Sunday, December 19, 2010

No fishing - 19th December 2010

Well this was supposed to be a fantastic account of how I won my second match on the bounce to end the year on a high but that poxy white stuff saw to that. Matches have been called off all over the place, including ours so a day off and I'm bored shitless.

I'd like to take this opportunity to wish anybody who reads this blog a very Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year - Tight Lines!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

River Isle - Xmas Fayre - 12th December 2010

We actually didn't have a frost last night and the temperature wasn't too bad although with no rain, the river was always going to be low and clear for this one. At the draw there was a decent turnout of 14, including Andy Welch, Moses Holbrook and Tackle Uk's Ashley and Scott. The draw was announced and I went in the bucket just after Scotty who pulled out 124, I opened my fingers and saw a 1 followed by a 2 and then finally a 5! - yes I'd finally drawn a flier. The trouble was I now had to catch off it! With the river being low and clear I didn't think the peg would do the 30-40lb weights of previous weeks.

I got to the river and you could see the bottom over much of the peg but there were quite a few fish topping. With only twenty minutes to set up I quickly assembled a 13 foot Preston waggler rod with a small Drennan Crystal waggler with just two number 10's down the line, ending in 0.12mm bottom and size 18 B611. I just had time to chuck on a pole rig (yep you guessed it - Ole Faithful) and plumb up before it was time to start. I shipped out the pole to fish just past the middle and started getting indications on double maggot before catching a 2oz roach, I was off the mark. At this early stage the pole just didn't feel right so I switched to the waggler.

I was feeding maggot, caster and hemp just upstream of me and fishing double bronze maggot on the hook. I started catching roach and dace quite well and after the first hour had 40 fish with the odd better one amongst them. I shouted up to Andy Welch above me to see if he'd caught and he replied he hadn't had a bite yet. I carried on still catching but having to go further down the swim to get bites and added around another 30 fish by the end of hour two. Scotty and Rob turned up, Scotty hadn't had a bite in 124 which surprised me and Rob had caught one chub and lost another in 123. Andy Welch then caught a half decent chub and Rob came back from seeing Leighton on 126 below the road to report he was catching quite well.

I was still catching but having to chase the fish around a bit, I would get a few from right under the feed then have to go right down to the tail to get bites. I was missing/bumping quite a few and most of the roach and dace were 2-3oz, not the usual 'clonkers'. I tried caster and caught a better stamp but had to wait longer for the bites. Scotty reckoned I should try the pole as there were fish flashing under my feed, I caught a couple but the pole was all wrong, float too heavy as was the elastic. I was still catching odd fish though and seemed to be doing better than most people at our end, Andy had added a couple more fish but Scotty had been phoned by Ashley at Ashford and they were all blanking!

Scotty went back to try and catch a chub and was replaced behind me by Butch and his son (and there was me thinking Butch had forgotten how to get to the river!). I was still on the pole and getting odd fish although I did lose a chub around the 1lb mark while they were there. I even had a spell fishing two sections to hand where I caught half a dozen roach before they disappeared again. I kept thinking that a four or five metre whip would be the answer but I didn't have any suitable rigs so carried on putting odd fish in the net on the pole and waggler.

I could see odd decent fish flashing opposite me, near the far bank and had caught a couple of net roach on the waggler there so tried the pole, but with the unsuitable rig and elastic I was missing too many. In the back of my mind I had the nagging doubt that I should be setting up another, lighter rig with lighter elastic. I was still fishing the waggler and alternating between double bronze and red maggots and single caster and with an hour to go had 120 fish. With half an hour left I finally went to the rod bag and got another top two out, attached a 0.75 gram Carbo and went across to where those big roach were flashing. First put in I hooked a good roach of around 12oz-1lb, only for it to come off halfway across - bugger.

I started getting the odd fish including a couple of netters and finished up with 149 fish, I had no clue to what they weighed as I had a lot of small fish including five or six gudgeon. I was amazed that I never had a pike strike with the water being so clear and a big snapper had a go at something above me near the end. Scotty had the scales and when I caught up with them, Rob had weighed 1lb 5oz and Scotty had found a chub albeit a small one as he only weighed 1oz! Andy weighed 4lb 5oz and then it was my turn, Scotty called my weight out at 17lb 4oz and I was hoping it would be enough. I'm sure a four or five metre whip, easing a rig through would have seen me do 20lb+ but still it was a lovely days fishing and my biggest weight so far this river season.

Below the bridge, Leighton had 4lb 4oz and Justin had 4oz and with Scotty saying they'd all not caught at Ashford, it just left the top end of the river. Back at the results and the top end of the river had fished poorly with Martin Heard top from peg 15 with 1lb 15oz. Martin paid me another £1 and said I'd won it - yes! I collected £35 and won a nice bottle of brandy and then we all had a lovely buffet (thanks Cindy and Steve). Andy and Leighton actually finished 2nd and 3rd but after last week the river had fished really badly. Still I was well chuffed to win my fourth match of the year and my first match on the river since January 2009.


1 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 17lb 4oz
2 - Andy Welch (Ilminster) - 4lb 5oz
3 - Leighton Cox (Ilminster) - 4lb 4oz

I must thank Pete Lonton for getting all the prizes and Robin Cox for organising the match and of course Steve and Cindy at the Crown for the lovely food. Next week is round five of the Crown League and it would be nice to draw 125 again! (well it worked last time!)

Sunday, December 05, 2010

River Isle - Crown Winter League - 5th December 2010

The weather had eased a little for this one although we still had a frost. At the draw there were nine of us fishing today and it was lovely to see Rocking Roy Fowler, who had come to give the river a try for the first time in ages.




Rocking Roy










Rob had decided to give the top end of the river a rest so this week we would be fishing Ashford, North Bradon and Isle Brewers. Of course everyone wanted 125 or 126 at Isle Brewers but I also fancied 85 at Ashford, I came close when I pulled out 82 but not close enough. Rob drew the flier (125) and Neil had 126, Rocking drew 85 and I was sure he'd get a few fish. I got to Ashford and was surprised to see that Rocking's van wasn't there, I unloaded my kit and as I was walking across the road, Roy turned up from the opposite direction!, he'd actually been to North Bradon (I didn't realise it was that long since he'd visited the river!).

My peg actually looked really nice with the mill stream coming in opposite with tree branches in the water to my left and to my right. I set up a Drennan Carbo (but a deeper rig than I normally use!) and after plumbing up had to chop a bit off to make it fishable. I had a nice depth to my left before it started to shallow up, there was also a tinge of colour but I was worried that all the cold water that had gone in might knock sport. Ten-thirty arrived and my opening gambit was to fish caster to the left just past the main flow in the slacker water.

No bites here so I started searching down the swim to my right, still nothing and I thought that it might be as hard as I expected. I tried double maggot to see if I could get a minnow to avoid the blank but no indications at all. With three quarters of an hour gone I decided to have a coffee, a sandwich and a rethink. I laid the rig in downstream in the flow and put the pole down while I had a hot drink. As I was tucking into a packet of crisps and a sandwich I noticed my pole moving and looked up to see elastic being pulled out of the end of my pole! I dropped my breakfast and lifted the pole and there was a decent fish on, as I shipped back carefully I could see the fish twisting in the flow and then the elastic went slack - gutted.

I was desperately hoping that wouldn't be my only bite of the day, but next put in I had a decent roach, followed by three chublets and as the first hour drew to a close I already had 2lb in the net. I was getting quite a few indications but several times I lifted the rig to move it and there would be a fish on! I then had a better chub of a pound and a quarter before losing two fish where I hadn't seen the bites. All my fish had come to double bronze maggot so far. I kept swapping between two places in the flow and added a couple more roach but decided to rest it for a bit as each hooked fish caused quite a commotion in the shallow water.

I came back up the swim and fished against the branches of the tree to my right and my first bite resulted in something much more substantial on the end and after some hairy moments in the strong flow, I safely netted a 3lb+ chub and was probably up to about 8lb with three hours to go! Things got even better when I had a pound and a half chub next put in, although I have to admit I didn't have a bite and the fish was on when I moved the rig. No more fish from here so I went back downstream in the shallows and lost another fish in the flow before catching a 12oz chublet to give me double figures.

Bites were becoming less frequent though and I kept thinking about adding another section to search further downstream. I also reckon if I'd set up a little crystal waggler I might have kept those fish coming for longer. I tried double red maggot and had a couple more chublets to give me around 11lb. With an hour and a half left, Roy turned up and he hadn't had a bite! I then had a spell where I hooked three fish only for all three to come off - bugger. I added a section to search further downstream and missed a bite straight away so I took six inches off the depth as I knew I was well overdepth and had a small chublet.

I was hoping the last hour would be very productive but I only added two more chublets to end with 18 fish for around 12lb. With Roy not weighing, I quickly packed up and he weighed me in, my fish actually went 12lb 4oz with the biggest chub weighing 3lb 2oz. I'd lost/bumped six fish and I was hoping they wouldn't cost me as I was sure pegs 125 and 126 would do good weights. Back at the pub and Leighton was first back and he'd been at North Bradon and done a respectable 5lb 10oz from peg 92 and Steve Parker had 2lb 13oz from peg 96, so far so good.

Then Rob came back from Isle Brewers and he'd had 32lb 2oz from 125 and Justin had caught 22lb 8oz from 124! At this rate I wouldn't even frame but luckily Graham had done 9lb 3oz from 123 and Neil 9lb 2oz from 126, Heardy didn't weigh from 128 so I actually stayed in third place and picked up £20 (plus I've got a £1 to come from him next week). The river had fished really well and this was my best weight so far this river season and I'd really enjoyed it. I also got my first section one pointer to lift me into second place with five points behind Leighton who leads with four.

It was lovely to have a good old natter with Roy and I hope his blank today doesn't put him off (you might draw 125 next time mate!). It was also nice to see lots of roach and chublets showing up in catches, lets hope it continues. Oh and I had my first proper chub this year!

1 - Robin Cox (Ilminster) - 32lb 2oz
2 - Justin Charles (Ilminster) - 22lb 8oz
3 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 12lb 4oz
4 - Graham Field (Taunton) - 9lb 3oz
5 - Neil Dring (Ilminster) - 9lb 2oz

Next week is the Xmas Fayre, what's the betting I don't draw 125!!!!!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

River Isle - V.E.S. Precision League - 28th November 2010

With loads of snow in the week and freezing conditions forecast, I wasn't looking forward to this one. At the pub there were only six brave souls (idiots) and when the draw was announced I hung back and when there were only two balls left and 14 was one of them I was about to draw when Justin turned up! Rob had to put another peg in and we had to draw again. The golden ball was drawn again and this time it was 14 (it was 20 first time around) and Rob offered Justin first draw to see if he could pull out 14 for the third match on the trot. He pulled out a ball and we waited while he opened his hand and yes he'd drawn 14 yet again - unbelievable! I drew peg 20, a swim that hasn't really been in much and definitely not a match winner.

I got there and it actually looked nice with some deepish water above me and some brambles on the far side downstream. Steve Parker had drawn 24 and trying to turn around had got his van stuck! - not a good start. Pete Lonton was above me on 18 (at least I hadn't drawn that again). Heardy had got peg 15 and I fancied him, Justin on 14 and Neil on 27 to fill the three frame places today. I only set 'Old Faithful' up and after a quick coffee was ready for the start. I was fully expecting it to be really hard and thought a couple of pound would be enough to frame.

I started with caster on the hook and inched it down in the flow and then held it back against the brambles but nothing. Then out of the blue a fish topped in the flow, I switched to double bronze maggot to see if I could get a bite, even a minnow would do. I was holding back in the flow and went to move the rig and there was a decent dace on! I shipped back really slowly only for it to come off - bugger! I started to get little knocks on maggot and thought they were minnows but then I had a little 2oz chublet - blank avoided. I then had a tiny dace before catching a minnow so I switched to caster and then hooked another good dace only for that one to come off as well. My elastic didn't seem to be coming out so I checked and it had frozen inside the pole!

Pete came down, he'd only caught minnows and his line kept freezing in the rod rings. He said Heardy was catching in 15 but Justin was struggling. I actually felt there were a few fish in my swim as I was getting regular indications, I had three decent dace quite quickly, all on caster. A small fish topped above me and I went up and was sure I'd catch but never had a bite. Steve came up, he hadn't caught and was searching for logs to put under his wheels to try and get his van out, he wasn't a happy bunny. My bites dried up and in between copious cups of coffee, I tried maggot but only had a couple of minnows and a bullhead.

I did hook another little dace only for it to drop off when I went to swing it! It was really cold and I just wanted the five and a half hours to end. I did manage another small dace right on the whistle to give me six fish (plus minnows) and I was pretty sure I didn't have a pound. I went to start packing up and my landing net had frozen to my keepnet! then my landing net pole was frozen solid, fully extended and I had to pour precious coffee on the joints to free it. I walked down with the scales to Steve only to meet him on his way up, he hadn't caught. We then met Justin who said he'd only had 7oz!, Martin had weighed 4lb 6oz and would be a clear winner with that. My fish went 13oz (bagger!) which actually put me in third place behind Dringer who had 3lb from peg 27 and I picked up £14 although I had to give Heardy the pound back that he'd given me this morning.

We all then trudged down to try and get Steve's van out, which we eventually did with Rob using his car to tow it out - phew! If Steve never sees peg 24 again, I think it'll be too soon. On the plus side it's nice to see lots of little dace and chublets showing but where have all the big chub gone? I haven't hooked one this year yet! On the league front Neil and Martin jointly lead with perfect three point scores followed by Fieldy (who didn't fish today) on six and then me on seven.

1 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 4lb 6oz
2 - Neil Dring (Ilminster) - 3lb
3 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 13oz

Lets hope it warms up a bit before next week!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

River Isle - Crown Winter League - 21st November 2010

More rain and the river was in perfect nick yet again, my day didn't get off to the best of starts when I overslept and had to rush over to Ilminster as I had all the stuff for the draw in the back of my car! I got to the pub (minus all my kit, which I'd have to go back for) and had all the usual abuse about me having my head up my arse, that sort of thing! Rob had put some cracking pegs in today including 14, 15, 27, 125 and 126, in fact the only pegs I didn't fancy were 18 and 29. When the draw was announced I thought I'd go in early and I hung onto my peg without looking while everyone drew. I was waiting for someone to say they'd got 18 and when this didn't happen, I slowly opened my fingers and there was poxy 18 staring back at me!

I drove back to Chard to get my kit really disheartened because although I'd done alright off it last week, with some good pegs in I didn't fancy 5-6lb would be enough to get in the frame today. I actually had the choice of 17 or 18 and when I finally got to the river I decided to give 17 a try instead as it did look nice. With me being so late, I had to get my patched up 'Ole Faithful' out for another session. The depth was fairly similar to 18 and when I finally got fishing I had already missed quarter of an hour, I started catching dace and small chublets quite quickly, along with the normal minnows.

My catch rate was similar to last week but the average size was smaller with just the odd net fish and I was going nowhere fast. The peg is just below a bridge and back when it used to be good, people used to catch by the wall on the opposite bank but it looked pretty pacy today. I probably had a pound or so in the net but with two hours gone things had slowed up and with nothing to lose I decided to try by the wall. The rig actually sat in the flow quite nicely and then the float just slid away and I was soon netting an 8oz chublet. Another three in as many chucks hinted there were a few fish there but then I couldn't buy a bite again.

Leighton wandered down from peg 14 (the tank traps) and said it was quite slow and he'd only had a couple of pound and that Dringer was struggling in 15. He'd also spoken to his dad on peg 29 and both he and Martin Heard on 27 were struggling but apparently Graham Field down on 125 was bagging and had phoned his missus to bring over another keepnet! I kept at it because although Graham looked to be a clear winner and I fancied 126 to be second there was still third place up for grabs.

I was still getting the odd fish from in the flow and every now and again I'd try by the wall and get another dace or chublet. I'd also fed an inside line from the start and kept trying it periodically but never had a fish from there. I was getting a few problems with minnows and tried lobbie and double caster and had a couple of fish on both to end with 28 fish which I reckoned would go around 3lb.

While I was packing up, Rob turned up, he didn't bother weighing in and Heardy had 1lb (woo-hoo, I'd beaten him two weeks on the trot). Dringer came down to weigh me in first and when I weighed 4lb 9oz I suffered the usual ribbing over my crap estimates. As I was loading my car they came back from weighing Leighton and he'd had 4lb 10oz - bugger, ounced again! I had to weigh Neil while Rob rushed off to weigh Fieldy in, Neil had 1lb 13oz so I actually scored two league points but was sure that I wouldn't pick up today.

Back at the results and Graham Field had weighed in a staggering 43lb 4oz to set a new match record! He'd caught 314 fish on the waggler and maggot and had an amazing days fishing. Janders held the old record of 37lb 8oz and I thought that would stand for years but as he's now defected to carp puddles there's no chance of him reclaiming the record. I do think it'll take something special to beat Graham's new record.





Graham Field - new River Isle match record holder with 43lb 4oz










I looked at the weigh boards and was surprised to see Steve Parker had only weighed 2lb 3oz from peg 126 and that Richy hadn't weighed from 128, which meant I'd sneaked into 3rd and picked up £16. Richy actually chucked back 44 fish and I reckon that might have pushed me, I learnt years ago to always weigh in as you never know!

1 - Graham Field (Taunton) - 43lb 4oz
2 - Leighton Cox (Ilminster) - 4lb 10oz
3 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 4lb 9oz

After three matches and dropping the worst result, Leighton leads the league with two points followed by Graham on three and me on four. Next week is round four of the V.E.S. and I'm just hoping I don't draw 17 or 18 again!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

River Isle - V.E.S. Precision League - 14th November 2010

After weeks of the river being low and clear we had loads of rain and I was worried at one point that it might be unfishable. On the morning the river looked perfect with some extra pace and a tinge of colour. Neil and Rob were off playing darts (drinking) in Torquay so it was left to the rest of us to sort the match out. There were only eight of us so we put pegs in that should hold some slack if the river rose during the day as more rain was forecast.

I had the bucket and when there were only two balls left I got Pete to draw for Justin who hadn't turned up yet and he only pulled out 14! I was left with 17 or 18 and after reaching the river decided on 18 as it can fish well with colour on. As usual I only set 'Ole Faithful' up and looking at the river I was surprised there wasn't as much colour as I expected. A small fish topped in the slack at the top of the swim and I couldn't wait to get started.

10:15 arrived and so did the rain!, first put in I had a chublet on caster and then three nice dace and the odd minnow. By the end of the first hour I'd had 13 fish for the best part of 2lb and was enjoying it although the rain was freezing cold. I was fully expecting things to slow and they did in the second hour, I was trying holding it back, running it through and different areas of the swim, but I only added five more fish including a nice roach with several fish coming to double maggot.

The third hour was much the same and I would get a couple of fish from one spot before they moved. Steve Parker turned up from peg 52 and said his swim was unfishable and that Martin was struggling on 50. He also said Pete in 15 had a decent chub plus bits so I was up round there at the halfway stage. I was still getting odd fish but it was becoming a struggle, so I went 13 metres down the swim and missed a corking bite before catching a net dace. I had a few more indications but no more fish. Tony Newman then turned up from peg 24, he'd also packed up so I stuck at it hoping I could get a few more.

I put on a half a lobbie and had three dace in quick succession before that died a death so I tried a lobbie down the swim and missed a bite before disaster and I got snagged solid on some underwater obstruction. I pulled and it finally came free but 'Ole Faithful' didn't look too good afterwards. The side eye had pulled out, half the shot had pinged off and the hooklength was gone! With only twenty minutes left I did a bodge job and stuck the eye back in and tied a new hook on. Out of the blue I had two small chublets in two chucks on caster to finish with 31 fish which I reckoned might go 4lb.

I packed up and went to see how Pete and Justin had got on, Justin had a fantastic days fishing and plonked 18lb 8oz of dace, chublets and roach on the scales, Pete had also done well with 6lb 15oz although he said he'd bumped as many off as well. My fish actually went 5lb 7oz but my only hope of a brown envelope was now if those two framed and I got the section by double default! Back at the results and that was exactly how it panned out and I picked up a tenner to keep the winnings ticking over. I was actually third on the day but they only paid two due to the depleted turnout. Martin had 1lb 5oz and owes me £1 (well he can give me one of the several I've given him over the last few weeks!). Despite his low weight he actually won his section as the two pegs at North Bradon only weighed an ounce apiece. His second one pointer means him and Neil are leading after three matches and dropping the worst result they are both on two points. I'm way down on five.


1 - Justin Charles (Ilminster) - 18lb 8oz
2 - Pete Lonton (Ilminster) - 6lb 15oz

Sections
A - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 5lb 7oz
B - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 1lb 5oz

Well that's it for this week, tune in next week when I draw another crap peg!

Sunday, November 07, 2010

River Isle - 7th November 2010

With no league match scheduled we decided to have a knock up and perhaps try some new swims. There were only seven of us again and Rob had put some swims in at Isle Brewers and I really fancied a crack at 125 but Heardy drew that, does he ever draw a bad peg! I paid him the pound from last week and made sure I had enough dosh to pay him for today (I'm thinking of setting up a direct debit!). I pulled out peg 50 at Ilford and quite fancied it for a few fish but was wary of how low the river still was.

I got to my peg and as I was settling in, Rob turned up to drop Leighton off as he was the peg below the bridge and said he could see a couple of chub at the tail of my swim, my appetite was now well and truly wetted! Being a lazy bugger I only set up the usual Carbo and plumbed up around the swim and could find no more than a foot's depth anywhere but as long as it remained overcast I was confident of catching a few. First run through with caster the float slid away and I swung in a small chublet, next chuck a dace and then another, I was enjoying this! After an hour I had 8 fish including a 10oz trout (which count) and a nice roach, I'd also bumped one and missed a few bites.

Then the sun came out and I could see through every inch of the swim and my bites just stopped. By the end of the second hour I'd only added two more roach and a small dace and still no sign of a proper chub. I went through the motions for another hour before deciding a walk was in order. I had a look upstream and off the bridge but didn't see a fish, next stop was Leighton but he wasn't at his peg either! I met up with him as he walked up from having a look at the big bend and he said he'd just had a few small fish and loads of minnows. He also said he'd spoke to Rob and he was struggling in 14 but they were getting a few at Isle Brewers.

I went back for the last hour and despite trying lobworm and upping the feed the elusive chub remained elusive and I never had another bite. I packed up and as I was walking down to weigh Leighton in, Rob turned up, he didn't bother weighing in and Steve Parker only had 12oz from peg 17. I still fancied the top three would come from Isle Brewers though. Leighton had a hard won 1lb 6oz and for once my estimate of 2lb 8oz wasn't too far off as I weighed 3lb 1oz.

Back at the results and Neil Dring had a lovely day on peg 126 to win with a brilliant 15lb 13oz of mainly roach to record his second win on the trot. Martin Heard had 5lb 3oz from 125 for second and I sneaked into third place and picked up £16 as Tony Newman had 2lb 4oz from 123, although he'd had loads of pike trouble. So once again I'd gotten off to a promising start only for it to fizzle out and I still haven't hooked a proper chub!

Next week is round three of the V.E.S. and at least Neil can't win 'cos he's not fishing next week! Although that will probably just mean Martin will get back to winning ways.


1 - Neil Dring (Ilminster) - 15lb 13oz
2 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 5lb 3oz
3 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 3lb 1oz

Sunday, October 31, 2010

River Isle - V.E.S. Precision League - 31st October 2010

After quite a bit of rain on the Saturday I was once again surprised to see the river low and clear but at least this week we didn't have bright sunshine to contend with. There were only eight of us fishing and this week Rob had put two pegs in at North Bradon, 92 and 96 and I didn't really fancy either and really wanted 14 or 27. Of course I pulled out peg 92, it's known as the 'Roach Hole' but hardly any roach show nowadays and it's normally chub that make up the weights from it. Last year a tree had gone down across the peg but Janders (remember him!) still did over 6lb off it and I also recall Neil Dring doing 18lb of chub off it a couple of years previous. Neil had drawn 96, which was a golden peg and had the scales. Rob said most of the tree was now gone and he saw several chub in there yesterday.

I got to the river and my peg looked really good and I couldn't wait to get started, it was a bit of a rush to get set up so only a single rig came out the bag and yes it was a Drennan Carbo! I plumbed up and there was a good depth running up to the tree in the water.




Peg 92, how fishy does that look!










The start time arrived and I went out in the flow with a single caster and missed a bite straight away, I then started catching small chublets and had eight and a roach in the first hour and I started to think I could do a weight. Surely it was only a matter of time before the big chub arrived? But then I got plagued by minnows and despite trying double caster, half a lobbie and upping the feed, they remained a problem. Every now and again I'd get a small roach, chublet, dace or gudgeon but I wasn't catching fast enough to do a weight. Where were those bloody chub? I kept holding back right by the tree but got snagged a couple of times and minnows were still being a bloody pest.

By the half way point I probably had a pound and a half and was very frustrated, then Neil arrived and he hadn't had a bite so I stuck at it, hoping for good section points are maybe even yet another default section win! Time was running out and still no chub when out of the blue I had a better chublet and three nice roach with the best probably around 8oz. Would I finish with a flourish? no was the answer as I only added a couple more gudgeon to end with 28 fish (plus minnows) for a couple of pound or so.

Neil walked up with the scales and reported that he'd had four good chub and lost two in the last two hours! My fish went 3lb 1oz and after four matches that's my top weight! and I still haven't caught a proper chub. Neil's four 'dogs' went 10lb 4oz and if he framed there was still an outside chance of a section win.





Neil with his late chub!















Back at the results and Neil had tied with Martin Heard (another £1 bites the dust!) for first place. So Neil won his second V.E.S. match (and golden ball) on the trot and Martin won his second match on the trot! Graham Field won the top section from peg 15 with 3lb 14oz and as for my section, Pete Lonton had 3lb 2oz from peg 27, so I'd been ounced again! I'm having a bit of a bad run at the moment, with a free date next week I think we're having a knock up somewhere so lets hope for an improvement then.

1 - Neil Dring (Ilminster) - 10lb 4oz
1 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 10lb 4oz

Sections
A - Graham Field (Taunton) - 3lb 14oz
B - Pete Lonton (Ilminster) - 3lb 2oz

Sunday, October 24, 2010

River Isle - Crown Winter League - 24th October 2010

After quite a bit of rain on the Saturday I was hoping the river would be carrying a bit of extra pace and some colour but as I went over the river at Hort Bridge was surprised to see it still low and clear! There were 11 of us at the draw and Robin had put some interesting pegs in, including much fancied pegs 25 and 50. There were also several in I didn't want, mainly 38 and 39 because of the mammoth walks.

When the draw was announced I decided to hang back and wait until those two pegs had gone, this worked to a certain degree but the two new pegs (25 and 50) both went as well. With only two balls remaining I went for it and pulled out peg 48 at Ilford - gutted. I've only fished the peg twice before, the last time I blanked and the time before that was when I was a junior (a long time ago!) and caught a small chub, so I didn't have high hopes. Malcolm Levy did catch a chub off it last year, so lets hope it still lived there!

I got to the river and passed Tony Newman on the much fancied peg 50 and Leighton Cox on 49 (another peg that just throws up the odd chub or two) and on arrival at mine, it looked quite fishy with plenty of cover on the far bank. I set up a 1.5 Drennan Carbo (surprise, surprise!) with 0.12mm bottom and size 18 B611 coupled with a fairly tight black hydro as if I hooked the resident chub I wanted to get it out. I plumbed up and had a decent depth of around 2-3ft over most the swim. 10:15 soon arrived and in his wisdom, Robin had decided we would fish six hours today!

I baited up with a single caster and after ten minutes of running the float through with no indication I knew I wasn't going to catch today. You usually get a mug chublet or dace or at the very least minnow bites but nothing!! Along with feeding above me I was also firing the odd morsal downstream to hopefully bring some fish up (ha, ha). I tried maggot and caster in all the likely looking spots but never had a touch after two hours so it was time for a walk.

I popped down to see Leighton who had caught a couple of minnows but also had a pike in his swim, next up was Tony on the much fancied peg 50, he'd caught 4 chublets early on but bites had dried up in the bright sunshine. I then walked down to Neil Dring on 52 and it was much the same story with him, he'd caught a few fish early before the bites tailed off and all he could now catch was minnows. I walked down the river a bit and never saw a single fish before heading back to my peg and I was thinking I'd give it an hour before packing up.

I tried 13 metres down the peg but nothing, by this time we were heading into the last couple of hours and I was bored stiff. Neil and Leighton turned up as they were in the same boat as me, after a bit Leighton wandered off and then I had an indication on half a lobbie and I was interested again. It didn't develop though and Neil soon got bored of watching me catch bugger all and went back to his peg. I tried caster and started getting bites but only from minnows, still I had avoided the blank.

Then Tony came up and said he'd just landed a decent trout (which count) and wanted to rest the swim after all the commotion (I think he just wanted to warm his feet up!). I was back on the lobbie and as I lifted the rig out a jack pike snaffled it and a short tussle ensued before it bit me off and that was the highlight of my day! I couldn't wait to pack up and thankfully the torturous six hours finally ended. Leighton had the scales and awarded both me and him the minimum weight of 1oz, before Tony had 2lb 13oz and Neil found a couple of late fish to weigh 3lb 9oz.

Back at the results and Martin Heard had got back to winning ways with 14lb 6oz of chub from peg 85, so I owe him another £1, Graham Bulgin had three chub for 7lb 9oz from peg 38 but lost three which would have pushed Martin's weight. Surprisingly Neil's weight was enough for third place and Tony won the section by default. Bob Hammond won the other section with 3lb 6oz from peg 27. The other fancied peg, 25, was an anti-climax and Graham Field only had 1lb 8oz from it. I scored 4 points so at this early stage I could already do with dropping a match!

1 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 14lb 6oz
2 - Graham Bulgin (Ilminster) - 7lb 9oz
3 - Neil Dring (Ilminster) - 3lb 9oz

Sections
A - Bob Hammond (Chard) - 3lb 6oz
B - Tony Newman (Ilminster) - 2lb 13oz

Next week is round two of the V.E.S. and I must be due a good peg soon!!!!!!!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

River Isle - V.E.S. Precision League - 17th October 2010

I was a little late getting to the draw and was amazed when there were only six other anglers there! Quite a few people were unable to make this match (probably a good choice, but read on dear blog fan). There was some money carried over from last years league in the golden peg fund and there were to be two golden pegs today, pegs 27 and 29. Both were potential winners and I really fancied peg 27 but of course pulled out 18! I wasn't too disappointed though as Fieldy did 5lb 10oz off it last week. Heardy paid me his £1 from last week and said he'd have it back today.

I got to the river and it was painfully low and clear and coupled with a frost last night and bright sunshine today, the signs weren't good. Graham had fished the peg high last week and I could see where he'd sat but I decided to sit lower so I could get to the tree in the water with my pole. I set up a 0.75 gram Drennan Carbo with size 18 B611. There were fish topping in peg 17 above me and I could have reached them if I'd sat where Graham had, was this going to be a costly mistake!

10:30 arrived and I baited up with single caster and started running the rig through in the flow, I started getting bites but only from minnows, after two or three I tried double caster but was still getting minnowed out. I then tried half a lobbie and was still getting loads of digs from pesky minnows. After two hours Robin walked up and he hadn't had bugger all from peg 22 (apart from minnows) and said Fieldy was the same on 24. He then went up to see Pete on 15 and Steve Parker on 14.

I then had my first proper fish, a 4oz chublet on half a lobbie, Moses turned up to see how it was fishing and I saw a fish flash in the flow, so went back out with a caster on and had a decent dace first chuck. A little while later I had a small one but was still going nowhere fast. Moses soon got bored watching me and then Robin turned up to say that Steve was catching consistently but Pete only had minnows. I stuck at it because there were only four of us in the section and if Steve framed I had a chance of the section.

I carried on getting very occasional dace and ended with 11 (plus minnows) for a 1lb or so - not a good day. Robin packed up early, so I just needed to beat Pete and hope Steve framed. Pete turned up with the scales and said he'd managed a small chublet, he weighed me in and I had a massive 1lb 9oz before I went down to weigh Graham in as Robin had gone on. He'd found a chub and weighed 2lb 6oz but luckily he was in the other section. When I got back to the car, Pete had just got back from weighing him and Steve in. Pete had 3oz and Steve had 4lb 8oz and I was hoping that would be enough to frame.

Back at the results and Neil Dring had won it with 5lb 12oz from 27 and also picked up the golden peg money - well done mate. But how had Heardy got on?, he actually weighed 1lb 10oz which meant I owed him a pound but also that I'd won my section and picked up a tenner, which was better than a kick up the ass! So despite two not very good days fishing, I've actually got off to a good start in both leagues with two points in each.

1 - Neil Dring (Ilminster) - 5lb 12oz
2 - Steve Parker (Ilton) - 4lb 8oz

Sections
A - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 1lb 9oz
B - Graham Field (Taunton) - 2lb 6oz

Round two of the Crown league is next week and some fish would be nice!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

River Isle - Crown Winter League - 10th October 2010

I was really looking forward to getting back on the river and the weather was bright and sunny which isn't ideal for fishing but the river looked in good nick. There was a decent turnout of 12 (including me), I just needed to draw peg 14 or 27 now! After a quick coffee it was time to draw and I managed to pull out peg 24, it used to be a proper flier but has dropped off the last couple of years.

I got to the river and surveyed my peg, there was loads of far bank cover and it looked really chubby, Heardy was above me on 23 and his peg looked nice too and he was soon asking if I wanted a £1 side bet! I accepted after checking I had enough change to pay him. I only set up 'old faithful' and set about plumbing the swim, there was a decent depth all along the middle and far bank. 10:30 arrived and we were off, I baited the size 18 hook with single caster and started inching it through just past the middle. while feeding casters, maggots and hemp.

I had my first bite holding back by an overhanging branch to my left and was soon swinging in a 3oz chublet, blank avoided. I then had two perch about 8oz apiece and another small chublet, all on single caster. Martin had a perch about 10oz and then I had another, this time about a pound and a quarter. With only an hour gone, I was pleased with my start and fancied a few more. I had another chublet about 4oz and then couldn't get a bite! Martin was getting minnowed out and all of a sudden it was looking bleak.

In fact apart from the odd dig from minnows I only had one more decent bite, on lobbie, which I bumped when the worm went over the point of the hook. Robin wandered down from peg 22 and said he'd lost two big chub and that Fieldy and Graham Bulgin were catching small fish on pegs 18 and 21. He'd also phoned Leighton on 85 and he'd had a decent chub and some smaller fish.

I went through the motions for the latter part of the match, hoping for a couple of fish in the 'golden' last hour but it didn't happen. Martin packed up with half an hour to go (so he is human!) and promised to pay me the pound next week. His travelling partner, Malcolm, had also packed up and chucked back a couple of pound of fish.

I packed up, a little disappointed after such a good start and walked up to see Robin, he'd lost four chub in the end which could prove costly. The scales reached Robin and he had 2oz, Justin had 10lb 12oz from 14, Steve Parker had 4lb 12oz from 15, Fieldy had 5lb 10oz from 18 and Graham Bulgin had 2lb 3oz from peg 22. I thought I had about 2lb or so but my section was in with the pegs below the bridge and at Ashford and apparently Bob Hammond had caught a few on peg 27. My fish actually went 2lb 15oz (yep, underestimated again!) so I would have to wait to see how the rest of my section had got on.

Back at the pub and Leighton was top at Ashford with 7lb 15oz, which meant he'd frame and then the next best was Tony Newman with 2lb 9oz and Bob with 2lb 4oz, which meant I'd won my section and picked up £15, so not too bad a day and a good start to the league with two points (and I've got a £1 off Martin to look forward to).

1 - Justin Charles (Ilminster) - 10lb 12oz
2 - Leighton Cox (Ilminster) - 7lb 15oz
3 - Graham Field (Taunton) - 5lb 10oz

Sections
A - Steve Parker (Ilton) - 4lb 12oz
B - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 2lb 15oz

Next week is the first match of the V.E.S. and it's a league I'd love to win (I know I say it every year!) and a good start is vital so wish me luck.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Goodiford Mill - 3rd October 2010

This will be a short one as I'm all blogged out, Martin and Malcolm have been asking us to go down to Goodiford for ages so with nothing else on we had a knock up. There were only six of us and we decided to pay the top two and do a blind drawn pairs after the match. The lake looked nice and I managed to draw out end peg 27, I set up a rig for fishing three metres and a shallow rig. This was to be a silvers only match and Martin said weights should be good.

I had a small roach first chuck so switched to caster and started getting some better roach, I also had three nice tench and felt I was doing ok after the first hour. I was just ahead of Steve Parker on my right but was sure Martin would be catching on the next peg to Steve as he knows the venue well. I started to get the odd clonking big roach to 12oz but was bumping off loads of fish, I also lost a carp.

After a couple of hours Martin wandered down so maybe he wasn't doing so well after all! Apparently Malcolm was catching well on the other end peg. I tried my shallow rig but it didn't improve my catch rate so went back to the deep rig and catching the odd fish on the drop. Martin was getting the odd crucian on soft pellet so I kept trying it but could only catch roach. I finally caught a couple of crucians on double caster but no more tench. I gradually pulled away from Steve but thought I was behind Martin and Malcolm.

I ended with 144 fish but had no clue what weight I had because although I had some decent fish, I had a lot of smaller ones too. The weigh in started at Malcolm who fished peg 20 instead of 24 with the agreement of Rob and had 30lb 15oz and I was pretty sure I didn't have that, Rob had 8lb 6oz, Graham Bulgin weighed 21lb 10oz and then Martin plonked 37lb 11oz on the scales and I knew I wouldn't be framing today. Steve had 11lb 7oz and I weighed 23lb 14oz and was praying I'd draw Martin or Malcolm in the blind pairs.

The first two names out the hat were Rob and Malcolm to give them a combined total of 39lb 5oz, then Graham got called out with Steve (33lb 1oz) so me and Martin won the pairs with 61lb 9oz and picked up £15 each. The day got better still when Chelsea beat Arsenal 2-0 to stay top of the league.

1 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 37lb 11oz
2 - Malcolm Levy (Tiverton) - 30lb 15oz

Drawn pairs

1 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) and Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 61lb 9oz

Next week is the first match of the Crown league on the Isle and peg 27 would be nice!

Gillhams Resort, Thailand - 22nd September to 30th September 2010

Scotty, Ashley and me headed off to Gillhams Resort in Krabi, Thailand for a nine day fishing holiday and it was brilliant. The fishing was excellent, food was top notch and we met some brilliant people. Stuart and Sean Gillham were the best hosts and nothing was too much trouble. Stuarts wife, Benz, was lovely as was my guide, Golock, the other guide Joe (Fishcake), Matt the head gardener, Stuarts daughter Becks and his son Jack was very sweet.

We caught loads of fish, topped off by a stunning arapaima of 330lb, caught by Ash. We also caught Amazon redtail catfish to 66lb, siamese carp to 55lb, Asian redtail catfish, silverbarbs, alligator gar, Mekong catfish to 110lb, sorubim catfish and spotted featherbacks and arrawana.




Ash with his 330lb arapaima












Scotty with his 110lb Mekong catfish














Me with 100lb arapaima













Stuart and Benz
















Alligator gar















Ash with Amazon redtail catfish













Scott with siamese carp















Me with spotted featherback

















It wasn't all fishing though and we went elephant trekking which was excellent









































and we had a night out in Ao Nang!






Joe (Fishcake)



















Fishcake and Amy


















It was a top night!
















The resort was lovely and the scenary fantastic

















Well, we're back now and down to earth with a bump and I'm fishing a knock up at Goodiford Mill in Devon on Sunday so I'll let you know how I get on.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Dillington Pond - Summer League - 19th September 2010

The last summer league match arrived and after missing two matches I wasn't in contention of a league placing so just had to try and frame today. There were only eight of us fishing and I pulled out peg 14 but would rather have had 16 or 18. Heardy drew 18 and Steve Parker drew 16, Moses was on 21 again and had loads of room. I made myself comfortable and as always, mixed my groundbait up first, this week I had some Dynamite Baits Lake and Canal.

I set up the usual 4 metre whip rig and a Drennan Roach for a chopped worm line. I just finished setting up when Rob blew for the all in, I cupped in some chopped worm and caster at 11.5 metres towards peg 16 and chucked a little nugget of groundbait on the whip line. I started with red maggot on the hook and had to wait ages for my first bite. I started getting odd roach and perch but it wasn't happening, Richy White was already ahead as was Alvin on peg 12 and I could see Martin swinging small fish in regularly. After an hour I only had 10 fish and was already thinking about trying the chopped worm line.

I struggled on for a bit and added a couple more fish including a 4oz perch and decided, as I was going nowhere, to try the choppie line. I started getting bites and had a couple of dumpy roach and some small perch but I wasn't setting the world alight off this line either. Steve on 16 lost a good fish that took him in the reeds and he was having a real problem getting his rig back! All of a sudden I had a couple of better 8oz perch and things were looking up. At this early stage my money was on Martin and Moses who had landed some nice perch as well.

I was loose feeding casters over my chopped worm line and getting bites quite regularly and doing as well as those around me. Robin across the pond on peg 4, lost two big bream in short succession and wasn't a happy bunny. I was getting odd fish but it was slowing so I put some more choppie in and went back on the whip line but it was barren and I never had a bite there again. I did lose a perch at the net and bumped one next put in, which didn't help. With the top two places already filled (Martin and Moses) I thought I had a chance of third place if I could beat Alvin who seemed to be the only other person catching consistently.

With an hour to go, my bites just stopped and I only added one more small perch and I was sure Alvin had done enough for third. I had 29 fish and thought I had between 3 and 4lb. Before the scales reached me, I watched the last couple pegs in the other section weigh in. Robin had 2lb 15oz and could have won easily if he hadn't lost three big fish, Fred had 4lb 5oz and I wasn't sure I had that, Richy had 3lb 15oz and Alvin had 5lb 8oz and I knew I didn't have enough. The scales reached me and my weight was called out at 4lb 11oz, close but no cigar! Steve had 2lb 8oz and then as I predicted Martin won with 8lb 10oz although Moses was close behind with 8lb 8oz.

As Rob was only paying three today due to the depleted turnout, I didn't even pick up my usual default section win - bad times. With his second win on the bounce, Martin secured the league title with Alvin second and Moses third. I finished up a disappointing fifth but did miss two matches.

1 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 8lb 10oz
2 - Moses Holbrook (Ilminster) - 8lb 8oz
3 - Alvin Jones (Enterprise Angling) - 5lb 8oz





Summer League winner - Martin Heard









Final league standings

1 - Martin Heard - 14 pts
2 - Alvin Jones - 16 pts
3 - Moses Holbrook - 26 pts

Well that's that for another year and I can't say I'll miss it!, maybe the club will put some decent fish in before next year (I won't hold my breath!).

No report next week as I'll be in Thailand but on my return, hopefully I'll be able to post some exotic fish snaps!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Summerhayes - Open - 12th September 2010

Scotty text me on Saturday to say the match was on Sellicks and not on Longs so I wouldn't be breaking my duck this weekend, still I quite enjoy Sellicks and have been doing ok of late. There were twelve of us fishing including Scott and Roger Russell, after a coffee and bacon sarnie it was time to draw. The golden ball was peg 6 and I only went and drew it! The pressure was on as it's a decent peg, the level of the pond was still down and with there being a gusty wind and worse forecast, I was determined to stick to my plan of fishing down the track as it's served me well in the last few matches I've fished.

I set up two rigs, a Carpa 2 with 0.12mm bottom and size 16 808 hook and a similar rig as a duplicate in case I trashed one. For bait I just had some wetted micros and 4 and 6mm expanders - simples! Rob Birch was on peg 4 and Adrian Bishop was on peg 2, I couldn't see Scotty who was on the other side of the pond. Pete blew for the all in and I put in half a cup of micros at 10 metres and the same by the lilies to my right. I started out with a 4mm expander on the hook and missed my first bite before catching a couple of skimmers. The angler on my left had a carp early on but apart from that there wasn't much happening so I wasn't too concerned at this early stage.

I had my first carp (hooked just outside the mouth) just at the end of the first hour and I was doing as well as anybody on our side of the pond. I was putting in micros through a toss pot every put in and I tried by the lilies for the first time to keep the bait trickling in there. No bites saw me back out and another couple of skimmers graced the net. It was still really slow and Rob had only had one small fish so I was happy to keep putting the odd fish in the net (and there was the silver fish pool to go for).

I kept trying by the lilies and I had my first bite and soon as I struck I knew the fish was foulhooked, after a lengthy battle I was getting the upper hand and had unshipped to the top three when the poxy hook pulled out and all my shot pinged off the rig! I then lost one which did me in the lilies and things were definitely not going to plan. By now we were two hours in and I kept plugging away, putting the odd skimmer in the net (and I bumped two). I then foulhooked a decent fish on the longer line but managed to get that one in the net to put the score at 2-2 on the carp front.

The wind was being a real pain, Rob was now fishing the paste on his side of the lilies and getting the odd fish but I was still just ahead. I had a couple more foulhooked carp from the long line (much to Adrian's amusement - not!) and another skimmer. I now had around ten skimmers for 4lb or so which were worth a carp in weight. I was starting to worry about Rob who seemed to be getting bites more regularly than me, I was on four carp and I think he had the same number.

I kept trying by the lilies but couldn't get a bite there now, back long saw me add a couple of carp (properly hooked this time) and two more skimmers. Adrian and the chap on my left were getting odd carp now and everybody seemed to be catching me up. With an hour to go I think Rob was on seven carp, then I had my seventh, although it was a smaller fish of a pound or so but I did have those skimmers so I thought I might be just ahead. Rob had number eight and I was praying for one more and with five minutes to go I hooked it! I played it with kid gloves and I don't think it was particularly big, I unshipped to the top three and the hook pinged out - bugger, bugger! and I think it was properly hooked too.

I had time to go out again but as soon as the rig had settled, Pete blew for the all out. I thought I had around 20lb and when Adrian said he had eight or nine I thought I'd be right out of it as I was sure Rob had beaten me as well. Pete came round with the scales and said he thought he was in with a chance of the silvers as he'd fished for bits all day. Adrian was first to weigh and had 22lb odd and I was sure I didn't have that. Rob had 22lb 1oz and bet me a pint I'd beaten him!, I wasn't so sure. My carp went 17lb 13oz and my silvers went 6lb 6oz to give me a 24lb 3oz total. The guy on my left had 17lb odd and then Roger had 22lb 2oz and I was still ahead. At this stage I was winning the match, the golden ball and the silvers pool.

Then the next peg along had just over 25lb (oh no, was that last fish going to cost me?) and then the next peg had 28lb something, which I was a little relieved about as I knew I wouldn't have had that but by the same token I was now down in third place with several anglers to weigh. Also Pete was last to weigh and might top my silvers. I was still lying in third after the next three pegs and when Pete pulled out his net, Rob said I was safe but I wasn't sure. The needle was hovering around 6lb and Roger called out 6lb 2oz - phew!

Back at the results and Pete said he was paying two in the silvers today! Luckily he was joking and I picked up £20 for third and £24 for the silvers pool. I've now topped the grand this year with the best part of four months to go! It would have been lovely to have won the golden peg and the £150 that goes with it but still a pretty good day.

I'll have to apologise because I didn't get the names of the anglers who came first and second as I rushed off after the results.

1 - 28lb+
2 - 25lb+
3 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 24lb 3oz

Silvers - Jamie Rich - 6lb 6oz

I must also congratulate Steve Chant who won out Perry St today with over 79lb - well done mate.

Next week is the last Summer League match at Dillington and then I'm off to Thailand for two weeks - whoop, whoop.

Monday, September 06, 2010

Dillington Pond - Summer League - 5th September 2010

The penultimate round arrived and there were 11 of us fishing today, I pulled out peg 10, which has been a pretty consistent peg. Heardy was the next peg to my left and Richy was the next angler along on my right. Moses had a side bet with me and he'd drawn well, peg 21, on the far side. After getting my box level, my first job as always was to mix my groundbait. I had half a bag of Dynamite Baits Roach and added a bag of GOT Baits red Atomic Cloud to hopefully create a nice cloud for the fish to feed in. Would it work?, only time would tell.

I set up the usual 4 metre whip and a 0.5 gram Drennan Roach for the chopped worm line at 10 metres to my left. With Robin in Turkey, it was left to Alvin to blow for the all in. I cupped in some choppie and casters before starting on the whip. I missed the first two bites before catching a tiny perch. I switched to caster and started getting some better sized roach, it was fairly slow though and after the first hour I'd only had 20 fish. At this early stage I was neck and neck with Richy although Martin was slightly ahead. Graham Field next to Martin was catching well though they were very small fish.

We were getting problems with lots of floating debris and it was making fishing the whip a nightmare, the wind would blow for a bit, clearing our swims before it calmed down and it would all come drifting back! The second hour was similar for me and I was on around 45 fish when I heard Martin ask Graham how many he had and he replied 82! Martin was on 65 and I was already well behind. I fed the choppie line again with it in mind to try it shortly as my whip line was fading. The trouble was everytime I thought about making the switch I would get a couple of fish on the whip to keep me interested.

I was still quite a way behind Heardy and Fieldy but was ahead of Richy and from what I could see, most people seemed to be struggling (mind you, I've said that before!). It was also raining quite hard (which was nice!) and for the first time in ages I'd left my car in the field behind me and of course sod's law dictated that the cows would pay me a visit. I had to stop fishing to move my car to a safer location, as did Martin. On my way back to my peg I passed Roger and Leighton and neither seemed to setting the world alight, so I carried on with the whip.

I found by flicking the rig to the right of my feed area I would get a couple of fish quite quickly and in hindsight I think the fish kept backing off the feed and a light rig for fishing past the whip line might have seen me catch more. I never did try the chopped worm line and I finished up with 93 fish for 5lb or so, I felt Martin and Graham would fill the top two places and the best I could hope for was a section win. I packed up and caught up with the scales just as Leighton was about to be weighed in, Steve Parker had already weighed 5lb 7oz and Roger had 7lb 11oz (and I thought he was struggling!), I knew I hadn't beaten Rog and it would be close between me and Steve. Leighton weighed 3lb 14oz and then Richy weighed 4lb 6oz, my fish went 6lb 2oz and Martin had 10lb 7oz and I was hoping Roger would frame so I could sneak the section.

That was how it turned out although it wasn't Graham who claimed the runner's up spot as I'd thought but Alvin in the other section with 9lb 14oz from peg 16 (another angler I didn't see catch bugger all!). In fact the other section was a pretty close affair, incredibly Moses had the same weight as me so no pounds were exchanged, Neil had 6lb 4oz, Graham Bulgin 5lb 2oz and Fieldy had 6lb 5oz (which really surprised me as he had loads of fish but they were tiny). I picked up £15 for the section win but my three points meant any slim chance I had of sneaking into third in the league had gone. Martin still leads with 13 followed by Alvin on 15 and Roger on 22.




Yes, it's that photo again!










1 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 10lb 7oz
2 - Alvin Jones (Enterprise Angling) - 9lb 14oz
3 - Roger Russell (Ilminster) - 7lb 11oz

Sections
A - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 6lb 2oz
B - Graham Field (Taunton) - 6lb 5oz

The last match is in two weeks time and to be honest I shall be glad to see the back of the pond for a while as I'm fed up with catching bits, several others said the same. I just wish the club would put some skimmers in, they say they are worried about cormorant predation but lack of fish isn't the problem it's just the size. All these tiny roach would be ideal for the river (with the correct paperwork of course), meaning the fish in the pond could grow on.

Anyway, rant over, with no Ilminster or Chard matches next week, I'm off to Summerhayes again, maybe this week I can break my duck on Long's pond? I doubt it.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Two Day Charity Match on Chard Reservoir

Chard held the two day match on the resi on Sunday and Monday and this year over £200 was raised for cancer charity which is fantastic. Also fantastic was the fishing and on the Sunday Paul Blake demolished the match record with over 230lb of bream, an amazing weight. Paul had nearly 50lb on the second day to finish second over the two days. Ian Parsons scored a perfect two pointer to win over the two days. Full results below (click on picture to view it better).






Some fantastic weights











I'm at Dillington on Sunday and itching to get back on the bank (it'll probably be pants now!)

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Evesham 28th and 29th August 2010

Just got back from my annual pilgrimage to Evesham festival with Andy, there were lots of small fish being caught thanks to bloodworm and joker being allowed over the three days. The first day was won with over 22lb of bream and the top five all had double figures.





Simon Willsmore 'balling it in'












Milo Columbo













Sam Wildsmith landing a roach















Andy














The tented village

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Summerhayes - Evening Match - 26th August 2010

With the nights drawing in, this was to be the last evening fixture on Sellicks of the year and although the weather wasn't great it was better than yesterday. There was a rather depleted turnout due to several anglers getting a soaking at Durleigh yesterday, the stay aways included Alvin, Scotty and Bruce Hunt. I drew peg 9 and Roger was on peg 6 where I did well a couple of weeks ago.

I was determined to just fish down the track all night again and only set up a single rig, a Carpa 2 with 0.12mm bottom and size 16 808 with a toss pot fitted to my top three. The whistle went and I cupped in half a pot of micros plus a few expanders at about 9 metres straight out in front and also towards 10 'o' clock to my left, to give me another swim. I slipped a 4mm Bait-Tech expander on the hook and started out in front, after 10 minutes I had my first bite and netted a 2lb carp - good start.

That early fish proved to be a false dawn and apart from a couple of missed bites there was no more action for ages, the chap on my left had three fish quite quickly and I thought he might do well as the wind was blowing into his corner. I had a second carp just before the end of the first hour and I hoped things would improve in the remaining two hours. I then had two carp in two put ins to edge ahead of the guy on my left, Roger had two carp so it was looking good at this early stage.

There wasn't much fizzing going on over the micros and I reckoned 9 or 10 carp would be enough tonight. I had a small skimmer but the next half an hour didn't see me add anything else to my weight. I then had carp number five and skimmer number two just before the penultimate hour began. Normally the last hour is pretty productive but the air temp was quite cold and the persistent misty rain wasn't helping either. Roger asked what I had and said he'd had two carp, the chap on my left hadn't added to his early fish and was stuck on three so a good last hour could see me do well.

Bites were now few and far between, I had a sixth carp with fifty minutes to go and was still ahead of the anglers on either side. My lightly fed line to the left didn't produce a single bite despite trying it several times. Scotty turned up (and was dried out after yesterdays soaking!) and while he was stood behind Roger he had a really good spell and landed three carp in the last half an hour to put him on six carp. I felt I needed another fish but didn't get one and missed three tentative bites in that last period.

Scott came up for a natter and said two anglers on the other side of the pond had packed up!, it had been that hard. The scales didn't take long to reach us and the chap on my left weighed 9lb odd to put him in the lead! I knew I had more than that but wasn't sure I'd beaten Roger. My two skimmers weighed 9oz and my carp went 13lb 12oz to give me a 14lb 5oz total, would it be enough for a first Summerhayes victory?
No was the answer as Roger's carp went 15lb 4oz but it was enough for second as the bloke next to Rog weighed 11lb for third. Adrian Bishop won the silvers with 1lb 8oz.




Roger won with 15lb 4oz











Still I picked up £25 and fished a tidy match, only missing a few bites and landing everything I'd hooked, so I couldn't say 'If only?'.

1 - Roger Russell (Ilminster) - 15lb 4oz
2 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 14lb 5oz
3 - Jim Jenner (Summerhayes) - 11lb

Silvers - Adrian Bishop (Summerhayes) - 1lb 8oz

No match this weekend as me and Andy are off on our annual pilgrimage to Evesham, I'll stick some photos on if we don't get too drunk!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Dillington Pond - Summer League - 22nd August 2010

There was a good turnout of 13 for this one and I pulled out peg 17 and was well happy with that as it's a decent peg. When we got out the pond we had the added bonus! of the Festival of Yesterdays Farming taking place on the estate all around us, so much for a quiet days fishing! At least on the side I was on, we didn't have it all going on directly behind us. Roger Russell was on peg 16 and with the level back up, it looked nice, Steve Parker was on my left hand side.

There were loads of fish topping and it looked like being a good match, I mixed up some Dynamite Baits Roach groundbait before setting my rigs up. I set up the usual Drake waggler 4 metre whip rig plus a Drennan Roach for the chopped worm at 10 metres. I was going to set up a little Drennan Squatt rig for fishing past the whip line but I ran out of time. On the whistle I cupped in some chopped worm and casters at 10 metres before starting on the whip. Bites came straight away but a tiny roach followed by an even smaller perch wasn't what I had in mind. I switched to caster and started catching some quality rudd and roach. I was feeding hemp and caster with the odd little nugget of groundbait.

After an hour I had 28 fish for about 3lb or so and from what I could see most people were catching and at this early stage felt a good weight would be needed to do well. I was catching on the caster in spells and a switch to maggot saw my catch rate improve slightly but the average size of fish decrease but I was still getting the odd better fish. By the end of the second hour I had around 55 fish but the whip line was slowing. I cupped in some more choppie to keep the eels happy and would be trying it shortly. I struggled on for a bit but bites were now very few and far between.

The festival was in full swing and the chap on the microphone was giving out lots of interesting facts about vintage tractors and fire engines. The comments around the pond suggested that bites had dried up for most people so it was time for my eel line. I nipped a worm in half and shipped out, loosefeeding casters over the top and not neglecting my whip line. I waited ages for a bite and when the float slid away I was fully expecting lots of elastic to come out but was disappointed when a small roach was the result. No more bites left me scratching my head, there were still loads of fish topping so I went to holdall and set up a little shallow rig. This didn't work either and I only had one small roach.

By now several people were walking and it looked like bites had dried up for everyone, back over the choppie and a tiny perch was added to my net and time was running out. I tried the whip line again and had a run of five or six roach before that died. I stuck with it until the end and added one decent roach before the end to finish with 75 fish. I really wasn't sure what weight I had (for a change!) and was guessing at around 4lb, if the fish had all been the same size as the fish I was catching in the first hour I would have said I had nearer to 8lb.

As I was packing up I asked Roger what he had and he reckoned on about 3lb, Leighton wandered down and said that Malcolm Levy had won it off peg 1 as he'd caught four chub late on and also that Martin Heard had done ok on the small fish. Roger had the scales and started at Moses on peg 11, he weighed 3lb 10oz and I thought he'd done better than that, Robin had 2lb 2oz before Graham Bulgin had 5lb 7oz and I thought he'd struggled! Roger had 4lb 3oz and then it was my turn, it was close but Roger called my weight out at 5lb 9oz and I was leading the section with two to weigh. Steve Parker had 4lb 2oz and Leighton had 2lb 3oz, so I'd won the section!

As expected Malcolm won with 10lb 10oz from the other section but Martin ran him close with 9lb 11oz. Alvin was the next best weight in that section with 5lb 8oz so I'd actually sneaked into third place (and learnt loads about tractors in the process!). Also it was nice to ounce Alvin out of it for a change! although I wish I'd had a £1 bet with him now! Still he had the consolation of winning his section and Graham won ours. I picked up £25 to take my winnings for this year to over £900, although it will probably all go pearshaped now.




The 'Old Fossil' thought he was on the Trent catching chub!












Although the leading weights were decent it's still not great for six hours fishing and I still feel it could do with an injection of skimmers (and some more tench would be nice!).

1 - Malcolm Levy (Tiverton) - 10lb 10oz
2 - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 9lb 11oz
3 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 5lb 9oz

Sections
A - Alvin Jones (Enterprise Angling) - 5lb 8oz
B - Graham Bulgin (Ilminster) - 5lb 7oz

Hopefully I'll get to fish the last evening match at Summerhayes on Thursday as I couldn't make last weeks.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Summerhayes - Open - 15th August 2010

With nothing else on, I booked into the open at Summerhayes, I had to pick Scotty up in the morning as he had a heavy night! The match today was on Longs pond and there are more silvers than Sellicks so I was looking forward to a good day. There were around 20 anglers booked in and I managed to pull out peg 39!, the same peg I had the only other time I've fished Longs. I had around 26lb then and was hoping to do better today, the trouble is, it either does very well or crap.

I had quite a bit of room with nobody on my right and the peg is in a bit of a corner with a walkway/bridge to the left. The level was down quite a bit and I was hoping this would help my plan to fish down the track. I set up a Carpa 2 for fishing down the track at 10 metres, a Drennan Carp for fishing towards the walkway and a Trabucco dibber for fishing towards the island (although I was hoping I wouldn't need this rig!). For bait I just had a few pints of soaked micros, corn and 4 and 6mm Bait Tech expanders.

The whistle went and I cupped in half a pot plus some corn on all three lines before starting down the track with a 4mm expander on the hook. I didn't have to wait long for a bite and my first fish was a lovely little crucian. I then started catching decent skimmers, small carp, a nice tench plus a couple of rudd and roach. In the first hour I had 16 fish for the best part of 10lb and it was all going to plan, I'd only lost one skimmer and missed a couple of bites. I was ahead of the anglers around me, including Alvin who was two pegs along on my left (and had placed the usual £1 side bet).

The start of hour two was ok, with a couple more skimmers and a small carp but the swim was slowing. I cupped in some more feed by the walkway in readiness for trying it shortly. By the end of the second hour I'd only added seven more fish and some of them had been small roach, it was now really hot and the anglers around me were struggling like I was, it was time to try swim number two (by the walkway). I fully expected to catch straight away but couldn't buy a bite here either! I briefly tried by the island but this was a waste of time too.

For the next three hours all I could get was the odd small roach, Alvin was getting some carp and I was sure he'd overtaken me (bye bye £1). Then out the blue I had a small carp from by the walkway, had they arrived? - nope! Back out at 10 metres I had another small carp and a small skimmer but it was hard going. I did manage two more carp (one foulhooked) from by the walkway to end with 32 fish. I knew it wouldn't be anywhere near enough today, I wasn't even sure I had 10lb!. Pete walked by with the scales and said they'd been bagging down the other end - great!.

I was last to weigh so started loading my gear in my car, quite a few people up our end didn't bother weighing. Alvin had 19lb+ and I knew he'd won a £1 back with that. I caught up with the scales with five or six people left to weigh, 44lb was top and there was a 31lb and a couple of high 20's. The only reason I was going to weigh was that Pete was paying two in the silvers pool today. There was a 10lb silvers weight and then Scotty had 15lb+ and I knew that was that. My silvers went a level 8lb and my carp weighed 6lb 1oz to give me a total of 14lb 1oz and I was well down with that.

Quite a disappointing day, the only good point was Scotty won the silvers yet again. Hopefully I'll be able to fish the Thursday evening match so lets see if my luck changes then.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Summerhayes - Evening Match - 12th August 2010

I was looking forward to another evening 'sprint' at Summerhayes and was determined to just fish down the track tonight as I was sure 30lb or so could be achieved and this is normally enough to get in the frame. Also you tend to catch more silvers down the track and normally between 5-8lb is enough to win the silvers pool. There were 13 fishing tonight, was it going to be an unlucky number for me?

We were going to start quarter of an hour early tonight as the evenings have really started to draw in. I was first to draw and pulled out peg 6, a decent peg and Martin was third off it last week with 30lb. I spoke to him about my plans to fish down the track all night and he said he did that last week but didn't have his first fish until after an hour! This deflated me a bit but the peg also has a big bed of lilies on the inside to the right so I would feed this as well and swap between the two lines.

Scotty had drawn peg 11 (a decent peg) and Alvin had 15 (a swim he's won off several times) and was keen to have a £1 sidebet. I agreed but wasn't confident as he's been on fire on Sellicks on Thursday nights. I was determined to avoid the far bank and when I started setting up and shipped the pole out to find the far bank was over 14.5 metres across, my mind was made up. It was pretty windy and it made holding the pole at even 10 metres fairly difficult so I wasn't going to struggle to hold 16 metres.

There were plenty of fish moving all over and it looked like being a good match. I just set up one rig, a Carpa 2 with 0.12mm bottom and size 16 Tubertini 808. There were only a couple of inches difference in the depth between the lilies and down the track so it would suffice for both lines, I just had to make sure I didn't trash it as I didn't have a duplicate (piss poor preparation again). Pete blew for the start and I cupped in half a pot of micros plus a few grains of corn on both lines before starting out with a 4mm expander on the hook (cheers again Scotty).

I had to wait 20 mins for my first bite but was soon netting a small carp and after an hour I had 3 carp and a decent roach plus a small rudd from by the lilies. I was a little shy of my five carp an hour target but this was better than the two carp I had across last week in the first hour. I had another go by the lilies and the float had barely settled before I was netting a decent carp. The anglers either side and the young lad on peg 2 were getting odd fish as well and nobody seemed to be running away with it.

I was swapping between the two lines and catching pretty well, I had four skimmers (including a flier!) and another decent roach plus several more carp. I had one decent mirror that was foulhooked and just as I was about to net it, the hook pulled out! I scooped for it and as I lifted the net it was in there! (was luck on my side tonight?). After two hours I had nine carp, four skimmers, two roach and a rudd and there was still the best hour to go and I'd only lost one foulhooked fish. The guys on either side were still getting fish but I felt I was just ahead of them, I could see Bruce and Scotty's elastic coming out at regular intervals too.

Then in hour three it all went horribly wrong, I lost a foulhooked fish at 10 metres down the track so switched to the lilies and then lost one in the lilies (the only fish to reach them all night!) before losing yet another foulhooker at 10 metres! I then had my tenth carp with over half an hour still to go. During this awful spell I was sure the angler on my left had caught me up and then I hooked a big fish which I played for ages and just as I thought I was winning the battle, the hook pulled out - bugger! It looked like all my luck had deserted me.

With the light starting to fade I missed three good bites in as many put ins and then with seconds remaining I've hooked another by the lilies, got it into open water and the bloody hook pulled out!!!!! That was the last of the action and Pete blew his whistle just as I was baiting up again. I really thought that last hour had cost me until I heard some of the comments from across the pond, people were saying they'd had three or four carp and one or two skimmers. Then Scotty walked past and he'd had ten carp but was claiming they were small and I said mine weren't huge either.

As I was packing my kit in the car, Alvin arrived and said he'd only had 5 carp so maybe it hadn't fished as well as I thought. The scales started with young Matt Sayer on peg 2 and although he didn't have loads of fish the 8 or 9 he had were good ones and he weighed 38lb 2oz and I knew I had nowhere near that. The next peg only had 5lb 8oz and then it was my turn. My silvers went a level 3lb and my carp weighed 21lb 4oz to give me a 24lb 4oz total but I wasn't sure it would be enough to frame. The guy on my left had 16lb odd and I thought he'd had more than that, Bruce only had a few carp but I was more worried about his silvers net, they went 2lb 8oz and I was still in with a chance of that pool.

When Scotty pulled out his net I thought he'd done me, his ten 'small' carp went 22lb 13oz but he only had two silvers to give him a 23lb total. Alvin had struggled and handed over a £1 and Martin Heard didn't weigh. Adrian Bishop had 4lb 9oz of silvers to spoil things but then Scotty said they were paying two in the silvers tonight! Roger was last to weigh and I thought he'd come close with silvers but he had 2lb 4oz and 15lb of carp for a 17lb 8oz total. So I came second overall and second in the silvers pool to pick up £48 (plus Alvin's £1) - nice, but I reckon this little run will have to end soon. I'd fished a pretty good match apart from the last hour when it all went pear shaped but luckily those lost fish hadn't cost me too much.




Scotty was third with 23lb












1 - Matt Sayer (Summerhayes) - 38lb 2oz
2 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 24lb 4oz
3 - Scott Russell (Yeovil and District Angling Centre) - 23lb
4 - Roger Russell (Ilminster) - 17lb 8oz

Silvers
1 - Adrian Bishop (Summerhayes) - 4lb 9oz
2 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 3lb

With nothing else on Sunday I'm back here but on Longs pond where there are more silvers than Sellicks so hopefully it should be a nice day.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Dillington Pond - Summer League - 8th August 2010

I was at a bit of a loss how to approach this match as I can't seem to compete on the whip and targeting big fish is too much of a gamble. The trouble with the whip is that during the daytime matches the whip line fades as the match goes on, some people have been fishing the pole slightly further out to carry on catching but this hasn't really worked for me. As I had quite a bit of worm left from Hainsey's last weekend I decided to use this up, although chopped worm has been a bit of a non starter lately!

There were ten of us fishing and I pulled out peg 3, the level was lower than last match and as I was taking my kit to my peg, I noticed an open wasps nest behind my peg - great!, I hate wasps with a passion. I had plenty of room and the next angler along was Alvin on peg 5, I've had a real problem beating him lately and he was keen to place a £1 side bet, which I accepted as I had some loose change in my pocket. I mixed up some groundbait and set up two rigs, the usual 4 metre whip rig and a 0.5gram Drennan Roach for fishing the choppie at 10 metres.

With Robin not fishing today, it was down to me to yell the all in, which I did at 10:00. I cupped in a generous helping of chopped worm and caster on my long line before starting on the whip. I started catching roach and perch quite well without really bagging but was missing/bumping far too many. Everybody seemed to be catching well although at this early stage I think Alvin was a little ahead of me. At the end of the first hour I had 31 fish including a couple of better fish that I netted to be on the safe side. I kept trying caster and had a few fish but was missing some cracking bites. I also potted out some more choppie after an hour and a half.

I tried hooking the caster like a maggot and this helped to a degree, then out of the blue I hooked a lump which tore off and snapped 0.12mm like cotton! I guess it was either a chub or big perch. A few more roach and some nice rudd followed before I hooked another big fish, this time I stopped the initial run but then it went again and snapped me. Big fish 2 - Jamie 0. I ended the second hour with just under 60 fish, including two eels and I was still getting plenty of bites.

Leighton across on peg 21 shouted across to see how I was getting on, I told him and he said he'd had a perch of a pound and a half, so I reckoned he was up with the leaders. I tried hemp on the hook and had a couple of roach but they were no bigger than the caster or maggot fish. During hour three the whip line definitely started to slow down and from comments around the pond, it seemed to be the same for everyone. Alvin still seemed to be catching ok though and from what I could see Heardy was still swinging in fish regularly.

I struggled on, catching fish (and swiping at wasps!) in bursts but with two hours to go it almost completely died and I decided to try my worm line. I put on a worm head and shipped out, feeding casters over the top, I also kept feeding my whip line with the odd nugget of groundbait. I didn't have to wait long for my first bite, which turned out to be a tiny perch!, not the result I'd hoped for. I tried again and the next bite saw some elastic come out and I was soon netting a 6oz eel. Moses on the bottom bank had also landed a couple of eels and with Graham Bulgin catching fish quite well, it was still too close to even hazard a guess as to who might be winning.

I had two more eels of a similar size and another small perch but was having to wait longer and longer for indications. I had eel number six (including the two from the whip line) and it was stuffed full of worm, so I decided to put some more in and go back on the whip for half an hour to let it settle. I'd been feeding the whip line religiously but I only had one more roach off it so I was back out at 10 metres with forty minutes to go. I felt if I could get a couple more eels I might be there or thereabouts. Alvin seemed to be getting odd fish and I was sure he'd beaten me. I did manage one more eel and missed a couple more bites to end with 93 fish.

I really hadn't got a clue who'd done what, I thought I had 6-7lb but felt both Alvin and Martin had more, also Malcolm and Roger had been catching well apparently and then Moses had several eels as well. I was first to weigh and my fish went 8lb 10oz, then Graham weighed Alvin in and shouted over that there was two ounces in it! Thankfully his weight was called out at 8lb 8oz - phew! The other section was being weighed and Martin asked what I'd had, I told him and he said I'd win with that but I wasn't so sure. Graham Bulgin had 5lb 14oz in my section and I shouted across to ask Martin's weight and he said 8lb 2oz - so far, so good. Leighton had 7lb 12oz from peg 21 in the other section and all the weights were incredibly close and I was sure someone would pip me.

Malcolm then had 8lb 1oz and Roger 8lb 4oz so I'd topped the section and taken a £1 off Alvin (at last!). With Steve Parker only weighing 1lb 13oz in the other section, that just left Richard and Moses who weighed 6lb 6oz and 7lb 12oz respectively and I'd won! It had been incredibly tight with 1lb 10oz separating the top seven weights and a decent fish would have swung it for several anglers. Still I fished a tidy match and was glad those two lost lumps hadn't cost me, Leighton said he'd been done by three as well. I picked up £50 for winning my third match of the year (my second at Dillington) and the only downside of today was Man U beating Chelsea 3-1 in the community shield.

1 - Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) - 8lb 10oz
2 - Alvin Jones (Enterprise Angling) - 8lb 8oz
3 - Roger Russell (Ilminster) - 8lb 4oz

Sections
A - Malcolm Levy (Tiverton) - 8lb 1oz
B - Martin Heard (Tiverton) - 8lb 2oz

After seven matches and dropping the worst result, Martin Heard leads with 10 points followed by Alvin Jones on 11 and Moses Holbrook on 15 (I'm way down on 22 after missing two matches).

Hopefully I'll be able to fish at Summerhayes on Thursday night, I bet Alvin gets his pound back then!