Saturday, 24 June 2017

24 June 2017, Syndicate Lake (Gold Valley)

Today was to be the second part of one of those things of real beauty – a double-double weekend, double pub (Friday and Saturday) and double fishing (Saturday and Sunday)!!! The venue for pubbage was The Mill in Haslemere and the venue for (attempted) angling heroics was the world famous Gold Valley lakes in Aldershot ...
Syndicate Lake, peg 136
Today’s match saw 14 keen anglers line the far bank of Syndicate Lake – being a simple rectangle with few obvious features the fish tend to follow a warm wind on this lake and as a result a peg as close as possible to the far corner (119) was the order of the day. As a result I drew 136, pretty much as far away as I could get! (In all fairness Dave Carter (140) and Geoff Miles (139) were to my left so I didn’t pick the worst peg in the bag.)
Bits and bobs
I hadn’t fished this lake for nearly two years before today but typically the anglers that fish it feed lots of 8mm pellets via catapults and as a result the fish seem to live somewhere between the central rope and the 25m line – following suit I settled on a simple rod and line only attack and went with just the following:
  • A pellet waggler set-up consisting of my 11’ Daiwa Tournament waggler rod, a Daiwa TDR 4012 loaded with 6lb (0.21mm) Guru Pulse Line, a 5g (to start with at least) Drennan Shorty pellet waggler and a 90cm hooklength of 0.17 Guru N-Gauge into a size 16 MWG with a hair-rigged band
  • A legering arrangement featuring a 10’ Daiwa Airity tip rod, another Daiwa TDR 4012 (this time loaded with 8lb Daiwa Sensor) and a 120cm leader made-up from 10lb (0.30mm) Drennan Supplex fluorocarbon fitted with a simple loop to take a variety of Guru X-Safe legering devices (mainly a 24g method feeder and a 19g in-line lead)
The view to the left
My basic plan of attack was to fish the pellet waggler front-to-back today but on the off chance that I could nick an early fish whilst feeding-up the 25m line I actually kicked-off with a quick chuck to the rope with a method feeder. After less than two minutes my tip rod had doubled-over and by 11:05 I had nearly ten pounds in the net – perhaps I’d drawn a flyer after all?!?
Costly brambles
No indications on casts two and three saw me switch to the pellet waggler and the next hour was actually pretty good – three more carp in the net and one lost on the brambles to my left (more of which later). I had to strike at the first bite but the next three all pulled the rod whilst I was reaching for my catapult – as peg 136’s platform is set quite high off the water and I nearly lost my rod twice as a result of the way I had to set my rod rest!
The view to the right
The next hour was pretty slow with just one more on the waggler and the hour after that was even slower as there was no action at all! As I had quite tall bushes either side I couldn’t actually see any other anglers, but occasionally I could see Perry Stones’ waggler and Geoff Miles' pole – Perry however popped-over at one point to say that he was blanking and that he was going to pack-up (though he didn’t, more of which later).
Fish eye
Going into the final hour I was starting to lose heart but I kept feeding and kept casting my waggler, the reward being two more carp (in three casts) at about 15:10 and yet another fish lost on the nearside brambles at about 15:30. I decided to spend the last ten minutes on the straight lead over the pellet waggler line to see if any fish were hoovering-up pellets on the bottom – just as I was washing-out a couple of bait boxes I thought I could hear a funny noise and looking round I could see that my rod was hooped-over and the clutch was spinning at ten to the dozen!!!
Not quite enough!
In the end my eight carp went 54-12-0, agonisingly close to Perry Stones’ section winning 61-12-0, those lost fish really costing me – just one of them hitting the net might’ve been enough for a notable scalp and a pick-up! (Perry caught all of his fish from his margin in the last hour.) Meanwhile on the downwind part of the match Mark Eves won the day with a whopping 196lb, Tommy Hiller was second with 177-8-0 and there were another four weights in excess of 90lb – in fact the section formed from pegs 120 to 129 weighed 887lb, whereas my section (130 to 140) only weighed 209lb!!!
Until next time ...

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