Monday 4 December 2023

Sunday 03/12/2023 - Westerleigh Winter League - Round One - Taylor's Pool and Shipp's Canal

Every year when the bad weather starts, I ask myself why I don't go more in the Summer - definitely next year.

Last weeks match was a practice which was very useful in letting everyone know the fishing on Taylors Pool will very different this year!

The last four days has been freezing, so some extra layers today only for it to go mild leaving me sweating.

We fish four matches on each pool, so it doesn't Matter which lake you draw to start, just didn't want pegs 15 or 16 on Taylors. Into the the car boot and found peg disc 13 starting back at me - Oh yes 13 is a peg you don't want on Shipp's in the early matches - bugger.

Nice comfortable peg with a few well made steps down to the peg. Peg 13 is very shallow and was very clear today and could see the bottom two metres out. This would mean fishing long. Last year I drew it in the practice match and having tried the waggler to no avail didn't bother setting it up and knowing it was about the same 3 foot all over only set a 12x14 Winter Titan, to fish on two lines both at 10 metres one in front and the other at 2 o'clock to the right.

Fed the right side only to start, with some micro and DR's and with double on the hook and after 15 minutes had one micro Perch in the net. Now the rub on this peg is you can see all the better pegs which can be very frustrating being distracted by anglers striking and with most of them having a Carp or three in this time, knew the writing was on the wall as anticipated - going to be last on the pool. So a switch to GB and Pinkie on both lines caught small Ronnie's steady regularly switching. It wasn't until the last hour that by changing my feeding that my catch rate increased. I did have a 4 lb Carp and losing one fouler which would have given me some additional points - but I was resigned to my first dropper.

My all Ronnie catch weighed 5lb 12 oz which was second silvers weight on the pool by 1 oz  to Steve Rogers! However, Steve picked up second on the pool so a default silvers win for me - Perhaps peg 13 isn't that bad after all!!!! The Carp weighed 3 lb 12 oz and as expected last in the section. Hoping my back will be OK in the morning after swinging 10 metres all day. What was interesting when I returned the one Carp it stayed more or less where it would have been in the keepnet?

Shipps Pool was won by Bri Shanks (pictured with a 14 lb Common in his catch) with 79 lb 10 oz from peg 1. Bri caught 3/4's over using maggot hook bait over kindered micro and maggot. Well done matey.

Andy won Taylors Pool with a lowly 15 lb 1 oz from peg 26 - Andy had gone early so did know how he caught - Well done Matey.

The weigh sheet for Taylor's Pool isn't very clear - not a bad thing! Next match 17/12/2023 will I avoid pegs 15 and 16?

Back to the New Inn for a well earned pint.

Weigh Sheets:

Monday 27 November 2023

Sunday 26/11/2023 - Westerleigh Winter League - Practice Match - Taylor's and Shipp's

It's amazing how the weather changes at the start of Winter  league. Hard frost the day before and dank and dower today.

Breakfast at Staple Hill Spoons with Geoff. The microwave Chef warm's (nearly) it up in the same time it takes to nearly fry an egg. Still good value and quick.

Very overcast with a mizzle affecting visibility. It was to be like this on and off the entire match.

Wanted to avoid Taylor's pool especially my nemesis pegs 15 and 16 - just can't catch on it. Heart sank seeing peg 16 staring back at me. Bri Shanks was next door on 15. All the pegs on our bank were in with peg 19 having two pegs to his right and one to his left empty.

Got in a bit of a muddle tackling up, so not quite ready at the all in. Waggler set up, Short Ronnie rig and a 4x14 Winter Titan. Fed a short line and one further out at bottom of shelf for the Titan with GB and Pinkie. Started long and had a little run of Ronnie's and a Goldfish which count as silvers. Decided to put a smaller hook on and in the process trashed the rig - Oh "Snickers". As we know the substitute rig never seems to be the same. Only had one Crucian afterwards. Tried the waggler with LR's over pulted LR's had one tiny Ronnie and with Brian fishing 14 .5 metres over to the bar and struggling I gave it in. Put another section on and fed some LR's and micro before trying the Ronnie rig which did produce a small Skimmer and some Ronnie's but they didn't seem to like the GB so switched to loose fed Pinkie. Out on the new line and one more Crucian. So spent the last knockings on the Ronnie rig, but didn't expect any Silvers coin as Lee Waller on peg 14 was catch accidently Skimmers long at 16 metres on pellet for 6 lb 7 oz. As per usual the rain came down harder as we packing up - great.

My few silvers weighed 4 lb 9 oz for no where the two Crucians went 1 lb 1 oz. No sign of a Carp, Bri only had the two. Matey Bill Ferris could only manage 6 tiny fish for a DNW on peg 25.

The lake was won as expected by the two anglers with some room - Norman Ferris (pictured) on peg 19 with 25 lb 5 oz catching on pastey maggots (don't ask) fished short!! Geoff Francis (pictured) was a close second with 24 lb from peg 22 Geoff caught on worm at 11 metres.
The match was won by Bela Bakos (pictured with the Silvers winner) from peg 10 on Shipp's with 71 lb 10 oz. Bela fished long 1 metre off the island with 6 mm hard over 4 mm loose feed. Later going 16 metres down to peg 9 adding some more decent Carp. Well done Matey.

The Silvers went to stand in Paul Elms with a decent catch of Roach and a smattering of Skimmers for 10 lb 14 oz from peg 4. Paul fished mainly just off the island with maggot kindered in slop. Well dome Matey.

Bit concerning on how Taylor's pool fished.

Back to the New Inn with the usually suspects and a good laugh.

Weigh Sheets:

Friday 24 November 2023

Thursday 23/11/2023 - Bathampton AA - Over 55's and Short Walks - Withy Pool

Surprising good turn out considering how bad Withy Pool is fishing. Suspect the Biomass is still too high ๐Ÿ˜„.

I walked up behind the island to check the leaf situation - pegs 47,48 and 49 were iffy so these were left out. Peg 50 would be OK if the leaves stayed put!! Didn't want to draw there again at the moment.

Chatting with Barny he was spot on with his prediction of only 7 lb needed to frame.

Into the draw bag and couldn't believe to see peg 50 staring back at me - bugger, just recovered from fishing peg 49 Saturday. For company I had Mick Gale the 0.08 specialist on peg 51 - one of my favourite pegs.

Peg 50 is a peg you really need to fish long but is hampered by the Otter fence - you either go over the fence, break down or as I did ship along the bank. Choose the latter because from experience Saturday expected to catch small fish the other options were more likely to cause pull- outs.

Did set up the waggler and on hindsight should have initially fished the feeder - expect another bollocking from Rich Coles - next time! By time we started the waggler line was leaved out. So spent the whole match on the 4x14 Winter switching between 0.1 with 22 - 808 and 0.08 and a 22 green GP04 Kamasan - the lighter rig made no difference to my catch rate. The wind did change pushing the leaves up and down my peg. Overcame this by having two lines left and right using the clearest line as and when, bit of a pain. Fished Pinkie and GB on both lines for about 30 Ronnie's. Hooked what initially behaved like a big Skimmer until lifting the top set and could see it was a big Perch at the same time it ran towards the bank and broke 0.1! There is a lot of snags close in, which probably helped cause the break. This was to cost me second section. Hooked just the one Carp. With 30 minutes to go a dew started falling making shipping the pole sticky. Think we were all glad to hear the all out. 

Weighed 3 lb 4 oz which was disappointing didn't have a sign of any Skimmers I caught Saturday. This was about halfway - it fished awful. Most of the framing weights came by early fishing of the feeder.

The match was won by Tony Ponting (pictured supping a well earned pint) with 7 lb 3 oz from peg 63. Tony had 50/50 feeder and pole, with his catch being bolstered by a 3 lb Bream. Mostly caught on maggot and GB. Well done matey.

Back to the Compton with a full house of suspects.

Weigh Sheets:

Monday 20 November 2023

Monday - 20/11/2023 - Rig Connection

I have been using the rig connection as per picture top right. However, I recently purchase some top sets pre-elasticated as the picture bottom right.

Having tried the latter I've decided to change to this method as and when the current elastics require replacing for the following reasons:

1. Reduction in the number of "links in the chain".

2. Less harsh on the elastic - a top-set may not be used for some time, so with my original method the elastic is continuously under compressive stress, hence causing potential damage to the elastic knot, compared with the new method, which is in a relaxed state.

3. Reduces risk of the Dacron (Fly line backing in my case) going over the toss pot.

4. much easier to set up.

My existing Drennan connectors are easily utilised.

Sunday 19 November 2023

Saturday 18/11/2023 - Bathampton AA - Open - Silvers Only - Withy Pool

Aaron Britnell was running a Silvers open on Withy Pool on Saturday and with nothing on Sunday booked in. Started with a full house booked in, but faded away to 14 of us - shame.

Travelled with Kev Winstone today - thanks matey. So much better travelling with someone as it can be lonely.

Nowhere's fishing well for silvers at the moment so expected low weights - still no wind to get the fish moving.

Drew peg 49 behind the island in the gap peg for me today. Jason was on next peg 50 so good company - But company we both could do without - leaves in both our pegs stagnating due to lack of wind. 

Waggler and 4x14 Winter Titan. However, waggler produce one indication which was a bit disappointing as it could be fished in a area leave free. Fished two lines both at 10 metres with GB and Pinkie picking off the odd hand size skimmers, 1-2 oz Ronnie's and tiny Perch from both lines, the leaves dictating when to switch. As expected it was hard. At least only the one Carp to contend with. 

Whilst packing up matey Layton Palmer came round and offered to push my kit back to the van. However, I was able to do it until, unknowingly, Kev had the call of nature and had moved his van. On my return unloaded my kit next to the wrong van - twat. But a double bubble van.

I weighed 6 lb 2 oz which got me the section by triple default - who don't like a triple๐Ÿ˜.

Aaron (pictured with the runner up's) won the match from peg 46 with  a decent weight of 12 lb 3 oz. Aaron caught at 13 metres initially with caster taking 6 lb, later switched to maggot for the remainder of his catch. Well done matey well deserved.

Back to the Compton which was rammed so off to the Mughal Palace for a drink or two and a takeaway - love draft Cobra.

Weigh Sheet:

Friday 17 November 2023

Thursday 16/11/2023 - Ray's Rip Off - Windmill Fishery - Match Lake

Well done to Ray Bazeley for raising an enormous sum for the British Legion again this year - takes a lot of effort and time organising a 100 peg river match.

Peg 22 again for me - when are we going to get some steps for pegs 2 to 11?

Great company today with Rip Off on 23 and Geoff on 21. Some colour in the lake but with the shortage of wind it was going to be hard for most.

Had a phone call from various family member's - the St Brendan's bus had broken down (again) so delayed setting up in case I was summon to the rescue. All OK in the end.

Set up just the short Ronnie rig and a 4 x16 Winter Titan in 8 foot of water at 10 metres both to target silvers.

Fished pinkie and GB on both lines. Caught small fish short for about 1 hour, then went out long but was loosing small fish, reduced the size of elastic but still enough power to get the Common Carp out. Had one Ronnie and one decent Skimmer, followed by a near 10 lb Common and one about 6 lb both on 0.1 bottom!. Sat on this line for far too long in search of more skimmers. Spent last 15 minutes back short and had a run of Ronnie's and Rudd. Should have spent longer on it. 

The two Common's weighed 15 lb 10 oz plus 3 lb 9 oz of silvers which I didn't think would come anywhere as I could see Haydn Withers catching better fish on peg 25. So was amazed to find it enough for second silvers.

The match was on by Leyton Palmer (pictured with the silvers winner) with 92 lb 13 oz from peg 9. Leyton caught 50 % of his carp initially on the straight lead over to the island with double corn. The other 50 % came from fishing meat on the pole. Well done matey.

As I thought the silvers was won by Haydn with 6 lb 15 oz from peg 25. He caught on the pole at 10 metres fishing maggot hook bait.

Geoff and me rounded off a good day out by another visit to the Indian. The Manager has named us Chasni and Ramo after the meals we usually order ๐Ÿ˜„.

Weigh Sheet:

Friday 10 November 2023

Thursday 09/11/2023 - Bathampton AA - Over 55's and Short Walks - Withy Pool

Members can't get access to the fishery until 08:00, so with the draw at 08:30 we had the usual queue.

Seventeen fishing today so easier to peg three sections. The pool has gone clear due to the recent rain. No signs of feeding fish.

Peg 54 for me today. Thought I had an empty peg next door which would be desirable today, however, Mick Gale arrived next door and it was he that had the empty peg.

The North bank pegs - low 60's to the low 50's are all South facing and would have serious issues with the Sun today. Brought my old Sun glasses which helped with the Sun but could only see about 5 metres with them.

Set up allsorts except the feeder which on hindsight should have been the only thing I could use sensibly - stubbornness.

Started short on caster hoping for some decent perch - just indications so switch to LR's on the hook and caught about 12 small Perch which more or less cleaned out the line. When out 3 metres with GB and Pinkie and had a couple of small Ronnie's and a few more tiny Perch. The Sun combining with the wind caused silver ripple making visibility near impossible. Out to 5 metres with a very light rig had a couple more small Perch and a Ronnie. It was almost impossible to fish. Most of the bank was on the tip, where I should have been. Chucked the waggler out to 20 metres but it was a strain seeing it. I decided to pack up early to get on with the weigh in just as the heavens opened up.

I weighed 1 lb 12 oz for last but one.

The match was won by Andy Greenham from peg 42 (pictured with his catch) with 7 lb 6 oz. Andy had a few of decent Perch on caster and some small skimmers on Pinkie and GB. Well dome matey.

As anticipated it fished hard and if it wasn't for some decent Perch showing in most nets the weights would have been a lot lower. BAA netted out the small silvers last year which are just the fish to feed under todays conditions giving bites throughout the match.

Back to the Compton with a few of the usual suspects missing. However, we did get our spot by the  wood fire.

Pick up my prescription glasses Monday so won't bother fishing until then.

Weigh Sheets: