Thursday, 25 February 2016

Thursday 25/02/2016 - Coffin Dodgers - Silvers League - Round Four - Windmill Fishery - Match Lake

The forth match in this league and the fourth heavy frost. That said better than the wind and rain of recent days. Luckily the Lake wasn’t frozen, plus the water had retained some colour.

Our turn in section D. Apparently Paul Barnfield couldn’t make it today, shame I as I have enjoyed his company in the section. However,recently retired Bin Man Shaun Putney deputised for him. His drawing arm was as good as Barny’s, pulling end peg 28. For me I drew peg 24 in between two Dave’s. In my section on my left was Dave “Hacker” Wride, the poor fellow had a horrendous never ending hacking cough. Dave Willmott on peg 23 was the first peg in C section, an angler I haven’t seen for twenty plus years standing in for holiday maker John Smith, nice to see Dave making a come back - watch out.

I didn’t mind where I drew in this section (excluding the end peg). I set up the usual Ronnie rig, but unusually set up a small waggler on the 4 metre Drennan whip, finally a 4x18 Jolly to fish at 9 and 10 metres in 9 foot of water.

The bait tray was a bit barren even for me, live red maggot and GB – simple.

I fed the both the Ronnie line and the 9 metre line with GB laced with maggot, starting on the Ronnie rig with 0.12 G-Line to a 20- Tubertini 808 hook. I caught Ronnie’s well during the first hour albeit they were very tiny. I kept trying the 9 metre line with the same terminal tackle and caught the same size Ronnie’s which was too slow at that distance. All too soon the Ronnie’s became difficult to catch with finicky bites – suspected marauding Carp.

Had a go on the whip with maggot over loose fed maggot and had another run of small Ronnie’s on the drop – until I hooked a Carp which I didn’t see with it breaking 0.1 G-Line. After a top up I tried the 9 metre line and low and behold I had four Skimmers in the same number of put in’s. As quickly as I got exited the Skimmers and everything else disappeared from my peg. For the last hour it was a struggle adding just a few ounces to the net.

Dave Wride had been catching similarly to me plus he had his third Tench in this league. I knew it was close between us but was worried about the size of that bonus Tench.

I weighed 9lb 3oz to pip Dave for the section win by 5oz. This also put me second overall. Another very enjoyable day at this fishery.

The match was won by Tony Rixon (pictured right) with 11lb 7oz from peg 6. Tony caught on various baits including soft pellet… see his blog for the details.

Section Payout:

Weight Sheet:

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Thursday 18/02/2016 - Over 55's and Disabled - Dave Crookes Fishery - Withy pool

Haven’t been fishing The Dave Crookes Fishery recently but decided to give Withy pool a try as it has been relatively left unscathed.

It was a really bumpy ride down the roadway to Withy Pool – need a 4x4!

I think 24 anglers are too many for this Pool, with 20 being about right, thus being able leaving out some of the less fancied pegs. Into the draw bag and out comes disabled peg 66. Happy with this as it can throw up either Carp or Skimmers. That said due to the opposite leafless trees it is very difficult to see the float, especially today with the sun being in and out – out with a yellow float was fine, with the sun in I couldn’t see any colour float tip too well.

As the peg is in a leg I only had peg 67 for company, Bailiff John Fry. However, I did have an intruder from time to time coming between us throughout the match who I caught on video below.

For me an 1 1/2 hours to set-up is far too long so had plenty of time to wander around and take the pictured right.

I set up the Ronnie rig for caster over caster and as it transpired I was too optimistic which produced absolutely nothing and was soon abandoned. The rig I fished for 99% of the six hour match was a 4x16 Jolly – 0.18 G-line main line and a 0.14 G-line hook length supporting a no 16 -808 Tubertini hook.

I fed a line at 10 metres with wetted micro and the 11.5 metre line with GB laced with maggot. I started on the semi-hard pellet hook bait at 10 metres and didn’t have any indication whatsoever, having a painful first hour fishless and freezing cold as I was in the shade. I tried the 11.5 metre line with maggot over the GB and likewise didn’t have any indication. Meanwhile John Fry was catching Skimmers regularly on expander pellet. Back on the 10 metre line but this time started to feed maggot and with double Maggot on the hook and had my first bite, a 2oz Skimmer. I decided to keep topping up with a smidgen of micro and a red maggot. I soon had another bite a 2 oz Ronnie. It then went quiet for a while until I had my next bite a 9lb 13oz Common Carp which was carefully played to the landing net. Over the next four painful hours I landed another 5 small Ronnie’s.

With my back aching from holding the pole for lengthy motionless periods, I was glad to hear the all out and start moving around.

I weighed 10lb 7oz fro fifth in the match ad last in the envelope brigade.

The match was won by Ray Bazeley (pictured right with the Silvers winner) with 22-04-0 from peg 44 which included a 16lb 6 carp and a couple of decent Skimmers.

The Silvers was won by Tony Rixon with 12lb 4oz comprising of mainly four Bream to 4lb…see Tony’s blog for more details.

Withy pool fished hard today with many DNW’s primarily due to the weather conditions being against us with rain all day yesterday and a frost come morning and bright sunshine all through the day.

Full Result:

  1. Ray Bazeley 22-04-0 peg 44
  2. Pete Greenslade 15-0-0 peg 46
  3. Tony Rixon 12-04-0 peg 60
  4. John Fry 11-10-0 peg 67
  5. Mike Nicholls 10-07-0 peg 66
  6. John Smith 10-06-0 peg 56
Top Silvers:

  1. Tony Rixon 12-04-0 peg 60
  2. John Fry 11-10-0 peg 67
  3. Barry Fitchew 07-06-0 peg 41
Weigh Sheets:

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Thursday 11/02/2016 - Coffin Dodgers Silvers League - Round Three - Windmill Fishery - Match Lake

Third match this year and the third time we had a frost to start the match. Our turn in C section pegs 19 to 23. Anglers have been hoping for end pegs, today I was hoping for either peg 23 or 22. Time to select from the pegs spread out on the draw table and peg 22 sticks to my mitts. Happy with this primarily because I had a good day on the peg back in the early autumn (Lake pictured from behind my peg below centre). Dave Wride drew the end peg 19 which I think he fancied. I was sandwiched between Bill Ferris on my right and mumbler Dave Haines on my left - peg 23.

Bait table – Semi Hards (not used), wetted micro and live wriggling maggot – no caster!

Even though we had a frost the water colour was reasonably coloured thus expected the Ronnie’s to feed. I wasn’t sure about the Skimmers though because it was bright sunshine and little to no covering wind. I set up the Ronnie rig to fish up wind (mistake this time). Tried a 4x16 Jolly but it was too deep so switched to a 4x18 Jolly. Simple.

I fed the Ronnie line with GB laced with maggot followed with the same feed on the Jolly line at top-set plus two.

I knew in a few minutes that the Ronnie’s weren’t really going to be chasing the hook bait. In the first hour I had three tiny Ronnie’s an 8oz Mirror which I thought was a Perch, followed by a very pretty 5lb Common. Out on the Jolly line and two lost Carp later I decided to deploy the decoy – a pot of wetted micro at top set plus three to distract the Carp, which I kept topping up throughout the match. After a re-feed of laced GB on the Jolly line I had a good second hour catching Ronnie’s and small Skimmers with a couple going 12oz, this spurt I now put down to the wind picking up a tad and picking up the into wind tow. For a reason unknown to me the tow stopped and the rig was gently going with wind. For the next two hours I struggled but kept feeding small balls of laced GB. The last hour wasn’t much better picking off the odd small Skimmers and Ronnie’s. Ten minutes to go I hooked a 2lb Skimmer and as luck would have it I struggled a bit up-shipping the top set and let the lacy slack and it was good buy Skimmer – bugger.

I finished the match with 5lb 1oz for a section second and fifth overall.

The match was won by Steve Dawson (pictured right) with 6lb from peg 8. Steve initially tried the expander pellet followed by caster to no avail. He caught most of his fish on maggot over GB, loose fed maggot and Micro fished at 6 metres. Steve is a good thinking Silvers angler.

I think it’s a fair venue for Silvers as the weigh sheet supports.

Finally Dave Wride was last seen wheel spinning out of the car park without a bye or leave - bad losers!!

Full Result:

A Section - Lee Waller 4-09-0 peg 32
B Section – Steve Dawson 6-0-0 peg 8
C Section - Paul Barnfield 5-14-0 peg 20
D Section – John Barker 5-08-0 peg 27

Weigh sheet:

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Bathampton Angling Association - Christmas Matches - Kelston to Newbridge

The Bathampton AA Christmas match was the biggest Christmas match in the country and the one we all looked forward to fishing and of course winning, with top match anglers from all over the country taking part. You had to be quick to get a ticket. During my time on the BAA committee and later as joint Match Secretary with good friend Richard Weeks (Willy Weeks younger brother) we pegged a few of these matches the biggest we did was a 400 pegger which ran from Kelston to Newbridge – both banks plus an unfancied section at Claverton Long Meadow. Whatever the weather or river conditions the match was never cancelled or moved – until!

The largest BAA Christmas match entry was 516 anglers this was due to the match entry being unrestricted with anglers arriving from across the country. The BAA committee ensured everyone who came had a peg. Mike Jones vividly recalls this match because all the Bathampton Team and Committee members had to forgo their places in the match and leaving Mike to put an extra 50 pegs along the Shallows and Saltford road side whilst anglers were arriving. Some pegs were less than ten foot apart in places. BAA learned the lesson and from that date all matches was ticketed. Mike was peeved he didn’t get to fish that day. This match was won by local tackle dealer Bert Scott (Scotts Tackle original owner – Pictured right collecting his spoils) won from Rotork section with 8lb 10oz.

I fished these matches for over twenty five years trying to win one. I didn’t manage to fish them all. I did have some near misses and managed to get in the top twelve on at least 50% of the matches I fished. There are plenty of memories for me. I recall watching anglers being pulled across the river on a large pontoon outside Sheppard’s Boat House. I wanted to have a go but was never drawn of the far bank before it was scrapped. (Pontoon in use pictured right - Kelston Bank to Saltford Bank).

One near miss match was just after the river at Newbridge had been deepened and straightened, plus the River Authority had also introduced Chub. I drew a peg one above the Railway Bridge at Newton St. Loe far bank which meant crossing the railway and clambering down the high pulpit. I had landed two chub and a Roach on the float for 2lb 8oz when I hooked another 1lb Chub which shed the hook. Bad angling, putting double wriggling maggots and a small size 20 hook, doubling over was the cause. The match was won with 3lb 4oz! Low weighs back then.

Another fond memory was when my son Steve fished his first Christmas match as a junior. We both had drawn the Saltford far bank Steve just above the rowing club house and me opposite the tunnel Saltford trees. The match had started by the time I got to my peg and found myself next to matey Bryan Britt. It was a bit of an half hearted attempt and after catching two Dace I decided to pack up and watch Steve. He was fishing the waggler down the middle in 14 foot of water. He had caught one 2lb Skimmer and was persevering to catch another. Alas he caught no more but won the junior prize – an enormous hamper and a jar of Frumps. He was also well up in the match but didn’t do the pools (well I didn’t). I was really proud of him. Back at the prize giving in the old Sheppard’s Boat House where there must have been over two hundred anglers on the top floor the whole building was swaying, got Steve and me out as soon as possible. This was the last time the building was used for the results. Mike Jones was second in the match from Kelston straight with a low 3lb weight, but the jammy bugger picked up first pools money by default.

The worse weather match was when I drew opposite peg 54 at Newbridge. Not living far from Kelston I put my local knowledge in to practice and parked in one of the lay-byes in Kelston Manor and walked to the river albeit down a very steep hill. I found my self opposite matey Topper Haskins. An hour in to the match the heavens opened with heavy flaked snow. After to hour of snow both Topper and I looked like snowmen. I had two Gudgeon and started to worry how I would get back to the car. So I chucked back and started up the steep hill which was very slippery and arduous. I think I made the right decision as the roads were getting really bad around Kelston. Ray Beazley was BAA match secretary at the time and although the match finished at 15:00 it wasn’t until 19:00 before Ray got the result out.

Some of my recorded results:

The last match I fished was moved from the river to the clubs still waters due to the river being in flood. The venues of the three Huntstrete Lakes and Newton Park weren’t to my liking (how things change). In fact I was really pissed about the change and voiced my objection because I always fancied my chances on a flooded river especially this venue. Matey Ian Spriggs talked me around so I purchased a ticket. Having wound myself up everything was half hearted. The word was the winner would come from the middle of the dam wall at Newton Park. I drew Newton Park but second peg up the near side just above the monk. Matey Gordon Jones was next to me on the first peg. There were a few Carp slayers on the Dam wall. In the bait bag there were no pellet, just casters, maggots, worms, hemp and ground bait. To be honest when it came to catching Carp I didn’t have a clue. It had to be pole only as I would be casting across the anglers on the dam wall. I started at 9 metres on caster catching small Skimmers and Roach. Gordon Jones was doing likewise. Halfway through only a few Carp had come from the Dam wall most by thrashing around with pellet wagglers. I decided to change to feeding Hemp and fishing whole worm over the top. Strange I know but that’s what I done. Following this switch I had five Carp before the final whistle. I weighed 39lb 9oz for my first Bathampton AA Christmas Match win. Some write-ups follow (miss spelt my name plus lots of other errors in the reports).

I mentioned the largest BAA match so in fairness have to mention the smallest which was in 2015. For some strange reason the match was “organised” split between the river and the K&A Canal. I understand that six anglers choose the river and five the Canal, making a total of eleven anglers. How this once mighty match angling club had changed.

I believe Colin Golding holds the record for the most wins with two. One of his wins from peg 14 one below Newbridge Road Bridge which included a 10 lb Pike, followed by Mike Jones with one win and two seconds.