Nearly blanked @ Swillington !!

MunchMyStump

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I have been looking at going here for a week or two Swillington Fishing With 5 ponds cum lakes to choose from I thought it would be worth a bash and given it's only 6 miles away, it's virtually on my doorstep!
Arrived at just after 7AM and joined the queue of cars waiting to pay and enter. The doors do not open until 07:30 then you have to form an orderly socially distanced queue to pay before entering the actual fishery.
I chose lake 2, or should I say I was directed to lake 2 after speaking with the ticket person. Lake 2 has Bream, Tench, Rudd, Roach, Barbel, Dace, and several varieties of Carp I was informed. Big areas of Lilly pads too he added, this had me envisioning my much younger days at Knotford Nook in the Lilly bay hammering the Tench... That'll do me!
The sun was very low and broken by whispy cloud and a couple short trees on the opposite bank leant themselves to highlighting the float, a very light mist over the water and I found myself with the whole lake to myself!
I slotted in between two giant Lilly sections with a good 10 feet between the beds. A nice clear channel should I need it.
The swim screamed "FISH"!
You know when you get that feeling of OMG, I can't really believe I got here first, the giddyness sets in and you cannot tackle up quick enough...Yeah... I had it and had it bad.
I tempered my enthusiasm and methodically went through my setup. No point rushing now, fail to plan, plan to fail and all that. Plumbed up the visi wag (so I thought) and with one number 4 @ 6" from the hook cast in. Hemp and caster were the groundbait with a smattering of corn (the hookbait) over the top.
I waited in anticipation, this was going to be a beano I thought, near perfect conditions and a swim to die for. I waited some more...and more... Hmmm
Something isn't right, not a single lift or take in an hour. The wind had picked up by now so hitting the spot on every cast was becoming more difficult, compounding this was the sun had arrived above the trees and I had left my cap at home. Dark lens Scierra glassed that I use for fly fishing were donned and I could just about carry on using alternate hands to block the suns reflection on the waters surface.
Still nothing.
So at 2 hours in, what do I do? I wasn't fishing heavy, well I was hedging my bets being in a Lilly swim but 6lb maxima mainline and 5lb Stroft GSM for the hooklink. I didn't think this was the reason for a lack of bites or indications of anysorts. I thought it quite reasonable given the swim?
Feeding wise was a golf ball sized hemp and a smattering of the hookbait every 20 mins. Was it enough? Was it too much?
Another few hours passed by, nothing... I decided to set up the quiver rod and hair rig a couple of grains. This was a last ditch attempt and if I had no action in an hour I would call my first blank.
It sat there in the same area I had been feeding all day...Nothing. So I retrieved, or tried to. There was something stuck. I thought I had grabbed a Lilly root so I just tried to lift gently and see what it was and if there was a way to dislodge. Well, what I wasn't expecting was for some poor souls top section to come out of the depths toward me...

Ahh for the love of FFS that is exactly why I have not had a single take or nibble. I was fishing over the top of a semi submerged top section with the tip pointing up.

By now it was close to 17:00 and not a single fish to the net. Was this going to be my 1st blank since returning to Coarse fishing and only my fourth outing?

The float lifted! The bands of the visi wag emerged and I lifted for all I was worth... Nothing...
Recast, same area, and sat on my hands. The float shot away and I lifted again...Bang!! The rod bent and a ruddy great bream erupted skyward landing on the Lilly pads, thrashed for a second. probably wondering why it was on top of the water before falling back in and heading straight into the snags for a second time.
I gave it some tufty. directing it out into the open water, I wasn't going to lose the only fish of the day! After a mere few seconds in open water it accepted it's defeat and was duly landed.
TFFT!
Phew, no blank! By now I was the only angler left. Everyone had gone home, bemoaning the place. 3 muppets opposite were just throwing lead around with gay abandon for a couple of hours before they declared the place s**t and there were no fish. Said bemoaning muppet actually hooked a tree on the bank to his left and lost all his terminal tackle....

Anyhow... No blank thus far.

Tight lines all.

Munchy
 

Dave

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Great report and like you it's only about 15-20mins away from me - not somewhere I've fished for a long time, in fact I don't think it had four lakes when I last fished it
 

MunchMyStump

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Out of curiosity Dave, given we share a similar locale, where would you recommend? I don't do Pole. I suppose I left it late in the year to come back to Coarse but I am more than happy to take advice on both river and stillwater.

Cheers

Munchy
 

Dave

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Tbh, there are that many fisheries, both large and small, still and flowing, around the area it's hard to recommend one place in particular.
I haven't spent a great deal of time on the banks this year due to a health issue, but when I do it's mainly the Wharfe, Trent, Lindholme Lakes, Alders Farm, and whereever takes my fancy at the time.

A lot depends on what you want out of a day's fishing - lots of activity, plenty of bites, or somewhere just to while away the hours and day dream.
And then there's the more commercial waters, puddles, or natural venues.
 
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