Heronbrook fishery


October 15th

Today i have been back to heronbrook as a guest for the Stockton heath lads it was the second round of the winter league and as it would be my last match here due to another winter league commitment at Old Hough that i have contested for the last few years so i was looking forward to getting a good draw plus catching a few fish but how wrong was i and after yesterdays good result at Partridge lake I came back to earth with a bang .On arriving at the fishery i caught up with the rest of the team before grabbing a breakfast and all the talk was on how hard it might fish because the weather recently had been awful with heavy downpours plus strong winds although it was still quite warm , at the draw i was handed peg sixteen on match lake i got told it was the worst one on the lake and i already knew the lake wasnt fishing great i would have much prepared to be on match pool as at least you was guaranteed a few bites on that water .

At least i could drive round to my home for the next few hours which i knew was a good winter peg due to the fact it was at least five foot deep all over the peg but today though it was very warm for the time of year and I knew it was going to be a struggle , i decided to set up a few rings to cover my options ;

Top kit plus one at the bottom of the near slope were upon plumbing up i found five foot so i used a 4×12 joof float with a staggered bulk starting above my six-inch 012 garbo hook length which had a size 18 lwg hook with a micro bait band attached to it and my main line was the usual 016 garbo main line .

Thirteen meter swim where it was nearly a top kit deep and i used a 4×14 joof float with a bulk plus two dropper shotting pattern , my main line was 014 garbo and hook length was six-inch of 012 garbo which had a size 18 lwg hook with a micro bait band attached .

Right hand margin in 4ft a couple of feet away from the bank because it fell away quite steeply and this is where it levelled out before dropping off again , i used a 4×14 Md diamond float which had an inch spread bulk starting above my six-inch 014 garbo hook length which had a size 16 lwg hook attached .

Left hand margin in three-foot tight to the bank because the slope was a lot more angler friendly on this side and i decided to fish a negative swim with pellets here , i used a 4×12 Md pellet float which had an inch spread bulk starting above my four-inch 012 garbo hook length and attached to it was a size 16 lwg .

As i had an island around twenty meters away i set up a feeder rod with a 1/8 ounce straight lead  which had an eighteen inch hook length and my hook was a size 16 lwg .

Bait for the day was ;

2 tins of corn

3 pints of soaked 4mm pellets

2 pints of 8mm pellets

When the all in sounded i started my match at the bottom of the near slope with hard pellets i kept flicking half a dozen 4mm pellets around my float and it was unbelievably slow going , i missed a couple of indications and i altered my shooting pattern so that my hook bait fell slower this got me two quick f1’s , i felt that i had it sorted but i only had a couple of missed dips on the float in the next half hour but as no one around me was catching I didn’t panic . All the time I had been pinging a couple of 8mm pellets towards the island and this was my next line to go at with the straight lead but all I managed was the odd liner which had me scratching my head as i really felt this would get me a few fish but especially as the lad towards my right was catching f1s on the tip rod although he was using a method feeder I found out later this never works on the match lake so I wasted another hour.

I went on to my 13m swim next at the bottom of the far shelf and after kinder potting in some hard 4mm pellets a few times from a height to try to draw some fish into the swim , this kind of worked for me as I caught two quick f1’s then nothing so I was back to square one and that seemed to be how my match panned out today as i added on another section going out to 14m where it started sloping up to the island which got me a couple of fish then nothing , in the back of my mind I just knew that I should be concentrating in shallower water with it still being quite warm . After re plumbing up along my right hand margin at six meters I managed to find 2ft but the slope was too steep to fish there and I found 4ft just as it levelled out a bit before another drop off, I began by kinder potting in a few grains of corn and after a couple of feeds i caught an F1 before twenty minutes without a sign .

A switch to my pellet line got me a couple more fish and I knew that I had made the right decision to fish in shallower water it was just that i made the switch three hours too late , for the rest of the match I rotated between them both catching fish from each before resting it and I did lose a barny rubble with a hook pull after a five-minute fight on my corn swim which cost me at the end , but i must have doubled my catch in the last ninety minutes from down the edge and maybe it was just the time of day but im not too sure .When the all out sounded I had a very long wait before i put a very disappointing 30lb on the scales for last in my ten peg section although I had 31lb on one side of me, 33lb the other and 46lb won the money section so i wasnt too far away but it was still a bit gutting the team didn’t do great either so all in all a very poor day , but like they say you are only as good as your last match so hopefully i can put it behind me when i contest the first round of my winter league at Old Hough next weekend .

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Partridge lakes fishery


14th October

I have been to partridge lakes today for the open match it was due to be on coveys 1-4 plus covey six and looking at the results during the week the latter one was the place to be because the original coveys had fished quite hard due to the very unsettled weather , as its nearly the middle of October and temps are up in the late teens not that I’m complaining still fishing in t-shirts at this time of year . On arrival to the fishery there was all the usual people in attendance getting reacquainted with the coveys as it was soon coming round to winter league time and I’m going to miss it this year , as i am concentrating on the Old Hough winter league that my mate is running but i will be back here for the Individual league in January , it turned out that there was seventy anglers in attendance just your typical weekend turn out for Partridge lakes . As I hadn’t been here for quite some time nearly three months to be exact so i expected to be well of the pace and i was still really looking forward to it even though I thought that it would be tough going , it soon came round to draw time so i joined the queue about half way and when it came to my turn for a dip in the bag of doom somethings never change as I pulled out my usual end peg which was 132 on covey six which does throw up a good weight every so often ( so no pressure then lol ) although it couldn’t be that good because i had been nowhere near it in the four years i had attended the opens on here as i had sat on most of the flyers .

After settling at my home for the next few hours i had the wind blowing into the margin as the scum had settled towards my left hand reed lined corner but i didn’t have any ripple as the bridge to my right and aerator rope directly in front had prevented the ripple reaching me , i decided to set up ;

4ft,3ft,2ft pellet rigs which i would use for chasing the f1s up and down the near slope and on all of them i used  a 4×14 Md wire stemmed float with an inch spread bulk starting above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length which had a size 16 guru pellet attached .

I also set up a shallow rig set at 18 inch because i noticed a few fish swirling near the aerator and the bridge , i used a 4×10 Md mini mag float with a small bulk of shot above the six-inch 012 garbo hook length which had a size twenty guru lwg hook with a micro bait band .

Bait for the match was ;

Two pints of soaked micros

Two pints of soaked 4mm pellets

One pint of crushed expander

Small tub of 4mm and 6mm expanders

I didn’t take any maggots to my peg today which i felt might have been a mistake if I wanted to fish shallow because there was a few fish knocking at the aerator and pellets do not usually work on here for fishing up in the water , i also didn’t have anything bigger than 4mm but i would give it a try but half expected it not to work and when the all in sounded I flicked my shallow pellet rig at eleven meters towards the aerator , i gave my float a couple of slaps then my elastic came shooting out which took me a bit by surprise and I lost the carp as it took me under the rope , i did not want to start feeding anything just yet as it might affect my other lines but by rotating between here and the bridge I picked up some nice stamp F1+carp in the first ninety minutes before things started to slow down this was when i picked up my catty to try to get them competing but it had the opposite effect killing the swim completely .

When this swim died I went down both edges starting in four-foot and managed a few f1s+stockies feeding micros sprinkling them in through a small kinder pot i had a 4mm expander on the hook when i began suffering with line bites so i tried clumping in the feed to try to get the fish back on the deck , this worked for a while but it wasnt right so i picked up my three-foot rig to chase them further up the near shelf this got me another run of f1s and they was all a good stamp as well , it wasnt long before the problem of line bites returned but i couldn’t get into any shallower water as the scum had began to gather really badly in front of me . I plumbed a swim across to the point of the island at 14m but the wind was making it a problem to keep my rig still and i did manage a couple of fish but i was fighting a losing battle with the blustery conditions so i gave up on it for the time being although i would give it another try when conditions allow .

I  put in a new line further along my left hand margin at the side of the scum but it was nearly four feet deep not ideal and after a couple of feeds i began catching again but the scum kept on gathering meaning that i had to keep adding sections to start new swims but at least it meant i did not have time to suffer with line bites , strangely my right hand edge towards the bridge never really got going and In the last hour I went back into four-foot at eleven meters either side of me which was the extremes of my peg and I managed to pick up the odd fish from each but it was slow going.

When the all out sounded I had managed 25 f1’s and five carp which went 64lb but i never felt in control of my peg today this was just enough to win the section and surprisingly I was also third on the lake , when I got back to the cabin it turned out that I was also third in the match which is my best performance here on these highly contested opens and it had been tough on covey 1-4, to be honest I felt that it could have been on a match winning peg if I had changed a few things and i am kicking myself for not getting the couple of extra pounds which would have placed me into the high flyer match next weekend  but I’m happy with the result on my first visit in months.

Cunneries fishery , teams of three league


October 7th

Today i was back at the Cunneries fishery for the penultimate round of the Autumn teams of three and as the Daiwa adlington team was languishing in mid table we could do with a good performance to move us up the league although in all honesty it would be very hard to make up ground on the top four , during the week leading up to the contest we had some torrential down pours and it was forecast to be continuous rain today as well , this i felt would have an impact on the weights and i thought that just 60lb could be enough for good section points that was probably only thirty-five stamp f1s which should be achievable on most of the pegs on the S canal , the Old canal was also in the match today after it had been closed for over a month and on Thursdays match it had thrown up some really good weights but that was a rover when just four anglers decided to go on it today every other peg would be which would make things a bit tougher .

After my short drive to the fishery i grabbed a buttie before having a chat with a few of the other anglers in attendance and so far the rain had held off but there was quite a brisk wind blowing towards the car park , as i had decided to stand down from the Daiwa Adlington squad after the league had finished i decided to let the other team members do a bit of the work so i relegated myself from doing the drawing duties , but it didn’t really make much difference as the captain still brought back our usual end peg this time it was in the shape of 15 S canal with the wind blowing into it and it looked really good , the only trouble was i wasnt going to be sitting on it as my home for the day was 40 S canal only a couple away from the last round where i struggled to catch a great deal so i expected more of the same this time .

When i arrived to my peg which was half way along the fourth leg i had the usual reed lined margin + far bank plus a nice mud bank and an empty platform either side of me , so at least i had a bit of room and i decided to set up ;

Top kit plus one at an angle towards my left at the bottom of the near slope and i used a 4×12 Md maggie float with a staggered bulk shotting pattern spread along the bottom third of my rig starting above my six-inch 012 garbo hook length which had a size 18 guru LWG hook attached with a micro bait band .

Three foot rig for in front of the far bank reeds and five meters along my left hand margin at the far side of the weed bed , i used a 4×12 Md pellet float with an inch spread bulk shotting pattern starting above my four-inch 012 garbo hook length which had a size 18 Guru pellet hook attached to it .

Channel rig six meters towards my right + left this would allow me to try a couple of different feeding patterns and i used a 4×12 Md maggie float which had a  staggered bulk shotting pattern spread along the bottom third of my rig starting above my six-inch 012 garbo hook length which had a size 18 guru LWG hook attached .

Bait for the day was ;

3 pints of red+white maggots

2 pints of micros

2 pints of 4mm pellets

small tub of 4mm expanders

I began the match on my top three and tapped in a few 4mm pellets before flicking my rig out so that it fell up the near slope even though i kept throwing in some pellets and laying my float among it , it took an age for me to get an indication and i only managed four f1s in the first which wasnt the best of starts maybe hard pellets are on their way out now that the water has started to go a bit cooler . I switched to my across swim it took a couple of feeds of micros through a kinder pot  before i got a response and for the next hour i had a good run of fish the only trouble was they were just stockies+skimmers not what i wanted to be catching if i required some good points , despite trying all sorts of different feeding patterns and moving swims i just couldn’t get through the small stuff .

I decided to give my channel swim a try which was my best area on the last round and i fed one with a small pot of maggots the other with a kinder pot of micros , by rotating between the two i managed to pick up the odd stamp f1 but never really managed a run of fish from either it just seemed there wasnt many in the area and to be honest if i had spent the rest of the match here i would have ended up with better section points but i felt that i wasnt catching quick enough so i had a look down my long left hand margin , i clumped in some micros through a large kinder pot and lowered my rig in over the top of it and i managed three big f1s straight  away i hoped that i could put a run together but it never really got going . A switch back to my channel swim got me a few more fish and i spent the remainder of the match alternating between them both picking up f1s from each , soft pellets was by far the best bait for me today which was strange because others that i had talked to did better on maggots .

When the all out sounded i ended up with 17 f1s plus a few skimmers+stockies and this went a disappointing 35lb which although beat the anglers either side of me was only good enough for 7th in my ten peg section although if i had managed another 5lb which was possible i would have had a lot better points , on meeting up with the other lads in the team they had struggled just like me so we was all a bit down with the result and as it turned out we ended up joint fifth on the day which is a lot better than we thought because i feared we might have even been last .

Theres a few weeks break before the next round so hopefully the weather might have settled down a bit and the fishing has improved , before that im off to Partridge lakes for the first time in ages and then back to Heronbrook fishery for the second round of the winter league so a busy but enjoyable weekend ahead .

MD floats

cunneries fishery teams of three , round two


Saturday 9th September
I have been to cunneries fishery today for the second round of the teams of three and with the amount of rain coming down in the days leading up to the contest I expected the fishing to be quite tough especially as we was also forecast some heavy downpours during the match. After having a chat with a few of the lads it was time for the captains to queue up for a dip in the bag of doom and at the draw I pulled out peg 26 for me, peg 7 for John , peg 6 for China and for the second round running my first pick was an end peg although it was the wrong end today with the wind blowing to the car park but there is always some resident big f1s + carp in the area .
I set up three rigs to cover my options because i didn’t want to confuse myself because my peg had plenty areas to target ;
Top kit at 4ft deep towards the bottom of the near slope and i used a 4×16 malman roob float with an inch spread bulk along the 014 garbo main line starting above the 010 garbo four-inch hook length .
Margin rig a top kit both right+left in two foot which was the shallowest water that i could find and i used a 4×12 malman roob  float with an inch spread bulk along the 014 garbo main line starting above the 010 garbo four-inch hook length .
Three foot rig for fishing across to the far bank reeds and also along my left hand reed lined edge at the side of the bridge ,i used a 4×14 malman roob float with an inch spread bulk along the 014 garbo main line starting above the 010 garbo four-inch hook length .
Bait for the day was ;
Bagem 4mm pellets soaked in bagem pellet oil .
Bagem soaked 2mm pellets
Bagem crushed expander ground-bait
Small tub of bagem 4mm expanders
Small tub of mixed hard pellets .
 As usual I started on my top kit with hard pellets and i had a good first hour managing to catch 8 fish before it faded, so a switch to my margin behind me in the cut out where it was 3ft deep and i used soft pellet on the hook feeding micros through a small kinder pot which got me a couple more f1s but there did not seem to be a great deal in the area .I went across to the far bank reed’s and had a quick couple of fish before things went quiet and i didn’t have to wait long to find out why as I hooked something a bit better which took me under the bridge snapping my hook length , then all i could manage was tiny silvers it wasnt looking good .
For the next few hours I rotated my swims but struggled to catch anything which was the same as all those angler’s around me apart from the lad opposite who was picking up the odd fish from in front of each empty platform , I decided to put in another swim along my left hand margin at eleven meters where there was a cut out between the reeds and as i had nothing to lose I put in half a pot of pellets , after about thirty minutes of catching the odd silver this finally produced a carp and a big skimmer.
We soon approached the last hour and I went back onto my top kit with hard pellets this produced the odd fish till the all out sounded , signalling the end of another frustrating match as I ended up with 21 fish for 44lb and this was only good enough for 4th in my ten peg section  ,which I’m a bit disappointed with as I’m still struggling to catch mid match and need to get it sorted out .
John did well to get second from an unfancied peg and China finished 7th but I wouldn’t have wanted to be on their today because it was either carp or bust on the lake today, this left us on 13 points and fifth on the day but there was only four points separating us from the winners , lets hope for some better luck on the remaining few rounds .

Cunneries fishery


September 2nd

Today i was back at the cunneries fishery for the first round of the autumn teams of three and after doing well on my last couple of visits managing to pick up my section , I was rather up beat expecting a good showing from the Daiwa Adlington team and even though it would be really tough for us to match our 4th place from the spring teams of three because it had attracted the attention of some very good sponsored anglers this time round . On arrival to the complex i was greeted to blue skies and hardly any wind with what there was blowing away from the car park so not the ideal conditions for catching a good weight of f1s , after booking on for the match i had a chat with some familiar faces that i hadn’t seen for some time and then went for a walk around hawk because one of the team had not fished it before so i gave him my limited knowledge of the lake as i had only fished it twice . When we got back to the cabin it was nearly time for the draw to take place so i joined the queue behind the other team captains and when it was my turn for a dip in the bag of doom i pulled out an unexpected average set of pegs ;

peg one on the s canal my usual end peg although i wasnt on it today

peg nine on hawk which wasnt great although he did have a bit of room .

my home for the day was peg forty about half way along the fourth leg of the s canal it can be a reasonable area but is quite deep .

When i arrived at my peg i had quite a few of the better anglers in my ten peg section and i felt that i was fishing for 5th or 6th , i had the usual reed lined margin and far bank plus at long last i had a mud bank to target and i decided to set up ;

Top three towards my right+left in four-foot with banded pellet and i used a 4×12 MD roob styled float with a staggered bulk shotting pattern starting above my four-inch 010 garbo hook length which had a size twenty guru lwg hook attached .

Far bank in front of the reeds in three-foot and i would be using soft pellets so my float was a 4×12 MD roob styled float with a staggered bulk shotting pattern starting above my four-inch 010 garbo hook length which had a size twenty guru lwg hook attached .

Top kit towards my right in the shallowest water i could find which was 18 inch and i used a 0.4 MD diamond float which had an inch spread bulk shotting pattern starting above my four-inch 010 garbo hook length which had a size twenty guru lwg hook attached .

I did plumb up the mud line but it fell away from six-inch to three-foot like it was a cliff face so im afraid that wasnt an option today .

Bait for the day revolved around pellets ;

2 pints soaked bagem micros pellets .

2 pints hard bagem 4mm pellets , soaked in bagem pellet oil .

1 pint bagem crushed expander ground-bait .

small tub of 4mm bagem expanders .

small tub of mixed hard pellets .

When the all in sounded i began on my top three towards my left and by tapping half a dozen 4mm pellets i had a good run of f1s it looked like i might be on for a nice day but like usual on here after my first hour the swim died on me , i switched to my across line in front of the reeds tapping in some micros through a small kinder pot and after about ten minutes i managed an f1 quickly followed by another but then all i could catch were small skimmers not what i wanted , i put another line in about a meter away and started again this produced a quick burst of fish before the silvers moved in , there seemed to be a lack of fish in front of me or more likely i had not got my feeding right .

I began potting in some Bagem crushed expander on my right hand margin tight to the reeds and i hoped that a few f1s might settle on it as it was the shallowest part of my peg , while it settled i put in another swim along the far bank and for the next hour i rotated these across lines picking up the odd fish but it was really hard going . I went on my margin swim for a quick look and when my float buried straight away i thought i had cracked it but when a gudgeon came to the net i wasnt very happy , for the next couple of hours i swapped between all my lines putting next to nothing in the net and you could say things wasnt going great today .

With nothing to lose i decided to pot in some micros on my top three-line as i hoped that this might draw some skimmers into the area which could in turn get the f1s interested , after about five minutes the bottom began fizzing like mad and when it finally settled down i dropped on to it , i started picking up hand sized skimmers before a couple of bigger ones turned up and after an age of inactivity i was glad to put something in the net . Fifteen minutes passed by then i hooked a decent f1 which i somehow managed to lose under my platform in fact i lost the next three the same way which was bad angling on my part , i just hoped that they wouldn’t cost me at the end but with the calibre of people here i just knew that it would and after giving myself a stern talking too i got my act together just in time for me to put a run of f1s together before the all out sounded .

I had managed 23 f1s plus two nice skimmers but i was unsure on the weight after packing up i went to see how John had got on because the would be weighing hawk pool first he managed 5th in his ten peg just missing out by an ounce on a better place so a bit unlucky , the scales soon arrived at my peg and my two nets went 39lb this was only good enough for a disappointing seventh so yet again my middle period is costing me any chance of competing for good section points , only an extra 4lb would have put me forth so as i expected those lost fish had cost me and the team dear today , our third team member china managed fourth this left us with sixteen points and fifth on the day but with a bit of luck it could have been a bit better but at least it gives us something to build on , although it looks like we are all playing for third place as two teams ended up with a remarkable four + six points on the day .

 

Cunneries fishery


August 28th

Today i decided to contest the bank holiday open at Cunneries fishery as it would hopefully give me chance to fine tune a couple of things before the start of the teams of three next weekend , when i arrived at the complex there was already a couple of lads knocking about and it seemed that a few others had decided to do the same as me with a bit of a sneaky practice , there ended up being twenty anglers split over the four legs of the s canal which was good as it would replicate the pegging for the league . The weather was quite nice as well which was a surprise for a bank holiday and we was treated to blue skies plus a light swirling wind , which was good conditions for the angler but not great for catching lots of f1s especially with it being the third match on the trot on the s canal over the long weekend so i expected things to be quite tough going .

It was soon time for the draw and i did my usual trick of drawing near the car park  this time i was on peg ten just one away from where i sat on my last visit so at least i knew how best to fish it or rather how not to do it , after a short walk to my home for the next few hours i had ;

A reed bed either side of me and after plumbing up i found just under three-foot and as i was going to be using hard pellets , i used a 4×12 MD pellet float which had an inch spread bulk of number ten stotz , starting above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length and hook was a size 18 guru lwg .

Yet again i didn’t have a mud bank across just a reed lined far bank and as it was 2.5ft deep i used a 4×12 MD maggot float with a bulk plus dropper shotting pattern , my main line was the usual 014 garbo with a 010 garbo hook length attached to it .

I set up a margin rig a top kit to my right in 18 inch which was the shallowest water i could find and i used a 0.4 MD margin munter float with a bulk of number nine stotz , starting above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

Shallow rig set at 18 inch for fishing either down the track or in front of the far bank reeds and i used a 4×10 MD mini mag float with a bulk of number eleven stotz starting above the four-inch 010 garbo hook length .

Bait for the day was ;

3 pints red and white maggots

3 pints 4mm pellets

2 pints of ground-bait

small tub of mixed hard pellets

When the all in sounded i began on my top three towards the edge of the left hand reed bed and after tapping in a few 4mm pellets through a medium kinder pot , i lowered my rig in over the top and held it still , it took a couple of feeds before i had my first indication and not long after wards i managed my first f1 , for the next forty minutes i had a good run of fish but i had to work hard with my feeding to keep the bites coming when i began suffering with liners i had to clump the pellets in to get them back on the deck , after a while things started to tail off so i went on to my right hand side and started again but for some reason this never really got going only producing a couple of f1s all match . With just over an hour gone i had a dozen fish in the net and it looked like i could be on for a good day especially as they was all a decent stamp , i went across to my far bank swim and fed a small kinder pot full of maggots , i laid my rig in so that it fell up the slope as this would give me a tight line between hook + float i got bites almost instantly but only from small stockies and silvers not really what i wanted to be catching , i persevered with it for half an hour but things didn’t improve so i decided to change it to a shallow line and began feeding a dozen maggots every five minutes at seven meters which was pretty easy to reach with the wind now blowing off my back , i didn’t really want to fish across as well as shallow due to the swim being so narrow as it would just split the f1s  .

I went back onto my hard pellet line and rotated between my right+left hand swims this produced a few f1s but it was very slow going although i was missing the odd bite which must have been small skimmers because there is quite a few in here , after an hour of feeding shallow i decided to give it a try even though i hadn’t seen any signs and i had an f1 almost instantly quickly followed by another but then i was plagued by small silvers . I cut down my far bank rig and replumbed up a top kit towards my left in two foot of water , i then started to feed it quite heavily with maggots just to see what would happen and while it settled i had another look shallow which didn’t produce anything other than small silvers , back on my maggot swim and my float buried straight away  but after an f1 all i could catch were small perch things wasnt going to well although nobody was catching a great deal around me either . With ninety minutes remaining i began feeding my right hand margin with ground-bait in 18 inch of water and then went on my only line which was producing the odd bite my hard pellet swim towards the left hand margin , i kept putting the odd f1 in the net but when i saw the water muddying up over my margin feed i quickly swapped rigs and this produced a fish straight away , with time running out i choose to spend the rest of the match on this swim and managed another eight f1s before the all out sounded .

I had managed thirty f1s plus a few silvers and after packing up i went to speak to a few of the other anglers it seemed that it had fished quite hard today , only a few anglers where admitting to having over thirty fish so it would all go down too who had caught the heaviest average stamp and when the scales arrived at my peg i ended up with 45lb this was good enough for sixth overall plus a section win , although with a low 50lb getting in the frame I’m a bit disappointed not to have managed that but i did try a few things out today and i am pretty happy with the plan i have in mind for the teams of three starting next saturday .

Bradshaws fishery


13th August

After a bit of badgering from the rest of the Daiwa adlington squad i headed to Bradshaw’s fishery near Bolton to contest the open on lake 8+9 and as i had not fished it before i was quite looking forward to it , especially as the weather had settled down a bit with blue skies plus a slight increase in temperature . On arrival to the fishery i was one of the first there and i found out that the draw was only going to take place at 930 so yet again i had a bit of hanging about to do , i did want to have a look at the lakes in the match today as i hadn’t even seen them yet but i noticed that the gates to them was locked when i drove down to the cabin , so i decided to have a walk round the other lakes on the complex and when i got back there was a few more people knocking about including a couple of the squad members , we had a chat about how best to target things today but they wasnt giving much away .

It was nearly draw time so i joined the queue towards the rear and when it came to my turn for a go in the bag of doom i pulled out peg 14 which was on lake eight but that was a much as i knew till i got to the other car park , before i unpacked my gear i went to try to find my home for the next few hours and it was situated over one of the bridges , there was only two pegs on this little split so i had a bit of room and the far bank was about 13m away which had a couple of reed beds plus a mud bank , i also had a reed bed along my left hand margin and a lily bed a bit behind me towards my right at the side of the bridge , so i had quite a few options and it could be very easier to confuse yourself by trying to many different things especially on your first visit .

While i was putting my gear on the trolley i took the opportunity to have a chat with one of the venue superstars who kindly pointed me in the right direction and it seemed that i was in a reasonable are which was a positive sign , when i got back to my peg i had a bit of a plan in mind and decided to set up ;

Margin both left and right in two foot depth , i used a 4×12 MD diamond float with an inch spread bulk starting above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

Six meter channel rig in 5ft depth for under my shallow swim , i used a 4×12 MD maggot float with a bulk plus two dropper shotting pattern .

Shallow rig in 18 inch and i used a 4×10 MD mini maggie float with a bulk of number eleven stotz above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

Across rig at three-foot for in front of the far bank reeds , i used a 4×12 MD roob style float with an inch spread bulk starting above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length and i altered this for a bulk plus dropper when i changed to using maggots .

Mud line in 18 inch and i used a 4×12 MD mini maggie float which had an inch spread bulk above the four-inch 012 garbo hook length .

Bait for the day was ;

3 pints of white maggots

2 pints 4mm soaked pellets

1 pint of micros

3 pints of ground-bait

small tub 4mm expanders

When the all in sounded i began on my three foot rig across in front of a reed bed and after tapping in a nugget of ground-bait before holding my rig still over the top of it , with not much happening i had to start sprinkling in micros to try to draw some fish into the swim and it took a further ten minutes before i had my first f1 but even after my slow start i wasnt to worried because nobody around me was catching a great deal . I had another bite less ten minutes before the tiniest of indication on the float resulted in my next f1 and there just didn’t seem to be much in front of me , i had another spell of inactivity so i tried putting in another nugget of ground-bait in to try to kick-start the swim but it just brought in some gudgeon and small silvers not exactly what i had in mind . With an hour of the match passed and only two f1s in the net it was time to re plumb up another line towards my left , this time i changed to feeding half a dozen 4mm pellets every few minutes and this resulted in another quick f1 before it all went quiet yet again even the gudgeon had deserted me .

I had been loose feeding 4mm pellets every few minutes since the match started on my six meter swim so i dropped on this with my deck rig to see if the fish were in the deeper water and i would also keep an eye out for liners to signal that they might be shallow but i had not seen anything top in front of me , after what seemed like an age my float finally dipped under resulting in another f1 in the net quickly followed by two more and i hopped that i could get a run of fish but my next couple of fish were small hand sized tench . Even though i hadn’t seen any signs of movement up in the water i decided to give my shallow rig ago but as i thought i didn’t even get a bite in twenty minutes and with nearly half the match gone i was really struggling with just a handful of f1s in the net so it was time for a complete re think .

I decided to scrap the pellets and concentrate on using maggots , i began potting in ground-bait on to my mud bank and i also plumbed up a new swim towards my right in 2ft of water tight to the cover dumping maggots through a large kinder pot doing this dramatically transformed my match , as i caught an f1 straight away before the ide moved in and i changed my shotting to give a slow fall of the hook bait this worked really well as i had a run of forty ide in the next hour , although my 11 Preston hollo elastic was a bit too strong for the 10oz ide and a few either splashed on top as soon as i hooked them or came off at the net which might have disrupted the shoal because bites came to an abrupt end , i tried setting up a new swim towards my left at the side of some reeds thinking that they might have backed off but strangely that never really kicked off for me .

I noticed some movement on my mud bank so i quickly changed rigs my float had only just settled when my elastic shot off resulting in a small carp hitting the net and i then had a little run of fish all of which were a different species , bites began to tail off so rather than keep plundering the shoal i put in a cup full of ground-bait and another of maggots before going back to my original 2ft swim , this time i caught a couple of small roach so i decided to put all my shot above the hook length which would hopefully bolt the maggots through the silvers and i started picking up the odd ide before the f1s moved in , by swapping between this swim and my mud bank i ended up with a dozen more f1s+carp before the all out sounded .

As i began packing up i couldn’t help but think that i had wasted half of the match trying to get pellets to work but as I’m really new to the venue i was always going to make some mistakes and the later part of the match showed just how well it can fish , i ended up with 50 ide plus 18 f1s+carp and when the scales arrived my two nets went just under 50lb this was good enough to win the section quite comfortably as i had a dnw one side then a 16lb to my other so i was quite pleased with my effort today , overall the match was won with just over a ton and a couple of mid 80lb got into the frame so wasnt a million of miles away but the only thing is I’m not sure when i will get chance to get back as the cunneries league starts in September .