Maver match this Partridge lakes

June 28th , Covey 5 peg 105

Covey 5

Covey 5

Well where do i start about todays match but i am sure the fishing gods was against me because on the way to the venue i couldn’t find a cash point that was working and i just managed to scrape together enough money for the pools , then on the way their i had just got to the golf course near Partridge lakes when for some reason my car span off the road went straight through a temporary fence just missing two trees and ended up within yards from the edge of the pond . Luckily my car seemed fine and i was expecting a puncture but the tyres looked ok and i was at a puzzlement on just what had caused my near crash maybe i had aqua planned across the road in the wet weather but i managed to get back on to the road and arrived at the complex a bit later than i had planned , i was understandably a bit shook up but surely nothing else could go wrong ! ! !

After booking on for the match i joined the draw for the queue and you always get more big names present than on the fisho qualifier  because it costs a bit more and you are guaranteed a ticket if you get it early enough , i felt rather out-of-place competing against these sort of anglers but nothing ventured nothing gained . When it was my turn to pick i pulled out peg 105 on covey 5 not where i wanted to be as this lake is full of smaller fish around the 8 oz mark and you would need to catch a hell of a lot of them to get a decent weight ,my peg wasnt that far away from where i had parked so i decided to leave the car where it was and walk over with my tackle and when i got their it looked rather promising with an aerator-point of an island-long margin to my left and an empty peg to my right which had a few mud banks for me to target .


I had decided on just three areas to fish today so as not to confuse myself and these where ;


Far bank slope

Mud line far bank

Two rigs would cover all these ;

2ft deep , 0.3 matrix series 3 float with a spread bulk of number 9 stotz and my main line was 0.12 garbo with a 0.10 garbo hook length , hook was a size 20 gamma pellet .

1ft deep ,0.3 matrix series 3 float with a spread bulk of number 9 stotz and my main line was 0.12 garbo with a 0.10 garbo hook length , hook was a size 20 gamma pellet .

With the rain continuing to pour down my bait brolly would be required to keep everything on my side tray dry ;


1 pint micro coated with ground-bait

1 pint sloppy ground-bait

3 pint mixed maggots

small tub of 4 mm expanders


When the all in sounded i went onto my 2ft far shelf line first because i wanted to leave the mud bank for later when the weather had hopefully improved and warmed up a little , i tapped in a full kinder pot of micro+sloppy ground-bait and lowered my 4mm expander amongst it . It didn’t take long before i was into fish and by regular feeding plus lift-dropping i had thirty small f1s in the first ninety minutes which was a fish every three minutes not a bad catch rate but could i keep it up , the answer unfortunately was no because  the fish backed off so i tried fishing against the mud bank and this is an area of my fishing that i am struggling with at present because i miss too many bites and when using soft pellet i was constantly re-shipping in wasting too much time in matches .


After three hours my catch rate had really slowed i only had forty fish in the net and was really struggling too put a run of fish together tight across , it was beginning to do my head in and it was about this time that i noticed my top kit was starting to stick into my number four section due to the wet conditions which was something i hadn’t met before with my other poles and it wasn’t long before it was stuck solid with a fish on the end of my rig and upon trying to free it i managed to break it clean in two , i lost the fish as well which just about summed up my day but they do say bad luck comes in threes .


I did have a spare number four in my holdall so i could carry on fishing but by this time my head had gone totally , i did catch a few bigger stamp fish by potting in maggots on to my left hand margin but i was just wasting time to the all out and i re-tried fishing long again but i couldn’t get them to settle so with forty minutes to go i decided to call it a day and began packing up . When the scales came round my 52 fish went 35lb getting comprehensively beaten on both sides but that’s what happens when a club angler goes to contest these big matches and i think i need to improve a lot before i give them another try next year , i have noticed that i am not catching the same amount of smaller fish that the others anglers do on here and this is obviously one of the many reasons that i am struggling to compete at present .

I had thought about giving the evening open another try at Sycamore fisheries which i have done reasonably well on before fishing the Thursday open at Partridge lakes but I’m not sure yet , i think that i might benefit from some far bank fishing practice before i go back to fish on the coveys as you really need to master that style of fishing or fishing shallow to do any good on their .



Sycamore fishery

Peg 18 Silver birch , 24th June

A bit of a different blog for you to read today , as i was left at home looking after the kids while my wife was away at work which meant i couldn’t get on the bank as much as i would have liked , so i light-heartedly suggested to my little lad who is only six if he wanted to go fishing for a few hours and to my amazement he jumped at the chance because  i thought it would be a real challenge dragging him away from his tablet and cartoon network but he wanted to go and he was even telling all his friends at school how he was going to catch a whopper .


On my way home from work i picked up a pint of maggots and sorted out a bit of fishing gear it will make a nice change travelling light and not taking a barrow load of gear , so after picking up the lad from school and getting changed then off we headed to sycamore fishery but after the recent sunny weather it was forecast for a few scattered showers so when it started drizzling on the way their i wasn’t expecting it to last long .

There was only a couple of other anglers on the complex and i presumed most people would be watching the england football team get beat in the world cup yet again , so we settled on Silver birch and with little in the way of breeze we choose peg 18 .There was plenty of fish topping along the far-bank but that didn’t concern me because i couldn’t see my little lad holding 13 meters of pole , so we concentrated on just the top kit and after plumbing up to find the required 3ft depth off we started .


After getting my little lad in a comfy place for holding the pole i began flicking a few maggots at the float every few minutes the fish were swirling even at this close range and the float was getting knocked about all over the place , so i decided to try shallow which worked a treat and he began getting lots of bites . Of course he was missing plenty of them because he was using the top kit more like a whip , the ones he was connecting with were the ones that ripped his elastic out and the look on his face the first time the top kit nearly got pulled out of his little hands was priceless .


After about twenty minutes the rain started getting a bit stronger and i was just waiting for him to ask to go home but surprisingly he ignored it all , as he was really enjoying himself and apart from a couple of lapses of concentration when he got side tracked with the ducks he couldn’t take his eyes of the float . Towards the hour mark i felt he had caught enough and didn’t want to over do it on only his second ever fishing trip , he was definitely getting in the swing of things and even saved the biggest fish for the last with a 2 lb mirror carp making its way to the net .


All in all he caught ten f1s plus a 2 lb stockie for about 15 lb and he really enjoyed himself which made my day so i treated him to a mcds on the way home , i am not going to push him into going again but if he asks to go then i will be keen to take him because i never had anybody show me how to fish and it would be nice to have another angler in the family .


Off to Partridge lakes on Saturday to contest the Maver match this which was a bit of a last-minute decision but i just hope i make a better job of it this year and lets hope for a good draw .

Maver match this

Well after seeing on facebook that their was still some tickets left for this weekends Maver match this at Partridge lakes , i took the plunge and got myself one . Its a bit steep at 50 quid a ticket but i haven’t been fishing for a couple of weeks so thats kind of paid for itself and am looking forward to it , lets hope i can do better than last years attempt at it where i struggled on Holbar .

Widdows fishery

15th June , peg 9


Well here we go again round five of Balmoral Angling Clubs season and after a win in the last round i was looking forward to this one as its one of the venues on our match calendar that i have done well on with two consecutive thirds .

The lake has 36 pegs which enabled me to give most anglers plenty of room , it has an island which you can reach at 16 meters and it has a good stocking off carp around the 3lb mark with lots of skimmers to catch too .As you can drive to every peg on here and with everyone present we decided on an early draw , when it came for my turn i was left with peg 9 right at the side of the car-park which is far from where i wanted to be but everyone in my section was in the same boat .


On my last two matches here i have done really well targeting the skimmers and with the recent changeable weather i felt that was the best way to fish it today ,especially after finding out their had been a match the day before which was only won with 25 lb and as you all know waters don’t fish well when there’s two matches in as many days .

I decided to fish a few areas ;

16 m , i had 2 rigs for this line one at 1ft the other at 2ft both had 0.12 garbo direct to a size 20 f1 hook with a micro bait band and my elastic was red matrix

5 m ,i used a 0.4 scone float with 0.12 garbo line direct to a size 16 gamma pellet hook with red matrix elastic

Margin ,i used 4×12 malmam diamond float with 0.14 garbo direct to a size 16 guru lwg hook and my elastic was yellow matrix .


My bait was ;

1/2 kilo worm

1/2 pint micro

1/2 pint ground-bait

1 pint hard 4mm pellets

When the all in sounded i put two big pots in on my 5 meter line which i intended to leave for an hour for the skimmers to settle and so while i was waiting i went across to try to catch a couple of bonus carp , i started on my 2 ft rig because it wasn’t that warm yet and their hadn’t been any carp showing along the far-bank either .

I began by pushing my rig tight under the far bank rushes and then flicked four pellets at the float every few minutes,but nothing seemed to be working and thirty minutes in i was still bite less-fishless . Every one else seemed to be in the same boat apart from the lad to my left who was catching the odd fish on his feeder ,i began getting the odd indication but nothing i could hit so i decided to change to my shallower rig a bit earlier than i had planned .


This produced a solitary carp about 2 lb which but up a fight of a fish three times its size , so in the first hour i had not a great deal to show for it but neither had anyone else and it was fishing extremely hard .So i decided to go on my skimmer line which i had hoped would be my main line of attack but unfortunately it didn’t turn out that way , first drop and my float slid away so i counted to three before a firm strike which saw a tiny perch fly out the water followed by another of similar size .

I decided on a refeed to try to draw some fish into my peg this kind of worked with a few small 8 oz roach , when i did finally hook a big skimmer it did its best dolphin impression shedding my hook in the process , after two hours i was going nowhere fast with less than 3 lb in the net .So i decided on a new swim at 11 meters and fed this swim negatively with a kinder pot .

I went back on to my far-bank without success but when i noticed bubbles coming up from my negatively fed line , i took the opportunity to drop my rig over the top and this did not produce the hoped for skimmer but another small carp . A few small silvers came to the net so i risked another feed and it seemed that i had stumbled on a pattern with the bites because after 15 minutes i would hook something decent just as the bubbles appeared before the small silvers returned .

You will notice that i said hooked and not caught because i had two more big skimmers shed the hook plus i lost a 5 lb ghostie which somehow managed to break my main line above my float just as i was about to net it and after putting another rig on – plumbing up it disrupted my swim which never recovered because it never produced another bite.


So in the last hour i concentrated along the far-bank hoping for a few carp to boost my weight and their fore push me higher up the match placings , i missed a few bites but did manage another solitary carp around the 3 lb mark . When the all out sounded majority of the anglers were relieved because it had fished extremely hard as you can tell by the weights and my near 13 lb was good enough for sixth but if i had landed the lost fish it would have raised me up to third .

Having had a few late nights and early mornings leading up to the match definitely had a baring today on my decision-making because ;

1, I knew before the match that expander was working better than hard pellets tight across and feeding also seemed to make the fish back off .

2, The lad too my left fished the feeder across all match managed third so with the lack of carp showing shallow and the fact he was catching , it should have made me set up a deck rig for tight across especially after seeing the lad to my right catch four carp in the last hour doing just that .

3, Should never have big potted knowing the match result from the previous day and two negative lines would have worked better .

4, With more composure i might have landed a couple of the lost fish .

Any way we now have a mid-season break before some more dodgy matches that I’m not looking forward to fishing , but i am still second on the overall club points not bad after missing one match but i can not afford to miss any more because it’s getting tight at the top and i am having another enforced break while the wife works away it is something that i will just have to get used to but at least it will give me time to recharge my batteries .

1st Dave peg 19 , 41lb 12oz

2nd Aidy peg 7 , 27 lb 14oz

3rd Terry snr peg 35 , 26 lb 2oz



Todays club mat…

Todays club match at widdows fishery was absolutely lousy , with 3/4 of the anglers failing to get over 15lb . We found out that their was a match on it the day before which was won with only 25 lb , so our winning weight of 40 lb wasnt to bad from venue regular Dave who also has a commanding lead at the top of the table and im just scraping in at 2nd not to bad seeing as though i have missed a match . The blog will be put up over the next few days and points table has already been updated .

Sycamore fishery

Peg 16 Silverbirch , 11th June


After the weekends some what strange match i was back at Sycamore fishery to try to put a few things right but yet again i was left with more questions than answers just your typical f1 match then .After the previous days thunder-storm which will have hopefully freshened up the water a bit , today we was faced with warm weather , blue skies and little in the way of breeze which isn’t actually what you would like for fishing but can’t do much about that .

I had heard rumors that their might be a full house for todays match so i was a little disappointed with the 21 we had attending and it seems to be attracting some better class of angler these days too which can only help in improve your fishing technique .But at least we would all have a bit of room and come draw time that’s exactly what i was looking for , with the club not turning up at the weekend to fish Silver birch it meant that it was a week since anyone match fished it and i was eager to give it a try , so when it came to my turn i choose peg 16 halfway down the straight with two empty pegs either side .


My match plan was the same as always on here , start in the margin before going across and spend the last 40 minutes back to the margin but i had decided to try a different bait combination today ;


margin 2.5ft deep ,0.3 scone pellet float with 0.10 direct to a size 20 gamma black hook and elastic was red matrix .

far shelf 2ft deep , 0.3 matrix series 3 float with 0.12 garbo line direct to a size 20 kamasan f1 hook and micro bait band , my elastic was orange matrix

tight across 1ft deep , 0.3 matrix series 3 float with 0.12 garbo line direct to a size 20 kamasan f1 hook and micro bait band , my elastic was orange matrix .



1 pint mixed maggots

1/2 pint micro dusted with ground-bait

1/2 pint soaked 4mm pellets

small tub mixed hard pellets

As the all in sounded i went onto my left hand margin and began flicking maggots at the float , it didn’t take long before i had my first which was a f1 and the fish seemed ravenous because i had 17 over 8oz plus a dozen silvers in the first hour but i noticed the bites beginning to slow down so i was eager to give the swim a rest and not take the last fish from it like i did on my last evening match here .


My next line of attack was at 12 metres which was half way up the shelf at 2.5ft depth , i haven’t been happy with how my expander fishing has gone lately so i decided to change to a 4mm banded pellet also i had given up on the sloppy ground-bait too and gone for lightly dusted micros which could be made into a ball , i hoped this would make a difference to my far bank work which has let me down on my last few visits here .

I taped in a kinder pot full of micros and followed it down with my banded pellet , the bait hadn’t even touched the bottom before my elastic ripped out of my pole and a nice sized stockie made its way to the net , i then had a variety of species before it started slowing down and i probably wasted twenty minutes without changing swims which cost me a fair few fish because i worked out that 15 fish an hour would be needed for a good weight as they are slightly smaller on Silver birch .


After setting up a new far bank swim to my right i was back catching again but they was a smaller stamp of f1 , after two hours i had 27 fish over 10oz which was slightly off my target number but it was more than i caught all match on Sunday and it just shows how different these evening matches are .When i started missing bites on this line and then bumped of a small skimmer i decided on another change of rigs , so i cupped in some loose ground-bait tight against the far bank and gave it twenty minutes to settle while i was waiting i re-tried both of my far shelf rigs although i caught they wasn’t coming quick enough for my liking .

When it was time to try my far bank line i didn’t exactly get the response i had hoped for , first put in i had a barbel then a small f1 and then a crucian but i was having real trouble hitting the bites and kept coming back with silk weed on the bait band .Enough was enough i needed to catch some quick fish and as we were fast approaching the last hour out came the margin rig again ,i had been continuously feeding this swim with a variety of baits since the match started and maybe i had overdone it because it was black with fish .


I was struggling to get my rig to the deck and when it did i was getting liners left-right-center , a change of shotting pattern for on the drop produced a couple of stockies and going shallower didn’t work so i bulked up my shot near the hook length and went a couple of inch over depth , i vaguely remember Jamie Hughes fishing like this in the Fisho final last year for the barbel and it worked for me today too because it was barbel central on my margin and when i worked out what the best shotting pattern was , they were literally pulling the elastic out before i could strike and in the final forty minutes i had 15 of them upto 1.5lb .


As the all out sounded it was obvious that it had fished better than at the weekend and rumour was their had been an 89lb from Davids pool which came as a real surprise , there was also two mid 50lb nets from Rowans and my 47 fish mainly barbel was enough for 47lb and second best weight from Silver birch behind an 87lb from peg eight . So as you can see it fished extremely well and a quiet forty minutes mid-match cost me a chance of framing because 60lb was well within my reach from this peg and i cant wait to give it another try as it is becoming one of my favorite venues but it might be a few weeks as my wife starts working away again for a fortnight but before then i have a club match at widdows to contend with so lets hope i can keep my good form for one more match anyway .


Sycamore fishery

Rowans canal peg 28 , 8th June

After yesterdays eventful match in the supercup i decided to try to get on to the open match at Sycamore fisheries it had been limited to just twenty pegs because a club match was booked on the other water , after a few phone calls i managed to wangle first reserve and hoped that i would get on as i fancied a bit of f1 fishing today back to normality .

On the day of the match i woke to find blue skies and not the forecast grey-miserable day , i just hope it will stay that way to give my stuff chance to dry after yesterdays soaking . When i arrived at the venue i was surprised to find very few cars knocking about , not the amount i was expecting with two club matches plus an open taking place .

When i got to the cabin i had to wait till 9am before confirmed on to the match and their fore at the draw i was last to pick so was left with peg 28 not the area i wanted to be in but at least i was fishing and my mate had drawn the next peg too so at least we could have a chat if we were struggling , i had decided to target the venue like i did on Weds but with it being windy today i stepped up a touch on the float size .


Margin , 0.3 scone pellet float with 0.10 garbo line direct to a size 18 gamma pellet hook and elastic was red matrix.

Far slope line where it was 2.5ft deep , i used a 0.3 matrix series 3 float with 0.12 garbo main line which had a 0.10 garbo hook length attached was a size 18 gamma pellet hook and elastic was orange matrix .

Far bank where it was 1ft deep , i used a 0.4 matrix series three float with a 0,12 garbo line direct to a size 18 gamma pellet hook my elastic was orange matrix .


1 pint red maggots

half pint micros

half pint 4mm pellets

half pint sloppy ground-bait

small tub expanders

When the all in sounded i started on my usual margin rig loose feeding half a dozen maggots on to my left and kinder potting a ball of ground-bait rolled in micros every five minutes towards my right , it took about ten minutes before my first fish which was a little tench about 4 oz and three more followed before i had a stockie then a barbel all on my maggot line . I kept trying my right hand pellet swim without a single indication and i will be thinking about that before my next match on here because sloppy ground-bait-micro combination hasn’t worked on the margin for the last couple of matches here .

After my first hour i put just 5lb in the net things weren’t going great especially in my margin  but word around the match was that it appeared to fishing extremely hard which is only to be expected with all twenty pegs being taken , i tried both my far bank swims and i would get a few bites the odd fish but nothing was working very well my mate on the next peg had started catching shallow so i decided to follow suit and a new rig needed to be set up ;


1.5ft deep rig with 0.12 garbo line direct to a kamasan f1 hook which had a micro bait band , my float was a 0.3 matrix series three float and orange matrix elastic .

I began loose feeding at five meters because the wind prevented me going any further as it hindered my grouping of the pellets , it took about 15 minutes before i had my first fish which was a nice sized stockie but the bites were few-far between and you really needed to work hard by tapping-slapping to even get an indication , i think that by slapping and not feeding got a better response which meant that you was just picking up the odd fish swimming through the peg rather than attracting a shoal of them and it appeared that the recent heavy rain , drop in temperature had turned the fish off feeding today .

The second-third hour was pretty much uneventful with little being added to the net , i felt that i was well off the pace needed to frame so decided i would concentrate on trying to make the far bank swims work which would be handy for future matches on here . I cupped in some ground-bait-micro tight against the far bank and left it to settle while i went back on to my 2.5ft line where i kinder potted in a mixture of maggot-micro-capped with a nugget of ground-bait.

Every time i put in some feed i would get a quick indication but i needed to be really careful because the bites were just tiny dinks and very hard to connect with , i managed to pick up the odd fish but they didn’t want to settle and after thirty minutes i thought it was time to try tight across in 1ft of water this produced a couple of small f1s-crucians but it was a struggle there too .

It seemed to me that the 2.5ft rig was the best depth on the day so i decided to concentrate on this for the rest of the match both near and far slopes , i had continued feeding my margin and could really do with it working but just like every other swim you would get a few bites before they backed away but by rotating between the two swims i picked up a couple of fish from each although it was very hard work .

I was now into the last hour and after all the recent matches (6 in 10 days) started to catch up on me with my concentration beginning to ebb away this coincided with things starting to go wrong ,first my elastic began sticking which resulted in a couple of costly lost fish as you will find out later and then rather bizarrely i hooked something on my top kit that felt really heavy hugging the bottom it kind of plodded off to the middle of the canal then snagged me up on my near slope , not once did i get it under control and it resembled the fight of a big bream which of course aren’t present in the match waters ! ! !

I managed a couple more fish before the all out and i ended up with 18 f1-stockies plus a few silvers for just short of 23lb which surprisingly was good enough for fourth only 3oz from third and 2lb from second , it seemed that all the noted better areas did not produce today and overall it fished extremely hard , to make matters worse the club didn’t turn up to fish the match on silver birch so we was all tightly bunched up for nothing , on the plus side i sorted my sticking elastic because i found a tiny stone stuck in to the ptfe bush which prevented it working properly when i packed up .

I am having a few days off fishing this week but will be back on the bank Weds for another go at the Sycamore evening match lets hope i can improve on my two consecutive fourth places on their .