February 2015. Hi all fishing lovers, Today’s post is “February 2015”. We hope this post is a good choice for you, all fishing lovers.
Shearsby Willow, peg 25
Gutted ‘cos peg 1 was one of the three left in the bag when I drew and it won the last match. Still I thought 25 not too bad as it is opposite 1 and allowed me to fish towards the corner. Though with peg 26 (end peg) to my right I couldn’t get as far into the corner as I would want.
Set up five lines. In front at top five (7M?), full depth. Same distance to my right where the depth was the same just before shallowing slightly. Same distance but up that slope where the steeper margin slope starts. 11m in front of peg 26 and 13m just past it in around 2 ft of water. Thought I may draw some fish from the corner. Also set up a close in roach rig.
My reasoning for not going long in front was that I didn’t have an island, the chop on the water might have given the fish confidence to come closer and the gusting wind would be tricky at 13m (and I’m lazy).
On the first two lines fed a slop of Swimstim green and a few pinkies and a couple of pellets. Fed pellets & maggot sparingly on the other three lines.
Didn’t have a bite on any of these lines for three and a half hours. Decided then to risk going to 13m. Wind had eased slightly. Fed micros and maggot sparingly but didn’t get any bites in around 20 minutes. Got the roach rig out and took a few from the left, probably around a pound in 15 minutes. That got me thinking that I should have done this all match. 4lb an hour, five hours = 20lb and second on the day could have been mine.
That line then dried. Bigger fish may have moved in but didn’t take the bait. Back on the 13m line on maggot and glory be I had a carp around 4lb. Another followed a few minutes later and I was dreaming of a last half hour storm up the leader board. Wasn’t to be. Had a late skimmer and that was it. 9lb, all in the last 75 minutes.
Should have fished 13m all day and stuck to it. Double what I did catch in just an hour and I would have made second.
One day I will master this place. Until then……
Decoy Cedar, Peg 11
Planned my normal attack of pellet feeder and pole at 11 and 7 metres. Found three spots on each pole distance that I could fish with just one rig. Perfect for me. In last month’s blog I mentioned trying a new float, the Ugly Duckling. Used it again in these near-perfect conditions. I’m getting to like these floats and have ordered a few more before Buygoodtackle shuts down. With its quite thick, bulbous tip you can dot it down so even a millimetre of dip will show as a disappearance.
Switched to the pellet feeder cast just short of the far bank but again had nothing for half an hour. Back onto the pole and I began cycling through the baits – pellet, maggot, corn (meat is now banned at Decoy). Tried a tiny grain of corn and had a fish of just over three pound. I could tell by the comments on the bank that it was a hard day for everyone. Lisa however had managed a couple of fish on the feeder so I knew I was playing catch-up to her, still it was good to at least have one fish in the net.
As usual when its a slow day I couldn’t decide whether to stick with pole or feeder and so swapped around between the two. I had had a fish on the pole and was getting some signs of fish activity there. But I wasn’t getting proper bites. In the middle of the match however I had three fish in successive casts on the feeder. Then, trying the ridiculous on a day like this I tried a 6 mil expander over the swim at 11 metres that I had fed heaviest. Float buried and another carp went in the net.
With 90 minutes to go I had an estimated 15lb. I decided to give the pole a go for thirty minutes and then fish the last hour on the feeder. Had a fish on the pole and a few little dips of the float that didn’t develop into bites. Switched to the feeder and had nothing in 15 minutes so back on the long pole line where I stayed for the last 45 minutes. Managed two further fish for an estimated 21lb. I didn’t think I had caught Lisa up who’s weight I estimated at 25lb.
Section A on Elm weighed in first and my partner Perry took the section and match with 31lb, an excellent weight on the day. I weighed in 23 and Lisa an ounce or two over 25. The next best was a 22. So I was second in section and third overall. Again a day where I didn’t know if I was pleased to be third or disappointed not to have managed the one extra fish that would have given me second or even the three or four more that would have seen me win. Still a good team result with 1 & 2 in respective sections.
All credit to Lisa who has been fishing about a year. The wife of one of our existing members, she handles the gear well and does as her partner tells her. She has had some good results since starting fishing matches.
Perhaps if I had sat on the feeder for the whole of the last hour? But I do find feeder fishing boring and love the pole so much it always skews my decision making. Must try harder.
And a result in the evening. I didn’t find my missing box leg but there were a pair on EBay that I bid on and won for just over £5 including delivery. The missing leg turned up a week later, it had fallen behind my tackle room door. The door is rarely closed with anyone in the room and I hadn’t thought about looking there when searching.
*Our club changed its rules a few years ago to allow feeding before the start. The idea being that we want to have as much fish-catching time as possible. And this way hopefully we start catching sooner after the all-in.
Decoy Willows, Peg 15.
Set up a pellet feeder and a cage feeder for groundbait. Pole line would be topkit+3 where I plumbed up and found I could fish four spots about six feet apart with the same rig. I also set up a margin rig to fish in front of the very close platform for peg 14. Depth here was an inch deeper than out in front so I thought fish may be tempted in.
Spent the rest of the match switching around spots and baits trying to get bites. Groundbait feeder produced nothing but had the very occasional fish on both pole (4 mil expander) and pellet feeder (dead reds). I was still getting bites on the pole that I didn’t connect with. Then one time when I did the line had wrapped around the tosspot and the hook pulled with no elastic to cushion it. Strange thing was that of all the spots I fed and fished I only got bites in one place.
Looking back I probably overfed. By my standards I didn’t feed a lot at all. But perhaps it was a day for the smallest tosspot I carry and being patient. The thing that confuses me is that my local commercial style club water will take a lot of bait even when cold. On the previous Wednesday I was catching where I had fed a 200 mil pot of micros. I then think Decoy will be the same given the probably higher stocking density. Having mulled it over I wonder whether its the fact that as a match venue the fish are well fed anyway while on my club water with very few matches less is fed by the pleasure anglers and so the fish are that bit more hungry and accepting of more bait.
I was also very surprised that despite the strong left to right wind there was no tow. That may have added to my feeding too much as it didn’t spread. Also I should have switched my back-up pole rig. I had set up a heavy float that I use for poor conditions. Given the lack of tow I probably could have used a 0.2g float as an alternative to the 0.5g that I used most of the day. The lighter rig may just have helped me hit the bites I missed.
Ended with eight carp and two skimmers for 13lb 8oz. John next to me on peg 16 had 13-7. I was fourth in section that was won from the flier with 80lb. Second in the match was a mid thirty from a sheltered peg. A couple of twenties and then it was weights similar to mine. So I was right that twenty would have been a good weight on the day.
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