Partney Brick Pit, Partney, Lincs
This month saw me fish four Tuesday night matches at Partney. At the start of the month I drew a decent peg next to the organiser Tony. He knows the place like the back of his hand and usually frames so it was an ideal opportunity to see what he gets up to. At the end of the match I knew he had beaten me but had anyone else? It was a tense weigh in as I claimed second by a few ounces. At nearly twelve pounds it was the first match I had really caught anything. Tony had a magnificent twenty eight pounds an won by a country mile. So what was the difference? Tony is a better pole angler than me no doubt but the main difference was the bait he was using. I have been persevering with pellets while Tony swears by little pieces of luncheon meat. I made a mental note for the next week.
I've said before that matches can give you invaluable information about what fish reside in what peg and my eyes lit up when Tony caught a couple of decent Bream. So a few days later I went down to his peg one evening and baited up with a bag of wetted micro pellets and some meat. At dawn the following day I was bank side and ready to go. Nine Tench later I did finally get a Bream of about twelve ounces. By half seven I was done and on my way back home.
Funny looking Bream....
The following week saw me draw another good peg. The one Tony had won off the week before and the one where I caught the Tench in fact. I came second with seventeen odd pounds on the meat. Sods law dictated that I also caught one of those decent Bream. Shame you don't realty get chance to appreciate them in a match situation though. A freak weight of twenty two pounds off the usually rubbish peg four won it. As I waited for the scales to come around I had a little lie down behind my peg and took a few pictures with my phone..
Lincolnshire skies really are something............
Tony and I were keen to get out and try and catch some Bream from somewhere else but where? I mentioned to him one of the lakes at Bain Valley Fisheries. A few days later I got word from Tony that the owner of the complex had just bought three more lakes. One of them had been virtually unfished for twenty years and word was it contained not only massive Bream but also some big Perch and Roach. Better still he had given Tony permission to fish it and he could take a guest too! Only an angler can understand how exciting the prospect of fishing somewhere like this is. I think it is the unknown that keeps us all going. This place certainly fitted into that category. We arranged to go the following week and I readied my specimen gear with enthusiasm. The night before our visit I went down with Tony to pre-bait a couple of pegs. In fact the place was so overgrown that we had little choice of where to fish. Anyway I catapulted a couple of kilos of corn into a likely looking area and departed full of confidence. Being on old gravel pit this was in my experience the best way to go. The fish instantly recognise it as food. Groundbait in theses sort of waters is usually does more harm than good.
Another super early start saw Tony and I bank side at four o'clock in the morning. I fished the tip with corn and set up a float rod to fish maggot. The tip remained motionless while I began to catch a few small Roach on the float. After four hours with just a few Roach to show for our efforts our confidence gradually began to wane. A visit from the bailiff revealed that Bream were indeed present but were proving difficult to locate by the few that had already fished it. He also threw some light on a pair of massive birds of prey that we had seen during the morning. Marsh Harriers apparently. A breeding pair were nesting on the lake. They softened the disappointment of the slow fishing somewhat. A had a bit of a wander with my spinning rod towards the end and managed to catch a small Pike and I had a take from what I was sure was a Perch. Having read about quest for gravel pit Bream before I've concluded that I simply don't have the time or dedication to start a serious campaign for them. I would, however, like to go back sometime and try for a decent Perch.
The virgin lake............
The following Tuesday saw me back at Partney in the evening match. After my specimen hunting exploits I hadn't transferred my stuff back into my seat box. Typical then that I drew peg fifteen that required fishing the pole at eight meters. You simply can't fish a long pole from a chair and I didn't even weigh in. I was kicking myself. Fifteen is usually the peg to have and that was twice now that I had not done it justice.
The Secret River, Lincs
There is a long section of this river that I haven't fished or even seen. A local pub supplies the tickets for forty pounds for the year and I've been meaning to join for ages now. It's always a good idea to check out a venue first though and I took Mrs P and the Chaos twins with me for an afternoon stroll along the stretch in question. You might be able to tell from the pictures that it doesn't really see a lot of anglers and access to the bank was really poor. In fact for over a mile of River I could only see one fishable peg. Maybe it will be different in the winter. It certainly isn't worth the outlay at the moment. The last picture shows the rivers meeting. The others just scream big Roach.......one day........one day....
Partney Brick Pit
Sorry this month is getting a bit samey but my match exploits had given me another idea. The pole brigade were occasionally losing Carp they couldn't handle. While I hadn't hooked one myself I was keen to try a technique I hadn't employed for a few years. A quick trip down to the supermarket saw me leaving with a box of dog biscuits. In years past I've used chum mixers but alas the country's smallest Sainsbury's didn't have any so I settled on some small dog bakers meaty meal. I wasn't even sure they would float! Luckily they did and what's more they could be hooked straight from the box. Better than mixers and found by complete fluke. Anyway would these unseen beasts feed off the top?
The following evening I drove down to the pit and catapulted a few out. Half an hour passed with only the occasional swirl. Certainly not enough to have a cast at. Another half hour passed and I was considering going home. Just as I had decided to give it best they started to feed and I quickly dug out a rod from the car. No secrets to surface fishing. Fine-ish line and a small hook will see you among the fish every time. I use Drennan Double Strength in seven pounds breaking strain coupled with a size twelve wide gape hook. No float or weights just use the weight of the biscuit to cast. Soak it for a few seconds before casting and you'll be able to go thirty odd yards. Did I catch one? You bet I did. At eleven and a half pounds it was still quite lean with plenty of room to grow...........
The match the next night saw me draw peg fifteen again. This time I was ready with my box and a few floaters just in case things got desperate. I did wobble a bit after only having two small Tench in the first hour and I put out a few meaty meals. Two quick fish soon had them spooked but I had what I wanted. They must have weighed fifteen pounds between them. I spent the rest of the match on the eight metre line and managed another couple of Carp and a few Bream. At thirty four pounds it was the best weight this year and close to the match record. Victory at last. Never thought I would get there.
A mate of mine has been waiting for ages for an operation to have his leg re-broken (don't ask). Anyway a few days before he went in he managed a new personal best Carp of nearly twenty seven pounds. Get well soon Pete. I might just have to get one bigger to give you some inspiration. I think you are safe though!
Till next time......................