Acorn Fishery – Open – 23rd March 2024

I embarked on a few fishing marathons last year including five matches on the trot and also seven competitions in nine days. Well with some time off, I’ve decided to take it even further, ten matches in twelve days!!! Now I realise I’m an elite, honed, angling athlete but could this be a bridge too far? Will somebody find me sat by a pond somewhere, striking at imaginary bites and mumbling to myself?

To kick off this frenzy of fishing, we were at Acorn for another of Chris Fox’s opens and just for a change the forecast was for 40 mph winds!! I was hoping to draw somewhere on the near side, 34, 38 or 40 would be just lovely please. By the time I reached the bag of hope, Nick had already got bridge peg 40, I pulled out number 4 on Rayet’s island and no prizes for guessing who was next door on 5!

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With it being so windy, I set up two Preston Innovations F1 Maggots to just fish a couple of lines at top two plus three (straight out and angled to the right where it was a bit shallower) and also a shorter line at four sections. The side tray contained lots of maggots plus some Bait-Tech Special G F1 and Dark groundbait.

As I went to plumb up, the rig was in the edge and when I lifted up, a carp was on and ran me ragged before snapping me! On the whistle, I fed all three swims the same with some groundbait and maggots before starting at top two plus three straight out. I had a positive bite after a few minutes and got off the mark with a nice little tench of a pound. Another followed shortly after and I was getting quite a few indications.

After sixty minutes I had four tench (with one around 3lb), two skimmers and a nice roach for 6-7lb. Then I lost what felt like a foulhooked tench before landing a skimmer hooked up the bum and from doing well, I was struggling until a lovely 5lb tench salvaged a poor second hour to put me on around 12lb.

Kev Perry who was on peg 1 had to answer the call of nature and said he was struggling and only had about 3lb of silvers and a few carp. Along with the horrendous wind we had some rain and even hailstones at one point which was rather unpleasant. The conditions made it really difficult to get any kind of decent presentation and it looked like it was fishing hard. On the plus side I wasn’t hooking many carp although I did land one near double figure fish hooked in the wing.

Even Martin next door, who knows every fish in peg 5 by name, wasn’t bagging by his usual standards but he did hold up a big tench to show me (I think he said its name was Trevor!). I tried the right hand line and had a nice roach but it was slow going there as well, the top kit plus two swim was a waste of time and despite trying it several times during the day, I never had a bite there.

Another big tench was very welcome but I also pulled out of two decent skimmers. With around an hour to go, I tried the slightly deeper rig on the right hand line, thinking extra line on the bottom might help presentation. A skimmer and two 1lb+ tench had me cursing I hadn’t tried it earlier but then a spell of missed bites followed so I went back on the other line.

The float buried and I was into what felt like a good tench but the hook pulled so I decided to spend the remaining ten minutes on the shallower line. Time was running out and I was praying for one more chance and with a couple of minutes left, a lovely bite resulted in lots of elastic out but the fish wasn’t doing a lot. As I carefully shipped back it came off and there was slime all up the hooklength and I’m sure it wasn’t hooked properly – gutted.

That was the last of the action and it was a relief to get through the match without any pole breakages or gear getting blown in the lake! I finished up with 20 silvers (tench, skimmers and roach) plus four carp and a carassio. As we waited for the scales, Nick said he’d had some nice tench but had pulled out of several as well.

The scales made their way onto the island, starting with Kev Perry on peg 1, he weighed 46lb 13oz (including 6lb 15oz of silvers), Glenn C had 16lb 1oz of silvers (and 33lb 6oz of carp) and then it was me, my carp went 19lb 3oz and my silvers weighed 23lb 5oz but I was sure it wouldn’t be enough and lost fish were going to cost me. Martin R then had two nets of carp and a few silvers for 114lb 3oz which would see him qualify for the Ace of Acorn final.

Nick had 15lb 11oz of silvers and when the other weigh board came back, Paul Faiers had weighed 15lb 1oz on peg 29 and there had been several 12-13lb silvers weights as well.

1 – Martin Rayet (Acorn) – 114lb 3oz
2 – Chris Harrison (Acorn) – 62lb 11oz

A – Dave Manning (Acorn) – 76lb 7oz
B – Mike Hill (Acorn) – 48lb 3oz
C – Mike Tommey (Acorn) – 31lb 8oz
D – Mark Williams (Acorn) – 76lb 3oz

Jamie Rich (Against Men and Fish) – 23lb 5oz

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So I managed to win the silvers and had a nice pick up of £55 but this weather is doing my head in now, it’s never ending and spring feels like an awfully long way off at the moment.

There’s still a great offer running if you fancy treating yourself to some new fishing gear, use the exclusive discount code AgainstMenandFish10 to get 10% off when you shop online at Somerset Angling

Also I still have copies of my book available from eBay here or Amazon here


And if you could spare five minutes to leave a nice review on Amazon, it would be very much appreciated.

Next up – Bird’s Quarry

Coming soon – Lots more match reports

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Posted by Jamie Rich

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