Rookery Waters, Pidley, Magpie Lake

Neil ofthe nene

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Third club match of the year, 16 fishing. This year we have some new members amongst them some good open anglers I have fished with before and struggled to beat. Last time out at Yoke hill I blanked so was looking forward to redeeming myself.

I drew peg 28 that for those that know the lake is the first peg on the left after crossing the bridge to the island. The first thing I noted were, for me, the very inviting margins. In the past I have found that this fishery is one where meat has worked for me. So a tin of luncheon meat in 6mm cubes was added to my normal baits of corn & pellet.

Plumbing up I found the lake had an even depth from very close to the bank. I therefore decided, as I would, that there was little point in setting up a long pole and so my Maver Abyss X 9.5m pole came out of the bag together with topkits holding 16 solid elastic. Four rigs were used. Two for full depth and two for the margins. Each pair identical except the hook. One had a band for hard pellet.

I chose to fish at around 5 metres in front and left and right margins at topkit +1. In front I fed two lines, one with meat the other with a mixture of corn & micros. Meat went into the right hand margin and corn & 4mils into the left.

Two hours into the match and I had six fish for around six pound. Five of the six fish being small stockies added to replace larger fish that have been moved to the new lakes on the fishery. The feeder rod (Banjo) came out of the bag and I had a further two small carp while eating my lunch and taking time to asses my options.

Meanwhile I could see two club mates opposite putting a decent weight together and suspected that one of the new members and good open angler, Jason, who was out of sight behind me was doing the same.

After taking time out to think I decided my only option was to commit 100% to the margins. Reason being that I trusted them to work and this is probably what I am best at on commercials. It also gives me a lot of pleasure catching in this way. So even if I didn't do well I would have fun trying.

I carried on feeding as I had done, meat right, corn and 4 mils left, but more regularly. Gradually indications of fish in the swims and the occasional bite and fish told me I had made the right decision. Over those last four hours I switched from my original feeding to using corn & micros in both swims. The fish were not reacting to the meat as I had hoped they would and when I tried corn on the hook I was getting more bites.

Fish came regularly with a few blank periods offset by instant bites on lowering in the rig. I thought though I was not going strongly enough to catch those I could see catching well. In the last hour I stopped keeping a close tab on my weight (fishery rules – three nets and split fish evenly). By the end I estimated 25lb in each net. So a total of 75-80lb.

I would be second to last to be weighed in. The two anglers opposite me who had caught well had 78 and 116lb. There were then a couple of mid 80s before the scales arrived at my peg. I was surprised that my total was 91-8, second place with Jason left to weigh, he was admitting to 70-80 like I had. He was also under in his estimate and his final tally was 92-10. Knocked down to third by 1lb 2oz.

And now I have to admit to a schoolboy error. In the first two hours when I was struggling I missed the net with a fish of around a pound. At the time I thought I was so far behind that I had no hope of catching up and so was a bit carefree. Would it have been worse to be second by two ounces?

So three club matches into the season and I have had two thirds and a blank.
 

Simon Walsh

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Great write up Neil. I’m there with the caravan for a week in August. Can’t wait as it looks a fantastic fishery
 

Stewie74

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Hard luck Neil. I fished a match there a couple of Sundays back, drew peg 14, the other end to where you were. Caught around 80 fish in 6 hours, unfortunately every one apart from 2 were 6-8oz F1’s. A very busy but very frustrating day for 40lb.
 

nigeljohn123

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Feb 11, 2021
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I fished there a month or so ago and was surprised at the how few of the larger fish are left in that lake, I had two doubles (1st two fish of the day) then after that it was just 1-3lb fish all day, fun but would like more variety in fish size. Have also fished Jay lake at the same fishery and found it to be very similar most fish between 1 and 4lb
 

Neil ofthe nene

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There were quite a few larger fish came out during our match. One particular net of margin fish caught on worm & maggot seemed to have more than most.
 
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