Using up a few days holiday before the end of the year saw me book into Manor Farm Leisure Thursday Open, this week held on the island pool.
These Thursday Opens are the affordable opens at only £15.00 to enter with the option of entering the super pool for an extra fiver. Normally these opens are well attended where there is no overall winner paid out, just section winners which are normally 3 or 4 man sections. But for some reason only 4 anglers entered this week, very strange. I was there early and paid my £15.00 and the extra fiver for the super pool. But I was the only one to enter the super pool so I got my money back before wetting a line!
With only four of us fishing at least we would all have plenty of room with pegs 6, 12, 16 and 18 in. I drew peg 18 an end peg so I was happy with that but with flyer peg 6 in which had won the match the previous day and with the same angler on it today it was always going to be tough beating peg 6 especially with all the room he had got today. The weather had finally changed from the mild conditions and with a 10 degree dip in temperature it was difficult to gauge how the pool would fish. So I opted to try for carp first but had maggots back on the side tray if the carp weren’t playing ball today.
I set up a medium 30g Preston ICS Dura Banjo method feeder for fishing tight to the island an ICS 20g Preston ICS bomb for midway a cross. A maggot rig at 13 metres, soft pellets for the short pole line and a margin rig but I didn’t expect to catch there now the weather had turned colder. It was the first outing of the year for my winter clothing and my Preston Celsius suit kept me warm all day.
A slow start on the Method feeder
I started the match on the method feeder. At manor the you have to get your feeder landing tight to island to get a bite and this it where I started. It can be difficult casting this accurate at long range and the regulars have got used it it but I don’t fish here much and hardly fish rods and I don’t like clipping up but after a few casts I got it spot on using my 11’6″ Method rod. The fishing was slow for all apart from flyer peg 6 who was soon into fish as expected. I caught my first carp on my 3rd 10 minute cast (always use a stopwatch) and added a couple more in between catching a few silvers on the maggot line during the next two hours. The fishing was slow and I was now rotating my lines between the method and bomb and my pole lines but not much was happening.
Soft Pellets on the short pole
As we got into the final two hours my short soft pellet line began to produce. I’d been throwing 4mm’s here all match at 2+3 and caught a good 4lb carp here around 1.30pm this gave me the confidence to stop on this line a little longer rather than continuing to rotate my lines. The water had a tow on it and I changed from a 4×14 to a 4×16 Preston F1 pellet float. This worked much better but I was still having to hold the float on the back shot to keep it still and another carp of the same stamp soon followed using a 6mm Sonubaits soft expander as hook bait. At this point I decided to see off the match on this short pole line as I had began to catch some good sized carp here. One must of been 12-13lb and I got broke on a couple of fish. I’d been using 0.15mm mainline to a 0.13mm hook length and the mainline broke on the mainline loop to the hook length twice despite using a 13 Duru elastic. I had geared down the mainline as we are coming into winter but but think that was a mistake. 0.17mm from now on. Strangely it was the mainline and not the lighter hook length that broke on these two fish.
These lost two carp proved to be costly. I weighed in 75lb 4oz. to finish 2nd in the match, 10lb short of the angler on flyer peg 6. But still a great days fishing for the middle of October.
Best Rig of the day
Soft pellet rig – 4×16 F1 Pellet pole float in 5 foot of water set up on 0.15mm Guru N-Gauge with 8 no.8 shot at 1 inch gaps above a size 16, 6 inch 0.13mm Preston GPM Ready Rig set up on white Preston 13 Duru elastic.