Session 67 – A Match Not Made In Heaven

Saturday 10th December I was up at 0500 in order to be ready by 0615 for my lift to a club match being held on the River Severn at Hampton Loade. The draw wasn’t due to 0800 but one of the entrants was recovering from a heart attack sustained just over a month before and my lift (the match organiser) and I went down early in order that we could get his gear down to his swim for him and check he was going to be OK… The draw for peg for the guy had been made the night before in order that we could make the arrangement to meet up with him to get all in order…

Anyway, there were 24 of us fishing on the day with a £10 entry fee and prizes for 1st, 2nd and 3rd places plus a £10 prize for the last-but-one (ie anyone not weighing in was ‘last’ so effectively it was a prize for the lowest weight actually weighed in) from half the entry monies paid in with the other going to charity. And, unfortunately, the charity was ‘decided’ for us in the preceding couple of weeks of the match by idiots and morons :(

One of our committee members has a son who visits a centre for people with difficulties although that is by-the- by… and those aforementioned ‘wonderful’ people (idiots and morons) decided to pay a night time visit and smash up their club house and pour engine oil over the presents that had been prepared by the members to give each other, etc….

So the charity proceeds of the match are going to the organiser’s of that club – and the angling club members have also added the ‘restoration’ fund via personal donations and public appeals have also added and it seems that recovery is well in hand, at least financially, now. And hopefully some sort of normality can return to the affected club and its organisers and members. I just hope that the deviants that caused the damage get caught and punished appropriately ….

So let’s get to the fishing…

The day started with quite nice mild and calm weather and the river looking in excellent trim and it was expected that there would be some good catches with barbel showing – and a guy who fished the day previous had had a good catch of barbel and chub which added to the anticipation. My own peg was looking great with 3 distinct areas from ‘in the flow’, ‘mid flow’ and ‘the reed/bush lined margins’… However, the weather forecast had said that there would be heavy rain from midday and they were spot on… so the last 2-3 hours were a bit damp….

For the first couple of hours I fished the outer 2 swims with a feeder loaded with bread mash with added maggot and hemp with bread or cheesepaste on the hook. And whilst doing this I loose fed small but frequent balls of the mash/hemp/maggot mix down the margin line…. and after a couple of hours of no nudges let alone a decent take I switched to a light (3 x 2SSG) link ledger approach with bread, worm and maggot baits fished down the margins about 1-3 rod lengths out…

And what did I catch – well, a few leaves and had 3 possible nudges (but suspect leaves catching the line)… :(

And the match overall – was won with one 6+lb barbel – a solo 5lb 5oz chub taking 2nd place – and third place went to a 5lb catch…. in fact, the TOTAL weight of the field was only a little over 19lb with 9 weighings in – and the last-but-one was won with 1oz J.

Oh well…  :)

Next week? The gear still being wet from the downpour I think I’ll give Tuesday a miss – have some Xmas stuff to sort out anyway so that will give me chance to do those preps. Maybe Friday I’ll get out … And my Waterways Wanderer card arrived a few days ago so a possibility I might grab a couple of hours with a lure on the local ‘urban/industrialised’ Black Country canal system. Also, I had my 2017 Birmingham Anglers’ Association card come through as well… so will have to keep fishing for another 12 months … despite the famous Fred J. Taylor comment made in the foulest of conditions … ‘I’ll be glad when I’m fed up with doing this…’  God Bless, FJT!!

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