The Sunday open at Bake Lakes was on Dunes, I was looking forward to the day as the lake has [&hellip
I was busy on Wednesday and couldn’t make the White Acres mid week match, by Sunday I was chomping at the bit to wet a line, it was a silvers only round but word was the carp had really been having a munch mid week, so avoiding them was going to be paramount. Thirty five turned up this week, so we were slightly down on numbers but that usually happens mid league, still it is a good sized match for this neck of the woods. I was near the back of the queue hoping that a good peg was left in for me and was really pleased when I saw peg 31 in my hand, it was the end peg at the far end of the High Bank. Young Steve Ragg was keen to see where I had drawn, he apparently wanted to draw next to me again, seems like I have become his talisman, and he fancied making it three on the bounce! It was not to be though as he drew in the next section on peg 16 shame really it would have been nice to have a pole only duel!
Just what do you do?
I really liked the look of my peg and sat down to decide on my plan of action, there were Roach plopping all over the lake and slightly worryingly Carp were swirling, but mainly way out by the island, I hoped that’s where they would stay. It really did scream caster shallow, but I ignored that idea as I thought it would be frantic with small Roach and I would work my socks off for 20lb, which in all probability would be 10 – 15lb off the pace. I had previously had a chat with Andy Partridge and he told me how he had caught from peg 30 on the previous round, on that day he caught most of his 58lb only 18’’ from the bank, so that was not going to be ignored! The plan was formed, margins and deep long and short! My rig for those VIP’s was a 4 x 12 J15 float with a .12 bottom to a size 16’s T213 hook the margin swim was around 3’ deep on both sides, I couldn’t go too far to my left as peg 30 was in but it’s always nice to have two margin swims. I am not ambidextrous so cannot fish too long to my right margin; I fished a comfortable 5 sections which meant I could feed bait by hand, which to me is important. I also had a 5m line straight out in front of me, preferring the slightly deeper water as there was not much colour in the lake. Going further out the depth was the same at 11m and 14m which I made a mental note of.
About this time last year I started fishing meat on the long pole so it was time to give it a go, unfortunately I had not had a chance to practice it, but figured if I put it out long and it didn’t work I had plenty more water to try more conventional winter baits. It is a deep swim so my old favourite the .75gram Cralusso Capri was my float choice. On the bait table was a tin of Plumrose, two pints of casters, some maggots and worms and two kilos of ground bait, Andy told me he didn’t use any GB but I’m not confident unless I have some with me on this lake.
The all in was called and the 5m line received three 250ml cups of groundbait containing casters and choppy, on the 14 line I put ¾ cupful of cubed meat, a few casters were thrown by hand down both margins. Baiting with a couple of maggots I started on the 5m line expecting an immediate response but after 5 minutes was scratching my head still biteless! Barry to my left had caught a small Roach; I had not seen anything else come out. A few minutes later I had a bite, and an 8oz Skimmer was soon in the net, which was great to see; hopefully loads of his brothers and sisters would follow! But it didn’t happen, about 5 minutes later I had a very small Roach. I suddenly had that disappointing feeling, thinking it was going to be one of those poor days. Trying the left margin resulted in an immediate bite from a 4oz Perch which was quickly followed by another; I bumped a better one next drop, don’t they always feel massive when you lose one? It seemed to kill the swim, trying the right hand swim was disappointing, I didn’t have a bite.
It was back out onto the 5m line whilst the margins were fed with caster, a few fish came to maggot or bits of worm but I was plagued by missed bites which is infuriating. I caught a few very small Roach and I think these were the culprits. I tried the meat line a couple of times but never had a bite; the margins were still not producing which was worrying. Listening to the chatter going on further down the High Bank It was obvious that it was not going to plan for those anglers as well. After around 90 minutes I decided to feed the 11m line with four balls of groundbait and hope! That had an immediate response of a 10oz skimmer a few smaller samples followed but it wasn’t fast or furious. With well over half the match gone I finally had a bite from my right margin and it was a VIP of around a pound, that was the start and I caught reasonably steady from that line. I found it was best to rest it after a few fish and managed to keep some skimmers interested out longer. I had a few good runs of Perch from the margin including some approaching 2lb but managed to lose a few good ones as well. The only change I made to my rig was going up to a size 14 T213 hook which helped keep the losses down. The water was reasonably clear and I have to say the sight of those big Perch coming to the net with the Dorsal fin up and their distinct colours clearly visible is really a brilliant sight; they really do deserve the VIP status in my book.
That’s enough fun for one Sunday
Unfortunately for me the ‘all out’ was called as I had a fish on and the swim now solid, what a shame that they didn’t turn up a little sooner. The scales were starting at peg 13 I walked down to watch the weighing and was amazed to see that the weights were all around the 20lb – 25lb mark, all very close.
Young Steve Ragg put up another great performance taking some more scalps as he recorded a section win from peg 16 with just short of 25lb. My fish totalled 37lb 4oz which took my section and I was pleased to find was good enough for third overall in a very tight finish. John Shirley coming out on top from peg 24 with 40lb of skimmers and Perch followed by Harry Billing on peg 15 on Jenny’s with 38lb
I don’t have the league results to publish at the moment but I should think that Harry Billing has now established a lead at the top followed by Trevor Conroy, hopefully I may have gained a couple of places from my previous sixth place but will just have to wait until the results are posted.
All’s well that ends well!
The Wednesday affordable at White Acres didn’t start as well as it could have done. I had a disturbed night waking up several times thinking it was time to leave. Eventually getting to sleep and unbelievably sleeping in, which consequently made the whole family late. In my haste I went out to the shed to pick up my casters which were in plastic containers, unbeknown to me, the top one had a loose lid; they were stacked upside so the casters could drain. The result was over a pint of casters loose fed all over the floor! Just before I left I remembered that my boots were not in the van and I quickly picked up a pair from the garage forgetting that this particular pair has a small hole in the sole, I ended up fishing with a cold and wet right foot. I eventually pulled up in the car park at the fishery and realised that I had left one of my keepnets and all my landing nets on the drive, I actually felt it might be better if I just turned around and went home, slowly!
Unfortunately it was a very low turnout, I don’t know if it’s the weather putting people off as it was forecast to be wet and windy, or just a general lack of money but the anglers are just not supporting mid week matches at the moment, it’s certainly not the fishing as that is first class. It’s a shame as White Acres will open for visitors before long and that will be it for the majority of the local anglers until late October.
Anyway, we had a winner take all sweep and fished the High Bank of the Match Lake, it is a good opportunity to have a practice in match conditions even if it is a small match but we were assured a good peg! Mark ‘8mm’ Lazell had the draw bag and he held it out, I pulled out peg 27, great another opportunity to fish the point of the island. The wind was south west and strong, but at least it wasn’t as icy cold as last time. I did rule out the long pole, but today had to be simple as a good weight would be needed to stand any chance. Tackle was a pellet feeder, margin rig for the VIP’s and a 5m rig. When we started I fed some 6mm pellets on the 5m line casters down my margins and cast the feeder to the boards, bait was a Yorkshire Baits red dumbbell boilie.
After around 10 minutes the tip flew round but it was a Skimmer, not what I really wanted but it was a start. Five minutes later and a small carp of around 3lb took a fancy to the strawberry flavoured bait followed by another next cast. This was looking good, next cast and the tip went around immediately and I found myself playing a better sample but it didn’t feel quite right, there was some jarring, I looked up and followed my line out towards the island and saw it attached to some line coming down from the Pine tree on the island. I couldn’t moan too much as I remembered two weeks ago it was me who lost the feeder in the tree! I played the fish at least I was making progress and when it was around 10m from me the line came undone and I was playing the fish normally which was soon in the net, I unhooked the carp put it in my keepnet and picked up the feeder which was still in the landing net, only to realise it was the feeder I lost two weeks ago! It was really strange as today’s feeder was also in the landing net, I honestly have no idea which rig the fish was attached to but suspect it was today’s. The good thing was that I managed to retrieve all the lost line which cleared the hazard. Following this I had a quiet spell but I kid you not, the next fish I landed on the feeder was a nice size F1 and that came attached to a pole rig, not one of mine I hasten to add. Oh man, you just couldn’t make up a story up like this!
I had a really great days fishing catching 6 carp and a dozen F1’s on the feeder, an 8lb Mirror carp on the pole, along with some nice skimmers and around 10lb of VIP’s from down the edge, sadly I didn’t manage to catch any further fishing tackle but my 68lb was good enough to pick up the WTA beating Chaz Ward who had 52lb of pole caught carp and good sized skimmers. The day that started out looking like it was just going to get worse and worse, turned out to be a fantastic days fishing with a giggle to boot!
Next Sunday I am looking forward to having another go at the Specimen Lake at Bake Lake Fisheries, hopefully there will be a good turnout. Followed by the next round of the Individual Winter league at White Acres, unfortunately no mid week match for me this coming week as I am on the road with some work commitments. Until next time, I hope you manage keep those strings tight!