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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!


  1. weather's looking cock on for sunday......gales!!

  2. Just what you want on a pole only match

  3. 42mph according to bbc weather app
    That's just a stiff breeze!