With the family off out hunting for the day with the horses, I was due to be sitting on my rear in front of the box, or pottering about the house / workshop, Im not into all this horse riding stuff, I was told about the New Years day open on my previous visit but decided to leave it open as it depended heavily on the previous nights festivities.

Well the previous might was a good takeaway a couple of bottles of the fizzy stuff and a few bers so it wasnt too heavy I decided to get up early throw my kit in the van and get off to colemans.

I took a nice leisurly drive down to the fishery about 40 miles, the roads were so empty even more so than a Sunday, I noticed all the lakes and ponds en route were frozen so wasnt too keen going on the last visit here.

On arrival at the car park I was pleasently suprised with the amount of cars there that meens another good turnout although a queue for brekkie, and going on the previous Saturdays match it was sure to put a smile on a few faces.

I order up my brekkie and go and take a seat with Bob Jarvis, Chatting to Bob he tells me Martin Amos was on his way but as usual he was late, I have never seen Martin early for a match, in fact every match I have been on that he has been on, he is always the last to his peg sometimes with just minutes to spare, it never seems to phase him he just takes it all in his stride.

Its time to draw as Martin turns up I then hear "what peg you want Martin" he replies to Bob "26" I draw and get peg 16 its a nice peg and can often throw up a few fish Bob gets 18 a peg I previously drew and in goes Martin, peg 26 good angler on one of the best pegs normally = fishing for second , 26 has won the last few matches with peg 25 being close.

I get to my peg and set up, I put on the normal wilkie pellet for the bottom of the far shelf thats around 13mtres I use a .3gram .15 mainline with a .13 hooklength and a size 18 G pellet, its about 6ft deep, but .3 is ample with this type of float, and a smaller rig set for exact depth up the shelf at 16m

At the off I introduce a small cup of micro's with a dozen maggots on both lines and go right down my peg and cup in a dozen maggots.

I look up and pegs 18,25 and 26 all have fish on, good sign I think, then the float slips away I hook one only to have the hook pull, I sit and wait, not a bite,
by this time Martin on 26 is getting a few peg 25 seems to be catching well and Bob on 18 had had 5, now we are 2 hours in and I have only had 1 bite.

I desperatly want to feed again but the last 2 matches have proven that this has a detremental effect on the peg Bob has fed again in 18 and has stopped catching, my peg cant get any worse so I decide to cup in 6 maggots, I drop my rig over the top and wait, today Im using a milo bar I knew it was going to be hard and to be fair its cold and holding 16 metres all day in this cold is going to be a killer, I got distracted for a second look back and wheres my float ?. strike and have a fish on

Its only a pasty but boy did it warm me up I played that fish as if it was a 10 pounder on an .8 hooklength, its in the office now I have some renewed enthusiasm, I wait again and nothing, I put another 6 maggots out and within a few minutes I get another bite 15 minutes later I have a healthy looking 6 pounder in the net.

I sit and wait eagerly for another, By this time Bob is getting worried he is feeding to keep in front but going on the bend in his pole possibly too much, Im still waiting for a bit but it doesnt come, I opt to put another 6 maggots in, and low and behold another fish, you seeing a pattern emerge here because I sure am.

I countinued this untill the end, it wasnt fast by any meens but a few maggots seem to stir up a little confidence amongst the fish and stimulate a few into feeding. Also it seemed like fishing the rig for down the shelf halfway up it gave me around a foot of line on the deck, this meant my hookbait was perfectly stationary thats what they seemed to want and may explain why the bomb was productive here for me a week ago. it resulted in more confident bites and very well hooked fish.

I ended up with 28lb 12oz I have taken the lead 13lb up untill now was top, Bob had 19lb we walk around to peg 25 and 26, 25 weighed in 30lb that was close and Martin took the honours from 26 with a real tidy 61lb, I ended the day 3rd for the first envelope of the new year
so close to second, the 2 fish I lost during the day could have made the difference.

A good start to the year, lets hope it continues

I Have the Milo league at Lake John on the 4th I hope I can sort that one out

JC