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Sunday, 12 October 2014

Harescombe Match Lake, 12 October (14 pegs)

It was a bit nippy out last night when I was loading the fishing bus up in my shorts late last night and I was fully expecting to be scraping ice off the windscreen this morning, which would not have been great for the prospective day's fishing, but as it turned out it wasn't too bad, 5-ish degrees and foggy so no wind and a dry day which is always a blessing up at Harescombe with it being so exposed to the elements.
The on-site cafe was busy as the locals were having a match on one of the other lakes but most of our lot had opted to visit Ronald MacDonald.
I'm not a big fan of MacD's "breakfasts" so I took my chances with a "Pricey" in the cafe.
I don't think the ironic naming of the "Pricey" breakfast was intentional but at £7.25 (once you've added a cup of diy instant coffee) it's a little, well ... pricey!
But it wasn't bad and it filled a hole which is more than can be said of a MacMuffin.

Anyway, fourteen on the list today and with no Silvers pool the payout was to be top two overall plus two sections of seven paying first and second (well it made sense to me)

No scrabbling about in the bag for me as I had the last peg which gave me peg 24, one of the landslide pegs and one that wins a lot here so I wasn't displeased.
It's a peg I've had here before and the last time I had it I started off well but ended up totally messing things up so I was keen to avoid doing that again.

For company I had Mike Wilson on my left and on the opposite side was my pound coin nemesis, Lee Williams who was sandwiched between Adam Caswell and Lee Waller. 
Alan Healey was next down from him so I could see whether or not my other pound coin was safe but I suspected it would be as there was no phonecall to Dean Malin for instructions.

I set up rigs for the bottom of the near shelf (topkit plus 2), to fish with soft pellet or maggot.  A rig for the margins which would also cover the far bank and finally a shallow banded pellet rig to fish 6mm pellet at 14m over to the right where the landslide goes into the lake.
This was where I expected to catch mainly as there were fish swirling there and mooching about in the shallow water against the mud.
At the kick off I fed the close lines and the far bank with micros and maggot and pinged out a few pellets over to the right edge.
By the time I'd done that a few fish had already been caught so I was guessing it would be a bit of a fish race.
I started (under advice from the guy in the cafe) on the short line down the shelf with a soft pellet on the hook and after a few missed bites eventually made contact with a small F1 to get the ball rolling.
It was slow though and a few were struggling to get anything.
I stuck with it, topping up with micros, and it was getting gradually better with a few more small F1's and junior skimmers surrendering.
A drop in with maggot on the hook only produced a roach fry so that was scrapped.
Elsewhere a few were catching. Word was that Mark Radford was doing well on the other side of the landslide (peg 29) as was his offspring Ryan on peg 2 who was denying catching and therefore must have been doing well.
Alan was quite pleased with himself as he had landed a 2lb chub and I heard Chris Szakacs was doing ok down in peg 14.
Adam however, after an hour of sitting over a golf ball of F1-resistant paste, decided to do a "Mark Britton" and marched off with his kit into the distance to the pleasure lake to find a pensioner in a deckchair who he could hopefully win a pound from.
Meanwhile, I was overcome by the urge to fish up to the landslide so I dumped a pot of micros on the short line and went over with the shallow pellet rig.
And it didn't take long to hook a "proper" carp of a couple of pounds followed by a second one foul-hooked in a fin.
By this time a steady stream of floating casters that had come from the bottom end of the lake had grabbed the attention of a few fish so, as I never had any caster (floating or otherwise), I catapulted out a couple of pouches of maggot and went over with a newly made up shallow rig with maggot on the hook.
To cut a long story short, apart from a couple of small F1's from the right margin and one from the far bank I spent the rest of the day with the shallow rig over to the landslide catching fairly steadily.
The last hour was a good spell with most drops ending up with a small F1 (8 to 12oz) along with odd chublets plus a few more bonus carp which were caught in the really shallow water against the bank just a few inches deep.
To get these was just a case of laying the rig in the shallow water and waiting for the big swirl and the elastic to come out.
Unfortunately this would spook the rest of the fish so I didn't spend too much time chasing them and stuck with the smaller fish in the deeper water.
I'm not comfortable fishing to my right side, especially long, and I couldn't feed while I was fishing as my bait tray and catty were behind me so I was feeding a couple of pouches of maggots and then going over it until I hooked one but it seemed to be working ok.

By the end of the match I had no idea what I had but I was guessing about 40lbs which hopefully would get me my section dependant on Chris Szakacs who I'd heard had done well.

Mark Radford was first to weigh and put 51-2 on the scales which included all six of the lake's barbel population.
Next up was Chris Gay who weighed 43-11 and a wet leg as he slid into the lake getting his nets out bless him. 
Ryan weighed 40-0 which was 8oz more than Alan and after a couple of 30's weights, Chris Szakacs' one net went 43-7 (his other net had been "moused").
I was last to weigh and my net of big stuff went 20-8 but my F1/silvers surprised me a bit going to 40-8 for a total of 61-0.
So a little bit out on my estimation but it's easy to lose track of these small fish.

Full Result:

  1. Steve Burgess (peg 24) ...... 61-0
  2. Mark Radford (29) ............. 51-2
  3. Chris Gay (30) ................. 43-11
  4. Chris Szakacs (14) ........... 43-7
  5. Ryan Radford (2) ............. 40-0
  6. Alan Healey (4) ............... 39-8
  7. Rich Jones (11) ............... 36-0
  8. Lee Williams (7) .............. 35-8
  9. Mike Wilson (22) ............. 35-0
  10. Stevie Wynne (17) .......... 25-15
  11. Derek Lucas (12) ............ 10-7
  12. and 3 Dnw's

Next week we are down at Shiplate on Hawthorns which should be interesting as at the moment it's the only place outside of an aquarium where Alan Healey has any chance of framing!


  1. Steve you do realise a side tray can be put either side its all part of modern technology

    1. Never even gave that a thought, fabulous idea