With a club match on the 20th April I decided to go with a couple of the guys for a practice seeing as I’ve never even seen the place let alone fished it! I got there at about half eight to find that pegs 1-25 were booked for a match and a lot of the other pegs had been taken. I'd been informed that last weeks open match was won from peg 34 with 50lb and that the majority of the weights had come 34 upwards so all was not lost.
After much deliberation I plumped for fishing on peg 29 with John on 31 and Paul on peg 27. Peg 27 and 29 are both in the corner and fishing to the corner of the island, I can’t begin to imagine how tight it would become if someone was on 28 too! I'd put a few feelers out on the Oaks Banter site and Maggotdrowning and found that it was about 4.5ft down the track and 1-2ft across on the island. With this in mind I’d set up a few rigs at home. I’d made a couple of different rigs up for down the track and also a few more for fishing across.
With the impression of there being a lot of big fish in there I stepped my gear up to 0.18 although on reflection maybe this was too much. Whilst plumbing up I found about 18inch-2foot on the island and only around 3feet down the track so most of my rigs were useless. I ended up fishing a BGT shallow 0.2g on the island rig with 0.18 straight through to a size 18 PR36 and the same rig but with a size 14 PR36 for down the track and the margins. Both of these were teamed up with a middy pink 14-16 hollow elastic.
I started the session by cupping in a few pellets and some mashed up cat food on the margin line and then went out to the island with a 4mm expander and tipping in half a kinder pot of micros over the top. For the first two hours my float would not sit still from liners, I managed to hook two fish, probably foul hooked as I lost them both. Meanwhile John couldn’t get any indication and Paul was having similar trouble to me losing one. I then managed to snare two in quick succession, one of about 3lb the other nearer 4lb on triple maggot. Paul then managed one from the margins on corn. I decided to have a quick look on the margin line, the float slowly sunk within seconds, I struck and nothing. I dropped back in and didn’t get another indication.
The main problem was the depth of the water, when ever you struck or lifted your rig, waves would appear on the surface from the fish swirling. This meant there was fish there but they just didn’t seem to want it. We persevered until three o’ clock but nothing more was happening.
Typically it rained all day and as soon as we packed up the sun came out. Not the practice session I’d imagined but at least I’d fished the venue now and new a tiny bit about what to expect next week. The lads on the match from peg1-25 didn’t seem to be fairing too well either. The guy on 25 had a couple and one guy maybe had half a dozen whilst we were there but no one else seemed to be doing much either. It doesn’t tend to bother me as much if no one catches but when you’re not catching anything and everyone else is that’s when you start doubting your own ability.
Not to worry, I’ll just have to hope that next week proves a little better and hopefully we'll have some nicer weather to boot!