in as every time they shake their heads it seems like they're going to shed the hook.
I spent the last 90 minutes fishing meat down the left hand margin and I managed to get 4 decent sized carp out but the lake really switched on for everyone in the last hour so there was to be no Curry Kings tonight.
My collection of skimmers went 15lbs (which I was quite proud of) and added together with my 4 carp gave me a grand total of 50-4 for nowhere and to make matters worse I was beaten by Adam, Alan and also Lee which cost me £3 so an expensive day!
The match was won by Chris Davis with 119-9 which also included the top silvers weight of 67-7 of skimmers.
Added to that, Chris was on the golden peg which earned him an healthy bonus of £100.
Chris caught the bulk of his fish on meat over loose fed meat at 5/6m.
Brian Shanks ran him a close second with 118-7 from peg 9 followed by Chris Szakacs with 93-13 from 11 (I was expecting him to do a little better than that but I guess he tried his best) and 4th place went to Mark Radford in 20 with 85-8 caught on paste.
Top silvers, as mentioned already went to Chris so the default silvers pool went to Bridgewater Silvers Superhero Lee Williams with a level 40lbs.
For a blow by blow account of Lee's heroics click here!
Rocket Ron Hardiman took the second (default) silvers spot with 20-10.
The skimmers really got there heads down today with a total of 202lbs weighed in.
Incidentally the top 2 match I mentioned earlier on Tile lake was won by Vic Bush with 164-4 from peg 39 which is a new record for the topkit matches.
Tile lake has been fishing really well recently with match records being beaten several times over the last month or so.
For all the latest Sedges match results click here
(not that the frog would be too bothered)!

Full Result:
  1. Chris Davis* (peg 3) ....... 119-9
  2. Brian Shanks (9) ............ 118-7
  3. Chris Szakacs (11) .......... 93-13
  4. Mark Radford (20) .......... 85-8
  5. Alan Healey (7) ............. 64-10
  6. Adam Caswell (1) .......... 60-8
  7. Lee Williams (14) .......... 54-5
  8. Steve Burgess (17) ....... 50-4
  9. Darren North (10) ........ 36-3
  10. Ryan Radford** (12) ..... 33-10
  11. Mike Welling (5) ........... 28-15
  12. Ron Hardiman (18) ....... 20-10
  13. Lionel Legge (15) ......... dnw
*golden peg
**silver peg

  1. Chris Davis (3) ......... 67-7
  2. Lee Williams (14) ...... 40-0
  3. Ron Hardiman (18) ... 20-10
  4. Mike Welling (5) ....... 16-1
  5. Steve Burgess (17) .... 15-2
  6. Alan Healey (7) ........ 12-12
  7. Brian Shanks (9) ...... 12-9
  8. Ryan Radford (12) .... 10-1
  9. Mark Radford (20) ..... 3-13
  10. Adam Caswell (1) ...... 2-5
  11. Darren North (10) ..... 2-3

Monday, 14 July 2014

Trinity, Wildmarsh, 06 July (12 pegs)

Due to the well publicised problems on Woodlands Lake this match was switched to Wildmarsh which is a stunning-looking lake (as the above picture shows) but due to it's size it doesn't have the stocking levels and relatively easy fishing that we are used to at many venues these days and so nobody was expecting three-figure weights today.
Frys had fished a match here on the previous Sunday which I think was won by Andy Curry with 50lbs-ish so that would be a more realistic target to aim for.
As usual the very lovely Misha was on "meet & greet" duty and sorted out 12 pegs for us (altered slightly by venue expert, Adam Caswell)  as well as providing me with a pen as I was not quite as prepared as I usually am on a Sunday morning but we got there in the end!
To cut along story short, it was hard work for most of us.
I drew peg 2 which was about 5 steps from the car park and set up a shallow wag rod, a tip rod, a shallow pellet rig (because a carp topped in front of me while I was setting up) and a rig for down the left and right margins.
The left margin had a large willow overhanging and to the right was a tangle of tree roots in the water that looked "carpy" although getting fish out might have been a bit of a problem (but I need not have worried).
Bait for the day was corn and meat for the margins and the usual 6's and 8's for the wag / lead.
To cut a long story short, after three hours of watching Mark Radford opposite me on peg 24  catching on paste and Brian Shanks giving him a good run for his money  on 22, I finally got a bite down my right-hand edge on corn which produced a roach of about six ounces.
This was then followed by a "run" of two skimmers and another similar sized roach before I bumped a third skimmer, which was no suprise on 16 elastic, and that put paid to that.
With about 90 minutes left the wind picked up putting a bit of ripple on the lake prompting another go on the wag and that produced a 6lb carp followed by a duck which was the end of my match giving me a total of 11-5 but at least my duck was bigger than Alan Healey's and his two tench went 6lbs odd so I got a pound off him but unfortunately I had to give that one to Adam who had somehow managed to "hook" a couple of carp and skimmers for 16-15.
Despite claiming to only have a couple of carp and lost loads etc etc ... Mark Radford was the clear winner with 51-5 of carp and skimmers all caught on paste.
Chris (£14 a kilo)* Szakacs took second place with 37-8. 
He also had a biteless first half but found a few fish that moved in on his paste line late on.
Brian Shanks made up the frame with 34-10
And with Mark also winning the silvers with 12-5 of skimmers Alan Healey's two tench for 6-3 caught on worm gave him the silvers by default with Adam Caswell following with 4-15.

Full Result:
  1. Mark Radford (peg 25) ........ 51-5
  2. Chris Szakacs (13) ............ 37-8
  3. Brian Shanks (22) ............. 34-10
  4. Rich Britton (11) ............... 27-0
  5. Adam Caswell (7) ............. 16-15
  6. Steve Burgess (2) ............ 11-5
  7. Steve Wynne* (24) ........... 6-10
  8. Rich Jones (9) / Alan Healey (21) .. 6-3
  9. and 3 DNW's


  1. Mark Radford ....... 12-5
  2. Alan Healey ......... 6-3
  3. Adam caswell ....... 4-15
  4. Steve Burgess ...... 4-9
  5. Rich Jones ........... 1-10

Since this update Woodlands lake has reopened and is fishing well.
The Carpenters Arms match this Sunday was won with over 90lbs so hopefully the damage wasn't too severe and the lake will soon recover.

*subject to confirmation!

Avalon, 29 June (11 pegs)

Only 11 fishing today which was a bit of a shame really as last time we were here, back in April we had 21 fishing but we had a few out this week on international duties and some away at Whiteacres, plus one wasting a hospital bed so just one of those things really.
Anyway Vic gave us pegs 5 up to 20 which still gave us plenty of space and avoided "death row" at the car park end! (So no chance of me drawing peg 3 again).
As ever, owner Vic was on hand with plenty of advice and had his usual collection of recycled floats on sale in the shop.
Adam Caswell got himself a couple as he doesn't have any oh his own and usually scrounges them off his neighbours.
The interesting example he's holding below I believe is called a "ducker".
The idea being that you chuck it out, count to 10 and hope it reappears from it's "ducking".  If it doesn't come up after ten seconds it means you have missed a bite!
I don't think Adam caught on it today.

Anyway, as it turned out the area to be in was the top end of the lake which was occupied by Lionel Legge in 20, Adam Caswell in 19 and Will Dearlove in 17.
Lionel had a bit of a torrid day and was hooking and losing carp to the gap in the island from the word go.
I think his final tally was 8 floats so look out for those in the shop over the next few weeks.
Regardless of his tackle losses he still did enough to win the match with a respectable 95-5..
Will was 2nd with 87lbs exactly and sandwiched between them Adam managed to foul-hook 56-4 for 3rd which also included the top (accidental) silvers weight of  10-8 which was 20lbs shy of what can be caught in silvers from any peg (so I'm told)!
As for my day I was a tiny bit late arriving as we were held up a bit at Shipham cafe which was packed to the rafters with campers but it was worth the wait, not just for the enjoyable breakfast but also for the pleasant views provided by the young lady dishing out the grub!
Anyway, as Vic had organised the draw I abandoned my normal routine and took my chances with the rest of the oiks and pulled out peg 7.
I wasn't too disappointed with this as although I would have preferred to have been a bit further up the lake, it was a nice warm day with minimal wind so anybody was in with a shout (it seemed).
For company today I had Local boy Lee Williams on 7 who would be fishing for silvers and  Brian Shanks on end peg 5 which is the peg with the boarded off gap.
My peg looked lovely with a short chuck across to a small bay and an overhanging tree on the island slightly to the right. There wasn't too much in the way of overhanging vegetation and plenty of fish were cruising around across so I had high hopes although Lee had the end of the island in front of him and there were loads of carp showing but I was expecting him to ignore the obvious and concentrate on catching whitebait and 30lbs of skimmers.
As usual my main plan of attack was to be the pellet wag (I had plenty of hook lengths tied up) with a tip rod in reserve to fish a conker and I also set up a margin rig for paste.
At the all-in all three of us started on the wag but it was soon apparent that the carp weren't going to give themselves up too easily as although they were readily munching the loose fed pellets they were avoiding the ones with a hook attached.
At one point I fired in 5 pellets and counted 5 swirls around the float which never even twitched!
Mr Shanks was hooking odd ones but they were mostly taking him through the reeds causing the loss of his best and second best floats plus numerous hook lengths accompanied by a lot of moaning.
He eventually gave up and reverted back to his comfort zone fishing the pole shallow.
Lee meanwhile couldn't make his mind up whether he was fishing for silvers or carp but was getting a few of both and I was getting the odd fish but it was slow going.
I had a go at playing conkers but that proved disastrous as the paste I made up the previous night was a bit wet still and despite squeezing it around in a towel it was flying off on the cast and feeding Lee's skimmer line which would explain why he started catching carp on it.
A look down the edge with paste produced a fish first put-in but it was the smallest carp in the lake and the second put-in it's granddad took the paste and went for a stroll through the reeds destroying the rig, my best paste float and the elastic so that was abandoned.
My disappointing efforts gave me a grand total of 36-4 against Lee's 53-8 and Brian whinged his way to 39-5 so I was thoroughly "chip-shopped" and there was no trip to Curry Kings!
Lee's version of events can be found here.

Full Result:

  1. Lionel Legge (peg 20) ...... 95-5
  2. Will Dearlove (17) ...... 87-0
  3. Adam Caswsell (19) ... 56-4
  4. Lee Williams (7) ........ 53-8
  5. Mark Radford (11) ...... 39-11
  6. Brian Shanks (5) ........ 39-5
  7. Steve Burgess (6) ...... 36-4
  8. Alan Healey (9) .......... 22-7
  9. Derek Lucas (16) ........ 9-0
  10. and 2 DNW's

  1. Adam Caswell .... 10-8
  2. Lee Williams ...... 8-0
  3. Will Dearlove ..... 4-10