Tuesday, 13 September 2016

MFS - Munkees vs Shandies, The Glebe, 10th September 2016

A night at the Longshoot was reasonably quiet and I slipped away early in an attempt to dodge the hangover that normally follows.  It didn't go un-noticed as Andy T busted me.  Sorry matey ;-)

The final day and it would be Munkee vs Shandee.  I did not want to be on Pool 4!

The Draw
I was second to draw from the Munkee bucket/ cardboard box.  I drew Pool 4, Peg 75 again!!!! I was not a happy camper to say the least!  Plenty of sympathy from the lads and plenty of micky taking too...

My neighbour was Callum's secret friend Tom... the less said about that the better!  Only kidding lads.

Well I didn't need to worry about my rigs and also the reel was still clipped up and I knew exactly where I had fed the previous but I needed to do something different today in an attempt to get a better weight.

So I added the following lines:
  • Bomb and Pellet
  • Long Pole towards the aerator

Today the weather had turned and it was raining but the positive was that the wind direction had changed towards my corner.  There were plenty of fish showing 3/4 of the way across on the bomb line.

Carpy Marty gave me a tip to feed 6mm pellets, overcast with an 8mm pellet and then drag the bait back if no bites were forthcoming.  I'd try that later.

I started on the feeder again and was rewarded with an early fish on the third cast, but after an hour it was still a struggle to get in touch with the fish.

I tried the bomb and pellet line and the trick that Marty had mentioned.  First drag of the bait, settling the rod and it was ripped out of my hand by a very angry little carp.  A few more fish in the net.

The previous day was repeating itself and it was tough to get a positive mental attitude to today but Tom wasn't ahead of me, so I kept the faith and dug deep.

Hour 3 I tried the 5 metre line and finally connected with fish, although it was those pesky Perch again!  Admittedly one Perch was around a pound in weight.

The last couple of hours Tom was bagging on his 5 metre line and I was struggling.  I could only get a fish on that line using the bomb over it and dumping a lot of corn on the line, a trick I'd learnt a few years back.

My bomb line was proving more consistent and so I stuck on this until the all-out.  Big thanks to Ruddy who was on Pool 5 and asked if I was bagging up every 30 minutes or so... Kept my spirits up matey!

40lb 8oz getting batter by Tom who put 76lb on the scales.  Well fished mate!  A Shandee victory.  However, the final results were a Munkee victory overall by 1 point!!!  Well done Munkees, we have the crown back!

Unlucky Shandees, well fished.

I double my weight from the previous day and managed to shake off the depression of fishing such a horrid peg.  Should I have tried shallow tactics?  Maybe, but I opened up more lines today that I normally do in an attempt to beat Tom.

The bomb line proved devastating for Tom and he battered me to submission with a 5metre line and bomb/pellet combo!  Just makes sure you use heavier elastic matey.

My Shandee competition

MFS - Munkees vs Shandies, The Glebe, 9th September 2016

Day 2 and I'd had a quiet night with the Mercers, Daddy May, Ben and Chris Martin which of course I received abuse for at the draw for "not being social" and missing the Longshoot drinks!  Typical, but at least I didn't have a bad head! ;-)

Today was the pairs event, it would be myself and Scone vs Hathers and Pikey!

The Draw
Pool 4, where nobody wanted to be and I had the end peg 75 where Russ Shipton was on the previous day.

I had Pikey as a neighbour for the day.

Feeder line to the far bank, pole line at 5 metres and down the right hand margin.

The wind was blowing away from this peg and I was faced with flat water, with the all-in I went straight on the feeder line, feeling pretty confident after the previous day.

Second put in on the feeder and I had a fish in the net, maybe today wasn't going to be too bad after all?  Well, after the first hour I had two fish in the net... oh dear.

Pikey wasn't fairing so well either with only one fish to his name.

Hour 2, was even worse with nothing at all.  I was chopping and changing my feeder line, 5 metre and margin line in an attempt to get a bite.  Pikey I think still only had one fish.

Hour 3, I hooked two more fish on the feeder which magically managed to snag me up on my keep nets.  It's amazing how a fish can hook you up on a snag or your keep nets.  These two fish would cost me!

Hour 4 and 5, I managed a larger carp from the feeder line which gave me some confidence.  I also had some silvers, mainly Perch from the margins, just as Russ had the day before.

The final hour, Pikey started coming back at me (as he does).  I managed a total of 6 carp and some silvers.  We know that Sconey had caught a rather large carp and that Hathers was admitting defeat.  Had I beaten Pikey for a Munkee point?

20lb 4oz and again being beaten by Pikey who had 27lb!  This turned into a Munkee vs Shandee tie!

Overall Result
Munkees are still in the lead, just 9.5 vs 8.5!

When Roy Marlow says, "you don't want to be on this peg" you know that it's not a great area!  My parting words where, "please don't let me be on Pool 4 tomorrow".  I'd be eating those words tomorrow!

More Pictures...
My nemisis


Oh dear!

A mix of a horse and a dog... (in the background, not Sconey)

Monday, 12 September 2016

MFS - Munkees vs Shandies, The Glebe, 8th September 2016

The motley crew gather!
Munkees vs Shandies 2016 and it was an early start from London to get to the 9:15am draw.  2015 saw the Shandies victorious so the Munkees pride was at stake to regain the crown!

It was great to see everyone, including the usual abuse from everyone!

Today would be the team event, 4 vs 4.  The team I was in consisted of Scone, Andy T and Andy Kinder.

The Draw
The board that was chosen consisted of pegs on Pool 5.  My placement was Peg 84 which was a long feeder chuck and also next to Pikey.

We would be fishing 11am while 5pm, so plenty of set-up time with the draw being at 9:15am.

I set-up the 11 foot extreme feeder rod with a 30gram gripper mesh feeder.  I also set-up a 5m and margin pole line.

Bait for the 3 days consisted of worms, casters, 6mm, 8mm and micro pellets, sweetcorn and dead reds.

Immediately out on the feeder for a number of reasons.  To get used to the bigger cast and to try to dominate the line as I knew Pikey wouldn't be on that line.  Again taking my lessons from Andy Kinder I was casting every 3-5 minutes and trying to get the feeder to "plop" into position next to the boards opposite.

I was into fish on my second and third casts with six fish on the clicker in the first hour.  Pikey commented about last year, "remember you got off to a good start last year only for me to get you i the closing hour?"... yes I remember it well!!!

I kept going on the feeder as the fish were there and the bites continued.  That mantra in my head, "don't come off feeding fish"...  Unfortunately this blog post may seem a bit boring as I stayed on the feeder until around 2:30pm when the line died off.

I had a 30 minute look on the 5 metre and margin lines which resulted in a few fish, but nothing regular, so back on the feeder line to an instant bite.  My day was going really well until I broke the tip of rod...grrr...

A quick re-rig and a new tip installed and I was straight back out there against the boards with carp coming to the net.

The final hour and Pikey was coming back into things (as he does)... a few larger fish on his paste line.  The all-out was called and I was sure I'd beaten Pikey!

I tipped 110lb on the scales, way off my 140lb estimate which of course became the butt of many jokes.

Pikey did me by one fish and weighed in 113lb.  Nice one Pikey!  This resulted in a Munkee Shandie tie on Pool 5

Overall however the story was a little different!  Go the Munkees, a 4 point lead!!!!

The feeder line kept on giving so I had to stay on it.  I really felt that I couldn't have fished the peg any other way.  Pikey of course was very relieved that he didn't get beaten by Lewy...  that wouldn't have served him well in the bar later! ;-)

More Pictures...

Gold Valley Lakes, 2nd September 2016

A pleasure session today at Gold Valley with Nathan before he went back to college.  Today my aim was to fish for the skimmers and large slabs while I Nathan was going for the carp.

The Pegs
Gold Lake on the canal side was our chosen area.  Permanent pegs 6 and 7.

Nathan had a chuck to the island point and also in front of the island.  My peg next door had some open water to aim for.

It's great to see the plant life around Gold Valley coming back after it's major hair cut some years back.

Nathan set up a 10 foot bomb rod with a hybrid method feeder on it and later he would use the pellet waggler rod.

I set up the pole at 12 metres, using Nick Gilbert white amber core to a 0.6g Drennan AS2 float on 0.18 line to a size 16 pellet hook to 0.13.

Baits were Gold Valley 6mm and micro pellets together with some sweetcorn.  I also decided to try some bream specific groundbait (i.e. non fishmeal).

Comfortable and smiling!
The Session
Before I'd even set-up anything Nathan was straight into a lovely common carp.  A bit of a mishap with the landing net detaching from the landing net pole was quickly resolved and the first fish was in the net!

Getting my peg set-up I potted in 3 ball's of groundbait together with some sweetcorn kernels.  If I was in a match I'd rest this line before going over it but as it was a very relaxing day and Nathan's mum Tracy had prepared us a bumper feast of bacon rolls, chocolate biscuits, pastries and drinks it was more than appropriate to start on them which was very welcome after a night out catching up with Dom Murphy and his pals in London town!

While my line was resting and we were eating, the tip ripped round and Nathan hooked carp number two which was quickly in the net.

I'd rested the line for 30 minutes and finally dropped the float over the area starting hook bait was sweetcorn.  I'd prepared some 4mm and 6mm expander pellets also but I wanted to try sweetcorn first.  The idea was to remove all fishmeal products and see what happened.

I had a couple of nudges and finally changed to a 6mm expander pellet.  The float went straight away and a small skimmer was on.  This repeated itself with smaller fish for around 30 minutes until finally I hooked a bigger fish of around 2lb.  This was my quarry!

The line seemed to die off, so I topped up with groundbait and started to catch more smaller skimmers but no more larger fish.

Meantime, Nathan was trying in the margins as there were a couple of large carp very close in.  My conclusion was that the fish were in the margins as there was only a couple of pleasure anglers on the lake today and the fish weren't pressured like they would be in a match.

My skimmer line die off again, so I started a new swim at the two o'clock position and pinged some 6mm pellets over the line.  Float disappears and the first carp was on!  5 more carp and it was clear that I wasn't getting any more skimmers!

Nathan hooked another couple of fish that came off, but he landed another nice carp to take his tally to 3 fish.

We were due to pack up at 3:30pm and my float dipped on what was to be my "last chuck".  Some beast torn off with the elastic bottoming out and the pole bent at an alarming angle, then the unthinkable happened.  The elastic slipped through the puller bung and up the top two taking the PTFE bung with it!  Bad angling as I should have checked the knot below the puller bung.

All elastics have been checked now.  We finished our feast, packed up and headed home.

The lack of fishmeal clearly had an effect.  The skimmers are so used to it that I could not get any fish until I switched to the expander pellet.  I believe the groundbait held the skimmers, but they were looking for the fishmeal content.

Pinging pellets soon brought the carp in and it was fun taking them on lighter gear that normal!

Thursday, 1 September 2016

Kingsland Reservoir, Coates, 26th August 2016

Day 3 for Mark and I and we had chosen to visit Kingsland Reservoir.  Large carp would be the quarry and after the previous day of lazy carping today would be a bit different.

Kingsland provides their own nets so we would have an opportunity to weigh our catch to determine the winner.

We picked swims on the first bank of the large lake near where we had fished back in 2014.

The fish were milling around so line would be quite simple.
  • 6 metre line shallow
  • Top Two margin line
Bait list, casters, maggots, worms and pellets, plenty of pellets.

The fish were cruising around, so it made perfect sense to start shallow with a banded 6mm pellet.  Mark's tactics were the same.  The first fish came after 15 minutes of pinging pellets and slapping the float.  After an few hours I had a few fish in the net but the shallow approach wasn't consistent.

The weather was very warm and the fish were cruising however they weren't taking bait from the top which was tested by flicking in bits of bread.

A new approach was required.  Mark had opted for a pole rig at full depth, I decided to break out the bomb rod and drop it over the 6 metre line.

The bites were savage to say the least and a few fish simply broke the 0.20 hook length with the banded 8mm pellet.

As the day was coming to a close, it was time to try the margins.  The margin lines at Kingsland are very deep, almost 6 foot at your feet and the fish know exactly where the reeds are.  I used double worm and I soon had black elastic streaming out.  I lost a few fish and Mark also lost some large fish too.

Our day was done and it was weigh in time.

We used a crude method of weighing the nets by hooking the last bottom ring of the keep net.  My weigh went to 59lb 8oz.  Mark's went 59lb which was very close with such a rough estimate.  Mark kindly gave me the victory which levelled the score at 1 all for 2016.

Blue Bell Lakes, 25th August 2016

Getting back into fishing with Mark we had decided that a few days of match fishing and a day of big carp fishing.  We decided to try Blue Bell Lakes again, mainly due to the shop on-site and it's locality to Mark.

I'd packed the Carp gear, but to be honest, not checked everything as I was confident it was all in the rod bag and haversack.

We picked Blue Bell Lake and swims close to where we fished it before with the willow trees opposite.

I thought I'd packed well, but the first thing I couldn't find was the rod pod!  With the weather I opted for a zig rig on one carp rod and seeing the large shoal of bream I broke out the pellet waggler rod.

Well, before the all-in we could not find the landing net handle, so off to the shop and Mark purchased a new net and handle... more about this later.

I cast the zig rig to the centre of the lake and the plan was to leave it for an hour.  Meantime I was pinging 8mm pellets to the large shoal of bream trying to snare one on the pellet waggler.

There were 3 guys who had been at the lake all week, one of them came over for a chat.  They had seen plenty of fish but hadn't had any runs or fish!

Today could be a long day!  I was on the pellet waggler for around an hour and finally I hooked a bream!  It was my turn to call for the net boy!

The fish came in without any issues and after weighing it, a new personal best, only 5lb 6oz, but a PB is a PB!

I had a few knocks on the zig, which were clearly line bites.  Re-casting the zig rig further towards the willow trees as plenty of large carp were crashing over there.

I fished the pellet waggler for the whole day, but unfortunately no more bream.

Mark in the meantime hadn't had any bites either.  It was a lovely relaxing day, but no fish came out.

As bream didn't count today, no carp it was called a draw today.

The massive shoal of bream cruising up and down was just too tempting.  Pellet waggler tactics worked and proved a good distraction while waiting for any carp.  The only problem is that I only had one carp rod out at a time.

Still another day of learning.  Tomorrow it would be back to carp on the pole at Kingsland!

New PB!!!