Sycamore fishery


January 27th

I decided to stay local today for a change because I needed to be back early as my Mrs was going out and I went to sycamore fishery in Golborne which used to be a regular haunt for me with it only being fifteen minutes from my house but I haven’t been here for nearly two years , as we are quite spoiled with the amount of fisheries on our doorstep in the Wigan area and I was quite looking forward to seeing how much it had changed since my last venture here .I arrived at the fishery a bit earlier than i planned so had plenty time to have a walk around the two canals which would be in the draw bag and  it all looked really nice , the trees had grown quite a bit which blocked out most of the strong breeze and they had a stone path all around the lakes . When i got back to the cabin i managed to get a chat with a couple of lads that i had not seen in ages and i was told about the recent netting + restocking of Silver birch with all the big carp going in David’s pool which was replaced with a lot of stockie carp this should hopefully get the original fish back feeding again .

At the draw I pulled out my usual end peg this time 21 on rowans but like most water’s at this time of year all the weights had come out from around the middle of the canals so not the ideal place to be and it’s just a shame it was not summer when i could make the most of these end pegs , but I was still looking forward to catching a few f1s and after speaking to a few anglers they said that the fish were all of a nice stamp with a few carp approaching 8lb so i needed to up my terminal tackle a bit .

My rigs for the day was quite simple for a change because with the weather still being cold i expected the fish to still be in the deeper water so i just set up ;

4ft rig which would cover most of my peg and i used a 4×14 Md slim float with a bulk plus dropper shotting pattern spread along my 014 garbo main line , attached to it was six-inch of 012 garbo which had a size 18 guru Lwg hook my elastic was size 13 Preston hollo .

3ft rig for just down the near shelf and i used a 4×12 Md slim float with a bulk plus dropper shotting pattern spread along my 014 garbo main line , attached to it was six-inch of 012 garbo which had a size 18 guru Lwg hook my elastic was size 13 Preston hollo .

Bait for the day was going to be mainly maggots with some corn if I needed it ;

1 pint of red and white maggots

1 tin of corn

When the all in sounded i began on my 4ft rig along my right hand margin at nine meters at the bottom of the near shelf and after tapping in a dozen maggots I foul hooked my first two fish , so I reduced the amount to just four maggots and this solved the problem as I then had 4 nice F1s in the first hour but i had to play them a bit carefully because my elastic was a bit on the strong side . With this swim beginning to fade a little I put in a new one still in 4ft this time against the island it also produced another four F1’s during the next hour and with not many people catching a great deal I decided to be a bit more patient than I usually would thinking about it now i would have been better rotating between the two lines .As the wind started to blow stronger this become a bit of a problem making presentation a touch awkward , so I switched back to my original right hand margin putting a couple of f1s in the net before putting in another swim at 11m and by carefully tapping in maggots on these swims I had another run of fish , for the rest of the match I had an easy time as i just followed the F1’s along my right hand margin and i did suffer the odd foul hooker but all in all it was plain sailing to be honest although i did miss a couple of indications . At the all out I had managed to catch 18 F1’s which went over thirty pounds this put me in second place getting agonizingly beat by just four ounces  missing out on a chance for the bonus pot but I still enjoyed my day and felt that if I had fished a bit lighter+rotated my swims more often than I might have caught a few more , at least I will know for my next visit in a few weeks because it made a nice change getting home when it was still light and also catching a few fish at last .

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Partridge lakes open match


23rd December

I have fished the partridge open match today because i wanted to try to get back in touch with the fishing before the individual winter league starts in January and after meeting up with a couple of friends all the talk when I got there was that you needed a draw on covey five to have a chance for a good days fishing because the other coveys 1-4 wasn’t producing at the moment due to the up and down weather conditions last week it was frozen solid then today was 10 degrees .It was soon time for a dip in the bag of doom and my bad run at the draw bag continues as I pulled out peg 65 on covey three not the best of areas in summer never mind at this time of year and it’s never a good sign when you get to your peg and they give you plenty of room especially when the lad towards my left didn’t turn up so there was plenty of room for the f1s to back off.

I decided to set up ;

Channel rig towards my left at six meters where the aerator used to be and after finding six foot when plumbing up i thought that this would be a really good swim , i used a 4×12 Md maggot float with a bulk plus two dropper shotting pattern and my main line was the usual 014 garbo which had a six inch 010 garbo hook length attached

Four foot rig directly in front of me but i sent up multiple swims along the far bank at this depth and i used a 0.2 Md maggot float which had a tapered bulk shoting pattern spread along the 014 garbo main starting above the six inch 010 garbo hook length .

Dobbing rig set at 4ft but would alter the depth as and when i needed to , i used a 4×12 Md diamond float which had the bulk of the shotting under the float with a couple of number eleven stotz acting as droppers along my 014 garbo main line and hook length was six inch of 010 garbo which had a size 16 guru lwg hook attached to it

Bait for the day was ;

1/2 pint of micros

1/2 pint black swim stim ground bait

1 1/2 pints of red maggots

small tub of 4mm expanders

When the all in sounded i spent the first hour of the match dobbin bread about a meter away from the island in 4ft and i worked my rig 14m either side of me with only a couple of liners to show for it, but nobody within eye shot was catching a great deal apart from the lad directly opposite on peg 58 who was catching the odd stockie so I wasn’t really that far behind . My next move was to start tapping in maggots in front of me in 4ft and after about twenty minutes i had my first fish which was a small ide at least i had not blanked , a short while  after I had my first f1 about two pounds then another small ide and I was just thinking that I might have a good run of fish but that was it from the swim , maybe i should have been a bit more patient but i decided to put in two more swims at the same depth either side of me even though i fed them both the same I only caught on the one towards my right although even then they was just small ide .

With two hours remaining I had a look on my track line and missed a bite but not long after the slightest tremor on the float resulted in a nice ghostie coming to the net but despite quite a few tries during the remainder of the contest that was the only fish I caught from that swim, i tried putting in a new line in front of the platform to my left and after trickling in a few maggots i never had a bite from it which was strange because it just looked right for a few f1s and with time running out i went further to my right still in 4ft and i managed a couple of small f1’s before i foul hooked a couple of better fish which might have been carp judging by the size of the scales , for the rest of the match I rotated all my swims without much success and i managed two quick stockies about ten minutes before the all out from directly in front of me it was just a shame they didnt turn up any sooner .

When the all out sounded it called an end to a very frustrating contest because i just couldn’t manage a run of fish from anywhere and i just hope that it improves before the individual winter league starts i think we need a run of continuous temps for that to happen ,I tipped back about 16lb of fish because 30lb was winning the section when they came to my peg and i am not sure what I could have done different today just a lack of fish in front of me i think .

Old hough winter league


December 12th

Today was the penultimate round of my winter league and with the last round being cancelled due to the snow i hadn’t been out for a few weeks so was really looking forward to it , although the weather wasnt going to make things easy because it had taken a dramatic drop in temperature with every were being frozen solid . The day before i had rung the fishery to find out the conditions of boulders+goose and they told me it was mostly free from ice with just the odd peg being covered in cat ice which sounded promising , i did decide to take my ice breaker with me just in case and it turned out i had made the right decision because on arrival there was a lid on the lakes .

In the conditions a good draw was going to be a massive advantage because there was a few areas that had fished hard on the earlier rounds , it was soon time for the draw and i left it till late to have my pick in the bag of doom pulling out 14 on boulders not what i wanted especially after leaving the lakes flyer in the bag which my main rival for the winter league was going to be on . When i arrived at my home for the next few hours i decided to break out three channels in the ice to eleven meters because i did not feel that the carp would want to be tight towards the far bank , after removing all the floating icebergs from my swims i had a quick plumb up and after finding just over four-foot everywhere in my peg i figured i was on for a tough match but at least i wouldn’t need lots of different rigs so i decided to set up ;

Pellet rig i used a 4×14 Md wire stemmed float which had an inch spread bulk starting above my four-inch 010 garbo hook length , i expected this to be my banker swim with all the hand sized skimmers in the lake .

Maggot rig i used a 4×12 Md maggie float which had a bulk plus two dropper shotting pattern spread along my 014 garbo main line which had a six-inch 010 garbo hook length attached to it , my hook was a size twenty guru maggot hook and elastic on both rigs was Preston size six hollo .

Dobbing rig which i would use along the edge of my ice channels and if it melted i would search all along the far bank , i set it at four-foot which was six-inch off the bottom and i used a 4×12 Md diamond float with all my bulk under the float then two size eleven stotz spread along my 014 garbo main line , attached to it was a six inch 012 garbo hook length with a size 16 guru lwg hook .

Bait for the day ;

1/2 pint of soaked micros

1 pint of red maggots with a handful of fluro pinkies mixed in

1 slice of bread

Small tub of 2+4mm expanders

When the all in sounded i began on my right hand swim and i tapped in half a dozen micros every couple of minutes but a bite less twenty minutes wasnt what i expected especially with the amount of small skimmers in here , i switched to my maggot line directly in front of me and bearing in mind what happened on my pellet swim i went even more negatively just trickling a couple of maggots in through a kinder pot , after ten minutes i had my first fish which was a small roach but at least it saved the blank because i had only seen one other fish get caught although that was a four pound carp so we was all playing catch up if we wanted good points today . I kept trickling in the maggots and i was slowly building up the swim putting some roach in the net with the occasional decent ide among them , after a while my bites stopped and i soon found out why when i hooked a carp which shot off under the ice towards my right , all i could do was put my pole under the water and pray that it stopped i did manage to get on to my top kit but it bolted again in the clear water resulting in the hook bending out slightly which meant it pinged off , so for the second round running i had lost what turned out to be at least second place on the lake fish .

Understandably the disturbance had disrupted the peg but slowly i got the fish back feeding putting some small silvers in the net , when the rain started it began melting the ice this had a disastrous impact on the fishing because everyone on the lake stopped getting any sort of indications for at least two hours , with all the ice now gone i picked up my dobbing rig to see if i could snare myself a carp but despite working my rig to the extremes of my peg both left and right i didn’t manage a single bite . With ninety minutes of the match remaining i was back plumbing up to see if i could find any sort of depth variation and i finally found an area about a meter square which was a couple of inch deeper at eleven meters towards my left so i put a swim in there with another at 11m to my right so i could rotate between them both , i started trickling in maggots on both but i only managed bites on my left hand swim and i was soon catching some small silvers with an occasional decent ide mixed in , when the all out sounded i was kicking myself for not finding the slightly deeper swim sooner and it goes to show how important it is to search all your swim but with the lake being frozen i was a bit limited on where i could go .

When the scales arrived at my peg i put my ten ide plus a smattering of silvers on the scales which went just short of six pounds this was enough for a comfortable third place but with only nine pounds + eleven pounds filling the places above me i just needed a bonus carp to challenge them , this result pushed me down to second in the league table just a point behind the leader but at least i know which anglers i need to beat on the last round although i will have to wait nearly a month to do it and it will take place at Bradshaw’s on lakes five+six somewhere i haven’t fished before so i will be up against it a bit .

 

 

Old hough fishery , winter league round two


October 29th

Today i have been back  to Old Hough fisheries for the second round of my winter league and this time it was going to take place on boulders + goose which is somewhere that i have not fished for over twelve months so i was really looking forward to the contest especially after my good result in the first round , after yesterday’s very blustery conditions I was glad to wake up and see it a lot calmer but with bright skies plus colder conditions it could make things a bit difficult although on these lakes you was targeting silver fish with the odd carp coming out .

On arrival to the fishery i meet up with the other anglers and a few of them had fished a couple of matches on these waters which would obviously give them an advantage but from what i heard there seemed to be a lot more carp showing than i thought , it soon came round to draw time and when i had a dip in the bag of doom pulling out peg 11 which i was pleased with as it was an area that I had fished before , doing well winning the match with nearly 50lb of ide although I was definitely on the colder side of the lake with the trees blocking out the sun.

I decided to set up ;

Two foot rig for fishing tight to the far bank and i used a 0.4 Md diamond float with a bulk plus dropper shotting pattern , my main line was the usual 014 garbo and hook length was six inch of 012 garbo my hook was a size 18 guru maggot hook .

Three foot rig for fishing at 11m which was about half way up the far slope and i used a 4×12 Md maggot float with a bulk plus dropper shotting pattern , my main line was the usual 014 garbo and hook length was six inch of 012 garbo my hook was a size 18 guru maggot hook .

Five foot rig for fishing at six meters down the track and i used a 4×12 Md maggot float with a bulk plus dropper shotting pattern , my main line was the usual 014 garbo and hook length was six inch of 012 garbo my hook was a size 18 guru maggot hook .

Bait for the day was ;

Four pints of red maggots

Two pints of 4mm pellets

Two pints of ground bait

When the all in sounded i started my match by fishing across at 14m tight to the over hanging reeds i put in a large kinder pot of maggots and a nugget of ground-bait  but this only produced a stockie carp plus a few small silvers in the first hour , looking around i saw everyone fishing in the same area and was struggling just like me but in the back of my mind I knew that the fish wouldn’t want to be in the shallow water but i got suckered into going tight across . I decided to drop further down the shelf in a depth of 3ft at 11m and by feeding maggots through a kinder pot then letting my rig fall up the slope , doing this produced a few nice ide but I made the mistake of changing my feeding to using a catty which didn’t work for me and i switched because i hoped that it would drag more fish into the peg which it did but only tiny silvers .

Since the match started I had potted in maggots on my left hand channel swim at six meters and when I dropped on it after two hours I caught some decent ide between the small silvers but it gradually got better , as i began catching a few small carp and i felt that with it being hard going i needed to rest this line for a while so I put in another track swim six meters to my right but this one I fed with a big kinder pot of maggots , it didn’t take to long for the fish to settle on the bait and i had a good run of fish including a couple of barbel but as the contest went on with the conditions getting colder ( on my side of the lake anyway as the opposite bank they were sitting in t-shirts ) the bites were getting really delicate and often the slightest of dinks on the float would result in a big carp and for the rest of the match I rotated between them both, the swims got better and better as the bigger fish bullied the smaller silvers out of the peg.

The all out called time on a really enjoyable match as I caught a proper mixed bag of fish not knowing what i would be putting in the net next which made a nice change from all the f1 fishing i had done recently and when the scales arrived I had 27lb to beat , my net went 44lb which was enough for the lake and overall match win so thats two out of two lake wins in the winter league I’m back there next Sunday for round three on boulders and goose again where i am sure to come crashing to earth with a bump .

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 .

Mosella summer league at Hall lane round one


May 13th

Today i was off to Hall lanes fishery in Rufford for the first round of the Mosella summer league which was taking place on Bessie’s pool and i haven’t really fished this water a great deal so i was quite looking forward to it , even after struggling on the practice match a couple of weeks ago but that gave me a few things to work out so i felt better prepared and to be honest i needed a good performance if i was going to have a chance because the quality of angler taking part was pretty high .

On arrival to the fishery i noticed that the wind was blowing strongly towards the car park which could make fishing across to the mud lines quite difficult and after booking on i had a walk around the lake , down the opposite end of the water the wind wasnt as bad and i fancied drawing between 20-40 so quite a few to go at but just because it was suitable fishing conditions on these pegs i was still new to the venue and maybe the fish wouldn’t want to be there .

When i got back to the car it was time for the draw so i joined the queue about half way and when it was my turn in the bag of doom i pulled out peg two , not where i wanted to be because i had the worst of the wind to contend with plus it didn’t fish great in this area on the practice match but on the positive side i hadn’t far to walk . As i settled in at my home for the next few hours i decided to set up a few rigs to give me plenty options because i felt i could be scratching around for most of the match ;

Margin rig in front of the reeds where it was 3ft deep i didn’t feel that the carp would come right into the edge because it rained quite heavily over night which would have cooled the water down a bit and i decided to use a 0.3 MD diamond float with a bulk plus dropper shotting pattern i hoped that this would help keep my bait still in the rough conditions , my main line was the usual 0.14 garbo which had a six-inch 012 garbo hook length attached to it and my elastic was preston green hollo .

Top four at the bottom of the near slope which is the swim which i caught majority of my fish on the last visit here and i used a 0.4 MD wire stemmed float for stability it had a bulk plus two droppers spread along my usual 0.14 garbo which had a six-inch 012 garbo hook length attached to it and my elastic was Preston green hollo .

Three foot rig for fishing in front of the far bank reeds and i used a 0.4 MD wire stemmed float for stability it had a bulk plus two droppers spread along my usual 0.14 garbo which had a six-inch 012 garbo hook length attached to it and my elastic was Preston green hollo .

Mud bank line where it was about a foot deep and i used a 0.4 MD wire stemmed float for stability it had a staggered bulk spread along my usual 0.14 garbo which had a six-inch 012 garbo hook length attached to it and my elastic was Preston green hollo .

Bait for the day was ;

three pints of white maggots

two pint of 4mm pellets

small tub of 4mm expanders

I began the match by fishing across in front of the reeds and after feeding a kinder pot full of maggots before laying my rig in so that it fell up the slope which would help me keep the float still in the rough conditions , after a couple of feeds i had my first indication not long after i had my first fish which was an ide over a pound and in the first hour i put two carp plus four big ide in the net , things were going reasonably well i just hoped that it would continue but i had maybe put too much feed in or the better stamp had backed off because all i could catch was small hand sized skimmers .

I noticed that the lads either side of me were picking up the odd carp on the mud lines so i decided to follow suit and after picking up a carp straight away i had to wait ages for an indication , so i decided to be a bit positive and big potted maggots on my mud line , while i waited for any signs of carp i set up a new swim across in three-foot towards my left where my empty peg was and i began trickling in maggots through a kinder pot as i didn’t want to over feed the peg like on my original line ,  this produced a couple more carp and ide but it wasnt hectic by any means it just seemed like there wasnt a lot of fish present in this area of the lake .

I saw a swirl on my mud line and quickly shipped across and a picked up a carp straight away but i didn’t have another sign so put in another big pot of maggots in , while it settled i went for a look on my top four swim which i had kinder potted some maggots in every twenty minutes since the match started so i hoped that a few fish had settled on it , yet again i had a quick carp before the skimmers moved in and although it was nice putting fish in the net they wasnt big enough or coming quick enough for me to do the weight needed and when i caught an eel i choose to big pot it with maggots to see if i could get the carp back .

I had a look on my margin swim where i had thrown a dozen maggots since the match started but surprisingly i never had an indication from it and for the rest of the match i rotated between all my lines but only really caught on my three-foot across swims , i should have really put in another line at this depth but that would have meant going 16m towards my left and the strengthening wind would have made it a bit awkward controlling the pole .

The all out called time on a rather frustrating match as i couldn’t get a run of fish from anywhere and you needed to just go tight across then wait for a carp to turn up in the harder areas not exactly riveting fishing , im sure that there would be a method to work out so that you could keep putting fish in the net even if they are just silvers . When the scales arrived at my peg i had thirty pounds which consisted of eight carp plus a similar amount of big silvers , this put me third in the section getting beat by the lads either side of me so not the start to the league that i wanted and im going to miss the next round due to it clashing with the tricast festival at Weston pools over the bank holiday weekend so i need to pull my finger out if i want to do any good .

Adlington angling center

Cunneries fishery pairs


May 1st

Cunneries S canal

I was back at the cunneries fishery today to fish the pairs contest with my team daiwa adlington captain and as this was the third competition on the trot plus lack of sleep you can safely say that i wasnt feeling great when i woke up in the morning , but even though i didn’t really fancy it i had made plans and don’t like letting people down so i had some breakfast then headed off to the fishery . After my short drive to the venue i had perked up a little its surprising what a couple of shots of caffeine can do and after speaking to a couple of the mossella lads while i waited for the captain to show up , everybody wanted to draw down the opposite of the car park as that was where the wind had blown all weekend and some nice weights had come out from that area on the saturday team match , surprisingly i only had twenty minutes to wait before my partner turned up we had a bit of a discussion on which lake we wanted because i wouldn’t have minded another go on hawk lake but he wanted to go on it as well so i backed down and ended up on the s canal .

It soon came round to draw time i joined the queue towards the middle and when it was my turn for a dip in the bag of doom i pulled out peg 15 just your standard end peg unfortunately i was on the wrong end of the canal today but i would give it my best shot because my captain was on a decent peg on kestrel lake with the wind blowing his way and i didn’t want to let him down , when i arrived at my home for the next few hours i had an empty peg either side of me and a reed lined margin+far bank so apart from it being flat calm in front of me it looked really promising , i decided to keep things really simple today and chose to set up ;

3ft rig for my margin and far bank tight to the reeds i used a 4×10 MD maggot float with an on the drop shoting pattern which would enable me to hopefully pick up a few f1s as the rig settled , my main line was the usual 014 garbo and hook length was six-inch of 012 garbo which had a size 18 guru maggot hook attached .

4ft rig for fishing half way up both far bank + near slope i used a 4×12 MD  maggot float with a bulk plus a dropper shoting pattern my main line was the usual 014 garbo and hook length was six-inch of 012 garbo which had a size 18 guru maggot hook attached .

1ft shallow rig for fishing in front of both sets of reeds because in the last few matches on here i have suffered a lot with line bites as the fish had come up of the deck , i used a 4×10 MD mini maggie float my main line was the usual 014 garbo and hook length was six-inch of 012 garbo which had a size 18 guru maggot hook attached .

I had a bit of a change with the bait today as only had three pints of white maggots on my side tray .

When the all in sounded i began on my four-foot rig because although we had bright blue skies it was still relatively cold and bearing this in mind i took it easy with the feed just tapping in a few maggots every couple of minutes , it took me about twenty minutes before i had my first fish which was a nice stamp f1 and another quickly followed then it all went a bit quiet so i set up another swim towards my left then started again this produced a couple more f1s but it just didn’t feel like i was fishing in the right depth , after looking around the lake everybody was in the same boat as me struggling to put more than two fish together from any swim but the anglers that were catching were fishing tight across to the reeds and i decided to follow suit , i was still being negative with the feed but thinking about it now that might have been the reason the f1s didnt settle anyway going back to today’s match my across lines produced the odd fish but nothing in any numbers and with half the match gone i was going nowhere fast as i only had a dozen f1s in the net .

I had fed my left hand top three margin by hand since the match started i hoped that yet again it would get me out of trouble and thankfully i was into fish straight away as i managed half a dozen in a twenty-minute spell but It soon died on me i kept on feeding it and went back onto my across swims to give it a rest but these only produced the odd indication , i needed to find a line which i could keep putting something in the net so a plumbed up at eleven meters right into my left hand corner and on this area i kinder potted in maggots , this kicked off straight away and for the rest of the match i rotated between my two margin swims catching four from each before switching so i wouldn’t empty each area of fish , i did lose a few fish on my far line as i played the fish round in front of me it was a bit frustrating because i would get them onto the top kit and began to apply a bit of pressure then the hook would pull i think this might be down to the fine wire of the guru maggot hooks these are fine for winter but a change will be needed now that i have upped my elastic for summer bagging .

When the all in sounded i had managed to have a really good last couple of hours and i had 47 f1s on the clicker i was the last angler to weigh in on my section of the s canal and i put 61lb on the scales , the lad to my right had caught less than me but weighed a couple of pounds more so it seems that the stamp of fish are a bit smaller when using maggots which is something to bear in mind before my next visit , my net of fish was good enough for me to win the section so i had done my bit and i just needed a good result from the captain if we had any chance of finishing in the money , surprisingly there was only one pair of anglers who had a maximum two points and then a couple of lads on three points but unfortunately we ended up with four points which was only good enough for a top six finish .

Hopefully i have enough time in the week to sort out my rigs and get the rest of my stuff together before next weekends double-header were i am back at cunneries for the team of three and then at widows flash for the angling times supercup against crown tackle which is a bit of a local derby match .