Monday, 1 August 2011

River Wharfe - 29th July, Carp Vale 31st July

With the weather being kind all week, I decided I’d have another go down on the River Wharfe at Pool. I headed down there after I’d finished work and was probably fishing by 5 o’ clock. I cast out a maggot feeder into a slightly deeper looking pool, about two thirds across the river with a maggot feeder and a 12 inch hooklength with 4 maggots on the hook. I was hoping that by putting 4 maggots on the hook the minnows might be put off. I was wrong, the tip never sat still with the minnows shaking the maggots off one by one. Another big problem was the amount of weed in the river, I ended up putting a new hooklength on with a hair rigged cork ball and maggots on the hook, just to keep the bait out of the weed, this did no good either though. I persevered with the swim for a couple of hours, even free lining a big black slug didn’t show any signs! I moved to a little gravel bed just downstream of the weir but the minnows were still proving a nuisance, although I didn’t have any problem with weed there. So in short, not a very productive evening but there’s not many nicer places to have a doze than down by the river!

Sunday arrived, and feeling a little ropey from the night before I made my way to Carp Vale with a bottle of Lucozade, this was probably the ideal time for a big breakfast, unfortunately its one of the few venues without a café, I’ve since realised an apple is not an adequate substitute for a big breakfast!

After the disappointments last year by the majority of people who fished the match lake, this season, Cyprio and Front Pool were to be used in the matches, not necessarily making it fairer as it’s treated like two separate matches anyway but at least everyone should have a good days fishing.

I received a lovely polished pound off Mr Thackwray from last week but gave it straight back to him for the football card, which again, I didn’t win. There were 16 of us in attendance today which meant we’d have 8 on each lake so we’d have plenty of room.

We drew at 9am and I managed peg 66, this is on the front pool and from what I could remember, this would be a good method peg. So much for a lot of room though, Kev was on p67, Gordon was on p66 and Andy was on 64. Granted I don’t fish here that often and these might all be good pegs on their own but when they’re all in? We’d have to see. Making up the numbers on my lake, Honest John was on the easiest peg on the lake with an island in pole distance, Bob the Builder and the two Tony’s were all on the opposite bank.

Once I’d plonked all the gear down and got my box sorted, I set about setting my clip for the method. After a quick chat with Kev, we decided he could have the clump of reeds between us and I’d fish the other side of the island. I clipped up to fish just in front of the reeds off the point of the island, and with fish cruising and crashing all over the lake I was fairly confident of a good day, especially after the last I fished here I had over 70lb. I set up a paste rig which would cater for a swim at 13m in front and 6m to my right. Finally I had a shallow rig to fish at 13m over my paste line.

I made sure that everything was just right before the match started, as last time; I missed out on a payout, mainly due to messing about during the match and losing fish. The all in sounded at 10am and we were away. I big potted some 6mm pellets and a few bits of paste on both lines and then fired the method out to the reeds. Five minutes past and I was already worried, no one had had a signal yet, ten minutes, fifteen minutes, nothing? I stuck with the method for 45 minutes and managed a couple of lines but these were by fish in the middle of the lake as I saw them boil on the surface at the exact moment I got a liner.

I dropped onto the 13m paste line and standard with paste I was getting a thousand and one indications but not connecting with any fish. I eventually put a carp in the net of about 3lb; I swapped onto the short paste line and managed another carp straight away of a similar size. I kept swapping between these two lines and put a “skimmer” that was probably a bream due to it being a dark bronze and about 3lb! I also put a nice crucian in the net that would’ve been about a pound and a half.

At the halfway point I was sitting on about 11lb with 4 fish, not brilliant! Although everyone else was struggling too, Andy had had a few on the tip, Gordon was fairing similarly to me on the tip, Kev had had a few silvers and lost a carp. The opposite side of the lake weren’t doing any better either. In fact it was only John on the easy peg and Tony Koz who were putting many fish in the net although they were both losing more than they were catching through foul hookers and snags.

I swapped between all my lines for the rest of the match and managed 2 more carp and a tench. I reckoned I might just scrape 20lb! So a poor day, but at least it was crap for everyone.

The weigh in ensued, Andy weighed 26lb odd, Gordon 25lb 4oz, Kev DNW’ed, then I was next, it was closer than I thought for the quid with Gordon, I weighed in 25lb dead, though that I feel may have been generous! Tony Koz weighed 52lb odd, Tony Minikin 25lb odd, Bob DNW’ed and John weighed 48lb. So all in all it was very close on our lake apart from Tony and John, both of them could fish to an island with the pole, granted they both lost a lot of fish but at least there were fish there for the taking!

The other lake had fished equally poor with Martin Dodsworth coming second with 36lb and Stu “Superstar – needs banning next season” Stott weighing in 91lb!

Next week its Cedar up at the Oaks, one of my aims this year was to catch over 40lb on a match at the Oaks, this is something I cant seem to do but always come close with big 30lb weights but always not quite there! Wish me luck!

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