A Grayling Free Grayling Match

Simon R

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Penultimate match of the season is, as usual, our Grayling Cup competition – normally held on the upper Swale in the Catterick or Great Langton area. Originally scheduled to take place a fortnight earlier it was cancelled then due to storm Dennis and an extra three foot of flood water in the river.

Looking at the weather forecast it became increasingly apparent that we wouldn’t be on the river this weekend either and since the season was rapidly drawing to a close and with snow still to melt from the hilltops and the ground saturated it was doubtful if the river would drop back to a fishable level anytime soon.

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Normal summer level is 0.30m - so Sunday lunchtime it was at 1.50m - about 4' above normal level in old money

It wasn’t a difficult decision to switch the match to Parklands Fishery just outside Northallerton – we were meeting there anyway to obtain day-tickets to fish the Richmond AS controlled stretch of the Swale at Great Langton. We’d been given pegs 22-38 to spread ourselves out along and I’d hoped that would enable me to peg alternate pegs, however we had ten fishing and three or four of the platforms were underwater but I think everyone still had plenty of room. The draw saw me on peg 36 which is the end peg on the south bank of the larger pond (actually 37 is the very end but that was submerged under 4” of water)

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I had no features to speak of, the lake narrows here to less than 20m wide. A quick plumb revealed the depth to be a consistent four feet or so from just a couple of metres out across to the other side. In the strong, gusty and very cold wind I wasn’t going to attempt to fish a long pole and top kit plus three sections I could keep still enough. For a change though I was going to concentrate on the waggler – a 3AAA bodied waggler – an old Onion float with a long slim peacock antenna being my choice. With the line well sunk and fished a couple of inches over depth it was very stable and didn’t move. An 0.10mm hooklength and a size 20 B611 barbless hook completed the set-up.

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First chuck after the 10am start time saw me miss a bite but second cast I caught a little roach, which I repeated on the next two casts before striking into something substantially larger. Whatever it was just started plodding off towards the end of the lake as I back wound slowly to keep in contact with it. Upon realising that short of growing legs and hauling itself out of the pond it could go no further the unseen fish came back towards me – at one point I actually thought I had it under control until it swam straight past, heading for Chris some 30 or 40 metres down the bank. The hook pulled out before it got there and I presume whatever it was foul-hooked and probably didn’t even realise it was hooked.

After an hour I had about twenty small roach and a solitary gudgeon for probably about a pound and went for a wander along to see Chris on the next peg – he’d had a couple of silvers and also lost a carp and I was just in time to see Steve snare and successfully land a carp of his own. Further down it seemed a bit quieter, just odd roach & ide.

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I wasn’t going to catch enough small roach to beat a carp and so switched from the waggler down the middle to chopped worm at 6m on the pole. I did get a couple of better sized roach but was having to wait a long time for bites – I tried introducing a little groundbait but that didn’t improve matters and the bankside telegraph indicated there were a few ide showing further along.

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I went back to the waggler, came off the bottom and increased my loose-feed rate a little but the result was the same – tiny roach. I went back to fishing at full depth but altered my shotting pattern to give a slower fall to the bait. First chuck with the altered rig saw me get an unseasonal tench of a pound or so but then it was a return to the bits. I honestly don’t think there were any ide at my end of the lake – I should have caught at least one in five hours.

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The last hour the gale force winds abated a little and we had a couple of squally showers. I caught another tench around the 2lb mark but nothing else of any note and was hoping for 4 or 5lb come the weigh-in.

We started at my end and I was reasonably happy with 5lb 3oz

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Chris had lost three more carp but did succeed in landing one which helped him along to 9lb 2oz

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Steve, who was fishing his first Stokesley match for probably twenty five years, just pipped me with 5lb 6oz

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George and Rob had found both ide around the back of the island – George weighing 4lb 3oz

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And Rob 7lb 1oz

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Neither Steve on peg 27 nor Kev on peg 26 bothered weighing in and Tink on peg 24 only had 1lb 12oz.

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Peter on peg 23 had done slightly better, fishing the short pole all day and dropped a mixed bag of 12lb 2oz into the weigh net – giving him his first trophy of the season.

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Finally Frankie on peg 22 had also tipped back

Final match of the year is March 15th at Dromonby Farm – could all trophy holders please return them (preferably clean and polished) so I can get them re-engraved prior to the presentation night on April 17th – that will also be the first chance to renew subs (still £15) and we’ll also be taking a small number of new members the same night.

Lingdale Tavern is the venue (same as last year), kick-off 8pm or so- there’ll be a raffle and a tackle auction plus subsidised (possibly free) pie & peas. Any donations for the prize table gratefully received.


Simon
 

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Sam Vimes

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It wasn’t a difficult decision to switch the match to Parklands Fishery just outside Northallerton – we were meeting there anyway to obtain day-tickets to fish the Richmond AS controlled stretch of the Swale at Great Langton.

For future reference, due to the change of ownership, Richmond And District Angling Society tickets are no longer available at Parklands.
 

Simon R

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For future reference, due to the change of ownership, Richmond And District Angling Society tickets are no longer available at Parklands.
I found that out when we arrived
Good job we didn't need one as I suspect the only outlet open on a Sunday would be the filling station in Richmond and that would have been a 25 minute run each way.

Simon
 

Sam Vimes

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I found that out when we arrived
Good job we didn't need one as I suspect the only outlet open on a Sunday would be the filling station in Richmond and that would have been a 25 minute run each way.

Whilst I accept it's hardly been the most dynamic of websites, it has always had the important stuff updated promptly. The website has recently seen a drastic update very recently. All I can suggest is that anyone gives it the once over before travelling to either waters or retail outlets.

https://richmondangling.org.uk/membership
 
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