Sunday, April 29, 2007

BCUK League Round 4. Hartleylands

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I was off today to my favourite Commercial fishery to fish the next round of the BCUK League, today the match was to be fished over 2 lakes, Nicks and Bramley.
I wasn’t too fussed what lake I drew on as the payout today was going to be for the top 4 on each lake. I thought this was a good idea as I expected Nicks lake to produce the top 3 weights.

At the draw I pulled out peg 13 on Bramley (good job I’m not superstitious). I wouldn’t have been disappointed with any draw on this lake as I believe it can be won from anywhere, it wasn’t the easiest peg on the lake to fish either as it was opposite the point of the island with gusting wind blowing right to left.

As I walked round to the peg a lot had discounted the waggler as the best method to use in the wind, and I notice a lot of feeder and poles being set up, this wasn’t going to be my tactics for the day, as far as I’m concerned pellet waggler is the way to go here, and my 3 previous visits to the lake last summer had produced two firsts and a second place using these tactics.

I set up 2 rods one being the 11ft Carbonactive float, being gusty I had to use a 3SSG float, normally you can get away with a 4AAA here, the business end had a 0.16 trace attached to a 14 Drennan carp hook. The other rod was a 12ft Maver Reactolite float, the only reason being that I brought it some time ago and wanted to just catch a few fish on it to try it out! I also had a power 2 and a no4 section of my pole set up just to drop in the margin if I wanted to rest the pole line for a while.

6mm pellets was going to be the feed and hook bait for the day, with a bit of paste to wrap round the pellet if needed, I also had some 8mm pellets in my bag just in case the wind made it difficult to feed the 6mm.

I was going to attack the swim from the off today as the pegging was a bit tight at the end of the island and I wanted to try to draw fish in quickly before the other realised what was happening! So at the off 3 large pouch fulls of pellet went in by the island, or they were supposed to go there, with the wind they were dropping slightly short. The float followed and I was straight into a small carp while others on the lake were still messing about feeding on the pole. This promptly came of at the net though so it was out with the feed and float again, third chuck I managed to hook another small carp and this time it ended up in my net, conditions were difficult in the wind but not impossible and the first hour produced about 10 small carp, as the match want on I was catching steady but not as I expected, but glancing around the lake I didn’t see anybody really doing too well. I couldn’t seem to get a run of fish together just getting 2-3 then nothing for a while, I was also experiencing a high number of missed bites I suspect where liners even though I was only fishing a foot deep.

A quick change of float was done to one of my short stumpy balsa inserts being only 3 inches long, then shortening the trace to 6 inches finished the new rig.
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Although I didn’t empty it with this rig the catch rate improved a bit and the missed bites ended, after an hour bites seemed to tail off again and I was struggling, the fish became reluctant to go near my float, so lengthening the trace and casting more frequently got me picking up a few carp again, I had to chop and change to the end of the match to catch, it was one of them days when the fish just didn’t see to want to feed and you had to work for ever bite. A switch to 8mm pellets toward the end got me catching again and it was soon the all out netting my last fish just as the whistle blew.

When the scales arrived 40 lb odd was winning my section and the lake, I was sure I had more than that. I stuck 63 lb on the scales to take the lead, but I heard a shout some guy over the other side of the lake was catching well on the feeder and had about 90lb! As it turned out 90lb was really 50lb and I was the top weight on the lake.

One thing I noticed today is a lot of people set up waggler, pole with a multitude of top kits set deep and shallow, and feeder rods. On a venue like Hartleylands you are never going to do any good chopping and changing methods during the match, you need time to build and feed the swim, I find its best to pick one on the day that you are good at and commit to it fully.

Picking up maximum points again, and a few quid for wining the lake I was well pleased, I might even end up placed quite high in the overall standing at the end but need another 2 sections wins so quite a task.

As I predicted the top weight come off of Nicks lake and it was won by Mike Jamerson with just over a ton, off of peg 29 down the margin.


Anonymous said...

Hey Nick,

Noticed you dont get alot of comments so thought i'd say hi and thanks for the info.

I've been fishing 3 weeks and already entered 2 matches (last and last!) Going to try a few of the things you've suggested.

thanks again


TIM_B said...


Tim here from Invicta Angling. Can you give me a ring about the free stretch of the Stour at Chartham.