MFS - Stafford Moor - Open Match, 1st March 2013

17 of us decided to stay on the extra day to fish an open match were the carp now count.  It was a welcome later draw at 9am as it was a late night on the final day of the silvers festival.

I drew out peg 35 on Tanners which is over the far side of the lake and one peg off the end peg, 36.  It is a promising carp area so my hopes were high.

The Set-up
Last years festival the carp came to the pole line as that is where all the feed had gone in during the previous 4 days so I had the following two lines:

13 metre line at 10 o’clock, this would be the groundbait line
13 metre line at 1 o’clock which would have chopped worm on it

I also broke out a bomb rod and waggler rod to fish the waggler at full depth with banded pellet.

Bait was 8mm pellets, sweetcorn, 4mm expander and worm.

The All-In
Today would be decided by carp and not silvers, so I decided to feed positively, so I cupped in loose groundbait and on the other line half a cup of chopped worm.  These lines would be topped up every hour and would be fished after 3 hours dependent on how the bomb and/or waggler was going.

I baited the bomb with double hair rigged corn and cast half way between my peg and the island and pinged a couple of 8mm pellets.  As it had been cold I felt the corn would be a great visible bait for the carp to home in on.  The carp had not really shown during the week, this match would be won with about 4 or 5 carp so I was prepared to wait the bites out.  The first cast was in the water for 45 minutes without any liners or twitches, so I topped topped up the pole lines.

After 2 hours and 3 more casts I still hadn’t had a bite or any indication.  Meantime, Alan next to me on peg 34 had landed a carp and decent skimmer.  There was plenty of time left to catch some fish but the pressure was mounting.

The third hour passed with nothing so I decided to check the pole line with an expander pellet.  This produced a couple of fish, but they were a small skimmer and small roach which wouldn’t frame me in the match at all, so back out on the tip.

With 30 minutes to run and spurred on by some words of comfort, well abuse from Colin (BNF) the tip flew round and a small carp was in the net.  Meantime Malcolm on peg 36 had landed two carp, one a real munter.  The all-out was called and my match was over.

The Result
4lb odd for no-where and beaten by my two neighbours, Alan and Malcolm

The whole week had fished hard and not too many carp had shown, it was a matter of winter fishing at the max, waiting out for bites and casting around the peg to try and locate the fish.  A great week as per usual, roll on 2014!

The T-Shirt
Colin claimed a major scalp today if the form of Dave Stockton, venue expert.  Dave took it really well, even waving a white hankie mid way through the match after Colin had landed 3 great carp...


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