This match was the first time I had visited Landsend and with tales of big bags of silverfish I was quite looking forward to it. After losing an hours sleep due to the clocks going forward I was on my way. I found the fishery fairly easily and there were some faces at the draw I hadn't seen for a while, Big Frank and his boy, Roger Russell and his mate Rob and even Terry Niblett was there.
I drew peg 16 which meant nothing to me and all the pegs (with the exception of the corner pegs) looked pretty similar. I set up a 0.4 gram Drennan carp float to fish at 8 metres with a 0.12 mm bottom and finewire barbless size 20 Fox Carp match hook. I also set up a dibber style float to fish across towards the island at 11 to 13 metres, this also had a 0.12 mm bottom and a heavier gauge size 20 Fox Carp match hook.
I intended to fish caster at 8 metres and pellet and corn across, as there was a silverfish pool I intended to fish mainly for silvers with the odd look across for the carp. I mixed up some PA Megabait original and added some casters, corn and a few pellets. On the whistle I cupped in two balls at 8 metres and some corn and pellets at 11 metres. I also had a bush on the inside to my left and I feed some pellets here as well.
With caster on the hook I was expecting to catch straight away but this didn't happen and it was probably five minutes before I caught a small roach. I started to catch small roach with the odd better one but I was hardly setting the world alight! The wind was really cold and strong, the anglers either side of me had both gone straight across and after an hour neither had caught a carp. I decided to keep catching roach and wait until they caught carp before going across. Terry Niblett was two pegs to my right opposite a gap in the island and he hadn't caught a carp either. The wind was coming through the gap and whistling down making holding the pole very difficult, the angler to Terry's right was out of this wind and catching the odd carp.
After an hour and a half I had only had around twelve fish for a pound or so and was going nowhere fast. A brief try across resulted in bites and the anglers around me were still carpless as well. Back down the middle and I would have a couple of fish before they disappeared again, I wish I had brought some maggot as I was struggling for bites on caster. Double caster saw me hook something a bit better only for the hook to pull out and the next chuck I hooked another good fish but the same happened again. Then I went back to being biteless, the chap to my right was now fishing for roach with maggot but he wasn't really bagging either.
With half the match gone and all my options tried I realised I wouldn't be going home with a brown envelope today, the bloke next to Terry was still catching carp and had to be a front runner to win it. I did hook what felt like a good skimmer but once again the hook pulled out, not that I think it would have made a lot of difference. I did have a real purple patch where I had two skimmers about half a pound each. I cupped in some more groundbait and even scaled down to a 0.08 mm bottom and smaller hook but all I added to my net were a few small roach.
I was really ready for the end of the match long before the all out was sounded and there were several people walking about and a couple even packed up early. The pond hadn't really fished well at all. I tipped back twenty fish for about 3lb and headed home, I don't think I shall be rushing back here! Still I have enjoyed a good run and I suppose it had to end sometime.
Next week is the first match in the Perry St spring league and after a recent stocking of small carp the pond has been fishing really well so lets hope I can get a few bites.