I planned simple match deciding to fishing maggots long and short and also soft pellets long and short from Front Deans 27.
Front and Back Deans, Ghost and High pools were in today and my home for the day was Front Deans 27 a peg with some recent form in the week so I felt confident of a few fish but I needed to fish light to get the bites as this was the end of December and Woodland View Fur and Feather match.
I plumbed up at 14.5 metres and also found the same depth at 7 metres so it was a case of setting up just one maggot rig and one pellet rig. I started long at 14.5m metres on maggots feeding just a few maggots from a sprinkle pot as I expected bites to be at a premium.
I began fishing at 14.5 metres for anything that swims with an 0.4g Nick Gilbert NG XT Finesse Carbon HD pole float with a tapered shotting pattern on a short stop kit elasticated with 6-8 Orange F1 Hydro. This would handle silvers and F1’s with out bumping them off and give me half a chance if I hooked any bigger carp.
It wasn’t long before I began catching a few Skimmers and the odd F1 stockie feeding just a few maggots through the sprinkle pot. I then hooked into something bigger to test out the balanced “catch anything that swims” rig. The orange hydro shot out and I was into a big carp but I was only on a 0.11mm bottom with a size 20 Guru F1 Pellet hook and after playing it for 5 minutes the hook pulled out. So I decided to put on an size 18 Guru F1 pellet hook on an 0.11 hook length next and shipping back out. The bites slowed down and I was considering going back to a size 20 to get bites when the float dipped down again and I was into other big carp. I knew that I’d already lost my bonus fish and I didn’t want to lose another! I played out the fish and took my time. When the fish surfaced it was a big carp around 10lb and it was squeaky bum time again but at least I had a bigger hook on this time and I went on to land it.
Several Skimmers and F1’s followed in the next hour and I estimated i’d got 20lb in the keep nets two hours into the match. Looking at the match weights in the week I was on target to do a good weight and then I hooked another big carp. This time the 0.11m hook length broke and I lost the fish. So it was clear there were some carp feeding in the peg and I tied on an 0.13mm hook length and changed to a heavier size 18 Guru LWG hook.
The change to the heavier hook didn’t really effect the bite ratio and I was still catching Skimmers and F1’s but I’d also hooked a landed a couple of carp around the 3-4lb mark.
3 hours in I was doing OK but the bites began to slow down and I started catching some Roach and Rudd. The F1’s and Skimmers had disappeared.
So at this point I started a new line and fed in some micro’s and fished a soft 4mm pellet over the top but no bites came and I gave this up deciding to stick with maggots and I began to feed my short 7 metre line, again no bites came and I returned to the 14.5 metre line. But this line wasn’t producing now.
I needed to do something different so I began feeding maggots via a catapult rather than using the sprinkle pot. I also began alternating at 10 and 2 o’clock at 14.5 metres, feeding one line and fishing the other. This seemed to work and I began catching some Skimmers and F1’s again. I wasn’t catching Carp but at least I was adding to my weight in the last hour.
The angler on the next peg began to catch Carp and I felt the fish had moved up to him. So I began spreading out the maggot feed over an larger area hoping to attract a carp.
I was still catching Skimmers and small F1’s and hoped for another carp. Then two minutes before the end of the match I hooked a carp. I really didn’t want to lose this fish. The all out came, I called out “fish on” and I took my time and landed the fish, a carp around 6lb.
I felt confident of winning the pool/section and weighed in 35lb of carp and F1’s and 20lb of small stockie F1’s and silvers giving me a total weight of 55lb 12oz.
This was enough to win the pool/section and actually was enough for 3rd place overall in the match.
This really was an enjoyable match I caught well at the start, lost the fish at the midway point forcing me into a change in the feeding to get them back. Also although I fished light to get the bites on an 6-8 elastic I was still able to land 10lb fish. The Orange F1 hydro though a short Stop kit really did perform well.