- Sep 29, 2001
The Marsh AC season of club matches are coming to an end, the weather is starting to turn and with the dark nights getting earlier and earlier, it is starting to feel wintry. Today's match was at Hartleylands Reservoir at Cranbrook, Kent and with that means an early start. Mick picked me up at 0500 for the two and a half hour trip to the venue, although it does mean we get to sample the delights of the Knoxbridge Cafe. After Alders Farm, one of the best breakfasts I have had the pleasure to devour.
As I said earlier the nights are drawing in and although we could still maintain our six hour matches, it is very much dependant on the fishery. After speaking with the bailiff to confirm all the rules we were happy. Scales for the larger fish were scattered around the lake, hooking mats for those that required them, no need for a mid match weigh in as we were showing "a level of responsibility" with our plans.It does the club proud the fact that fisheries will welcome us back each year knowing that the fishery and its rules will be respected throughout our stay.
A good turnout (15) today for the reservoir match saw Mick pushing his way to the front of the queue whilst I was holding back and letting every one else go in first. One day a flyer will be left in the bag for me.
Mick with his secret ingredients.
But alas, Mick, Gino, Chris and Simon occupied my perception of the better pegs. I decided that the Reverend Tony Roberts was a danger man, not to the fish but to himself, he had drawn the same peg as last year where he struggled his way to 40lb. Someone said he had brought a rope with him and with plenty of trees surrounding the lake, I made sure to fish a line where I could see him.
The Reverend contemplating happier moments
My peg 16 was one of those where, nothing really happens and then you get a short burst of fish then nothing again. I had a plan to fish 5m in the deep water around 4ft at 10am and 2pm feeding 4mm pellet one side and nothing the other. I would also have a line down both edges on a top three for maggot on the right and pellet left. I did want to fish the pellet waggler to the middle but decided at the last minute to leave them at home, mistake, it looked perfect for the waggler, a little ripple in the middle of the lake with fish topping all over.
At the all in I put a large pot of 4mm sinkers onto the top four line and a pot of maggot down both edges. Starting off on the no feed line I had a couple of six ounce roach to start off with, lifting and droping a 6mm hard pellet. A switch to an 8mm saw my first carp after around twenty minutes, a crisp common around 6lb. Nothing was forthcoming so I switched over to the fed line and again lifting and dropping a 6mm woould only see a couple of pound skimmers and roach whereas an 8mm saw a couple of small 3lb carp.
Terry ready for the off
Gino was going well with a couple of weighers but he felt the Simon was emptying the lake opposite him on peg 1. I could see Mick catching well, fishing the margins and the willow tree. Jim Etherington, a guest of the club was also catching well on the bomb with popped up bread over his pole lines.
I had been fishing top four lines for three hours and had around 30lb including some silvers and felt it was time for the edges, A look down to the left saw a couple of small roach and perch fall to 5 maggots on a size 14, the right hand edge, again started off with roach and perch before the float buried and a good common around 8lb was gracing my landing net. Feeding a pot of maggot after each fish and lifting and dropping a bait was working, I was picking off odd carp in amongst the roach and perch, the only downside being that time was running out.
At the all out I had nicked six fish from the edge for around another 30lb to add to the earlier 30lb and a few silvers.
Asking around, Tony was admitting to another 40lb weight, Gino was revelling in his 45lb weight and was planning on how he was going to spend his section winnings. I must admit I may have been responsible for this as I did tell him I had around 30lb, but watching a grown man fist pump a weight in fishing did make me laugh.
Still the scales do not lie, said weight watchers. Gino was first up and an impressive 55lb Rod had struggled all day to place a couple of pound onto the scales. I put 13 pound of silvers on the sheet before place 59lb of carp for a total of 72lb 12oz. Tony had left his rope in his bag and had worked hard for 44-08. Jim had down the business and walked the section with 108lb, a mix of bread caught bomb fish and a few on the pole. Dave was a bit hemmed in on his peg but still managed 38lb with Roger adding 18lb to the scales sheet.
Chris trendsetting again
On the other bank Mick was first to weigh in and placed a solid 100 - 04 on the board for the section win with Chris on the other side of the willow adding 56lb of waggler fish. Jim had caught well with a solid 70lb with Garry chipping in with a couple of weighers, already on the board and a few silvers for 23-05. Clive was in the corner and chipped in with 48lb before we got to John. Four fish on the board for 40lb plus 51lb in the net would see John leap into 3rd place. Terry weighed 52lb with Simon jumping into 4th place with 83lb of pole and waggler fish.
Simon on his way to 4th overall
1st Jim Etherington 108-00
2nd Mick Wright 100-04
3rd John Holdsworth 91-04
4th Simon Watkins 83-00
5th Keith Ashby 72-12
6th Jim Boase 70-08.
Overall, I went with a plan and felt that with better control on my part it would have worked better. I felt afterwards that potting maggots and feeding via a toss pot would have improved things, hindsight.
The longer line went as i expected really but perhaps more time trying to find a level area within the peg would have been better, rather than trying to get the float to sit right on the slope.
Mick had fished a good match from a good peg, but it was good to see him back to winning ways, even if it did cost me a MK Nugget.