Partridge lakes fishomania qualifier

14th june

I had booked the week off earlier in the year because i had planned on contesting the pole fishing masters at tunnel barn but due to various family reasons i couldn’t make it and as there was still tickets left for the fishomania qualifier at Partridge lakes so i decided to jump on that , although i had planned on not doing any  this year because last years attempts were pretty woeful and i didn’t even get a day’s fishing on any of them due to them being extremely tightly pegged , at least Partridge lakes was big enough to cope with the pressure well i hoped that it would anyway .

The weather during the week had been really good almost summer like and today was no different with blue skies plus temps in the mid twenties although we did have a bit of a blustery breeze to contend with blowing towards spey so at least we knew which area of the coveys we wanted to draw as like most f1 venues the fish definitely follow the wind , i arrived at the fishery with plenty time to spare which gave me chance to catch up with a few lads that i hadn’t seen since my last match here on the Preston pairs at the beginning of May so you could say i was a bit out of touch .

With the draw fast approaching i joined the queue towards the rear and awaited my fate , when it came round for my turn i managed to pull out peg 64 on covey three another bad peg on a fisho qualifier but i decided to give it a go because with a few no shows you never know i might have a bit of room , but on arrival to my peg i wasnt that lucky as it was peg two miss one in my area and i was also one of only a couple that had not got a ripple so things didn’t look too promising but i would give it my best shot anyway .

On settling in at my home for the next few hours i had quite a few options to go at but didn’t want to confuse myself so just set up ;

Mud bank across in 18 inch and i used a 0.4 muddie float with a bulk of number eight stotz above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

Two shallow rigs set at different depths and i used a 0.1 md mini mag float which had a six-inch 012 garbo hook length that had a micro bait band attached so i could fish banded casters .

Pellet rig for in front of the far bank and near side reeds in 2ft depth and i used a 4×12 roob float with a spread bulk of number ten stotz above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

Bait for the day was ;

3 pints of casters

2 pints of crushed expander ground-bait

1 pint of micros

small tub of 4mm expanders

When the match started i began on my top three at the side of my left hand reeds in the margin i began by feeding a small kinder pot off crushed expander ground-bait to try to draw some fish into the swim it also didn’t have a great deal in the way of food content because i wasnt sure how the f1s would respond to the pressure , after tapping in a nugget of bait i lowered my rig in over the top and i got indications straight away not long after i had my first fish , in fact the first hour went extremely well one of the best i had ever had at partridge lakes as i put 15 f1s in the net all caught from the same swim and i thought that i might be on for a good day but how wrong was i because my match went downhill fast as the bites tailed off .

With bites grinding to a halt close in i decided to give my across pellet line across in front of the reeds a go and with them knocking like mad i expected to catch a few fish so i tapped in a few micros and lowered my rig in among it , i caught a couple of stockies straight away before i began foul hooking a few and it seemed that they was hiding in the middle of the reeds  , so i went back across with my shallow rig and started pinging half a dozen casters towards them this caught be a couple of f1s but they wouldn’t settle due to the lack of breeze .

I dropped onto my mud line although i couldn’t get as close to the bank as i would have liked as there was a few reeds and crap on the bottom plus i struggled to find a decent flat spot , i began by kinder potting in ground-bait because with me fishing in slightly deeper water i didn’t want to draw too many fish in the peg which could cause chaos with line bites etc , things didn’t really work out for me on this line because i just couldn’t get any indications there so i decided to bite the bullet and put a couple of big pots of feed in .

While it settled i went onto my shallow swim at six meters as i had fed it with a dozen casters every few minutes since the match started but with me having no ripple in front of me i thought it might be tough to catch this way and after twenty minutes without an indication i was proved correct , although to be honest i couldn’t really fish it properly as i had to keep shipping across to the far bank to prevent the ducks from dive bombing my mud bank . I went back across to see how much damage my feathered friends had done and surprisingly i got indications straight away as the stared up bottom must have attracted the fish , i managed to catch a few f1s+carp but in the depth of water it wasnt long before i began foul hooking the odd one and after a fish snagged me up in the reeds i needed to rest the swim .

I plumbed up a new swim  towards the empty platform towards my left and started tapping in some micros , i didn’t have to wait long before i caught a couple of nice sized f1s but due to the depth of water i was fishing in i foul hooked a big carp which bolted off under the aerator rope breaking my hook length , so i decided to go at the side of an over hanging plant where it was 18 inch deep and i put in a small cupping kit full of crushed expander plus a few micros as i hoped some more carp might be in the area .

For the rest of the match i rotated between my mud line and margin picking up the odd fish from each but it never really got going for me due to the lack of breeze it seemed all the fish followed the wind to the other end of the lake , this was proved correct when the all out sounded because the lad who came second was on my lake catching 146lb and when the scales arrived at my peg my thirty fish weighed in at 48lb , although i got told that it was a good weight from it which i was pleased with , so that was my fisho qualifiers over with for another year and i might have another try next year because i did enjoy travelling to different venues and rubbing shoulders with some high-class anglers on the previous few years .

Partridge lakes , fisho qualifier

June 18th, peg 98 covey four


Today was my last attempt at qualifying for the Fish’O Mania semi final at Cudmore and it was at my local water partridge lakes which is only ten miles away it is used to holding big matches regularly having over eighty on the opens but with it being a two hundred pegger there would always be places where you was going to struggle, after fishing it last weekend I felt that I had a reasonable idea on what was going to work so I just hoped that I could draw on one of the original coveys although these waters have not the best record in this match but it is a place that i am comfortable fishing .

It was a later than usual start for me today and I arrived at the fishery just after eight o’clock which gave me time to grab a bacon buttie before having a chat with a few lads that I knew we was all unsure of which water would through up the winner although ribbon has a tremendous record here in fisho qualifiers , there was also quite a lot of big name anglers knocking about which is nothing new for these contests and before I knew it there was a long line waiting for the draw so it looked like I would be having one of the last picks when it finally came for my turn I pulled out peg 98 on covey four not the best but at least I was in an area which usually holds a few fish mainly carp.


On arriving at my home for the next few hours I was faced with flat calm conditions although there was some fish across in the far-bank reeds I also had a nice mud bank to target and an empty platform to my right which I had been told would be my best area to target, as I began sorting my tackle out I was waiting for someone to get down on peg 97 but nobody ever did which was obviously a bonus, it turned out that there was at least thirty no shows and that was after all the reserves plus walk ins had got on to the match I’m afraid that’s the way this contest seems to be going with majority of the qualifiers not being full, it’s just a shame that they can’t let the match organisers know because not for the first time it made a mockery of the match with some lakes being very tightly pegged and other anglers having up to four empty pegs either side of them it really needs sorting before next year I have my own ideas on how it could be changed but that’s for another blog.

I decided not to over complicate things today so I just set up ;

Margin at the side of 99 platform were after plumbing up I found it to be a touch over two foot so I decide to use a 0.4 joof float and main line was 014 Garbo which had a six-inch length of 012 Garbo my hook was a size 16 lwg.

Top four swim this was positioned just at the bottom of the near slope and I would be feeding it by hand during the session it was nearly five foot deep so I used a 4×12 speedy float which had a bulk plus dropper shotting pattern my main line was 014 Garbo and hook length was 012 Garbo.

Mud bank and I expected this to be my main line of attack so after having a good plumb around I was pleased to find a nice flat area tight to the far-bank where it was a touch over a foot , so I used a 0.4 joof float which had a strung out bulk this would give me a nice stable rig helping me keep everything still among all the line bites, my main line was the usual 014 Garbo and my hook length was 012 Garbo which had a size 18 lwg hook attached.

Shallow I set up two rigs to cover my options one at a foot and the other at two foot both of them were set up the same I used a 0.1 matrix series three float which had a couple of number eleven stotz spread down the 014 Garbo main line and I had a four-inch 012 Garbo hook length that had a size 18 matrix bagger hook attached

Bait for the day was going to be ;

Two pints of 6mm cubed meat

Two pints of casters

One pint of riddled meat

F1 dark groundbait



When the hooter sounded in the distance signalling the start of the match I put in two pots of ground-bait with a hand full of riddled meat onto my mud line and while it settled I tried to see if I could mug a carp shallow among the far-bank reeds, the stems were knocking like mad and i was shoving my floats right in among them but I just couldn’t get an indication even after changing depths plus feeding a dozen casters every few minutes to try to get them competing didn’t work ,so I decided to keep the feed going in but with fish showing on my mudline I was eager to give that a try and after changing rigs I shipped out with a cube of meat on the hook I expected an immediate response all I could manage was a couple of line bites thinking that they might not want meat I changed to double caster but this didn’t work either which was a bit of a head scratcher.

I had been throwing half a dozen cubes on my top four line since the match started and with a few bubbles coming up I decided to re-feed my mud line before giving that swim ago, I didn’t have to wait too long before I began getting indications and after missing a couple I did finally connect with one but my elastic only came out a foot before pinging off then my next one did exactly the same I had made the mistake of upping my elastic because I expected to be catching mainly carp, so I was back rummaging in my holdall for a lighter grade of elastic but it seemed that the disturbance of the lost f1s had unsettled them and bites were now hard to come by and with over an hour of the match gone I was still fish less.


I began loose feeding casters at seven meters towards peg 97 in open water hoping that I might be able to catch a few shallow and while I prepared it I rotated my other swims but another thirty minutes passed without anything to show for it, I couldn’t really wait any longer and decided to see if anything had settled on my caster line but apart from a few missed bites which I think were from small silvers there wasnt a lot happening I really worked hard to try to get them up in the water without success , so I tried my deck rig underneath my loose feed and I have found this to be working really well on waters that allow the mong rig I’m not to sure why maybe they are backing away from the disturbance or just feel safer on the deck but you wouldn’t really be expecting to be fishing this way in the middle of summer as it’s more of a winter method, yet again it got me out of trouble as I finally began to put some fish in the net but after being fishless for nearly two hours my match was almost over as I would struggle to even have a chance for the section so I just tried to enjoy what was left of the day.

I had a little run of six f1s but they just wouldn’t settle for me and I found it best to feed a couple of big pouches of caster then give my meat line a go this seemed to produce a bigger stamp of fish including the odd carp by rotating between the two lines I kept putting the odd fish in the net but they wasnt coming quick enough, I wasnt really going anywhere so I decided to begin feeding my right hand margin at the side of the platform with ground-bait and it didn’t take long before I saw a couple of swirls, this was all the incentive I needed to pick up my margin rig and I pushed it out to the side of peg 99 I didn’t have to wait long before a carp took a liking to my double meat hook bait at nearly four pounds it was a good start , with carp being more predominate in this area I decided to put in a small cupping kit of feed after every fish hoping that this would keep the fish settled and finally it looked like I had done something right as I went on a run of fish mainly carp with the odd big F1 mixed in.


I was beginning to think that I might have a chance of doing a nice weight which after my start to the match I thought was never going to happen and this was when I started to rush things of course this resulted in things going a bit pear-shaped, first I lost a fish under the platform causing me to break my hook length although this gave me the opportunity to up it to an 014 and this gave me the confidence to bully the fish a bit more which made me lose focus as I hit my line when trying to rush one in causing me to trash my rig , for some bizarre reason I decided to put a lighter 0.3 float on the difference was remarkable because the carp were just wafting the rig out-of-the-way and in the last thirty minutes all I could catch was f1s .

The all out soon came it called time on a frustrating match because I had done numerous things wrong and even though i got told before the match that my peg wasnt the best I still feel that with the bit of room I had it was capable of throwing up at least a ton or more for a better angler, so I was very disappointed with my performance to say the least and when the weighman arrived I put just over 65lb on the scales which about forty pounds of that I caught in an hour down the side but you just can’t give anybody a two-hour start and expect to compete.

The lad on peg hundred had just scraped ninety pounds and he also struggled to catch on his mudline having most of his fish from round the side but lost a few carp too which probably cost him a chance of framing so it showed there was fish in the area ,as it turned out peg 85 won the lake with a low ton caught yet again from the margin although he had the benefit of what ever breeze there was blowing his way for the past few days causing a nice scum line and I later found out he had five empty pegs to his right plus the lad to his left packed up after an hour.

On arriving back to the cabin to watch the presentation most lakes had fished ok with nearly all the lakes having produced over a hundred pound , three of the top five weights coming from covey six including the winner although yet again he had the benefit of plenty room which made a mockery of the competition of course he still needed to catch them having over forty pounds on the second place angler and as the results were read out I also found out that there was lots of split sections including mine with me being in with covey six which I thought was a bit strange because i can not remember it being done like that in previous years but was probably down to the increase in attendance .

Well that’s my last Fish’O over and done with for another year I have only had one poor match at herronbrook where I drew shocking but the other two at the oaks and here at partridge I felt that I have drawn ok caught a few fish, I haven’t got much planned until September and next weekend i will be heading to the impressive Weston pools hoping to get back among the hard fighting barbel.



Fisho qualifier at Oaks Sessay

June 5th , peg three Ash pool



Today was my second Fish’O qualifier of the season and it was going to take place at the Oaks fishery in Sessay I had fished it before in last years contest where I managed a second in section from Cedar canal so I was really looking forward to it although with my van breaking down the other week I hadn’t had chance to go down for a practice but I managed to get a lot of up to date information through various social media outlets so I was pretty well prepared, it was another bit of a trek so an early start was needed again and I began packing my van just after six ready for the hundred mile trip the journey was pretty straight forward (unlike last year when they closed the motorway so I ended up late for the draw) On arrival at the fishery I met up with a couple of anglers that I knew so we had a chat on what to expect from todays match and everyone agreed that the new lakes were the place to be, after grabbing a bacon buttie I joined the growing queue for the draw and when it came for my turn I pulled out peg three on Ash pool which as luck would have it was one of the new lakes (always been good in the draw bag ) it was also somewhere that you could park behind so I had an easy day no need for my trolley, after finding my peg I was glad to see it was on the windward part of the lake although I had it blowing over my shoulder which I felt would make the other bank a lot better and I also had another angler to my left where everyone else had peg one miss one ( not the best of pegging by the fishery as putting 1+2 in leaving 3 out would have been better limiting the end pegs advantage )

On settling in at my home for the next few hours I had a good look at what was in front of me so I could make a decision on how best to target my peg , I didn’t have a lot in the way of features other than an aerator about 25m away ( which I couldn’t really take advantage of as there was a 14m limit on the new lakes ) I also had a nice cut out to my right  ( you’re only allowed to garden towards your right hand side ) so before I started I used my landing net to remove all the floating debris from inside it and I decided to have a nice uncomplicated match setting up;

Shallow , I used an 0.2 matrix series three float which had four number eleven stotz spread along the 014 garbo main line, my hook length was 012 garbo which had a size 18 matrix rigger attached.

Deck rig at 13m and as it was only a touch over four-foot deep I used a 4×12 maggie float with a bulk plus dropper shotting pattern, my main line was the usual 014 garbo and my hook length was 012 garbo which had a size 18 matrix rigger attached to it was a micro bait band.

Top four line where I was going to be using meat so I used a 4×12 speedy float with a bulk plus dropper shotting pattern my main line was the usual 014 garbo and hook length was 012 garbo which had a size 18 guru lwg hook attached.

Margin line after plumbing up to find two foot and wanting a stable float I decided to use an 0.4 joof float which had a spread bulk of number eight stotz along the 014 garbo line my hook length was 012 garbo which had a size 16 guru lwg hook attached.

Bait for the day was;

Three pints of 6mm cubed meat

Three pints of 4mm fishery pellets

Small tub of mixed hard hook pellets

When the all in sounded in the distance I started my match by kinder potting some 4mm pellets onto my long line before lowering my rig over the top of it and then holding my float still, not a great deal was happening around the lake for the first fifteen minutes so with a few fish cruising about I decided to begin pinging pellets to try to draw them into my swim which worked as I began putting some fish in the net it wasnt hectic just a nice steady half a dozen an hour they was all stockie mirror carp averaging two-pound a piece the bites were only little dinks on the float and I had to be on the ball to connect with them, after around ninety minutes the fish began moving up in the water to intercept the pellets this caused me to start to get liners and this is where my match began to get away from me because I really struggled to connect with the indications when fishing shallow as I was just foul hooking more and more fish, I found it best to use my full depth rig with just a couple of stotz spread down the line allowing for a very slow fall and this allowed me to pick up a few more carp, I was contemplating putting in a small cupping kit full of pellets in to get them back on the deck but with the bottom of the lake being mostly clay (with the plumet coming back covered in it ) I felt that this would do more harm than good causing lots of fizzing and even more foul hooking so I decided to catty in more pellets but less often hoping this might work for me.


When the problems started on my long line I began loose feeding my four meter swim by hand with meat and I decided to give this a go I didn’t have to wait too long before my float shot under ( a proper meat bite ) this resulted in another carp but this time a bit bigger at nearly three pounds and I went on another little run adding half a dozen similar sized fish in a forty minute spell , I was feeding through a large kinder pot after every fish or every five minutes depending which was the earliest as I didn’t want to make the mistake of keeping on feeding by hand as this might bring them up of the deck causing foul hookers again, it wasnt long before the bites began to tail off and I spent the next hour alternating between the two lines picking up the odd fish from each but it was no way as good as at the start ( I think most of the carp had followed the wind )

I noticed that a few of the anglers on the opposite bank had begun fishing their margins a lot earlier than I expected and was catching really well so with the other areas of my peg not really producing as I would like I decided give mine a try , I didn’t want to feed the peg until I knew how many fish were present so I put a kinder pot full of meat in then lowered my rig in over the top surprisingly my float had only just settled when it shot under and I was attached to another hard fighting carp which gave me a proper run around before I netted it , but it must have disturbed a branch in my cut out because my next fish snagged me up although i did manage to get it out with no float left on my rig . I replumbed up my margin with another section on this got me under the tree at the side of the reeds but it was a foot deeper not ideal for margin fishing and i did catch a couple more carp but unsurprisingly I suffered a lot from line bites, I even resorted to big potting in meat I hoped that it would pin them back on the deck but it didn’t really work and I spent the rest of the match just picking up the odd carp which was a disappointment after my good start .


I didn’t have to wait too long to find out my fate as I was one of the first to get weighed in after the lad on the end peg had put 130lb on the scales then it was my turn and my 26 carp went 55lb so a nice average stamp  it seemed that Ash pool had fished really well with a few 90lb nets and most having over 60lb, my match started well probably putting forty pounds in the net in the first couple of hours but instead of it getting better it got gradually worse and I’m sure that I could have caught a lot more from my margin cut out if that snag wasnt present but that’s the way it goes sometimes im not saying I could have framed from that peg but I should have been able to threaten a ton , so it’s on to my last Fish’O qualifier at Partridge lakes lets hope I can draw a good peg again and i am planning to go down at the weekend to contest the open on Saturday & Sunday as I have not been for a good few months.


Partridge lakes , fishomania qualifier

Saturday 20th June , Covey three peg 73


Today was my last chance for qualifying for fishomania 2015 and it was rather a funny day to be honest as i didn’t really feel up for it which was strange for me on a competition like this as i usually get really nervous about doing them , i think this might be down to the fact that i did the big festival at Tunnel barn in the week leading up to it and might have felt a bit drained . On the morning of the match the weather was a bit iffy with it being overcast and drizzly plus the wind was forecast to increase steadily during the day , after my short drive to the venue i picked up some maggots from the on site tackle shop before meeting up with a few mates who was also contesting this event and after joining the queue towards the back i didn’t fancy drawing on coveys 1-5 because they have an awful record in these big matches for some bizarre reason , when peg 73 on covey three stuck to my hand i had a mixture of emotions because i had fished it recently on an open match and caught quite well so at least i should get a good days fishing ( of course it was one of  the twitter hot pegs )


On arriving at my peg which was the second one over the bridge i had a nice mud-bank with plenty of reed cover and there was also a couple of cut outs in the margin bank as well so i decided to fish a nice uncomplicated match ;

Starting between my keep-nets at 4ft

Across at either side of the mud bank at 2ft

Both right and left hand margin at 2ft

Shallow for the channel mid match and also a deck rig for fishing under the loose feed .


My bait was to revolve around ;

Worm and micro for across + margin + top kit between my nets

Maggots for fishing in channel shallow and on the deck


When the all in sounded at 11 o’clock i began on my top kit line and after a couple of feeds through a kinder pot full of worm+pellet resulted in my first f1 of the day  the indications i was getting on this line where slight dinks on the float and as a result i began missing a few so i had to reduce the size of worm to allow me to hit more of them , this worked a treat with ten nice sized fish hitting the net for nearly twenty pounds and if it carried on like this i thought that i might have had half a chance but when the wind began to get a bit stronger blowing towards my right it seemed to push the fish out of my peg .

A change of tactics to fishing across was in order while i primed my shallow line at six meters towards my right which was just on the edge of the ripple , after a kinder pot full of worm+pellet i began getting liners but no bites so i needed to reduce the depth of my rig so i could get it really tight to the bank this resulted in me getting some proper indications with half a worm being the best hook bait as the weight of it prevented it getting wafted around and the bites where proper elastic rippers i added a further four f1s plus a carp on this line before faded on me .


After half the match of feeding my six meter shallow line so i expected an instant response as there was the odd bubble coming up but no fizzing which i felt ment that the loose feed wasn’t reaching the deck but after forty minutes of searching the depths and trying my bottom rig all i could manage was two ide ! ! this swim clearly wasn’t working so i began feeding my margin line one side with worm the other with just maggot to see which was best and while this settled i went back across but twenty minutes of inactivity got me putting in a new swim further towards the ripple this time i fed just maggots i got an instant response but not from the f1s but ide + small silvers not exactly what i wanted to be catching .

Ninety minutes of the match remaining and it was time for a look on my margins so with half a worm on the hook i pushed the rig tight into the cut out five minutes of inactivity before my float shot under and a firm strike resulted in an 8oz ide flying towards me ! ! but no more bites ensued on either margin so i was left with rotating my swims to try to get another bite  and as a last resort i went back on my top kit line between my keepnets i started feeding heavy with maggots as this is a method which has worked for me on a few occasions when fishing at Partridge lakes , it did again today as i managed four more f1s before the all out which called time on a pretty bad match even if it was a bit expected at the start .


When the scales arrived i put 31lb on which was a bad weight for on here especially on what is usually a good peg in the opens , after i had packed up i went to the presentation i was feeling a bit dejected after my match especially with the good start i had and when they began to call out the sections covey three was won with just 54lb and surprisingly mine was won with just 34lb so yet again another second in section which was twice from three fishos this year .

Well done too Connor Barlow on winning the qualifier and another Partridge regular heading to Cudmore im sure he will have a fair few people watching him there , i just hope it fishes better than what i expect it too .

Moorlands farm fishery , Fisho qualifier

April 25th , peg 6 Bank pool

Moorlands Bank pool

Moorlands Bank pool


Well it has soon come round again with my first attempt at a Fishomania qualifier for this year and this one was at Moorlands fishery which was a new venue for me , like i always do when attempting a big match like this i made sure i did my homework getting plenty information from the angling community on social media so i was well prepared before i went . I know a lot of people feel that you are just wasting your money trying to compete in these sort of matches because they are usually very tightly pegged making the fishing extremely hard with normally a low winning weight required and luck in the draw bag is also essential both of which suit my style of fishing , you do get a very high level of angler contesting them but you would anywhere that has matches these days no matter how big they are with venue regulars being just as good on there own water as your so-called big name anglers .

The weather leading up to today had been warm+sunny with a light breeze but predictably this all changed for the day of the match with it forecast to be exactly the opposite although i felt it could make the fishing better with the carp having a feed rather than sun bathing , i was up at 530am for the two and a half hour drive to the venue apart from the 50 mph zones on the motorway it was all straight forward getting there with it being one of the better fisho venues to find and on arrival at Moorlands fishery it looked a nice set up with four smallish twenty peg water and two larger ones i did notice that the pegs themselves where on the small side just big enough for you to fit your box on they were also very close together being about top four distance apart .

Grant Albutt catching a carp on Bank pool , in the far ground you can see me third angler from the left it also shows how tight the pegs are

Grant Albutt catching a carp on Bank pool , in the far ground you can see me third angler from the left it also shows how tight the pegs are

After buying the obligatory bag of fishery pellets i joined the queue for the draw which surprisingly went extremely well considering the amount of anglers present , when i picked my peg i ended up on Bank pool six one of the smallest waters on the complex and some where that i hadn’t got much information on and after driving around to the car-park near the lake i found it to be very heavily pegged with it having nine anglers on each bank although predictably i wasn’t far away from the Twitter mania hot pegs , mine was also one of only a handful which had a high bank behind me making shipping in+out a nightmare and i had to be really careful carrying my gear down the steep steps as i had visions of me slipping ending up in the water .


Moorlands hot pegs


I decided to set up four rigs which would cover all my options and i didn’t want to fall into the trap of going over board which would only end up confusing me ;

Margin – not sure it would work with the pegs being so close together

Bottom near slope – positioned this towards my right as this angler was going to fish the pellet waggler giving me a bit more room to draw fish from , i also felt that this would be my best line

Long deck 13m – ideally i would have gone out further but for the high bank behind me hindering my shipping

Long shallow – their was a few fish showing up in the water mainly in the ripple towards the opposite bank

With Moorlands having a strict five pint limit you needed to be careful on what you chose to put onto your side tray ;

2 pint fishery 4mm pellet

2 pint red maggots

1 pint corn

tub mixed hard pellets

tub 4+6mm expanders


I was set up well before the 11 am start and was eager to get going ,on my lake i had last years Fisho finalist Ben Emery on my right , Simon Fry a few pegs further down and Grant Albutt , Ste Openshaw , a top female angler plus a venue regular on the opposite bank which would make winning the lake extremely difficult . All too soon i heard a whistle in the distance which signaled the all in and i proceeded to put two cups of pellets +corn on to my top three-line then went out to 13m with the on the deck rig depositing a kinder pot of 4mm pellets and dropped my 8mm hard pellet among it , i began flicking half a dozen pellets at my float trying to attract a few fish but also being careful not to overfeed because as you can imagine a lot of bait had been deposited at the start of the match all over the lake .

After about 15-20 minutes i noticed a few bubbles coming up then i had a little dip on the float and my first fish of the day hit the net a nice 2lb skimmer quickly followed by one half of its size , i then struggled for forty minutes to get a bite so i went onto what i thought would be my main line and when the float shot under straight away i thought great but missed bite after missed bite wasn’t what i expected . I kept coming back with half a 6mm pellet so i figured these were just small silvers i decided to re-feed two cupping kits of pellet+corn and left it to rest for a while , i went back on to my deck rig at 13m there had been a few fish caught on the opposite bank by fishing shallow so i decided to catapult six pellets every couple of minutes at my float and keep an eye out for any signs that there was carp present either by swirls or line bites .


Twenty minutes of me doing this i finally had a bite which i missed thinking that it was a liner i picked up my shallow rig , the rules on here regarding up in the water fishing are a bit complex ;

No slapping

No tapping

No cupping in water

No dobbing

12 inch minimum amount of line between pole and float

So basically all you were left with is flicking your rig out letting the hook bait fall through the water and after thirty minutes of trying resulted in just a solitary missed bite things weren’t looking good with nearly half of the match gone and just two skimmers in the net , so i went for another look on my top three-line to see if any carp had settled but yet again i was back missing bite after bite from small silvers so i tried a piece of corn on the hook and waited for a more positive indication this never materialised so i decided to feed my margin with two cups of maggots then sat and waited on my 13m deck line the only swim which had given me any proper bites .

Surprisingly my float was only settled for five minutes before it slide under which resulted in a near double figured carp hitting the net which put up a spirited fight on my size 12 matrix hollo elastic , i decided to use this elastic as it would give me a bit of leeway when shipping over the high banking behind me and i then went on a bit of a run catching four decent carp plus a big skimmer in twenty-minute spell i was just beginning to think that i had a chance because i had heard the complex was fishing harder than expected then the bites suddenly stopped , i put this down to their not being enough bait left to hold them but i couldn’t big pot with the angle of the hill so out came the catapult and i put three pouches of 4mm pellets in .


While i let this settle i tried my margin swim but yet again i was getting all sorts of indications from the silvers , when i went back on to my 13m line i had another quick carp from exactly where i kinder potted the bait in but then had to work around the area where i had catapulted the bait in earlier to get another bite if i hit it or missed it the result was just the same a dead swim so i feed another three pouches and went else were to try to get a bite while it rested , i managed to do this another two times before the all out and both resulted in a brace of carp so i had stumbled on how the fish had wanted to feed a little too late and if i had another line which produced carp it might have been a bit different because my eight carp + four skimmers weighed 46lb ninety percent of it caught in the last half of the match which was good enough for a default section win as Ben Emery got second fishing the pellet waggler to the aerator .