Friday, 24 February 2017

Tuesday 21st February - Pleasure Session River Tone, Taunton

Fellow Clevedon Freshwater Angling Club mate Scott Smallwood has a month off so contacted me about wanting to fish the River Tone down in Taunton as he had only ever fished it once before many years ago and he had seen the catches I had from the free stretch near B & Q. The weather forecast and conditions looked good for Tuesday 21st so I arranged to meet up with Scott in Clevedon at 07:30. As we drove down the M5 it was raining quite hard but the nearer we got to Taunton it began to clear up. It only took us about 30 minutes to get to junction 25 and then a 5 minute drive to the back of B & Q where there was access to the river.
We parked up and had a walkabout first and the river looked in mint condition, a little clear but plenty of pace. I pointed out a few swims to Scott and he choose one upstream of the picnic bench, I went down to my favourite swim in the Copse.

Importantly we both had nice long trot. The stick float was going to be the set up today and I also set up a tip rod for the bread as there are some good chub in the stretch. I advised Scott to continually loose feed as there is a good head of small fish around.
We both got going and I was into fish straight away. A mix of roach, dace, chublets and bleak. A good pouch full of caster and hemp was fired in every trot and after 30 minutes I had my first chub, a nice fish of around 3lbs and a lovely fight on the slim rod. It literally was a bite every run through and another chub soon graced the net,
I started to get pike trouble with one sizeable fish attacking the fish in the keep net. It was biting the metal rings and twisting and turning like a great white shark in a frenzy. Even knocking it on the body with the landing net handle did not deter it, I almost netted it at one point before it disappeared.
Scott came down to see how I was getting on and said he had 2 big chub and lots of small fish which he found hard getting through. He too was having pike problems. Seeing me swing a chublet of around 8 ozs he asked how many of them I had as it appeared my fish were of better quality.
Scott went back to have another crack and I continued to catch although the pike were really starting to be a nuisance and I did manage to land one after the hook some how got caught in one of its fins preventing it from biting the line.
Towards the end of the session I gave the tip a try with bread flake and liquidised in a small feeder.
This made a good difference and I had some good roach and 3 more decent chub.
It truly was a great session. I ended up with around 15 lbs of chub, 10 labs of mixed silvers and a pike of around 5 lbs. Scott had 2 nice chub and about 8 lbs of silvers.

my 5 chub

Mixed silvers and the pike

Scott with his bag

All in all a great day on a free stretch of water, must get back there before the end of the season.

Monday, 20 February 2017

Sunday 19th February - Chippenham Open Bristol Avon

It's been just over 3 weeks since my last match so I was keen to get back out this weekend. I had three matches to choose from..... a club match on a Commercial, the Upper Brue Championships and a Chippenham Open on the River Avon. My choice was the Chippenham Open.
Chippenham AA have a lovely stretch of the Avon and access is very good as are the pegs. I used to fish their water a few times a year when the Avon Commercial League was running and with my old Club, Bristol Post Office. That was about twenty years ago though. I did fish a Saturday Open on the stretch about a year ago but that was in the summer.
Draw was at Witherspoons in the Town Centre at 08:30 and on arrival at 08:00 I met up with Mike Martin captain of the Sensas Nomads Team. Mike had won a recent match here (19lb of chub) and was looking to target them again. Talk was that chub would win it.
Twenty Two were booked in and every other peg was put in between Monkton Park up to above Riverside Drive. Into the draw bag and out comes peg 17 which is accessed from Riverside Drive. The angler on peg 20 had the golden peg and he said we were at the wrong end and needed to be on a peg in the mid 20's. One of the local anglers told me he lived more or less opposite the peg and best option was to fish a stick float down the middle.

The peg did look inviting but most of them do at this end of the river. There was a nice bit of pace so I set up a 4 x No. 4 stick float on one rod and a 3BB avon on the other. As I was plumbing up I found it was about 5 foot deep in front down the middle but shallowed up 30 yards downstream and was a bit weedy. Three quarters the way across it was the same picture. I set up a tip rod for fishing the straight lead with bread in case a chub or two were under the far bank tree.
On the ''all in'' I sprayed a pouch of caster and hemp and began on the stick with maggot. I was expecting an early bite but no joy. A few trots down later a few dips on the float suggested minnows so upped the feed. This seemed to make a difference and I started getting a few small roach about an ounce. I persevered with this and some slightly better ones came on (3 ozs). Although I was getting a few bites I felt it was going nowhere so switched to the small avon float which was bulk shotted. I had a small chublet first trot down and it felt much better. Next run down the float buried and I had a better fish on then saw a trout jump out of the water. I landed it easily as it was around 10oz but they don't count. Very small fish continued to plague me so in order to try and improve things I fed a small nugget of senses roach and noire every trot. The fish remained the same size. I had a look on the tip across but not a nibble.
I ended up with 3lbs 14oz, able me weighed 1lb odd and below me 5lb odd so definetly the wrong end. 19lb (6 chub) came off peg 23 I think and below that a 22lb and a 24lb, all big chub.
Not sure what won it but those weights would have been there or thereabouts.

Going pleasure fishing on the River Tone down in Taunton on Tuesday so hopefully get a few decent fish.

Monday, 30 January 2017

Sunday 29th January - Bob Warden Memorial Match, Kennet and Avon Canal, Bath.

I think this match has only been going a few years and this is the first time I have fished it. Despite my most recent form on the K & A I was looking forward to it especially with a rise in temperatures forecast.
Only 26 booked in (although there were 30 pegs) due to other events clashing with the date.
I drew peg 26 which was the Bathampton bend and not an area I fancied at all. It was a peg you would run to in years gone by but I am not aware of any decent weights from it for some time. Upstream of the school at Bathampton has been generally poor.
I set up a waggler for fishing across into the bay where it was no more that 2 1/2 foot deep. The deepest part of the peg was about 11 meters out in front of me where it was around 4 1/2 foot so set up a 4 x 14 for fishing chop and caster at 10 o'clock and bloodworm at 2 o'clock where it was the same depth. Then just a bread rig at 5 meters in about 4 foot of water.
The bread line did not produce after 30 minutes so went out on the blood worm and had a micro perch straight away, not a good sign. No more bites so tried the waggler over loose fed casters and had a micro roach. After less than an hour anglers were walking the bank. Rich Lacey came up and told me he only had 3 small fish and anglers where blanking not having a bite.
oooohhhh shit I thought another scratch match.
Up toward the end peg 30 Nicola Goodhind was doing the best with a dozen small fish.
As the match progressed Rich was back walking and told me he had 3 decent perch for about 3lbs. That was by far the best at Bathampton. I did get a few bites on the bloodworm in the last half hour but they were very, very, very small fish. My total weight was 2oz. Nicola did take our 5 peg section with 10 1/2 ozs.
Rich won the other 5 peg section.
The report below is from Vince Lunn's Facebook page.
The Bob Warden Memorial match was fished On the Kennet & Avon Canal from Garage pond to Bathampton (26 pegs) in aid of lung research.
We would like to thank everyone who fished the match and all the anglers who donated extra money to the charity, even some who were unable to fish.
Thanks to Lee & Leighton Warden, their mum Yvonne, Veals and Scotts tackle for donating prizes. Thanks to Bathampton for waiving the peg fees. Thanks also to Dean and Tracey for opening the rugby club and doing food.
£239 was raised for lung research!
After the recent cold weather the conditions had turned milder and there were showers during the match. Whilst the framing weights were good, some people really struggled for bites, particularily those fishing at Bathampton.
The winner of the match and collecting the trophy was Mike Goodhind of M&N Electrical. He was pegged on the right hand side of horseshoe pond and he caught about 1 lbs of fish on bread at the start. After a couple of hours he went over his joker at 13 metres fishing red maggot and caught 10 skimmers along with some roach. He finished with 11 lbs 9 ozs. Some pics of him catching skimmers are attached.
2nd was Carl Steffan (Black Horse), who drew peg 1 in Garage pond. He caught 90 roach on bread on the inside before moving out further on a groundbait line to catch another 70 roach on pinkie for 10 lbs 10 ozs
only top 3 paid out for main prizes,
1) M Goodhind M&N Electrical 11 lbs 9 ozs
2) C Steffan Black Horse 10 lbs 12 ozs
3) N Evans Preston Innovations Thatchers 8 lbs 11 ozs
4) T Gilbert Preston Innovations Thatchers 8 lbs 6 ozs
5) J Surmon Stand & Deliver Promotions 8 lbs 2 ozs
I also made a note of the Section Winners (some by default)
1-5 Mike Martin- Davies 4lbs 12oz (Sensas Nomads)
6-10 Tony Gilbert 8lbs 6oz (P I Thatchers)
11-15 Kevin Boltz 5lbs 10oz
16-20 Ben Matthews 10oz
21-25 Rich Lacey 3lbs 8ozs (Mossella Bathampton)
26- 30 Nicola Goodhind 10 1/2 ozs (M&N Electrical)

Photo's below from Vince Lunn and Nicola Goodhind.

Action shot of the winner Mike Goodhind landing a skimmer on Horse Shoe pond

Mike with the winners trophy and Lee and Leighton Warden.

Mike and Nicola do a tremendous amount of work running this match and the Bristol Commercial House League, nice to see them both get a result today especially as it was Nicola's birthday the day before.

Not sure about next week, no match planned and need to get a pole section repaired.

Thursday, 26 January 2017

Match announcement - Charity Match K & A Canal Bath 29th January.

Bob Warden charity match in aid of Lung research is on Sunday 29th January Kennent and avon Canal Bath Town sections. 8am draw at Stothert & Pitt Rugby Club Saltford Bath. £20 all in, free entry for juniors. Please book in asap if you want to fish. Call Nicola Goodhind on  07877 294095. This is always a brilliant match with a big raffle at the end. All proceeds to charity. Please support this match Bob was a lovely man and it is for a good cause.

Temperatures into double figures at the weekend and no frost forecast the night before.

Monday, 23 January 2017

January, sick and tired you been hanging on la la

January did get off to a good start when I had a good day on the K&A canal on the 8th with a Section and Team win in B Div of the Bristol Commercial House League (earlier Blog covered this).

I did go out on Wednesday the 11th Jan with Mike Endicott for a pleasure session on the River Kenn above Kenn Road bridge. Conditions looked perfect for some roach on the bread but after 3 hours we only had one fish each. They must have been shoaled up tight in another section but hard to say where.

my only fish and bite of the session and the beginning of a trend...

Sunday 15th January saw me book in to the Clevedon Clubs match on the Main Lake at the Plantations fishery Kingston Seymour as as I could not find a non commercial fishery match. Only 10 booked in. I drew peg 4 and having seen Kev Perry fish the peg before in winter just set up 2 lead rods to fish to the island with bread, corn, dead reds. I only had one carp and two roach. Press report and pics in the blog below this one.

Wednesday 18th and another pleasure session with Mike Endicott. The tide was wrong for the Kenn and the Tone was low and clear so we decided to try the Main Lake at Plantations for some silvers. When we arrived they were doing maintenance work so we went onto the adjacent Horseshoe Lake.
I had not fished it for ages and Mike had not fished it at all. We decided on a couple of pegs on the outside down the right hand side. Long story short....... Mike had 20lbs plus of big skimmers, I had 3 bites and did not hit any of them. the only difference in the pegs was that Mike had a gap in the sunken island where he fished, everything else we did was identical, nothing I could do about it.

Nice bag for Mike.

  • Sunday 22nd January - Bristol Commercial House League final round K & A Canal, Meadow Farm to Limply Stoke.
It had been bitterly cold during the days and nights leading up to this match but a rise in temperatures was forecast. I was pleasantly surprised to wake up on the Sunday morning and see that there had not been a frost but would it be the same in Bath. I was hoping the town would be pegged (a bit warmer) but when I got to the draw the pegs were all out in the country.  Not sure who makes the decision on this.
Couple of subs today by way of Tony Goodland and Jan van Mazyk plus die hards Chris, Sam, Lewis and myself.
Chris came back with the team draw and I found myself on A Section, Meadow Farm. Access to the section was down a very steep hill which you had to walk down so coming back would be done in stages.
There were 5 pegs to the left of the bridge and 4 to the right. I was on A2 so had to go left. What a bummer. The right hand side was more or less ice free and the left up by me was solid.

My peg... all that was missing was the Titanic!

On A5 was Tom Moratti who only had 'cat ice', A 4 was Jeff Surman with cat ice halfway then thicker ice. A3 was Mike Martin - Davies, cat ice which he broke with his pole. A2, me with ice so thick the hammer bounced off it. A1 Sean Townsend, thick ice.
I did not have a bite all match!!!!! hardly surprising.
Sean had 5 perch for 2oz 4 dram
Me daw
Mike 2 perch for 1oz
Jeff 3 perch for 3oz 8 dram
Tom 4lbs 6oz 8 drams (near the bridge)

The other side of the bridge fished much better...
Matt Challenger 3lbs 9 ozs
Andy Power 5lbs 13oz
Paul Purchase 2lbs 9 ozs
Craig Pinkett 6lbs 2ozs

Back at the results I was the only one in the Team to blank. There were many others who either packed up early and went home or blanked.

Team wise we had 3 section winners.... Lewis (2lbs 14oz), Tony (5lbs 4oz), Jan (6ozs 5 drams!).

One to forget me-thinks.


Individuals on the day:
1st    Paul Issacs 7lbs 6oz
2nd  Kev Boltz 7lbs 4oz
3rd   Nathan Hawke 6lbs 5oz

Teams on the day:

A Div
1st  Thatchers B
2nd Bathampton A
3rd  M & N 
4th  Bathampton B
5th  Thatchers A

B Div
1st DW Builders and Stand and Deliver
3rd Maver
4th Nomads

Final League

A Div
1st  Thatchers B
2nd Bathampton B
3rd  Bathampton A
4th  M & N and Thatchers A

M & N relegated to B Div next year on weight.

B Div
1st  D W
2nd Nomads
3rd Maver
4th Stand and Deliver

D W Builders promoted to A Div next year.

Fishing the Angling Trust Winter League for Sensas Nomads and the Commercial House League for Maver has been great. Well done to all who took part and of course the organisers.

Maver is currently in the Viaduct Winter League Teams of 5 but I am not fishing it.

Next up for me is the Bob Warden Memorial Match on the canal next week (Bath Town).

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Sunday 15th January - Clevedon Club Match Plantation Fishery

Press report below...I Drew peg 4 and fished the lead to the island all day for one carp...must do better!

The Main Lake on the Plantations Fishery complex at Kingston Seymour hosted Clevedon Freshwater Angling Clubs first competition of the year. The anglers knew bites would be a premium due to the lengthily cold spell but at least it was dry and overcast. The recent form indicated that a draw up the left hand side of the lake would be the favoured area to draw. Paul Nichols did just that drawing peg 8 and set to work on the long pole feeding micro pellet and fishing soft pellet or maggot on the hook for 27lbs of skimmer bream and 6 carp for a match winning 37lb. Not far behind Paul was match secretary Adie Baker with 36lb from adjacent peg 7. Adie caught carp and bream on a variety of methods and baits. Third place went to Rob Fogg who from point peg 19 caught a 34lb mixed bag on the pole.

1st Paul Nichols

2nd Adie Baker

Not in the money but... Brian Slipper had a nice net of silvers on caster fishing only his top set.

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Sunday 8th January - Bristol Commercial House League Round 5, Kennet and Avon Canal, Bath / Bathampton

This was the first match of 2017 for me, a Team Match and on one of my favourite venues. The League consists of 9 Teams of 6 with 5 Teams in 'A' Div and 4 Teams in 'B' Div. My Team are in 'B' Div as we only came back into the League last September.
Team mate Rob Wood went down with man flu on Saturday night so arriving at the draw we were one short. Not for long lol... one Team turned up with 7 anglers so we borrowed Tony Mazyk, happy days.
Nicola and Mike Goodhind assisted by Vince Lunn do a great job running the League and had their work cut out doing the pegging in order to avoid the boats and the resident Otter. They provided a nice little guide in order to get to the pegs.

Team Captain Chris Hook done the draw, we were more or less first in due to paying the Pools nice and early. The Team card came back and I saw I was on C3. Not a bad area and I thought it would be very fair due to the big bay not being pegged.
I had not ordered any bloodworm and joker but took Robs pack just in case, the rest of the Team had some.
Parking and access to my Section was easy and I was on C3 by 08:45 so plenty of time to set up. I passed Matt Challenger on C1 who suggested there may be a few fish about if I was in the ''Section''.
I had a nice big gap between the boats and I thought the peg would fish OK.

I had a really nice depth down the track, around 4' 6'' so set up a punched bread rig for fishing just off bottom at 12:00 o'clock and set up another similar track rig for fishing just on bottom at 10:00 and 14:00. Finally a chopped rig for 13 meters across about 0.5 of a meter out from the far bank where it was about 2'.
Bait tray was a little busy with worm, blood worm and joker, pinkie, caster, squats, red maggot and bread.
At the start I fed the track straight in front with liquidised bread and then fed the far bank with chopped worm, caster and squats at 10:00 and a ball of joker across at 14:00.
Starting on 6mm punch nothing happen for 10 minutes which was a bit concerning so fed another cup of bread. Next put in I had a small roach around 2ozs. Expecting a sail away bite as soon as I put the rig back in nothing happened so lifted it and dropped it twice which gave me a great bite and the No.3 elastic shoot out after the strike. A skimmer of around a pound and a bit was soon netted. After an hour no more skimmers showed but I did have a few roach, nothing to write home about though. I had topped up the far bank lines after 45 minutes as well as putting some chopped worm and caster in down the track at 10:00 o'clock.  
My first look across at 10:00 with red maggot got me a chunky roach of about 5 ozs, the float buried very quickly and a few more followed. Resting this line after 15 minutes I had a look over the joker with blood worm resulted in more roach but they were much smaller so decided to go back down the track for a while over the chop and caster with maggot.
Good decision this as I had 4 perch in a row and one was a pound plus.
The rest of the match I really only caught across to my left and down the track to my left. I kept busy trying different hook baits and topped up my main lines little and ofter. I had a 30 minute quiet spell due to a double boat mooring up immediately to my right.
The canal pulled quite hard at times and boat traffic was busy enough as was the tow path behind me. The surface of the canal was covered in debris as if someone had been doing some trimming so lots of rubbish on the line when brining in fish but you just have to get in the right mindset and focus.
At the all out I thought I had about 5lbs. I walked up to Mike Goodhind on C2 while waiting for the scales and he told me he had netted a decent skimmer, had the net on his lap and a dog of the boat beside him jumped into the net and made off with the fish! Got to be a first.
Scales came down and I was pleased to weigh 6lbs 9ozs.

Jeff Surman suggested that would be enough to win the ''B'' Div Section. It was, ''A'' and ''B'' Section weights below.

Matt Challenger had a good day on C1 catching quality skimmers down the track.

Back at the results the Team had a good day with my Section win and about 3 second in Sections.

Results as follows on the day:

A Div 
1st   Preston Thatchers A & Bathampton Mosella B
3rd   Preston Thatchers  B
4th   Bathamptom Mosella A
5th   M & N Electrical

B Div
1st   Maver
2nd  Stand and Deliver
3rd  DW Builders
4th  Sensas Nomads

1st   Tom Moretti 20lbs 12oz
2nd  Rob Randall 18lbs 13oz
3rd   ?  15lbs 2oz
4th  Matt Challenger 14lbs
5th  Nigels Evans 13lbs 11oz
6th  Nigel Wyatt 12lbs 10oz

Not sure where I am fishing next weekend but hope to go on the River Kenn Tuesday.