The venue for the clash of Titans of the angling word for the 4th round of the Watchet angling winter league was the River Tone on the fast stretch. Talking to other members of the Watchet clan it could be deemed a marimite venue you either like it or loathe it. Now I’ve only fished once before about 3 years ago. What I caught that very uneventful day was a bit of wood, a handle from a shopping basket and some ones sock (an orange one). I packed up after an hour after I came to the conclusion that the swim was 90% snags 10% water. Now the week running up to a fishing match I normally go in to I can’t wait or I am looking forward to it mode. But not this week. Looking for clues and tips of how to fish the venue I had the most helpful of facts Your best bet is a wind beater or pike bunk with arsley bombs knotted down the line oh best bait moth ball. You see some people can be the most obliging.
So it was up to tackle shop manager of Somerset Angling the one and only Mr Steve Kedge who put me right by suggesting the stick float and main bait maggot. Keep flicking maggots in and keep constantly changing depths to find the fish. So this was the main plan of attack in fact it was the only plan.
So come Saturday morning the Alarm goes of I have a choice of 2 things to do.
Now just let me just wonder of a little, how many people remember Quinn Martin Or heard of a Quinn Martin production only people over a certain will probably remember. The guy Mr martin was the person responsible for some classic American Tv series such The streets of San Francisco and Cannon. Now what impressed me about these programes was the introduction and the theme music. But what really intrigued me was the format of these introductions the narration part It would introduce the main actors of the series and then the guest stars but get this at the end part of the intro it would say and starring special guest star. Have a look at this video and you will see what I mean.
Now some of the anglers of the club had a challenge even before fishing started even before the draw. The task of how to unlock the gate so it was up to yours truly to go back up the track and show 3 anglers how to use a combination lock.
After the gate episode the draw took place I drew peg 8 I was then suitably informed that peg 8 was the wait for it. Big drum roll here. The Snag swim. My mind immediately started feeding me images of bits of wood, shopping baskets and orange socks. I started to enquire what time was the early kick of in the premiership was because there was a possibility of me watching it in the pub.
However I ambled to peg 8 with my gear to be greeted by a swim close to a weir.
So using a stick float I began to to the trot through the swim right up to the weir. Within 10 minutes I had my first fish a roach around 10 minutes in but then it became very slow on the hour of 11 I hook a fish a so called minnow. Wow but they all count. At 12 oclock I had a visit by John Barker and Dave Nash. Dave informed me he had 3 chub and John said he just had one roach and that he was thinking of packing up. Which he duly did at 12:30 a guy of his angling talent if he packs up early you can be assured he had a crap swim. Any way I ended the match with 5lb 4oz which consisted of 3 chub and a few bits. All on maggot.
|1st||Vic Bush||17lb 4oz||2|
|2nd||Eric Searle||12lb 14oz||5|
|5th||Rob Dodd||6lb 2oz||4|
|6th||Pete Curnow||5lb 4oz||8|
|7th||Phil Dodd||1lb 8oz||3|
The pegging was that pegs 1 2 and 3 were to the left of the car park peg 4 was closest to the viaduct or bridge and 5 was around the corner before the first weir and so on up the straight to peg8 ( my peg) before the next weir.
Vic Bush’s wining weight was achieved on the stick float also at times on a avon float and in is own words the bait was “the good old maggot” . Well done Vic.
Eric in second also used a Stick float with maggot but caught one on the feeder.
Alan in 3rd used a barbel trotter was also on maggot. And like wise for the rest of us also rans it was mostly The stick float and maggot
Conclusion As stated before in the beginning of this blog that this venue is classed by some as Marmite. Well my thoughts are, okay I caught fish and it was nice to catch a chub I have not caught one for a long time. But the nature of the water can be a cause for irritation. When float fishing on this water you trot down, the float would go under and I would hook a snag. Now do this a few times of trotting down and hooking snags can be a bit tedious. Then when you trot down again the float disappears you think it a snag and instead you hook a fish. This aspect to me was to some effect very disappointing. Alright because we live now in the age of the commercial fishery some of us are some what spoiled with what these venues produce and the creature comforts that they bring, So with me the jury’s still out and in my humble opinion this is why. I don’t fish this venue all that often and on this river I lack certain skills to be prolific on it. My areas where I lack the skills are 1) accurate casting with a stick float and 2) precision feeding in reference to the flow. Feeding to avoid the snags is crucial and getting the feed to the right spot is most important. So my thoughts are it a specialist type of venue and I don’t fish it often enough to make a judgement and to you anglers who are consistent framers on this water I take my hat of to you.
Finally to remind you guys about a match I am arranging to be fished on the 24th of December, Christmas Eve the venue will on the KSD at Parchay the reserve venue will be on the canal at Fordgate. Draw 9 o’clock. Fishing from 10 until 3. I am paying peg fees and the prize money in the kitty will be £70. I have a few names already. The cut of for entries will Tuesday 17th December mid night. Any late entries will not be tolerated and phrases like, I could probably make it put my name down just in case and I might turn up it depends and variants of these phrases will be classed as definite NO’s . Yes means yes and no means no there is no in between. This match is open to Watchet anglers only. If I don’t see you guys before have a Merry Christmas and a happy new year,