Today we were on Pool 1 and with 18 anglers on the 30 pegs it should fish well. I drew peg 18, not a known flyer but in the right area. There was a mixture of sun and cloud and there was a really strong breeze blowing towards peg 30. I was in a funny area of the lake, the next few pegs i.e. 19 onwards are much shallower, maybe 18″ to 2 foot shallower on the 5 metre line and I was afraid that I probably couldn’t compete with Carpy Marty on Peg 20 (19 was empty).
Last year if I’d drawn this peg in these conditions I’d have opened 6 tins of corn and have expected to open another 6 before the match was over, on Tuesday I opened two tins. This year really is completely different. Last year we had a long hot summer, this year we’re still waiting for it to begin. We have a few hot days and then on 1st of August some parts of the country have a frost !!. I’m convinced that last year was perfect conditions for corn fishing, the water temperature stayed high for weeks on end and the fish just couldn’t eat enough. This year if you shovel it in you’ll be in the also-rans, those fish just don’t want lots of corn.
Knowing this I started out feeding with hemp plus a few grains of corn in the toss pot. I was getting odd bites from the start although when I caught a brown goldfish followed by a tiny skimmer I suspected that things weren’t going well. Suddenly, although the wind hadn’t changed direction or speed, the water started towing strongly against the wind. The fish turned on immediately and once you worked out where exactly your bait was settling on the bottom it was a fish a chuck. After an hour or so the tow just stopped…just like that. I suspect that tow or no tow in lakes is as much a mystery as kicks on the snooker table or a cricket ball swinging in the air. We know what conditions are needed in as much as for a lake to tow it has to be windy, for a cricket ball to swing it has to be overcast but that’s only half the story. It can be windy yet the lake doesn’t tow, it can be overcast but the cricket ball doesn’t swing . So now the tow which had started so suddenly stopped just as abruptly and the fish went back to being super cagey.
Roy wandered along (no lessons this time, he just just sat on the bank and started to nod off) but before that he asked if I’d got 150 lb to which I replied oh yeah. I caught a few more whilst he was there and finally weighed in 128 lbs…I told you that I was crap at knowing what I’d caught !. Carpy Marty slaughtered me with 180 lbs from peg 20 and Baz Wrexham also beat me off the end peg with around 145 lb from end peg 30. The other section was won by Sconey with the only 200 lb weight of the day.
One last thought. With about 10 minutes to go in the match my hemp bowl was empty so rather than refill it I switched to feeding just corn in the pot. I then proceeded to hook and lose four lumps on the trot, all foul hooked. Feeding hemp with just a few grains of corn I was getting good bites and hardly any foul-hookers. Once I dramatically increased the quantity of corn then the fish obviously started charging around rather than grazing. A very graphic demonstration of what I think is happening at the Glebe at the moment.