Partridge lakes


July 15th

Covey two peg 31

Today i decided on another change of venue and i had prepared all week for another try at Blundells but due to family commitments  i had to get back home pretty sharpish after the match so i choose a trip to Partridge lakes instead which was a bit more local to me and also a five-hour match unlike my original fancy of venues , it had also thrown up some nice weights recently plus it was mainly mud bank work which would come in handy for a bit of practice before the next round of mosella summer league at Hall lane as i don’t tend to do a lot of this sort of fishing  . I hadn’t visited the fishery since the fisho qualifier a couple of months ago so i expected to be a bit of the pace but it was a day’s fishing and i was really looking forward to it especially as the weather was forecast to be quite reasonable with warm temps , a light breeze blowing towards spey and overcast conditions but on the down side we was forecast to get a few heavy showers during the day but thats the english summer for you . After catching up with a few of the regulars which i had not seen for a while and  before i knew it was nearly draw time so i joined the queue towards the rear , when it came for my dip in the bag of doom i pulled out peg 31 on covey two not exactly where i wanted to be and in my opinion it was one of the worst on the complex i’m afraid that my golden arm has completely deserted me for the time being but i shouldn’t really complain because i have sat on my fair share of flyers so far this season .

When i arrived at my home for the next few hours it was completely flat calm in front of me although i did have a bit of room with two empty pegs towards my left and another to my right , i had a nice mud bank directly opposite me which had two big reed beds either side of it and i also had a reed bed either side of me in the margin so it did look promising , i just hoped that there would be a few fish in the area and taking all this into account i choose to set up ;

mud bank in 18 inch and i used a 0.3 MD diamond float with a bulk of shot above the 012 garbo four-inch hook length .

margin in 1.5ft and i used a 0.3 MD margin float with an inch spread bulk starting above the 012 garbo four-inch hook length .

pellet rig in 2.5ft for fishing in front of the far bank reeds and along my left hand margin at four meters , i used a 4×12 MD pellet float with a centimeter spread bulk starting above the 012 garbo four-inch hook length .

shallow rig in 2ft and i used a 4×10 MD mini mag float with four number eleven stotz spread along my 014 garbo main , attached to it was four-inch hook length of 012 garbo .

deck rig which i plumbed up at five meters underneath my shallow swim and as it was a touch over 5ft so i used a 4×12 MD maggie float which had a bulk plus two dropper shotting pattern , my main line was the usual 014 garbo and hook length six-inch of 012 garbo .

Bait for the day ;

2 pints of red and white maggots

2 pints of soaked micros

some ground-bait for the mud bank

When the all in sounded i didn’t think the mud bank would be right so soon into the match after the overnight rain and i began on my pellet line in front of the far bank reeds , i picked a dark reed as a marker then i dropped a nugget of crushed expander which i hoped would attract some f1s into the swim , five minutes without so much as a liner and my next move was to start taping in a few micros , a further ten minutes past before i had my first fish although i wasnt expecting it to be a gudgeon and before the match i had purposely decided to stick it out on one line for as long as i could because i felt this was something which had let me down recently , as i usually try to chase the f1s around the peg more like winter fishing rather than concentrate on trying to get my feeding right so that i could get them competing on one line which is what you need to do for a good weight  . In the next forty minutes i put four f1s + two stockies in the net but after that initial flourish the gudgeon returned in numbers which was not a good sign , i swapped swims to the other side of the reeds so i could start again and i would hopefully be able to switch between them both picking the odd fish of each , my left hand line never really got going as it only produced a couple of f1s but to be honest neither of them did and there was definitely a lack of fish in front of me .

I put two cups of ground-bait on my mud bank then went long down my left hand margin with my pellet rig in 2.5ft i started the same as i did on my across line by feeding a nugget of crushed expanders then tapping a few micros other the top , this swim got me a few stockies before bites tailed off but i didn’t have to wait too long before i found out why as i struck into something a bit more substantial which took me under the spare platform then broke my hook length so that was one nil to the carp . By continuously feeding a few pellets i began to build up the swim and i managed to pick up the odd better f1 among the stockies but it was slow going , i saw a swirl on my mud line where i had earlier fed some bait a quick change of rigs then i was shipping across and no sooner had my rig settled then it shot under , a sharp lift of the pole tip resulted in a small silver skimming across the surface and a few more followed but no proper fish maybe i was correct about the rain putting them off from going tight to the bank .

I had fed my shallow line since the match started and although i had not seen any signs of fish i decided to give it a whirl because nothing else seemed to working for me , but yet again all i could catch was small silvers and i noticed that underneath this line was a few bubbles coming up so i dropped on this just to see what had settled on it , my bait  had only just touched bottom when my float dipped under and after a spirited fight up popped a barbel which took me a bit by surprise as i hadn’t caught one from the proper coveys before , i missed a couple of quick dips on the float and i hoped that a few more were rooting around so with nothing to lose i took the option of potting in some maggots just like you would over winter , doing this got me a little run of f1s before they backed off so i gave it another pot and as i let it settle i went back across to the mud line this time i managed an f1 among the small silvers but it just wasnt right , i had a look on my long margin with pellets but that didn’t really kick off either so i spent the remainder of my match down the channel where i picked up the occasional big f1 and it was a tactic that i never thought would work during the summer months .

When the all out sounded it called time on a rather frustrating day as i just couldn’t get a run of fish but maybe there wasnt a lot in front of me today and at the start i had set myself an optimistic target of thirty fish which i did manage if i included the handful of stockies , although i did feel that i had been comfortably beaten on both sides as it looked like they had put the odd fish in the net quite often during the day and when the scales finally arrived my fish went just short of 46lb , which was more than i had thought plus i was surprised to find that i had beaten the two anglers either side of me , but i was a long way from challenging for the section as the windward end produced a 80lb+70lb and that was only to be expected , so although i didn’t really do a great deal today i strangely enjoyed it and might have had a chance from a very poor peg if the fish had turned up on the mud bank but it wasnt to be .

 

 

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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 open match


September 3rd , covey six peg 137

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Back at Partridge lakes today for another try at the open match and i was really looking forward to it because i felt that i had neglected this style of fishing , with autumn fast approaching i needed to get back in touch with the fickle feeding f1s even if the weather was forecast to be pretty dreadful today (constant rain) After booking on to the open where i found it would be across covey 1-4 plus covey 6 and i then grabbed a couple of pints of red maggots from the on site tackle shop before joining the queue for the draw as i fancied an early pick in the bag of doom to see if it would change my luck , it looked like i needed to try another way because when it came to my turn i pulled out peg 137 on covey six not the best of areas and with two better pegs in my section i would be up against it but as i was still getting back to grips with the venue there would be no point sitting on flyers just yet .

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On arriving to my peg i fancied a nice easy match because it is all too easy to over complicate things and end up not sticking to your game plan but when i found out i had left my side tray at home and needed to borrow a bucket to use as a makeshift tray , my match turned even simpler because there was no way that i could risk using maggots in the rain without any cover as they would just end up going everywhere and it would be an all out pellet attack .

1 pint micros

2 pint 4mm

2 pint ground-bait

Small tub of 4mm expanders

Rigs for the day were;

Bottom of near slope after plumbing up i found around 5ft so i used a 4×14 roob float with an inch spread bulk above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

Three foot rig i managed to get a couple of flat spots along the far-bank and also in the margin towards my left so i used a 4×12 roob float with an inch spread bulk above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

With all the cold rain going in over night and during the day i also set up a four-foot rig for when the fish had dropped down into the deeper water , i used a 4×12 roob float with an inch spread bulk above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

When the all in sounded in the distance i began my match by using the three-foot rig along the far-bank at the side of the reeds and i tapped in a nugget of ground-bait to try to kick-start the swim but even after constantly trickling in some micros i failed to get any indications , i was thinking of trying further down the slope but before i did i decided to put in another swim at the same depth against another set of reeds and im glad that i did because it produced half a dozen f1s in thirty minutes before they backed off , so yet again i set up a new swim i basically followed them all along the far bank picking up a couple of f1s from each but they never really settled on one line for long and even though i was dithering in the cold rain the fish + water were quite warm so i never felt the need to try my four-foot rig .

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With two hours of the match remaining and nothing coming from my across lines i decided to drop onto my top three swim where i had flicked half a dozen 4mm pellets every five minutes since the match started and i hoped that there might be some fish present but a bite less twenty minutes wasnt what i expected even though other anglers were catching on this line , my next area of my peg to try was my left hand margin although i had not primed this swim and i decided to fish it like i did on my far bank by starting with a nugget of ground-bait then trickling in some micros , it didn’t take too long before i began getting indications and line bites so i decided to go into shallower water about two foot deep , i was soon back catching the odd f1 but yet again they would only come in spells ( not sure i got my feeding right ) i found that by dropping in a small ball of ground-bait then lowering a rig in among it was the best way to get a bite and i even managed a couple of carp from this swim .

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Before i knew it the all out sounded and called time on a very wet match although at times i really enjoyed it but I’m struggling to get to grips with my feeding but i am sure that the more i fish it the easier it will become , i ended up with nearly 50lb which was good enough for second in section behind peg 135 who had around 70lb from one of the more fancied pegs and the complex fished quite hard with ninety pounds making the frame which wasnt surprising in the conditions .

I am looking forward to getting back to Partridge lakes at the weekend but before that i have a trip to Weston pools tomorrow which has to be one of my favorite venues its just a shame that it isnt a bit closer or i would be there every week .

Partridge lakes fishery


August 27th , peg 35 covey two

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After Thursday’s eventful match at Partridge lakes i decided on a quick return visit to see if i could put into practice what i hoped that i had learned from last time as the weather conditions where the same with it being calm+sunny ( a better draw wouldn’t go amiss as well ) . On arrival to the venue i booked in at the cabin before grabbing a bacon sandwich and before i knew it was time to start queuing for the draw when it came for my turn in the bag of doom i pulled out peg 35 on covey two ( not again ) but at least i had a good idea on how best to fish it which might give me an advantage over the others that were in my section .

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When i got to my home for the next few hours it wasnt really what i was expecting because it was facing the point of the split with a tree overhanging ( which gave my far-bank some shade ) but my across swim only had three clumps of reeds and was mainly mud bank not ideal for how i wanted to be fishing today i decided to set up ;

Top three it was just under five foot deep and as i would be using pellets my float was a 4×12 roob float with a spread bulk above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

Margin swim which was top three towards my left at the side of some reeds it was around 18 inches here so it should be the perfect depth and i used a 0.4 jadz float with a spread bulk above the 4 inch 012 garbo hook length .

My far-bank swim was just over two foot deep and after plumbing around i found two flat spots on either side of the reeds it was also the same depth in front of the empty left hand platform so i used a 4×12 roob float with a spread bulk above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

Bait for the day was ;

Two pints of micros

One pint of maggots

One pint of 4mm pellets

Three pints of ground-bait

When the all in sounded i began on my top three-line at the bottom of the shelf and i was flicking in the odd 4mm pellet but no bites after 15 minutes soon had me going to my left hand far-bank swim and i taped in a nugget of ground-bait before holding my rig still over the top of it i sprinkled in some micros every couple of minutes to try to attract something into the swim , it took about twenty minutes before i had my first f1 another quickly followed before i started getting strange indications my rig wouldn’t settle properly either and i persevered on this line for too long the first hour passed without adding a great deal to my net . A change of swim was in order so i went onto my right hand clump of reeds and started again this worked out a lot better for me as i managed a good run of f1s somewhere around the two-pound mark it was noticeable today that they wanted a bit of feed going in today unlike on Thursday when they backed away from it ( especially ground-bait ) But after a good spell of catching i stupidly foul hooked a fish by striking at the wrong bite it went through the edge of the reed bed and unsettled the shoal , my next few bites were from gudgeon i could never get the swim back to how it was and thinking about it now i should have put on another section following the reed bed round towards peg 49 but you live+learn i had been pinging pellets towards the left hand platform but didn’t want to go on it too soon .

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I had put in the odd pot of ground-bait tight to the side of the reeds so i decided to drop on it with four maggots on the hook and i was getting the odd line bite ( which was a promising sign ) after about ten minutes i had my first proper bite which resulted in a nice stamp f1 hitting the net but after that i couldn’t catch anything decent if i put maggots on the hook i caught perch then when i changed to pellets i had small silvers ( not good ) I went back on to my far bank right hand swim and picked up the odd f1 but they wasnt there in any numbers so i decided to try in front of the empty platform , when i dropped my rig in i was getting lots of line bites but it was hard to get any proper indications and i changed my shotting on my rig to allow for a slower fall of the hook bait this allowed me to catch a few fish , i felt that if i big potted in some ground-bait then it might get the fish on the deck and to some extent it did as i went on a good run of f1s plus the odd carp but i did foul hook the odd fish which took me right under the platform .

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As the all out sounded i had caught thirty f1s+carp including one right on the whistle i was unsure how i had got on because i could only see one other angler who wasnt in my section and i had kept up with him , when the scales arrived i was the last to weigh in and 78lb was winning the section i knew that i hadn’t got that , my nets went just under sixty pounds so my slow start to my match had cost me yet again and i need to sort this out if im ever going to challenge for the section or better , overall the match fished quite hard 120lb winning with a low 80lb getting in the top six so i wasnt that far away and i am really enjoying my time back at Partridge lakes i just hope that on my next visit i can avoid covey two .

Partridge lakes fishery


August 25th , peg 48 covey two

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After managing to get a few days off work I decided to take the opportunity to re-acquaint myself with the coveys at Partridge lakes as it has one of the biggest attended open matches in the country and I hadn’t been here since the Maver match this qualifier a couple of months previously , like most f1 venues it can take a while to get back into the swing of things and now that shallow fishing is on the way out it will more than likely be my winter venue in between the winter league at Old hough.

After arriving at the venue just before nine I grabbed a bacon sandwich before booking on to the open and looking at the recent results I decided to get three pints of maggots rather than casters from the on site tackle shop , it was soon time for the draw yet again for a mid-week match there was over forty anglers in attendance when it came for my turn in the bag of doom i pulled out peg 48 and after speaking to Andy Bennett he wasnt to optimistic about draw saying i would be better off targeting the ide .

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On arriving at my peg which was half way up the split and to be honest it looked really good but that could be said for all the pegs on the coveys , i had a nice reed lined far bank on both sides of the mud bank and both margins had plenty vegetation as well there was also plenty of fish milling about shallow but in the calm sunny conditions they was very unsettled . I decided to keep things very simple as i hadn’t been for a while so i just set up ;

Far-bank i plumbed up to find a couple of flat areas in a depth of three-foot so i could rotate lines when bites started to slow down and i used a 4×12 roob float which had a spread bulk above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

Margin swim top three towards my left , it was nearly two foot tight to the bank at the side of the reeds so i used a 0.4 joof float with a spread bulk above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length which gave me a very stable rig .

Deck rig at six meters i didn’t really expect to be using this today but it is always handy to have set up underneath your shallow line and i used a 4×14 maggie float which had a bulk plus two dropper shotting pattern , my main line was the usual 014 garbo and hook length was six-inch of 012 garbo .

Shallow rigs i set up one at a foot the other at two foot , both floats were the same matrix series three float in a 0.1 and they had three number eleven stotz spread along the 0.14 garbo my hook length was a 0.12 garbo .

Bait for the day revolved around pellets ;

One pint soaked micros

Two pints ground-bait

Three pints red maggots

Small tub of 4mm expanders

When the all in sounded i began feeding my shallow swim with maggots before shipping across to my far-bank marker and deposited a kinder pot full of micros the first thirty minutes were a proper right off as i only managed a couple of f1s even though i was feeding every five minutes to try to attract some fish into the swim , i plumbed up a new swim a meter to my right at the other side of the mud bank and started because as you all know f1s can be very reluctant to move at times but yet again this didn’t really produce how i would have expected . So while i pondered my next move i decided to drop onto my left hand margin in front of the reeds which was the same depth as my across swims , after kinder potting in a ball of groundbait to try to kick-start the peg and a had a big f1 straight away but another bite less twenty minutes had me scratching my head , as i had fed my channel swim since the start of the match i hopped that this could get me out of trouble although this still off fishing wasnt really working for me so far this year .

I shipped out to six meters and chucked in two lots of a dozen maggots then flicked my rig in over the top no sooner had it settled when it pulled under but it wasnt what i wanted to be catching though because small silver after small silver kept taking the bait , increasing the feed did not help and neither did altering the depths i just had to try to plough through them but they was really doing my head in because i was catching a dozen of them before i managed an ide ! ! I noticed a few bubbles coming up from under my shallow line and thinking that there maybe a couple of f1s sitting there i picked up my deck rig but those bloody silvers were still grabbing the bait on the way down , i put all the shot on my line above the hook length and dropped the rig in a heap so it bolted its way to the bottom by doing this i managed a couple more f1s but yet again the silvers were a problem .

Two hours into the match with just eight proper fish in the net you can safely say things weren’t going to plan and with the other anglers in eye shot also struggling i choose to plumb up a new swim in slightly deeper water in front of the reeds , i also changed to my smallest kinder pot deciding to be ultra negative holding my rig really still over the top of it because i could always feed heavier if it didn’t work but with the fishing being hard i had nothing to lose , i began trickling in a few micros every couple of minutes i managed to draw a few fish into the swim after beginning to get some indications i had the confidence to keep doing what i was hoping to do and i soon had the f1s competing which made them easier to catch i had a quick run of six before they backed off . I replumbed up a new swim a foot to my left then started again this produced another burst of fish and for the remaining part of the match i had to chase them all along the far bank to be honest it was just like winter fishing even though i wasnt really catching that well i enjoyed it immensely which goes to show you don’t have to be bagging all the time .

As the all out sounded i had managed to catch 28 f1s plus a couple of ide for just short of forty pounds and the lake was won with ninety pounds then seventy pounds coming second , if i had worked it out a bit quicker i might have managed the latter weight but i didn’t expect the fishing to be that difficult today plus i wasnt in touch with the venue after spending so long away . Overall it had fished really well with 150lb winning the match and 130lb needed to get in the top six so as you can see the other coveys had fished a lot better than the one i was on , hopefully i will be back for another try over the weekend and i just hope that i can avoid covey two .

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog .

 

 

 

Partridge lakes Xmas match


27th December , peg ten Ribbon

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Well today was my last match of the year and i couldn’t think of a better place to fish than Partridge lakes especially as it was their annual Xmas contest and today they had over two hundred anglers in attendance , this was even more impressive due to the weather the previous day resembling the great floods of years past with rivers all over the place bursting their banks causing roads closed everywhere you turned and i had to wait till the morning of the match before making a decision whether to travel to the venue or not , as you can probably guess my the post i did decide to go although i had to make a major detour through Leigh in aid for me to get there and as the draw was due to start at 830 i left my house around 710 and after making good time with the roads being empty which wasn’t that surprising as most people would still be in bed , on arrival the car-park was choka and i had to park all the way down near Holbar which meant a bit of a trek to the cabin were i picked up some discounted maggots before joining the queue for the draw and it was almost an hour later before i got a chance to pick , when i pulled out peg ten on Ribbon i was reasonably pleased as it had a bit of form although it wasn’t the best on the lake it should give me a chance for at least the section if not the lake win .

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I felt that i would be better of leaving my car where it was and trolley my gear across the car-park on arriving to my home for the next few hours i was quite pleased as it had a far-bank reed bed , a mud bank which i remembered from the only time i fished this water had a big cut out underneath it plus another reed bed towards my left hand margin . As i began setting up one by one all the other anglers began to turn up which included a few Partridge lakes regulars along with some lads i hadn’t seen before which wasn’t surprising with the big turnout today , on settling in at my peg i had a think on which areas i felt would get me a few fish and these were ;

Obviously i figured my main line of attack would be in front of the dead reed bed across and i plumbed up to find it to be four-foot deep , with this lake being flat calm with the trees offering a nice wind break i decided that i could use a lighter more delicate float which should allow for better presentation giving a more natural fall of the bait . I used a 4×12 malman roob float which had 014 garbo main line and as i would be using pellets my hook length was three-inch 010 garbo that had a size 18 matrix bagger hook attached my shotting pattern was your standard one centimeter  spread bulk above the hook length .

My next area was in front of the hole in the mud bank on plumbing up i found just a touch over two foot and i wasn’t sure this would be a depth that the fish would feel comfortable sitting in today although i just couldn’t ignore it in case a couple of carp were hiding in it . i used the same 4×12 malman roob float as this would help me keep the rig still in the shallow water i had 014 garbo main line and as i would be using maggots my hook length was a longer six-inch 010 garbo that had a size 18 matrix bagger hook attached my shotting pattern was your standard one inch spread bulk above the hook length .

The other rig i set up was for the channel and i had a quick plumb around to find the deepest part of my peg it seemed to level out at four meters where it was a touch over five foot so i decided to put it at a comfortable six meters this lined up handily with a reflection of a tree in the water allowing me to be pretty accurate with my feeding , here i used a 4×14 RW maggie float as it had the carbon stem which allowed the float to settle at the same time as your bait fell my shotting pattern was the usual bulk plus two droppers and my main line was 014 garbo with an 009 garbo six-inch hook length that had a size twenty matrix silver fish-hook attached .

My other rig was one that i set up in the spur of the moment as it was a shallow one set at two foot deep i only choose to use it because i saw a couple of fish top in front of me as i was setting up and i used a 4×8 chianti float with 010 garbo direct to a size twenty matrix silver fish pattern .

I had all sorts of bait in my bag because of the amount of different lakes in the draw bag but as Ribbon was one of your more standard f1+ide waters i took to my peg the standard ;

Two pints of red and white maggots

One pint of soaked micros

One pint of four mm pellets

Small tub of expander pellets

Small tub of white hooker pellets

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As the all out sounded in the distance i put half a small cupping kit of maggots on to my channel swim and i would continue doing this every twenty minutes which would hopefully allow a few fish to settle on it before i had a good final ninety minutes fishing it , i then shipped out to where i had earlier plumbed up at the right hand side of the dead reed bed and i tapped in a small kinder pot full of micros then proceeded to hold my rig still over the top of it , in the next ten minutes not a great deal happened so i shipped back in to refill my pot but this time i changed the lid for a sprinkle pot as i hopped that the fall of a few micro pellets might attract a few f1s into the swim but thirty minutes in i was still fish less with only a couple of slight indications to show for it . A replumb a bit further to my left and i was back fishing again this time i cut right back on the feed only tapping in six micros at a time just incase the initial amount of bait on my other swim had caused the fish to not settle , after only ten minutes of being ultra negative i finally had my first fish which was a hand sized stockie and i was glad to get off the mark because it was looking like it could be a very hard day , slowly my swim began to get a bit better as in the next half hour produced two stockies plus a proper f1 around the 1lb mark and i missed a couple of indications as well .

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I don’t think that i had over fed the swim but it did began to tail off so yet again i had to replumb a bit further towards my left and all three of them were only one a couple of feet apart so it seemed a bit strange that the new one produced indications from the off it just goes to show how finicky the f1s were today no doubt to all the cold rain going in recently , by following the same feeding regime i managed another couple of stockies plus a bigger f1 in the next thirty minutes but yet again after almost exactly the same amount of feeds the fish backed off . Another swim was called for but this strangely did not produce a bite and neither did any of my earlier ones so with two hours of the match gone i had only six fish in the net ! ! I had been loose feeding a dozen maggots on my top three-line which was at the bottom of the slope to my left for the past forty minutes so i hopped that a few fish had settled there but twenty minutes of laying my rig through the water produced absolutely nothing not even a little silver fish and thinking about it after the match it was probably to close to the bottom of my keep net

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My next port of call was going tight across to the mud bank a choose to use double maggot on the hook i put in a kinder pot full of them before working my rig among them but yet again this failed to produce an indication and i had gone nearly an hour without seeing a fish , i had no  option other than to go on my channel swim a bit earlier than i would have liked  it looked that this wasn’t going to produce either until out of the blue my float dipped under and a big ide was added to my net , another bite less ten minutes had me reaching for my shallow rig which i used along the dead reed bed but this also failed to produce an indication even though i worked it in between all the reed stems and even along the mud bank .

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With just forty minutes of the match remaining i decided to spend it fishing my top six line as this is where i had caught my biggest fish and if they turned up i could still be able to put a weight together as from what i had seen so far twenty pounds would be a good weight from this lake today , i changed from feeding through a cupping kit to using a kinder pot every five minutes by doing this it seemed to provoke a response as i managed two more stamp f1s and another big Ide before the all out  although i did notice that the f1s i caught weren’t hooked neatly which in my mind meant the rig wasn’t working correctly which could have resulted in indications that i hadn’t seen .

I didn’t bother weighing in because the lads in my section to the left had caught more than me as i guessed my weight to be around 12-14lb not the best days fishing and it was a shame to finish my year on such a low , back on the winter league trail at Old Hough in January with just three matches remaining so i could do with an improvement in form and pick some better pegs to help keep me towards the top of the table .

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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 .