River Isle – Royal Oak Winter League 3 – 20th November 2011

With no rain to speak of in the week, the river was going to be low and clear once again and Rob had done the right thing by putting in all the pegs at Redbridge and Isle Brewers. All the pegs were capable of doing good weights and I really fancied 120, 124 or 126. The only peg I didn’t really fancy was 128 but Heardy drew that and wasn’t too amused. I pulled out 124 and was well chuffed as it’s been framing every time it’s been in. Could I end my bad run at last?

I got to my peg and it looked really nice, a bend with lots of reed cover on the far bank and odd small fish topping. I got myself comfy and only had time to set ‘Ole faithful’ up before the start. First put in with caster on I had a minnow and then had minnow bites every run down, even on double caster. I was soon reaching for my tub of lobbies, I put half a worm on and went back out. I was still getting loads of knocks from minnows and was just thinking it could be a struggle when I hooked and landed a good chub of 2lb 8oz and I was on my way. In the last few matches on this peg people have caught a couple of chub and lost fish as well so I knew there were a few more about and there were still four and a half hours to go!

After my decent start I soon reverted to struggling though and minnows were being a real pain, even taking the worm. I kept at it because I knew a couple of chub could show up at any time but after two hours I had only added minnows to the chub and was trying all over the swim. I’d been feeding quite heavily with casters, maggots and hemp to try and feed the little blighters off, it worked to a certain degree but I still couldn’t catch anything else either! Then out of the blue I had a small dace in the flow and started picking up odd small roach on single caster by running the float through. I would get a couple before the minnows moved back in so it was back to lobbie against the far bank cover. I had a good bite and a decent amount of elastic streamed out of the pole, it felt like a decent chublet but as I got it half way across the bloody hook pulled out!

I went back to catching the odd roach and had a couple of slightly better ones but it was short lived. My next bite by the cover saw me hook a beast that tore off before coming off, when I lifted the rig out, there was scale on the hook and things were going pear shaped very quickly. I did manage a chublet of 12oz-1lb but I have to confess I never had a bite and the fish was on when I lifted the rig up! With an hour and a half to go I still fancied I might get another chance and upped my feed to try and make something happen. Apart from a couple more small fish I had no more action and packed up feeling really deflated. I thought I had about 3-4lb and knew it wouldn’t be enough to end my dismal run.

I walked down to weigh Steve Parker in on 125 and he’d really struggled for 1lb 1oz but it didn’t really affect me as my section was in with pegs 106, 108 and 120. I weighed 4lb 2oz and felt I’d cocked up a good peg which has been doing 6-7lb every match. Heardy arrived back at the cars moaning, but he still did 5lb 10oz. Leighton had 8lb 9oz from 126 and looked like he might make it two wins out of two. Rob turned up from the top section and Neil hadn’t weighed from 106, Graham had a level 2lb from 108 and Rob had a nice day in 120, weighing 8lb 5oz to make it a Cox family one-two. So my terrible run continues although I did score two section points to keep me in contention in the league.

1 – Leighton Cox (Ilminster) – 8lb 9oz
2 – Robin Cox (Ilminster) – 8lb 5oz
3 – Martin Heard (Tiverton) – 5lb 10oz

In the league Martin leads this one as well as the V.E.S., with me and Rob second on three points. Tune in next week to see if I can finish November with a flourish or if the bad run keeps chugging along.

Right I’m off to do a rain dance!


Posted by Jamie Rich

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