Partridge lakes , individual winter league


19th February

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Today was the penultimate round of the individual winter league at Partridge lakes and after having had a few good draws plus the odd slice of luck i was sitting towards the top of the table in sixth place , i seemed to be in good form at the moment picking up money in my last five matches which was no doubt down to fishing here every week for the last couple of months and i was obviously really looking forward to the contest today especially as at long last the weather was showing signs of improvement  with temperatures hitting double fingers .

I had another early start to make the rolling draw at 815 and after speaking to a few of my 2+2 team mates i joined the queue for the bag of doom although to be fair it had been really kind to me in the last few rounds , when it came to my turn i pulled out peg 103 on covey five which isn’t want i would have liked because it is probably one of the worst in the section and i would be up against it for good points today . When i arrived at my home for the next few hours i had the young guru superstar on the flyer peg 101 and another partridge regular on 105 which had the benefit of the warmish breeze blowing into his margin so it looked like i could be in for a hard day , as i began setting up and time was passing by there was still no sign of any anglers on 107 or 109 even after going to speak to my mate on 120 when i got back they still hadn’t turned up so it looked like it was just a three peg section today which was a bonus .

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I decided to set up just the three rigs ;

Three foot maggot rig for fishing tight to the far bank and also to the dead reeds on my left hand side , i used a 4×10 maggie float with a spread bulk along the 014 garbo main line which had a six-inch 010 hook length attached .

Four foot maggot rig for fishing a bit further down the far shelf and also 11m down my left hand margin because i felt that the f1s would have followed the breeze today ,i used a 4×12 maggie float with a spread bulk along the 014 garbo main line which had a six-inch 010 hook length attached .

Track line at six meters towards my left ,i used a 4×12 maggie float with a spread bulk along the 014 garbo main line which had a six-inch 010 hook length attached .

Bait for the day was your standard partridge winter league stuff ;

Two pints red and white maggots

One pint soaked micros

One slice of bread

Small tub of 2+4mm expanders

After plumbing up a few areas along the far shelf i finally found a couple of flat areas at ten o’clock and two o’clock when the all in sounded i began on my right hand swim by tapping in a few micros then lowered my rig over the top , which had a 4mm expander on the hook because i had heard a few rumours that some people caught well using it the day before and it looked like i had made the right decision as my float had only just settled when it shot under i then had a spirited fight with a four pound common carp before anybody else had managed a bite , not long after i had an f1 in the net as well and it looked like i could be on for a good day but when i pricked a fish on the strike which came off at the net it killed my swim , so i swapped to my left hand swim although this time i decided to use maggots and i managed an f1 fairly quickly  i chose to feed one line and fish the other as i didn’t want to unsettle the fish so early in the match this worked quite well as i kept putting the odd fish in the net i was also holding my own with the other lads in the section , in the second hour the far swims were dying on me so i opened up a new line long down to my left so that i could rest them and after tapping in a few maggots i flicked my rig into open water then held my float tight so it fell against the shelf , by doing this i managed a couple of quick f1s before i lost a foul hooker at the net and i was now beginning to fall behind the other anglers who was both beginning to catch well down the track .

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The middle part of the match was a total waste of time as i just couldn’t get a bite even though i was rotating my swims all the time and i put in two more lines along the far bank at thirteen meters as well but this didn’t produce for me either , i had wanted to leave my channel swim for as long as possible but with nothing working for me i had no option and i did have an f1 straight away although no other bites on it had me scratching my head maybe i had gone on it too soon or got the feeding wrong because the lad on peg 105 was catching quite consistently on it .

With just over an hour of the match remaining i decided to change my furthest right hand swim towards the point of the island to pellets and after tapping in a few micros i then lowered my rig over the top of it , it took a couple of feeds before my float buried and at last i had another f1 in the net after what seemed like an age , i then had another straight away and another then another i wasnt sure if they had suddenly just come on the feed with the drop in light or been sitting there all the time and just wanted pellets , i managed to catch twelve of them including one right on the whistle it definitely slowed towards the end of the match and i really needed another swim to catch from so i could rotate between them both , but i didn’t have time to put another in so i just ended up plundering the one swim till the all out and i also pulled out of a couple at the net plus got broke by another under the platform which proved costly .

when the scales came round peg 101 had easily won the section which wasnt a surprise he had 43lb , i managed 20 odd f1s for 30lb the lad on 105 had 34lb which pushed me into third and yet again i was left ruing those lost fish at the net , this put me on eight points and in joint eighth place overall so i think that has cost me any chance of getting in the money but at the start of the winter league i would have been happy to finish in the top ten with the calibre of angler contesting it so that is my target on the next round, I’m having a little knock up with the rest of the team on Saturday to try to find a decent home venue for the supercup then I am back at Partridge lakes at the weekend for the team event and i just hope that i can have a bit more luck then .

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Partridge lakes winter league


January 15th , peg 119 covey five

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After last weeks eventful match where i somehow managed a default section win in the individual winter league at Partridge lakes where it was safe to say i was a bit rusty after my christmas break , i was hoping to try a few different things out to improve my catch rate and i would have loved to go during the week but unfortunately work must come first although the weather would no doubt have put me off as well because we had our first spell of snow plus freezing conditions . So today i was looking forward to the return too Partridge lakes for the winter league teams of four where we was lying mid table and i was charged with doing the draw for the team as we had a bit of a shocker on the previous round , so after arriving at the fishery i met up with the rest of the lads and after a bit of a mix up with the pools money i only got to the draw queue late with just a couple of people behind me , i managed to pick out ;

Willow 19

Marsh

Covey six 167

Covey five 119 which was my draw for the second time in three rounds and it is a peg that you would be fighting for fourth place in section with 113 .

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On arriving at my home for the next few hours i had the strong wind blowing off my shoulder towards peg 117 and i decided to set up the usual rigs ;

Three foot maggot rig , i used a 0.2 maggie float with a bulk plus two droppers my main line was 014 garbo and hook length was six-inch of 010 garbo which had a size twenty guru hook attached .

Four foot maggot rig , i used a 0.3 maggie float with a bulk plus two droppers my main line was 014 garbo and hook length was six-inch of 010 garbo which had a size twenty guru hook attached .

Channel rig 11m to be right , i used a 4×14 maggie float with a bulk plus two droppers my main line was 014 garbo and hook length was six-inch of 010 garbo which had a size twenty guru hook attached .

Dobbing rig , i used a 0.3 matrix series three float with a wire stem for stability with two droppers spread down my main line was 014 garbo and hook length was six-inch of 010 garbo which had a size 16 guru hook attached .

Five foot rig for down the side of the dead reeds i used a 0.3 maggie float with a bulk plus two droppers my main line was 014 garbo and hook length was six-inch of 010 garbo which had a size twenty guru hook attached .

Bait for the day was rather simple which is to be expected for the time of year ;

One pint of red maggots with a handful of pinkies

One slice of bread for dobbing

A few expanders both 4+2mm

Some crushed expander

A handful of micro pellets

When the match started i began by dobbing a 7mm disk of bread a foot of deck all along my far bank four-foot line and after working to both extremes of my peg i only had a couple of line bites to show for it , i then tried tight to the far bank cover in two foot but this didn’t produce a proper indication either so my next move was to try my four-foot rig with maggots where i had the line bites when dobbing earlier and as the lad on 117 was catching at the same depth i expected to get a few bites , although the strong cross wind was making presentation hard work and i needed to take a shot of my rig to pop the float up a touch so i could see any indications , after a couple of feeds i had my first bite which resulted in a small stockie f1 hitting the net and over the next forty minutes i managed three more similar sized fish before things went  quiet , during the next couple of hours i set up multiple swims at this depth and never had a single indication i even tried my three-foot rig against the far bank cover but the wind was playing havoc on controlling my rig , the only place that i could present a bait properly was on my channel swim so i decided to feed a dozen maggots every ten minutes on it and i then had a quick look at the side of the dead reeds but apart from a few gudgeon i never managed a proper fish in twenty minutes , the guy to my right was fishing long down the channel towards me and was catching the odd f1 so i decided to drop on to my 11m swim but yet again i had a bite less thirty minutes in fact the middle of the match was a complete waste of time .

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In the last hour i dropped back on to my left hand margin at the side of the reeds and i managed another three f1s before i foul hooked a fish so they backed off out of the swim , so that was it no more fish hit the net before the all out sounded calling time on a rather frustrating match and i managed just seven f1s for six pounds which unsurprisingly put me last in section although i was only a couple of pounds from finishing in a better position , on the plus side i stayed warm and dry in the cold rain as it was the first time i had used my Halkon hunt waterproofs in these conditions .

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When i got back to the cabin i found the other lads and we had a complete blow out with 19 points this put us joint last on the day dropping us down to 13th on the overall table , so not the greatest of days but im back at Partridge next Sunday for the second round of the individual winter league i just hope that i can draw a bit better next time .

Partridge lakes winter league


November 6th , peg 119 covey five

Today was the first round of the teams of four at Partridge lakes and it was to take place on the old lakes plus covey 5+6 which was the waters that i dont normally fish because the opens usually take place on covey 1+4 so it would make a nice change to go on these , the weather leading up to today’s contest had been quite cold a sure sign that winter was on its way and as a consquence the fishing had been rather tough but it was the same for everyone . After the short drive to the fishery i met up with the rest of 2+2 team and we had a good chat about what we expected from today’s contest , before we knew it the rolling draw had started so the team captain went to have a go in the bag of doom and when he came back i was on peg 119 covey five , he was on peg 20 ribbon and the other two lads was on spey + covey six i can not remember the exact numbers , we had a couple of reasonable areas but no flyers so with it being the first round we wanted a nice steady match and not to blow out completely like we did last year .

On arriving at my home for the next few hours i was up against some good pegs in my section with 115+117 having the wind blowing there way and 121 was a meter or so wider than my peg with a nice reed bed across that usually holds plenty of fish , as usual on these big competitions i had my mossella nemesis not far away on peg 123 although he wasnt in my section thankfully ,i had a dead reed bed towards my left which looked promising with the odd little silver swirling at the side of it but on the down side it was less than eleven meters wide so i would have to be careful not to put lots of swims in splitting any fish in front of me and with that in mind i decided to set up ;

4ft maggot rig this would cover multiple areas of my peg and i used a 4×12 maggie float that had a bulk plus two dropper shotting pattern , i had my usual 014 garbo main line which had a six inch 010 hook length and my hook was a size 18 f1 maggot hook .

3ft maggot rig for fishing further up the far shelf and i didnt expect to go any shallower in the conditions , i used a 4×12 maggie float that had a bulk plus two dropper shotting pattern , i had my usual 014 garbo main line which had a six inch 010 hook length and my hook was a size 18 f1 maggot hook .

Channel maggot swim and i expected this to be my main swim so i put it six meters too my right , i used a 4×14 maggie float that had a bulk plus two dropper shotting pattern , i had my usual 014 garbo main line which had a six inch 010 hook length and my hook was a size 18 f1 maggot hook .

4ft pellet swim like the same depth maggot rig i could use this all other my peg if the f1s decided to feed on pellets today and i used a 4×14 roob float with an inch spread bulk above the short four inch 010 garbo hook length.

3ft dobbing rig i used a 0.2 matrix series three float with my bulk under my float with just two size eleven stotz down the 014 garbo main line and i had a six inch 010 garbo hook length with a size 16 f1 pellet hook attached .

Bait for the day was ;

2 pints red and white maggots

1 pint of soaked micros

1 pint of crushed expander

1 slice of bread

When the all in sounded i began by dobbing a 7mm punch of bread along the edge of the left hand reed bed but even going in to every nook and cranny i couldnt get a single indication even though the lad on 121 was picking up the odd small f1 doing it towards the far bank reeds , so after a bite less twenty minutes i decided to change it to a maggot swim and after tapping in half a dozen maggots i laid my rig in keeping a tight line so my hook bait would fall slowly , it took a couple of feeds before i began getting any bites at first all i could catch were gudgeon but i hoped that they might grab the attention of any passing f1s and to some extent it worked because i managed to catch a couple of 2lb carp in between the gudgeon , i think that i might have got a bit giddy with the amount of maggots i was feeding because after thirty minutes i failed to get any sort of indication so with an hour of the contest gone i had about 5lb in the net which wasnt to bad in the cold conditions .

My next swim was 4ft across to the far bank i started on my pellet rig first and i tapped in a nugget of crushed expander then lowered my hook bait slowly over the top of it , the gusty wind was making keeping the rig still hard work but when i managed to stop the pole from moving about i managed the odd indication and i put two or three small f1s in the net , strangely i found if i fed any micros i would just get liners and after foul hooking a couple of fish they backed off out of the swim , thinking about it now i should have gone a bit further up the slope into three foot which might have got me a few more f1s but instead i tried to turn it into a maggot line which didnt really work as i struggled for indications , even after putting in a few different lines across i couldn’t add to my net and it was only when i went into three foot that i started picking up the odd fish again although most of them were small chub .

Another look at the side of the reed bed produced a quick f1 and a chub but nothing else , i was really struggling to put a run of fish together from anywhere and i had an hour where i couldnt get a bite from any part of my peg , i wanted to leave my channel swim for as long as i could so that hopefully a few fish could settle on it but with nowhere else producing i had no other option , i managed a couple of quick f1s then it just died on me and yet again thinking about it after the match i definitely over fed it as i was putting in about fifty maggots every half an hour , i did try putting on a couple more sections going further towards my right and being really negative but i think the damage had already been done especially as the lad on 117 was catching well from his channel swim .

With thirty minutes of the match remaining i went on to my left hand swim but plumbed up another line towards the back of the reed bed , i trickled in a couple of maggots every few minutes to try to interest some fish and after awhile my float shot under which took me by surprise after the long spell of inactivity , i then managed a little run of f1s right up to the all out and i was kicking myself for not going on it sooner but thats fishing for you . I ended up with a dozen f1s plus a few bits and pieces which i felt wasnt good enough to be anywhere near the top half of the section as it turned out i was correct because my net put me 4th with just 20lb , although i was fairly confident that i couldn’t challenge for 1st as peg 115 had 38lb , 2nd was peg 121 with 31lb who seemed to be catching for most of the match and i thought that he would have a lot more than that weight , but i was disappointed with myself on not beating  117 who had just over 21lb this meant i was only a couple of f1 short and as a few things didnt work out for me today i felt i was a tad unlucky but thats the way it goes sometimes , on the team front we ended up with 14 points as we had two 4th in section and two second in section so not a bad start as we ended up about 8th out of the twenty teams taking part .

Im off to Old Hough next weekend for the third round of the winter league which is going to take place on Lucky dip + Prospect not my favorite lakes on the complex but i will be trying my best as i need a good result after the last round where i ended up fifth .

Partridge lakes open match


December 19th , peg 110 covey five

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Well today was a very rare day indeed not only was i fishing on a Saturday but i was also on Partridge lakes which was somewhere that i hadn’t visited in over two months and i was really looking forward to it as i can not remember the last time i had caught any f1s as i had spent most of the so-called winter fishing for silvers , the weather leading up to the match had been pretty reasonable for the time of year with it being eight degrees at night and mid double figures during the day although we still had some breezy conditions plus lots of rain to be honest it felt more like the start of autumn rather than the middle of winter .

On arrival at the venue there was another good turnout of over seventy anglers meaning coveys 1 to 5 would be in the draw bag as i began queuing up with all the usual faces plus a smattering of your pro anglers and as i waited in line i noticed that all the framing weights on the result board had come from pegs out of the cold wind which was no doubt down to the fact that you could present a bait accurately across to the far-bank , when it came for my turn to pick out i pulled peg 110 on covey five which was only a couple away from my last visit in an area that isn’t the best and ever since i had got my head round f1 fishing my golden arm has let me down big time .

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When i got to my home for the next few hours i wasn’t that impressed as the wind was towing through quite strong from left to right meaning fishing across would be nearly impossible and i was also in pegs 114 , 115 and 117 all of which had better form plus the later two had the wind blowing off their backs so they could fish in the areas the f1s wanted to sit in . But i would give it my best shot and you just never know as fishing is a strange sport i decided to set up the usual three rigs which would be ;

Three foot , this would be for both slopes i was very dubious if i would be able to use it across but i plumbed it up anyway just incase my float was a slightly heavier 4×14 malman roob shotting pattern was a spread bulk , with 014 garbo main line and a short four-inch 010 garbo hook length this had a size 18 lwg hook attached .

Four foot rig , this was for the bottom of both slopes incase the f1s could be in slightly deeper water  my float was a slightly heavier 4×14 malman roob shotting pattern was a spread bulk , with 014 garbo main line and a short four-inch 010 garbo hook length this had a size 18 lwg hook attached .

Channel swim at six-foot i felt that in the conditions this would be my main line of attack and i used a 4×14 rw maggie float which had a bulk + two droppers shotting pattern , i used 014 garbo main line and a short six inch 010 garbo hook length this had a size 18 lwg hook attached .

Bait for the day was ;

Two pints of red and white maggots

One pint of micros

One pint 4mm pellets

Small tub of 4mm expanders

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When the all in sounded i fed a small cupping kit full of maggots on to my channel swim which i positioned towards my right hand side of my peg as it allowed me to put my back to the wind this would also give me better control over the rig , i then began my match fishing at five meters towards peg 109 at four-foot deep dragging my rig slightly up the slope and i tapped in a few micros every five minutes being careful not to put a lot in until i knew how they would respond and unfortunately they didn’t because i was still bite less after forty minutes just like the anglers either side of me . I then had to resort to struggling with the wind across to the far-bank but my rig was pulling through like a train which wasn’t ideal when you’re using pellets or any bait for that matter and i ended up putting my four-foot rig a lot shallower enabling me to have a longer lash this helped matters but i still couldn’t attract any indications .

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I had no other option other than to try my channel swim a lot earlier than i planned it wasn’t exactly hectic but i did at last begin picking up a few fish i had a good thirty minute spell where i caught half a dozen f1s but then i managed to lose a decent carp which broke my hook length when it made a dart for freedom under the keep net , then i lost another f1 straight after when the hook pulled at the net this kind of disrupted my swim because i couldn’t get another bite after that  so i set up another swim to the left side of my peg but chose to use pellets incase the fish responded better to that bait but this failed to produce a single indication and i decided to concentrate on my maggot swim for the rest of the match with the regular feeding i soon got them lined up again i even started getting liners which was strange in the middle of december .

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I really should have got up off my box and set up an on the drop rig but i made do with altering my deck rig so it had a slower fall in the final third of the water this got me a few more f1s and even a couple of big ide just as was thinking i might be able to put a run of fish together to the all out the fish vanished which was a bit puzzling and I’m still not to sure what i did wrong , i thought that it might benefit from a rest so i had another look down my right hand slope line with pellets it took me awhile to get my rig to settle in the correct area but when i did manage it i had another run of f1s right up to the final whistle although i felt it was to little too late although i didn’t really have a clue how they had got on further up the straight .

I was the first to weigh in for my section and my 17 f1s plus a few ide went just over 17lb the guys either side of me didn’t bother the scales man but the better pegs on the bend had caught a lot more 114 had 24lb and 115 won the section with 29lb but strangely 117 didn’t weigh in , overall it was a rather confusing match for me and i would have probably benefited from changing lines quicker but I’m not to sure where i could have gone apart from further down my right hand margin .

Tomorrow im back at old hough for round five of the winter league this time were back on lucky dip + prospect and i just hope this wind drops which should enable me to fish across were the bigger stamp of fish live other wise it will be a scratching for bits match not really what i want to be doing .

Partridge lakes open match


Covey five peg 107 , October 18th

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Well sunday soon came round and another crack at the Partridge lakes open was on the cards i had been looking forward to fishing it since my section win last week and i had kept an eye on the recent results , these seemed to have improved every day that was until i saw what the weights were on Saturday because forty pounds was good enough to get you in the top six and as there was over seventy anglers in attendance the limited amount of room no doubt had a dramatic impact on how it fished .

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The weather today was forecast to be a bit overcast with a light easterly breeze and high pressure not exactly what was required for a good day’s fishing but on the plus side the overnight temps were the warmest it had been for a while so that was a glimmer of hope or maybe i was just clinging at straws in the hope of a good day’s fishing , after catching up with a few lads i knew that hadn’t been here before i joined the queue for the draw and when it came for my turn out i pulled number 107 on covey five not exactly what i wanted especially after finding out my section would be 101,103,105,106,107 so i was at the end of a run of three consecutive pegs and after speaking to a lad who fished the next peg the previous day he told me to go home as most anglers down the long straight failed to weigh in that’s just what i wanted to hear .

I decided to keep things really simple today and choose to set up ;

Three foot deep rig , 4×12 malman roob float which had a spread bulk shotting pattern i used 0.14 garbo main line and a short 012 garbo hook length my hook was a size 18 matrix bagger hook .

Four foot deep rig , 4×12 malman roob float which had a spread bulk shotting pattern i used 0.14 garbo main line and a short 0.12 garbo hook length my hook was a size 18 matrix bagger hook .

Channel swim , 4×14 malman roob float which had a carbon stem i used a bulk +dropper shotting pattern and my main line was 0.14 garbo which had a short 012 garbo hook length my hook was a size 18 matrix bagger hook .

Bait for todays match was ;

Three pints red and white maggots

Two pints soaked micros

Small tub of expanders

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As the all out sounded in the distance i picked up my three-foot rig i decided to start at this depth and not the 2ft i used last week because i felt that the fish might have dropped a bit further down the slope i then shipped out to my far-bank marker where i had earlier plumbed up to find a reasonably flat area and deposited a small kinder pot full of micros before lowering my rig in among it i purposely kept my float still so it would act as a little trap for the f1s , i was expecting lower weights from this part of the lake i decided to increase the time between feeds to five minutes so as not to have too much of a build up of bait before the fish arrived although i made a conscious effort to keep some bait falling through the water as this would hopefully attract them into my peg in the first place . Within ten minutes i had my first tentative indication on the float and not long after my first f1 graced the net another quickly followed which was a lot better than i had expected , a further thirty minutes past without me adding anything to the net although i was certain there were fish present on this line because i kept getting the odd movement on the float i altered my shotting pattern from a bulk to a spread bulk in case they was backing away from the weight of the float but nothing seemed to work which was rather worrying .

I decided to set up a new swim at the same depth further to my left towards the empty peg in case they had backed off into the space and yet again after ten minutes i began getting signs on the float before a quick burst of two f1s but i was struggling to keep the fish settled in the swim im sure that my feeding couldn’t be that far off the mark , although the lads around me were also finding it hard going which i suppose was a kind of good thing as there was no way on earth i would have a chance of framing from here so a section was the best i could possibly go for . By rotating between the two swims i picked up another f1 from each and with half the match left i had the grand total of eight fish , the lad on peg 105 had picked up a few better stamp carp from down the margin so i decided to follow suit but after three feeds i still didn’t have an indication this was usually long enough to see if there was any fish in the area .

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As per usual i had fed half a dozen maggots every five minutes on my channel swim since the match started and i had seen a few bubbles come up which gave me a bit of a confidence boost , i would have really liked to leave fishing this line for the last ninety minutes but i was falling behind in the section and hadn’t had a proper indication for nearly forty minutes so to be honest i didn’t have an option . Yet again though i struggled to get any positive bites and i was missing more than i hit because they were just little dinks as the hookbait hit the bottom , i played about with the way i laid my rig in the water this altered the fall of my rig and i found holding a tight line was by far the best way to help connect with the indications but the only trouble was they were chub not f1s .

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Rightly or wrongly i decided to increase the feed on my channel swim because i foul hooked a couple of f1s as my rig went through the water and if i could get these back on the deck i could still be in a chance of the section , i felt it would be better to rest this line while i fed it and had another look on my 3ft far-bank swims by doing this i managed to pick up a couple more fish but yet again they wouldn’t settle . I tried my 4ft rig at the bottom of both slopes but after the three feed routine this failed to produce a single indication which i sort of expected as the water wasn’t that cold yet and with just ninety minutes remaining i decided to spend it on my channel swim to see if it could pull me out of the crap again , it seemed that my heavier feeding approach had kind of worked as i began picking up the odd f1+carp on double maggot but it was by no means hectic probably one fish every fifteen minutes .

When the all out sounded it called time on a rather frustrating match as i felt that i hadn’t got the most out of my peg as im sure there was fish in the area but i couldn’t find the correct feeding pattern to keep them in my swim , i was the first to weigh in my section and my net went just under 14lb which beat most of the lads down the straight but was next to last in my group of anglers not the best of days at Partridge lakes but I’m strangely looking forward to getting back there i just hope to draw on covey one to four because covey five is a difficult place to get your head round especially if you draw bad .

 

Partridge lakes , open match


June 6th , Covey five peg 121

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I was back on the Partridge lakes open match today and after Thursdays good day here on Marsh canal i was eager to get back on Coveys 1-4 so i could give my worm+caster+pellet approach another workout , as i was going to be meeting up with a couple of mates their i set off a bit earlier than i normally do so i could grab a bacon buttie and have a bit of a catch up before the draw .

When i arrived at the complex i booked on and got told the match would be taking place on Coveys 1-6 which would allow the eighty anglers contesting the match plenty of room as you will find out later this worked really well because even in the overcast blustery conditions there would be lots of weights over the ton , i was a bit sceptical that Covey six would be able to compete against the others even after Friday’s OAP match on it when 70lb was only good enough for fourth place but in fact it fished better than Covey five .

At the draw i didn’t really fancy being on five or six as those where you’re out-and-out pellet water and i was going to be using the earlier mentioned worm+caster+pellet method , for once my drawing arm let me down putting me on Covey five peg 121 although it was in a reasonable area i was up against pegs 113-115-117-119 all of which i felt were better than mine and with this in mind i decided to fish my original plan to see how this fared against those anglers fishing pellet around me .

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After driving around to Covey 5+6 car-park i soon found my home for the day and luckily the wind was being kind blowing off my back as it was slightly protected from the high bit of banking behind me , with this in mind i decided to set up four rigs which would cover my options and these were ;

1ft shallow , 0.2 Matrix series three float with 012 garbo line which had a size 18 matrix bagger hook .

2ft top kit too my right , 0.3 Matrix series three float with 012 garbo line which had a size 16 matrix bagger hook

3ft top kit too my left , 0.3 Matrix series three float with 012 garbo line which had a size 16 matrix bagger hook

Top three situated in between my keepnets , 4×12 malman Roob float with 012 garbo line which had a size 16 matrix bagger hook .

My bait today was going to be ;

1/4 kilo worm

1 pint casters

1/2 pint micros

all mixed together in one three-pint bait tub and i had another 2 pints of casters for fishing shallow .

When the all in sounded i decided to start on my top three-line between my keepnets this worked well on the last couple of trips here and it did today as well , i tapped in a kinder pot full of feed then lowered my inch long segment of worm hook bait among it and after ten minutes i had my first F1 which was just over a pound this was an above average stamp for Cover five .In the next forty minutes i had a nice run of fish putting a dozen in too the net but even after being carefull with the feed my bites began tailing off , i had thrown a dozen casters on to my six meter shallow line since the match started and with a few fish topping in my swim i expected a good response but no bites after twenty minutes wasn’t what i wanted so i gave up on it and went onto my right hand margin , this produced another run of fish although they were a bit smaller than i had caught previously plus the indications wasn’t what you would normally get when worm fishing as they were being just little dinks more like when using pellet and this resulted in me missing a few because if you left them to develop into something more positive they never did , i tried a caster on the hook to see if this would improve things but they just didn’t want it and putting just an inch segment of worm on the hook ( nipping a piece off just below the saddle ) allowed me to hit more bites .

After a while my bites started to tail off so rather than emptying the swim i went onto my left hand margin this was six-inch deeper because i couldn’t get closer to the bank due to the vegetation and i had to wait longer for an indication but the fish were nearly twice as big so well worth waiting for , by swapping in between both margin swims i kept a steady run of fish coming up to the last sixty minutes when the lake seemed to shut down but unlike my usual bad last hour i decided to try something a bit different and i had began to feed my top three-line quite heavily with casters giving me some were to go , by fishing there with half a worm or double caster on the hook produced some bigger stamp F1s and carp .

The all out soon sounded and i had enjoyed my match today thinking that i had done reasonably well catching 65 fish but after speaking to the lads either side of me while packing up it seemed that i hadn’t done as well as them because one had caught 90 fish the other over a hundred , while waiting for the scales man i found out that both my neighbours had fished pellet in the margin or shallow and rumour came our way of lots of tons and one lad even had 170lb .As Mel finally came with the scales 83lb was winning the section from peg 113 , they guy to my right on 119 had 73lb and my 65 fish went 69lb for third in the section , that lad on 121 which wasn’t in my section weighed in 103 lb i think that got him fourth overall and all the top ten had over a ton so as you can imagine it fished extremely well i hope they continue to put the opens on Covey 1-6 when they are able too .

I am not planning on going fishing this week because i need to start preparing for my first ever festival which is at Tunnel Barn and with all the top names attending I’m probably going to get battered on both sides on every match but you need to fish against the best to keep improving , i will no doubt learn a hell of a lot which will only make my fishing better and then when i come back from there i have the small matter of a Fisho qualifier on my home water Partridge lakes so just a nice easy week .

Partridge lakes , open match


April 6th , Covey five peg 125

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After Sundays awful match on here i was eager to get back and give it another go so after managing to book a few days off work and with the weather being nice+sunny i decided to take my chance for another trip to Partridge lakes to fish the open even though i don’t have that good a record on the mid-week matches but i still fancied catching a few .I thought that it was time for a worm+caster approach and the results from Tuesday’s contest seem to prove that fact with four of the top six weights caught using it so that is what i set my stall out on doing , on arriving at the venue there seemed quite a few people knocking about which wasn’t surprising in the nice weather and recent big weights coming out as it turned out their was over fifty anglers in the match so covey 1-5 would be in the draw bag and when it came for my turn i pulled out peg 125 on covey five it was obviously a good area ( as per usual ) but it is an out-and-out pellet water so the worm+caster would be staying in my bag also i would struggle to compete against covey 1-4 so my aim today was a lake win .

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My peg was the first one over the bridge on the split so i had the point of the island and a reed lined left hand margin to attack and it looked really good although there was anglers on pegs 101 + 103 but i still had plenty room to draw fish from , i decided not to over complicate things so i set up just three rigs ;

Shallow – 0.2 pea float with 012 garbo line direct to a size 18 hook which had a micro bait band attached

2ft – 4×12 malman roob with 012 garbo main line and a 010 garbo hook length which had a size 20 matrix bagger hook

3ft – 4×10 malman roob with 012 garbo main line and a 010 garbo hook length which had a size 20 matrix bagger hook

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As i mentioned earlier covey five was a good pellet water so that is what i had on my side tray ;

1 pint micro

1 pint 4mm

1 pint ground-bait

small tub 4mm expanders

I plumbed up various spots along the far-bank at 2ft trying to find an average depth so i could use the same rig but as it was still a bit cold with it being early morning i kicked off the match at 3ft , so when the all in sounded i shipped out to where i had found a flat spot earlier and tapped in some micros through a small cad pot before lowering my 4mm expander among it . I had left a few mm of bristle showing so that i could try to read the bites because there is a lot of small 8oz f1s in here and if you get your feeding wrong ( like i normally do ) you can get a lot of line bites and are constantly striking your pellet off , by working my rig and being careful with my feeding i managed a dozen fish in the first hour i would normally set myself a target twenty fish an hour on here but as i was catching mainly ghost carp or the bigger stamp F1 i felt my weight would be the same as if i caught more of the smaller f1s and i seemed to be doing better than those anglers around me .

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In the second hour the bites began getting less positive probably due to the calm bright conditions or more like the fact i had over fed my swim so i added another shot to really dimple my float down in fact it was only just breaking the surface tension and by doing this i managed another half a dozen fish but it was getting noticeably slower , a change of swim was in order so i moved closer to the point of the island and proceeded to start again just like before the bites began really positive before going very finicky i couldn’t get the fish to settle ( thinking back i should have picked a couple of F1s from each swim rotating them to allow them to feel more confident ) I decided to feed a bit of ground-bait on my swim to see if that would attract some feeding fish but it had the opposite effect and killed my swim .

With just over two hours of the match gone i had 25 fish in the net for a similar weight in pounds so i didn’t think i was doing that bad and with it getting noticeably warmer my jacket came off then i picked up my 2ft rig thinking the fish would have moved further up the slope into the higher temp water , i set up two swims and tried to rotate them so i wasn’t spooking them as much after i had caught a couple of them and this worked well for an hour but i was now catching more of the smaller F1s but hardly any ghosties . I decided to leave fishing across allowing it to settle for a while and had a look on my left hand margin i started flicking 4mm pellets at the float which i later found out was a mistake because although i started getting a bigger stamp of F1 i was soon getting plagued by foul hookers and bumped fish i did try shallow down the edge but couldn’t get a bite , obviously it wasn’t long before i trashed my rig and then had to cut my lighter 3ft rig down i also began feeding balls of micros through a kinder pot i felt that this would help solve the problem but i could never really get it to work right for the last ninety minutes i only put eight fish in the net by rotating my far-bank swims and i lost at least double that amount .

As the all out sounded i felt my match had gone alright for the first three hours before i lost my way towards the end which is where you normally catch the majority of the fish and i ended up with 48 fish for 49lb for about fourth on the lake as pegs 117,121,124 all had over 60lb so i had blown another chance as my peg had the potential for at least 80lb . The match itself fished really well with 130lb winning from peg 14 and six weights over the ton predictably most had caught using worm+caster , im off to sycamore fisheries on Sunday before my Fisho qualifiers start so lets hope they fancy a munch on worms there too .