During the early 16th century a explorer by the name of Ferdinand Magellan decided to up sticks for a while and with the knowledge that it was impossible to sail of the edge of the world took his ship to the west coast of South America and sailed south. He ended up at a place he named himself called Tierra Del Fuego. Tierra Del Fuego is an archipelago at South America’s southern most tip. This Island group contains the famous Cape Horn and is home to the southern most settlements on earth out side Antarctica. The climate at these latitudes can only be described as cruel. The place is whiplashed by gale force winds and soaked by rain most of the time, the temperature rarely achieves 9 degrees in summer. The weather of Tierra Del Fuego has the classification by the meteorologists as a sub polar oceanic climate. This inhospitable climate has the same characteristics as the weather in the Faroes Islands and northern Iceland.
Whilst there old Ferdo come across the native indigenous people called the Yaghan . Now these people were a very remarkable people indeed, they were remarkable not for any ground breaking scientific discoveries or that they built vast cities adorned with the latest technological achievements. No it was quite the opposite, they were remarkable by how extremely primitive they were. So primitive in fact that there wore little or no cloths, this could be deemed a money saver by the outside world, but alas this concept was completely lost on these people because they hadn’t even discovered currency either. These people were renowned for their complete indifference to the cold weather. These guys were often observed to sleep in the open completely unsheltered while the Europeans explorers shivered under blankets. This strange way of life came about because over time the Yaghan people had developed a significantly higher metabolism than the average humans allowing them to generate more internal heat thus helping them to combat the harsh conditions.
Well the match fished by the intrepid members of the Watchet Angling club on Saturday January the 8th could of done with the same DNA as the above members of the Yaghan tribe. For the weather that had to be endured at the Combwich match lake could only be described as sub polar oceanic. The wind howled, the rain poured and the knife sharp cold made a persistent presence. In other words and to cut straight to the ordinary bare bones language the weather was crap, very crap, bloody awful. So the six anglers who’d seemed that they had nothing better else to do may have lacked some of the DNA of the Yaghan people but this was probably counter balanced by the so called insanity gene.
The draw for the match was a rover or what some people refer to as a London draw.
so the order of choice of peg to fish was as follows.
First on the day and no stranger to top position was ” I’ve got a new pair of water proofs” Paul Smith. Paul had a really cracking weight owing to the so called inclement weather of 9 lb 6oz. Top angler Paul fished at 13 meters with pinkie over F1 dark ground bait.
In second place was none other than renowned silvers basher Dave Nash. Pinkie over once again F1 ground bait did the trick. Dave fished at varying distances and to his left. Dave ‘s not to be snubbed at weight was a healthy 5 lb 6oz.
With a jaw dropping 7oz yours truly found himself in a very remote 3rd place. I struggled at first (obviously) but after observing small fish topping I played the get out of jail card, I put on a very light rig and proceeded with a tactic which one see as damage limitation. I ended up with between 40 and 50 fish which appeared to be Bleak and Minnow hybrids. These microscopic creatures were lured to my keep net with pinkie and a Sensas ground bait could Ablettes.
Alan Bland our much beloved match secretary decided on a swim at the opposite end to the car park. Now Alan did catch fish, unfortunately they were Carp and our winter league being a silvers only did not count. But Mr Bland did manage to catch one small Rudd which was estimated to be 3/4 oz. The little beast got Alan 4th spot.
Poor poor Dave Colley our much liked NHS hero had a torrid time. So much in fact that he couldn’t even muster a bite. Hence total weight of fish was zero. Poor Dave who now resides in Bristol hence he has a bit of a drive to get to some of the matches, summed it up “it made no difference to my weight if I stayed here or stayed at home”. But what ever the outcome he always wears a smile and certainly flies the flag for the “lets give it ago brigade”.
Eric Searle who decided to fish the opposite bank to most other people gave up the ghost an hour before the end. But one most give this guy some credit to turn up in the first place.
For it must be said that Eric does suffers from poor health and to last as long as he did in the appalling weather should be an effort of note. So see you next match mate.
With the match finished and most of the gear packed away it was time for the end of the match chin wag. The main topic was where to fish the next match. Well a few suggestions were made such as the KSD or the canal, I even suggested the South drain at Shapwick. But it seems likely now that conditions permitting it could be Gold Corner either on the Huntspill itself or the Cripps river. But failing that owing to our ability to endure there is always the southern tip of South America and the wonderful Tierra Del Fuego.
Once again the unsung heroes have been out and been applying their charitable efforts to improving the swims at Dunwear ponds. This jolly gang has greatly improved the gate swim which is located at the back of railway pit and is the swim nearest to the entrance on Sedgemoor road. The swim has been widen considerably and has been raked and cleared of most debris. Even up to the bank to the left which backs on to houses were a boat was needed. So once again guys a big big thank you from all concerned.
It must be stressed the above people were not the entire gang, at the time this photo was taken there was some more volunteers improving the aptly name High Up swim on railway pit, so it hats of to them as well.
Well that all folks, take care and don’t forget to change your cloths.
Tight lines Pete C.