With promises of lots of small fish on the crowquill, I was looking forward to this one. I hadn't fished the Yeo (or the crowquill) for years. I was up bright and early and at Yeovil Angling Centre for 8:00 to meet Scotty and Ashley and to pick up some bait. Got to the draw to be told they had put some chub pegs and I managed to pull out peg 9 which is apparently a chubber! We drove in convoy through a farm yard and parked up. I asked where my peg was and was pointed in the direction of some trees in the far distance!
After a mammoth walk (yet again), I was trying to find my peg when several anglers walked down to say there had been a mix up with the pegging and we all had to move a peg down. Scott Cousins who was on peg 10 wasn't best pleased as his peg looked nice and that was where I would now be spending the next five hours. Surveying the peg it did, indeed, look very fishy. It was a big peg with several trees in the water at about 13 metres and the flow looked quite pacy. Talking about the swim with Scotty Russell he reckoned it was a pole peg as it shallowed up near the bottom and as it was quite a short run it wouldn't be ideal for the crowquill. I was quite disappointed as I'd only just bought some new crowquills and looking at the flow I didn't think I had any rigs that would really be suitable.
I put on an old faithful 1.5 gram Drennan Carbo and plumbed up to discover the rig was about four foot too shallow! Being a bit of a bodger I just added some line to my rig. I tried the rig out and really it was woefully undergunned although by letting it run through and holding back it seemed to go through ok. On the whistle I put a caster on and started feeding casters and hemp. At 13 metres it was quite hard work but I fully expected to catch straight away, this didn't happen and it took about 15 mins before I caught a minnow. I did add a small dace and a small roach but never saw the bites for either and the rig just wasn't right. I played about with the shot by bulking two of the droppers together but this didn't really help.
I also tried taking a section off and just running the rig through and I caught a couple of small chublets quite quickly but was going nowhere fast. I was still feeding hemp and caster quite heavily to try and get the chub feeding but after an hour I only had five fish. I tried double red maggot and held the rig back further down the swim and had a couple more fish. Ashley turned up to see how I was getting on and said he'd had five chublets and that one chap had already had five proper chub. While he was there I had another chublet and then dropped one off - great!
After he'd wandered back I had a couple more and dropped a roach off, the trouble was I still wasn't seeing and missing loads of bites. There were obviously a few fish further down the swim but I thought I might be too far overdepth so I replumbed and found I was probaly a foot too deep. I adjusted the rig and actually started catching small fish quite well, I then had a chub around the pound mark and things were looking up. I then had one about 12oz and I knew I should of netted it but like a dick I tried swinging it and of course it fell off. I then had a half pound trout but I don't think they count in these matches.
Halfway through the five hours I still had hope that some bigger chub might show, I kept trying tight across by the cover but snagged up everytime. I was still getting the odd small fish, but it had started raining and the temperature had definitely dropped and my catch rate was dropping off. With about two hours left Scotty Russell and Ashley turned up, Scotty had one decent chub and had lost two and Ashley was struggling. The guy with the chub was still catching and John Loader also had two. While they were there I never had a fish despite their helpful advice! (thanks chaps). With an hour left Ashley wandered back to pack up and I did manage a small fish just before Scotty went back to give it another go.
I was hoping the last hour might be productive, I tried a lobby unsuccessfully but did catch two more small chublets in the last ten minutes. I ended up with 26 fish which I thought might go 3lb or so. I packed up and started to take some of my kit back across the field and walked across to watch the weigh in. John Loader had landed another chub to weigh 7lb odd and the chap with the chub ended with 13 for a fantastic 34lb 10oz. Scotty and Ashley both didn't weigh and I weighed 4lb 12oz which was more than I thought, Scott Cousins had 4lb 9oz and I started to think I might have an outside chance of sneaking into the frame. This didn't last long though as two of the pegs by the road bridge had weighed 14lb odd and 6lb plus. I didn't go back for the results and drove home absolutely knackered.
I could really do with a good day tomorrow with a nice short walk but I bet I get neither! I'll let you know.