Summer evening pleasure fishing the Traditional Waggler for large carp with pellets.


I’m very fortunate to have the Manor Farm Leisure complex here in Evesham right on my door step and what better way is there than to spend an evening, fishing the traditional waggler on the island pool after a hard day at work for a few hours on a perfectly calm summer evening.

At only a fiver for an evening fishing this is daylight robbery. The sport on offer at Manor Farm in the evenings is simply fantastic, bites all evening and it only gets better and better as the evening progresses. Evenings like this are perfect to fish the waggler.

Regular visitors to my website will know most of my fishing revolves around matches where fishing the pole often dominates and if you are going to compete, the pole rules but post the original Covid lockdown in 2020 where we had to stay local to pleasure fish I’ve had a lot of summer evening pleasure fishing sessions down at my local water, Manor farm Leisure. I have to say pleasure fishing the traditional waggler here has been a revolution to me last year and also this summer. No match pressures, you can just set up one rod, feed a few pellets and off you go. Nothing fancy and all the enjoyment to look forward to playing hard fighting Carp and quality F1’s throughout the session.

I’ve opted to go old skool on these sessions fishing the traditional waggler rather than the pellet waggler shallow. These are pleasure sessions where I want to sit back, take my time, enjoy the experience and take in the atmosphere these summer evenings give you rather than fishing the pellet waggler, constantly feeding and reeling in and casting all the time. These sessions are all about enjoyment.

The set up

Drennan’s Red Range 12′ Carp Waggler Rod

A long 12′ rod is required as I’m fishing at a depth which also helps with quick line pick up but it needs to be a powerful rod to be able to handle large fighting carp. I use a Drennan 12′ Red Carp Waggler rod which is a half decent tool for the job. I don’t do a lot of carp waggler fishing and this one retails at about 80 quid and suits my budget. Reel wise I don’t compromise here you need a good one able to cope with these hard fighting carp. I use the smaller/lighter Daiwa 2508 TDR reel for this type of fishing. They are expensive with a RRP of £250 but as all anglers know about angling RRP’s these reels can be picked up for around £150.00. The line retrieval and clutches on these reels are fantastic and there’s no better feeling than hearing that clutch slip when a big carp makes a run. Mainline is Guru’s N-Gauge 6lb (0.17mm) line. I use this as its thin diameter aids the distance that can be cast with a light waggler and even though it’s really suited for pole rigs I find it a very robust reel line for fishing a waggler.

Daiwa 2508 TDR
Guru N-Gauge 0.17mm (6lb)

Terminal Tackle

The business end of the set up is really simple. A 2.5g loaded Waggler. It doesn’t really matter whether its a insert and straight float. Your not looking for shy bites with the hook bait being a 6mm or 8mm pellet it’s going to be a carp or F1. The loaded float just aids the cast and it’s just attached between two float stops and then several no.8’s shirt button style down the line to dot the float down. Then just a pre-tied 15cm banded 0.17mm size 16 Preston KKM-B ready rig. There no need to fish light. To set the depth just band a SSG split shot and hook it straight on to the hook and plumb up a normal.

All you need is a bag of 6mm pellets, a few 8mm hooker’s and a catapult and off you go! Using the 12′ rod coupled with the fine diameter line makes casting out a 2.5g float easy. Just one quick flick of the line by dipping the rod tip into the water and a quick flick upwards to sink it and the float stays in place fine.

These pleasure sessions have really been enjoyable and have highlighted to me how much fun pleasure fishing can be compared to match fishing and as you go later into the evening at this time of the year the fishing on island pool just gets better and better. It’s great fun playing carp on a rod and line. Bites all evening for less than a couple of pints down the pub. Given the choice I know what I’d rather do on a pleasant summers evening.

Give it a go!!

Jubilee Nomads pick up at Manor Farm Leisure and Moorlands Farm



This Sunday we decided on a trip to Moorlands Farm to fish the Open over island, Moors and Bank pools. 

27 anglers fished the match. Robin, Mark and Phil drew on the Bank pool. Fishing was tough early on but Mark produced an excellent finish to win the pool weighing in 54lb including 22lb of Silvers. This ended up overall 4th in the match and Mark also took the Nomad super pool. Phil and Robin caught fish but it was a struggle for them. Andy and Rob drew on the Moors pool and Stu drew the island pool but they also struggled for bites but still caught fish. 

RESULT Sunday 02/02/20 27 fished Bank, Moors & Island1st Neil Colcombe (moorlands) 82-14-0 waggler & corn peg 25 island 2nd Jason Powell (Maver) 67-15-0 peg 6 island 3rd Mal Watson (DGL) 65-2-0 peg 27 island 4th Mark Birbeck (Jubilee Nomads) 54lb 0oz peg 2 Bank

On the previous day (Saturday) Phil and Robin fished the Open at Manor Farm Leisure held on the island pool this week. Both had a good days fishing, fishing rods all day due to windy conditions with Phil coming 3rd overall with 65lb and Robin, 4th overall and picking up his section with 50lb

 RESULT1st Tom Need 100-4-0Top Tackle Peg 15 2nd Ian Millichip 73-0-0 Swindon Peg 4 3rd Phil Seedhouse 65-4-0 Jubilee Nomads Peg 6 4th Robin Ballard 50-4-0 Jubilee Nomads Peg 32 5th Steve Rich 46-4-0 Moaning Sods Peg 12

3rd Overall at Manor Farm Leisure


Despite Manor Farm Leisure being on my door step I don’t really fish there much, but this week I fished the Saturday Open on the island pool. The weather forecast was for strong blustery winds for most of the day. Fishing the pole would be difficult and rods would come into play. Manor is a good bomb and pellet venue and that’s why I went after I’d seen the weather forecast.

I drew well, the historically good peg six. Even with the limited time I’ve spend at the venue I still knew people generally throw to the aerator off peg six and catch well. However in recent weeks it hadn’t really produced.  

So on arrival at the peg I made the decision not to set my pole up. I suffer from “poleritis” as many of us do and I knew that if I set up the pole, I would try to fish it at some point. So setting up didn’t take me long today. I just set up bomb and Method rods. 

The plan was to start on bread out in front in various places looking for some carp while I fed some 6mm pellets to the aerator for later in the match. If I was struggling for bites the other rod set up was a small Dura feeder for throwing over to the island. So on went three 10mm discs of Warburtons white Toastie, fresh from the bag and squeezed prior to hooking onto a size 18 (0.17mm) Preston KKM-B Preston rapid stop ready rig attached to a 20g Preston ICS match cube. This was feathered in with every cast to avoid an unnecessary plop that could spook a patrolling carp. As bread swells up on the hook some people prefer a long hair but I find no problem with the Preston ready rigs and I haven’t the time to tie my own. 

The first cast produced a Skimmer straight away. Then 5 minutes later I began to catch some Carp and F1’s all on the bread. I had a nice little run of fish in the first hour before it started to slow down and I began to cast around looking for a carp. 

All this time I’d been feeding pellets to the aerator and as the Bread had slowed right down it was time for the change. I changed the Ready Rig over to a banded KKM-B version and first cast to the aerator with a pellet hook bait produced a small F1. This was followed by several more small F1’s but at least I was catching again. I thought I was doing well at this point but I was aware that I was catching only small F1’s and not Carp. Some other anglers now had caught some carp. So I switched back to the bread to see if I could catch another carp. Nothing came from the bread this time so the next decision was either to go back throwing to the aerator with pellets where I had been catching or to start a new line with the Dura feeder over towards the island. I decided not to come off the fishing fish and went back on the bomb and pellet. I stayed there for the rest of the match, feeding a few 6mm pellets after every fish. 

Come the weight in I felt I’d done alright. My fish went to 65lb 4oz which was enough for 3rd place in the match with 100lb winning and 73lb 2nd. 

I don’t ever recall not setting up my pole for a match before. Perhaps I should do this more often. Choosing the right method on the day is really important, which in this case was rods due to the windy weather conditions. If I have set the pole up I know I would have tried it at some point and probably caught very little due to not being able to present the pole rig right in the windy conditions. Successful match fishing is really about fishing the right method and not the method you want to fish on the day.

4th placed at Manor Farm Leisure, Thursday Open


With the week off work I was able to visit Manor Farm Leisure for their Thursday affordable open, held on the Boundary pool this week.I fancied a rod match with the Method and Bomb for a change. But it turned out to be a framing pole match in the end. 

I’d not had a session on the Method or the Bomb for a while and Manor Farm Leisure is one of those venues where these two methods work well. Plus I wanted some more F1 practise on the pole shallow before this coming Saturday’s Supercup semi final up at Tunnel Barn Farm so I set up Method and Bomb rods plus 3 pole rigs, a bottom rig, a shallow rig and an edge rig. 

I started on the Method fishing a 30g Preston Dura feeder loaded with micro pellets and a 6mm pellet on the hook half way across the pool. I had a pull round first chuck which was a small F1 in the first 5 minutes. I thought a good day on the rods was ahead of me. I cast out again and also fed a couple of pouches of 8mm pellets onto a short bomb time to my left just in case the method didn’t produce. But after 45 minutes with no more pull rounds on the rod despite several hook bait changes I threw the rod up the bank and picked up the Bomb rod a cast over the feed area I’d primed earlier.

Nothing happened which is pretty strange for this pool it normally responds well to the pellet and bomb approach. So with an hour and a half already gone in the match, was the pole going to get me some bites? 

I’d been feeding my 13 metre pole line via a cup a couple of times since the start of the match and I went out on the pole line with a banded 6mm hard pellet. After a few minutes I hooked and lost a good carp but I felt there were now some fish in the peg and sure enough after another few minutes I caught a couple of small F1’s. 

I carried on feeding this pole line via a cataplut pinging in 8-10 6mm hard pellets in every few minutes with the veiw of keeping any carp on the bottom, catching a few and then cutting down the feed to hopefully bring them up in the water for the last half of the match. 

My next fish was a big Carp around 8lb in weigh. As I hooked this carp I took my time with it, letting my No.12 Hollo elastic take the strain. I didn’t want to get broken like the first big carp. I was fishing fairly light with a 0.13mm hook lenght so I took my time this time!! 

The next 40 minutes proved to be good and I caught some small Carp and F1’s on the bottom in this period. The bites began to slow down now and I was missing a few bites. So had the fished moved up in the water?? 

I went out with a shallow rig and began slapping for a few shallow feeding F1’s. But as a back up I began feeding the left margin with corn for the last hour if required. The Shallow session proved fruitless I never had a bite for 30 minutes and then I saw a big carp swirl in the margin. So I tried this next.

I was fished the margin for 5 minutes hoping to catch that big carp I’d seen. However the carp in my Keepnets began splashing and this spooked the Carp it also broke the water with a big splash seconds after the carp in my keepnet had splashed. The angler on the next peg then caught a big carp after 5 minutes. Maybe it was the same one?? Anyway I carried on with the margin and I caught a couple of Skimmers. 

This margin was very shallow, only 6 inches deep and after 15 minutes I’d not had a Carp bite and there was only 20 minutes left. So I gave up on this margin and returned to the 13 metre pole line, but back on the bottom and I cataputed in some feed pellets hoping to bring the carp back. 

This worked I hooked a landed another Carp around 8lb after a few minutes and then a couple more F1’s before the all out. 

I ended the match with 42lb which was enough for 4th place in the match. an enjoyable days fishing even though I’d fancied a rod match at the start it was nice to catch some nice F1’s on the hard pellet. 

The bottom rig acounted for all the fish apart from the first Method F1 at the start of the day. 

Bottom Rig – 0.5g Nick Gilbert NG XT finesse HD Carbon pole float set up on 0.15mm Guru N-Gauge main line. a small bulk of no. 8 stotz’s with 2 no. 10 droppers spaced out in 6 inch gaps above a 6 inch 0.13mm hook lenght tied to a size 16 Guru Super LWG banded hook. Set up on a No.12 preston dura hollo elastic.

Lake and Section win, Manor Farm Leisure Sunday Open


This week I visited Manor Farm Leisure for their Sunday Open, this week held on Island, Middle and Windmill pools.I drew on the Windmill pool and with just open water in front of me I set up two pole lines at 13 metres in 6 foot of water left and right and a bomb rod if things got tricky. 

Having caught well the last time here a couple of weeks ago on Boundary pool decided on fishing hard pellets on one line and expander pellet over mirco’s on the other plus a short maggot line in front of me at 7 metres. I started with a 4mm hard pellet and fed in a few 4mm feed pellets and after 10 minutes the float dipped and I was straight into a good fish which was a ghosty around 5lb. I great start! So I re-fed the line with another kinder cup of 4mm pellets and waited for a another, thinking I could be on a shed load of feeding fish. But Sadly that Carp was to be the only carp I caught all day. 

I stayed on the hard pellet line for the next hour but this only produced 3 small F1’s and a few roach but at least I’d had a good start compared with all the other anglers on the pool, hardly anything had been caught my them. 

With the bites slowing down now it was time for a change. So I kinder fed a pot of micro’s into the soft pellet line and fished a 4mm expander over the top. This produced a good Skimmer and a few more roach but no more F1’s so after another 30 minutes I decided to go back on the hard pellet line, but this time I stopped feeding the 4mm pellets and changed to feeding small balls of micro pellet, (squashed balls because of the depth of water) This seemed to do the trick and I began catching small F1’s again in between a few roach and skimmers. 

I then hooked a larger carp which I think was foul hooked as the elastic ploughed out. I played it very gently as it looked like the section would be won with a low weight today. I got it all the way down to my top two but then the hook pulled out. 

By this time the match was going into the last hour and I guessed compared to all the other anglers I could see I was doing OK and a section win was on the cards. I felt with the last hour the fish would come on the feed so I stopped feeding the mirco pellet and began to feed hard 4mm pellets. I was right the F1’s did begin to feed in the last hour and I went on to catch several more in the next hour. 

At the weigh in I was last to weigh in my section. I had 23lb to beat. Luckly I placed 24lb 6oz on the scales to win the pool and the section. 

The match was actually won with 70lb off the Middle pool and my section win wasn’t even enough to get into the top six finishers. So today I probably drew on the wrong pool and a section win was only the realistic option. 

Pellet rig – 0.6g Nick Gilbert NG XT Deano Diamond wire on 0.15mm Guru N-Gauge main line. A bulk of no.8 shot 18 inches from the hook length with 3 no.10 dropper shot at 5 inch gaps above a 6 inch 0.13mm Guru N-Gauge hook length with a size 18 SLWG banded hook. Set up to a no.12 Preston hollo elastic. 

Open match win, Manor Farm Leisure Sunday Open


This Sunday I visited Manor Farm Leisure for their open on Island and Windmill pools. This match was winter fishing at its hardest. 2 degrees and heavy snow, sleet and rain for the whole day. 

I drew on Island 6 and throw out the bomb with bread at the all in. I caught a small F1 in the first 20 minutes. But after an 1 hour that was my sum total of fish. So time for the pole at 13 metres. I’d been feeding maggots during the time on the bomb but I was just catching the odd small Roach and Perch. Things weren’t really going to plan. I decided two feed a new pole line with micro pellet, fishing a 4mm expander over the top but I never had a bite. So I went back on the bomb and bread but a little further out but the rod still never pulled round.

So I decided to go back to the maggot line. At least I was getting the odd small fish. The other anglers were all struggling, so it was a case of putting a few fish in the net, even though they were small. This time I decided to feed the maggots heavier and this did start to produce a better stamp of fish and I was catching better sized Roach. So I continued the feed the maggots heavier hoping to draw in a Carp. I caught a good Skimmer next about 2lb so the heavier feeding seemed to be working and I still hoped for a carp to come.

After an hour doing this I caught some nice Roach but the angler on the next peg had now caught 3 good sized Carp. So these silvers weren’t going to get me anywhere. So will 45 minutes left in the match I picked up the Bomb rod, changed to a 6mm hard pellet and throw it out even further out, having only 45 minutes left. Would the gamble work? 

Well after 10 minutes the rod pulled round and 5 minutes later I had a carp around 7lbs in the keepnet. I throw out again and then a had a small tap on the tip and then then a drop back bite. I lifted into the bite and the rod arc’d round which resulted in a small F1 around 2lb. 

With 30 minutes left in the match I was finally catching fish. A low winning weight was on the cards because of the horrible weather so I hoped for a couple more carp and during this time a caught a big F1 and another carp round 4lb. So the gamble paid off today with the late Carp but the 5lb of silvers during the mid part of the match were very important as they got me over the line today.

Bomb rig – 10ft Preston mini plus bomb rod and 2508 Daiwa TDR reel loaded with 6lb Daiwa XT mono to a 10g Preston ICS inline match cube with a 15 inch 0.17mm Guru N-Gauge hook length with a size 16 Guru QM1 hook banded with a 6mm hard pellet

Open match win, Manor Farm Leisure, Thursday affordable open


Using up a few days holiday from work before the end of the year meant I was able to visit Manor Farm Leisure for their mid week affordable open. I drew Windmill 34 in the shallows with only a 3 foot depth of water. But with a few days of mild winter weather I was still confident of catching a few fish.

I decided to fish in the deepest part of the peg I could find, 13 metres slightly to my left with expander pellets over micro’s. With it being relatively mild I pumped up some 6mm Ringers Next Generation expander pellets and also a few 4mm’s if it was hard going. A pint of maggots were the back up bait if things got really hard as the recent winning weights have been very low at this venue for several weeks.

I started on a 6mm expander and kindered in some mirco’s to see how it was going to fish. I had a good start catching 5 small F1’s and a few skimmers in the first hour. Then it slowed down and I had a switch to a maggot line I’d been feeding to my right at 13 metres. This line was just producing small Roach every put in and not really weight builders. I tried my maggot rig over the pellet line that I’d been feeding but this still produced the small Roach.

So it was time for a change. I’d caught some F1’s and a few Skimmers with the 6mm expander. I tried a 4mm expander but I was still catching the small Roach. So I decided to big cup in half a 250ml cup of micro’s into the pellet line. This did the trick, as after 10 minutes I attracted and landed a Carp around 4lb. 

So I began topping up the pellet line with mirco’s after every fish, getting some bait into the swim even though it was December! The fish were feeding and I caught several more F1’s, Skimmers and Roach during the next hour. 

Going into the 3rd hour I struck into something bigger, which turned out to be a Carp around 8lb. I’d decided to fish a 12 elastic as there are some big Carp in this pool and the 12 elastic gave me half a chance. Taking your time on these bonus fish in winter is very important and I let it tire out for several minutes letting the elastic take the strain before bringing it into netting range. 

I was beginning to build a good weight now and all my fish had come from the same line. I was thinking about resting this line and trying the short pellet line I’d been feeding as back up soon. But after another 10 minutes I was into another good Carp which was about 5lb this time. Again I let the elastic take the strain before nettting it. 

At this point in the match all was going OK so I decided to stay on the same line for the rest of the match. The fish didn’t seem to be bothered about the pole over the heads despite the swim only being 3 foot deep. I was catching Carp, small F1’s, Skimmers and Roach and all was good. 

Going into the last hour I landed a couple more good Carp around 4lb each and some more F1’s, Skimmers with the odd Roach. 

At the end of the match I weighed in 64lb 8oz for the match win. This was a brilliant winning weight for the 2nd week in December. I’d had bites all day from the same line. This day was one of my most enjoyable matches of the year and I was very pleased with my winning weight of 64lb which also was the best winning weight at the complex for several weeks. I just wish I could fish it more often but I have to work full time.

Pellet Rig – 0.3g Nick Gilbert XT finesse Carbon HD pole float set up on 0.15mm Guru N-Gauge main line with several no.10 stotz’s at 2 cm gaps just above a 6 inch 0.12mm Silstar matchteam hook lenght will a size 16 B911 F1 spade end hook. On a No.12 Preston Dura Hollo elastic.