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Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Avalon, 15 March / Sedges, 22 March

I never fished last week's match at Avalon due to the fact that it was Mothers Day and also number 2 son's 19th birthday and a responsible adult was required to light the candles.
My stand-in blogger also wasn't brave enough to risk a day's fishing either so that's why there wasn't an update last week.
For some strange reason though, (one too many Friday night Stella's)
I decided to issue a bit of a challenge in that if anyone caught more than 30lbs of silvers I would pay their membership.
- seeing as there are 30lbs of skimmers on every peg at Avalon (apparently)
So I was a little bit concerned when Vic Bush took me up on it, mainly as he owns the place!
And he came close to robbing me of my hard-earned, winning the silvers with a shade over 20lbs of skimmers and he may well have beaten the target if he hadn't have lost a good bream and a tench so he proved his point (almost) and generously stumped up the £20 membership money.
As it turned out the match was won convincingly by Adam Caswell from peg 11 With 61-4 caught on the lead with 8mm pellet so it's just as well then that I never went as that would have been another pound gone out of the Burgess family holiday fund which, thanks mainly to Alan Healey and Lee Williams is looking more like a weekend in Brean than a fortnight in the Maldives.

Full Result:
  1. Adam Caswell (11) ...... 61-4
  2. Mark Radford (5) ......... 24-14
  3. Alan Healey (16) ......... 21-11
  4. Vic Bush (17) ............. 20-9
  5. Ryan Radford (20) ...... 13-15
  6. Lee Williams (19) ....... 10-12
  7. Steve Sewell (22) ...... 7-2
  8. Matt Challenger (7) .... 5-2
  9. Julian Nurse (9) ......... 2-13
  10. Lee Waller (13) ......... dnw
  1. Vic Bush ........ 20-9
  2. Lee Williams ... 6-15
  3. Alan Healey .... 6-1
  4. Matt Challenger .. 5-2
  5. Mark Radford .... 4-12
  6. Steve Sewell .... 3-6
  7. Julian Nurse ..... 2-13

So on to today then and over the course of last week, partly due to a football match somewhere, we were down from 17 to just 9 of us fishing which was a bit disappointing but never mind.
I was expecting a nice spring day as had been forecast but instead it was dull and  a bit nippy in the North-Easterly breeze.
I put 4 pegs on the roadside bank, avoiding peg 30 (the corner of death) and on the Middle bank we had the 2 corners and the rest spread out in between.
With only 9 of us the payout was limited to top 2 overall and 1 silvers.
The last ball in the bucket gave me 38 which was ok but I'd have preferred to have swapped with The Gimp who was next down and not looking best pleased with corner peg 40 because it looked "carpy".
My peg had an small island to chuck to but I wasn't too bothered about it as the islands here tend to be occupied by the smallest carp in the lake.
So I untangled a waggler rod to fish banded pellet at various depths, a 4x18 rig with a size 16 808 for skimmers at 13m and a rig to fish down the margin at the bottom of the shelf in about 4' of water.

To kick off I fed 6 small balls of groundbait laced with dead(ish) maggots at 13m plus a generous cup of the same (loose) down the edge and pinged out some 6mm's for the ducks.
To pass the time while waiting for the skimmers to arrive I started down the edge with a couple of maggots on the hook, mainly to annoy the Gimp as I'd offered to give him a lesson in silvers fishing.
One cig and a cup of coffee later and the float hadn't moved which was no more than I deserved for my over-confidence and I abandoned the silvers fishing lesson and went out on the longer line which resulted in more of the same - not the greatest of starts.
But it wasn't all bad as my travelling partner, Derek Lucas had netted a carp on his first chuck so a trip to Curry Kings was still a possibility, briefly!
Elsewhere the Gimp wasn't setting the silvers world alight either, Alan Healey, my other nearest neighbour, was annoying ducks with a method feeder and also struggling. In fact, apart from Julian Nurse on 33 who was getting a few skimmers the only person doing anything significant was Ron Hardiman up in the corner peg 31.
About an hour in and I finaly started getting a few indications on the skimmer line and a hand-sized specimen soon set the ball rolling but after that all I could get was silly bites from tiny roach hanging on to the maggots.
Then I hooked into a better skimmer but it bumped off straight away due to the maggot folding over the hook.
With over an hour gone I still only had about a pound in the net and the bankside gossip was that Rocket Ron up in the corner (31) had been sacking up  from the start and had the match won already.
To make matters worse, Alan on 35 had abandoned the method feeder and gone out on his pole line and caught 2 carp in quick succession .... it was time for a walk, or should I say, time to see what Alan was doing that was different to me!
- which turned out that he was using soft pellet as (apparently) maggot doesn't work at Sedges??

Anyway, I'd seen enough and returned to my peg with renewed vigour and determination not to lose another pound coin to Mr Healey.
I refed the pole line and went out on the waggler with a 6mm pellet in the band and within a couple of casts the float buried and that was the start of a bit of a "purple patch" which saw about 8 or 9 smallish carp come to the net.
I did lose one much bigger fish that was hooked in the wrong end and was unstoppable, eventually breaking the line but these things happen.
In the meantime, Alan's run of carp had ended and he was now getting odd skimmers instead.
His neighbour, Julian Nurse was doing well on silvers catching skimmers at a steady rate, unlike The Gimp who was as predicted suffering carp "problems".
Derek's early carp had proved to be a false dawn.
Lee Williams, who had talked himself out of catching anything on Facebook over the previous few days, was doing just that .... catching very little (read how Lee caught very little here) but Matt Taynton, 2 pegs down on 26 appeared to be getting a few on the waggler.
I had no idea how Lee Waller was doing as he was hidden behind an island (it was a big island) on peg 40 but I guessed he would be targeting fry and suffering similar problems to The Gimp (why people fish for whitebait in carp pegs escapes me but whatever floats your boat I suppose )

Back in my peg and the sun had come out and the breeze dropped which seemed to put the fish off a bit, or I'd maybe overdone it on the feed but for whatever reason my run of carp had come to a bit of a standstill so I had another look down the edge where I'd been piling in dead (now alive again) maggots and groundbait.
First put in with 2 maggots on the hook gave up a small skimmer followed by a carp of about 10lbs which didn't realise it was hooked and waddled into the net in seconds which was good, and then it went quiet again (which wasn't)!
After a fairly uneventful final hour during which Alan switched his method feeder to a straight lead set-up and worryingly started to catch one after another, I dumped a cup full of meat down the edge and went over it with the same on the hook and with just 2 seconds of time left the float buried and I was into something quite significant!
Fifteen minutes of elastic pulling later and with the help of a nearby pleasure angler's carp net it was landed (all 18lbs of it)!
Unsurprisingly there were a few comments!!

Everybody else had packed up by then so Lee Williams came round and kindly  took over the weighing detail.
Best weight from the road bank was Matt Taynton who weighed in 58-4 caught mostly on the waggler on the deck with 6mm pellet.
Ron had started well but ran out of steam later on in the match and ended up with 51-11
Julian Nurse had done well with the silvers on peg 33 and weighed in 18-13 of skimmers on maggot and later on soft pellet.
Alan, despite the predictably pitiful underestimate, then put 64-9 on the scales and despite my couple of bonus fish I couldn't beat that and ended up with 58-4 and second ... another pound down but I did cancel that out with 2 from Lee Williams as I'd upped the stakes when he started whining about tendonitis!

Full Result:
  1. Alan Healey  (35) ...... 64-9
  2. Steve Burgess (38) .......... 58-4
  3. Matt Taynton (26) ............ 55-12
  4. Ron Hardiman (31) .......... 51-11
  5. Lee Waller (21) ............... 25-0
  6. Julian Nurse* (33) .......... 24-4
  7. Lee Williams (28) ........... 12-7
  8. and 2 dnw's

  1. Julian Nurse ...... 18-13
  2. Lee Waller ......... 10-12
  3. Matt Taynton ..... 8-0
  4. Lee Williams ...... 6-6
  5. Alan Healey ....... 5-14
  6. Steve Burgess ... 1-15
  7. Ron Hardiman .... 1-10

On then to next week and just to clear up any confusion there are currently 21 booked in for Campbell but this number will probably diminish over the course of the next few days (as is the norm).
And unless anyone says otherwise (and they won't) it will be an "any method" match ... ie: not pole only!

Monday, 9 March 2015

Emerald Pools, Ruby & Sapphire, 08 March

Seventeen fishing today which, as the title suggests, put us on Ruby with an overspill on Sapphire.
Unfortunately there was also an overspill of pleasure anglers on Sapphire and as we were unloading our kit a couple more arrived and skipped past the barrier to the area reserved for us.
Just as well then that the owners' daughter arrived in time to send them on their way before it was necessary to send in the "heavies" to give them the Dean Malin treatment and I was spoilt for choice in that department with both Lee Waller and Steve Sewell fishing today.
So with that small problem sorted we put 14 on Ruby and 3 on Sapphire and then I remembered I had split the match into 4 sections of 4 (Ryan Radford wasn't in the pools), so Alan Healey in his role as vice-chairman  went back round and took peg 11 off of Ruby and stuck it on Sapphire thereby justifying his position on the committee for another year!
The general opinion was that a draw on Sapphire would be preferred as the carp on there tend to be a lot bigger and the silvers likewise.
Ruby on the other hand has a big stock of carp but they average under 2lbs and anything over that is considered a bonus.
Silvers-wise Ruby contains a varied selection ranging from the normal roach, rudd, skimmers and tiny tench to assorted crucians, f1's, fantails and the like that the Gimp suggested should all count as carp to save confusion but that bright idea was quickly shown the door!
Somebody put forward the notion that the framing weights (1st, 2nd and top silvers) could all come off of the Sapphire pegs meaning that whoever came last on the lake could win the section by triple default, which was great news for Derek Lucas, but as it turned out Ruby fished better overall and especially for Steve O Toole who saw more elastic come out of the end of his pole than he has done in all the matches he's fished this year put together (and more most likely)!
Anyway, following the organisation dramas it was decided to put the start back to 10:15 which was bad news for the Gimp and for Simon Belcham as it doesn't take too long to set up one rig and add or remove the required amount of line and even I was ready with time to spare having only set up two rigs myself.
As per normal I had drawn last and for my sins found myself on peg 5 which was the second peg up from the corner of the back bank of Ruby and the first in my section which also consisted of Keith Meredith, Chris Gay and Mr Belcham.
To my left was the Gimp, fortunately hidden by a tree, and next to him was Mark Radford who was in a cosy little corner and on the golden peg (safe) yet again, luckily for Mark this corner looked a bit more inviting than "Wiggets Corner" on Sapphire which was where he drew in our last match and moaned his way through all six hours!

View across Ruby from my peg

That section also included Darren North and Mike Wilson and the third section started with Julian Nurse on the top end bank along with Lee Waller, Ryan, Steve O' Toole and ending with venue expert, Chris Szakacs.
The Sapphire section consisted of: Alan Healey and Steve Sewell in the mangroves, Matt Taynton on Lee Waller's island retreat and Derek Lucas in the peg by the gate that Chris Szakacs had last time round, so four good pegs any of which looked good for a decent weight.

Back in my peg and as mentioned previously I set up two rigs, one for open water at 11m where it was around 4 feet deep and the other for 14m as near to the island as the overhanging undergrowth would allow which was 3 feet (or so) deep.
Both rigs were finished with a size 16  808 to fish either maggot or soft pellet.
At the all-in I fed two open water lines with maggot and micros and a pot of the same over to the island which I intended to leave alone for as long as possible.
Starting over to the left in the direction of the aereator I had a couple of roach straight away followed by a small carp of about a pound and that pattern continued in the same vein for the first couple of hours, catching steadily but nothing like Steve O' Toole opposite who was catching carp one after another.
The Gimp next to me was amusing himself plundering fry and attracting carp and Mark Radford was getting a few but was also having a few torrid moments with fish taking him in the reeds.
Ryan however was doing better and giving Steve a run for his money but Keith to my right was struggling as were Chris Szakacs, Mike and Darren as well as Lee Waller who looked to be struggling to get a bite from anything up his end of the lake.
My biggest problem was with shipping my pole back. It was either a case of shipping on an angle through a decent sized gap in the trees or just jamming the pole between the branches behind, neither option was great and it was a lot worse when I eventually went across to the island as that meant breaking down twice.
I had tried feeding a short 2+2 line in front to make things simpler but this didn't produce anything although I never persevered with it.
So out to the island then and while trying to get the pole sections together I got myself hooked up on an overhanging reed which saw the end of the rig (and my best new float), so feeling a bit peeved and without a suitable spare rig to replace it I stuck a shallow banded pellet rig on instead and went out with a hard 6mm pellet set to half-depth feeding 4's.
First put in produced a nice big rudd, followed by a small carp and the next couple of hours was quite pleasant apart from the fun and games with shipping through the trees.
Approaching the last hour I reckoned to be doing enough to be ahead in my section as Keith was still struggling and although I wasn't too sure I assumed (wrongly) that Chris Gay and Simon never had much either.
To my left the Gimp was now getting properly "carped out" and it was looking likely that if he wasn't winning the silvers he would definitely win his section but 
there was no doubt who was going to win the match as Steve O' Toole had sorted that by about 1 o' clock and easily had doubled any one else's weight.
So I spent the last hour fishing the pellet rig down the left edge where I'd been feeding regular doses of pellet and maggot and spotted a few swirls. 
Fishing 2+2 with the float almost resting on the grass bank I had a bite straight away but the hook pulled out of that one.
Next drop was more successful but I then lost two or three more so I snipped the band off and switched to maggot on the hook which got me three or four more before the all-out which included my two best fish of the day.

Mike Wilson's day in the corner on peg 1 had never got off the ground and he'd packed up early and started the weigh-in and as expected John Bradford had won the silvers with 14-4 of maggot chokers.
His accidental carp had taken his weight up to a total of 44-11 which topped the section so the default section went to both Mark Radford and Darren North who both had 38-2.
My nets went 47-14 which I was happy with until we got to Chris Gay who somehow managed  48-2 for the section although I reckon he should have been docked 4oz for using a method feeder and another ounce for double-checking the scales.
The third section went to Julian Nurse with 37-0 by default as that section, and the match, was won by Steve with an awesome weight of 124-12.
Ryan Radford was 2nd overall with 51-13.
Over on Sapphire the weights were less than expected with Steve Sewell, Matt Taynton and Derek all weighing 30's but that just left Alan to weigh in and he came up with 49-8 for 3rd overall (2nd in the payouts) which completely pissed on my fire as they say.
On the whole though it was a good day's fishing and other than the winning weight, a close finish.

Steve O'Toole with part of his winning net

Full Result:

  1. Steve O' Toole (13) .... 124-12
  2. Ryan Radford (12) ..... 51-13
  3. Alan Healey (11s) ..... 49-8
  4. Chris Gay (7) ............ 48-2
  5. Steve Burgess (5) ..... 47-14
  6. Simon Belcham (8) ... 45-6
  7. John Bradford (4) ..... 44-11
  8. Darren North (2) & Mark Radford (3) ... 38-2
  9. Matt Taynton (16s) .... 37-4
  10. Julian Nurse (9) ........ 37-0
  11. Lee Waller (10) ......... 36-1
  12. Steve Sewell (17s) ..... 34-0
  13. Derek Lucas (15s) ...... 33-1
  14. Chris Szakacs (14) ...... 28-5
  15. Keith Meredith (6) ...... 10-12
  16. Mike Wilson (1) .......... dnw
  1. John Bradford ..... 14-4
  2. Derek Lucas ....... 9-9
  3. Julian Nurse ....... 7-0
  4. Alan Healey / Matt Taynton ... 6-12
  5. Chris Gay ......... 6-9
  6. Steve Burgess ..... 6-8
  7. Simon Belcham .... 6-4
  8. Keith Meredith ..... 4-0

Quote of the day ...
Darren North to John Bradford: "at least now that Avon Angling has shut down   my casters sink"

Monday, 2 March 2015

Landsend match lake 16 pegs

A fairly good turn out this week with 16 in attendance, probably down to the fact that the fishery has been producing decent results of late and even the open match the day before had given up a fair set of winter weights. Unfortunately asper last week for the majority of the field it was a proper grueller! not really sure why it fished so hard although there was very little colour in the water or it could just be down to the fact were all crap! hence the blog this week will be rather short as theres not a lot to write about.

Anyway messers ( Austin ) Healy and Caswell were in charge today and they spread the pay out paying a top three, two sections 1-13 15-24 and a silverpool so everyone was happy.

The view from 5-11 and obviously the missing angler is Adam Caswell who to be fair did spend most of the match sat at his peg but only because with a half hour to go he was probably winning the section with a tench,f1 and one carp which basically showed how hard it fished as that was the story of most peoples match with solitary carp and a few silvers the main stay of most.
Si Belcham getting ready to plunder the silvers in peg 3 not that it worked out that way as acouple of small skimmers later and with a hour to go he'd had enough and had a early bath not that he was the only one, as long before both the Radfords had packed up and gone home followed swiftly by Lionel Legg.

My match was abit of a non event really drawing peg 5 I wasn't filled with much enthusiasm knowing that it had not showed a lot of form through the winter, my plan of attack was to fish 14-16 metres into the gap between the islands fishing caster for anything that swims but as it happened this became a non starter as the wind was howling through the gap making it hard to present but worse was the light conditions making any float impossible to see, so I settled for straight infront fishing at the bottom of the shelf, this wasn't exactly productive although in the first hour I hooked three carp two of which were fowled and parted company rather quick but the third seemed to be hooked properly but on shipping down to my top kit just fell off which I did curse just abit! anyway with 45 minutes to go all I had to show was a few perch and roach and a single f1, the weather then went nuts for twenty minutes the heavens opened with storm force winds that span me round on my box trashing my rig in the process at this point I turned round to Adam on 6 and told him i was packing up to which he kindly reminded my i was on the scales. Id fed a small amount of corn down in front of the pallet on peg four so killing some time before the all out i picked up my margin rig put on a bit of corn and shipped out and lowered the rig infront the pallet a few seconds past when out the blue the float buried! lifting into it several yards of elastic emerged and a few seconds later a seven pounder was safely landed much to the disgust of Adam next door! with the carp in the bag and the few silvers ment i just managed to scrap the section.

As it happened most of the action took place down on 15-13 with Darren North and Lee Waller taking first and second respectively, Lee catching four or five carp and Darren catching six or seven decent carp, i did ask them both how they caught, Lee confessed to fishing half a pinkie on a 8oz bottom on his top kit which i think equated to fishing pellet long to the aerator! Darren was slightly more forthcoming fishing castor shallow a metre of the far bank although he did have a large grin whilst explaining so make of that what you will.

Third place went to Lee Williams on 20 who instead of the obligatory one carp managed two! Silvers winner was mr Healy on 18 who spent most of the match fishing over to the bush catching 7lb odd of plip roach on some left over docks maggots and the other section was won by Steve O Toole on 19.


1ST,  DARREN NORTH      37LB 6OZ     PEG 15
2ND, LEE WALLER            22LB 2OZ     PEG 13
3RD, LEE WILLIAMS         13LB 12OZ   PEG 20
4TH, ALAN HEALY            12LB 10OZ   PEG 18
5TH, CHRIS SZAKACS       11LB 4OZ     PEG 5
7TH, ADAM CASWELL        8LB 8OZ     PEG 6
8TH, STEVE O TOOLE          7LB 60Z     PEG 19
9TH, STEVE WYNNE            7LB 5OZ    PEG 21
10TH, JULIAN NURSE          7LB 40Z     PEG 16
11TH, STEVE SEWELL         5LB 15OZ  PEG 24


Next week its back down to emerald pools and with better more mild weather forcast for the weekend it should be a goodun also theres the monthly meeting this Tuesday so come along and book in!!

Sunday, 1 March 2015

Viaduct, Match Lake, 22 Feb (12 pegs)

I'd love to go on for ages about how well this match fished but I won't because it didn't unfortunately.
No idea why really as the lake is stuffed with fish of all kinds including loads of F1's, usually reliable all year round, and plenty of carp up to double figures.
But winter has a habit of throwing a spanner in the works and it did just that today.
I was a bit surprised though when I looked out of the window to see a frozen fishing bus on the drive as the forecast was for wind and heavy rain all day, not to worry though as it wasn't long before it arrived in force.
No Derek again today so my travelling partner was trainee Match Secretary Will Dearlove (well he hasn't denied it yet), who kindly insisted on getting my breakfast at Shipham cafe .... And that was the hilight of our day (and Will only had a coffee)!

I drew the last ticket which gave me peg 50, an island chuck, and Paul in the shop reckoned it was one of the better draws.
 Chuck (tight) to the island with maggot on the hook for F1s and carp and fish 13m for skimmers as it's usually a reliable peg for these on the pole line, happy days then!

The bait lineup consisted of last week's leftover maggots (executed in the freezer overnight), a pint of immaculate casters from Scott Tackle on Soundwell Road, Kingswood BS16  4QP
(Other tackle outlets are available)
A tin of meat, cut up and untouched and an unopened tin of Aldi's best corn.
No live maggots due to the inclement weather forecast and the fact that I keep my seat box and bait bag permanently in the back of the fishing bus and it's only 2 weeks old so I could do without the usual fly hatch problems.
For company on the bank today I had Ryan Radford on 51 and Psv chairman Mike Wilson (briefly) on 49 who threw in the very wet towel by 1 o clock.
Going around the corner was Steve O Toole on 48 who also surrendered early. Although he did have the full force of the weather straight in his face which is never pleasant when you can't get a bite for love nor money.
And next to Steve was Alan Healey, more on that later!

Due to spending too much time in the shop absorbing Paul Greenwood's fountain of knowledge I only had time to set up a small cage feeder three times
(1st plopped into the lake before I'd finished tying on a connector bead and the 2nd got "tree-d" on the first attempt to clip up)  plus a 4x12 rig for 13m, or anywhere else, as the  depth was around 2½ feet all over give or take a few inches.

After dropping a couple of balls of caster-loaded groundbait on two lines at 13m
I started off on the tip with 2 dead reds giving the hordes of hungry skimmers a chance to move in on the pole line.
But despite my pinpoint casting accuracy, apart from a tiny twitch, it never moved for an hour during which time Matt Challenger had snared a good skimmer on the tip and Mark Radford had managed an early carp on the pole.
Out on the 13m line then and the blank was avoided by a microscopic roach.
And that's how the next four hours continued, a fairly steady stream of weightless roach.
Further visits to the island were unrewarded apart from a liner that looked suspiciously like it had been caused by a passing duck but I was staying positive.
With an hour to go nobody appeared to be catching much and a few had either packed up or were wandering around looking wet and bored.
Alan Healey then proceeded to land a big carp fishing long down the edge immediately cancelling out my collection of fry. 
Ryan also started catching across on the feeder with maggot, netting a couple of small F1's and carp.
With my collection of fry unlikely to trouble the silvers pool which was looking to be a race between Lee Waller and Matt Taynton, I was determined to rescue my pound from Alan and had a look down the edge to the right with double caster on the hook and started catching roach of a slightly better stamp (but still under 2oz) before the float slid away and plenty of elastic appeared.
I never found out what the culprit was though as it came off!
And that was as good as it got for me.

Alan's near-9lb carp together with his  3lbs of silvers was enough for first place followed by Mark Radford with a slightly smaller carp and the same weight of silvers.
The silvers pool itself was won comfortably by Matt Taynton with 7-12 
So as I said at the start, it was not a match to remember other than that Chris Gay weighed in more than Steve O Toole and therefore won the knockout, which I (and everyone else except Chris Gay had completely forgotten about) so well done Chris!

Full Result:
  1. Alan Healey (47) ....... 11-14
  2. Mark Radford (41) ........ 9-11
  3. Matt Challenger (52) ..... 8-5
  4. Ryan Radford (51) ........ 8-0
  5. Matt Taynton (42) ......... 7-12
  6. Lee Waller (40) ............ 3-8
  7. Chris Gay (44) ............. 3-4
  8. Steve Burgess (50) ....... 2-12
  9. Adam Caswell (43) ........ 0-8 
  10. and three dnw's

  1. Matt Taynton ........ 7-12
  2. Lee Waller ............ 3-8
  3. Chris Gay ............. 3-4
  4. Alan Healey / Mark Radford ... 3-0
  5. Steve Burgess ...... 2-12
  6. Matt Challenger .... 1-3
  7. Adam Caswell ....... 0-8

This week (today) is at Landsend but I'm not fishing so your next exciting instalment will be coming to you from the capable fingers of Mr Szakacs.