After a 16 year break from Coarse Angling I re-ignited my passion for fishing in 2010. Follow my journey from tackle selection, new methods, old and new venue's. All the blanks and bags captured. Thanks for stopping by...
After spending a week at the fishery staying at the what can only be described luxurious lodges I feel that I can give all blog readers an insight into this jewel in Devon.
I stayed in Maple Lodge, which is the first lodge on the left as you enter the fishery. Sharing the lodge with me where two other MatchFishing Scene members, Andy G and Rich H. As you can see by the picture, the lodges have a wide balcony both on the ground and first floor, the only thing you need to watch out for is slipping in your wet boots.
Either side of the double entry doors are two secure lock up's for tackle and bait which include a freezer and washing machine. The kitchen is fully appointed and you don't need to bring anything apart from your condiments, tea, coffee, milk, etc. The downstairs lounge is spatious with a dinning table that can seat 6 people with ease and some of the lodges have a sofa/bed in them, inlcuding a small TV on the wall and further storage cupboard.
There are a further two bedrooms, a double and a twin including a large bathroom with bath for those weary anglers after an exhausting day on the bank.
Upstairs you have another living area with large screen TV, plumbed into Sky, a large outdoor deck that over looks Beatties or Tanners Lake dependant on which lodge your are in.
Finally, there is a double room with ensuite bathroom including shower. I managed to blag this room ;-)
The lodges are very clean and tidy, that is until we had stayed in them for a week, but Andy and Debbie's army of cleaners soon put this right for the next tenants. The bedding, matresses and pillows are very comfortable ensuring a sound night of slumber or maybe that was also to do with the amount of beer we all drank at the "Lodge of Plenty"?
Would I stay here again? Without a doubt, comfortable, clean, friendly and very close to the lakes.
For more pictures of the Lodges, check out the Stafford Moor website under Holidays
During the Maryuku / MFS Silvers festival we fished both Tanners and Woodpecker lakes. Tanners is the larger of the two and more sport was seen from Tanners during the week, although it appeared that more carp were caught from Woodpecker.
Chris Haines, Olympic Diving Team?
All the lakes have good sturdy platforms to fish from, but be careful as they can get quite slippy after rain, something which Chris Haines, local tackle dealer, co-sponsor and venue regular learnt to his cost on day 3. Chris never did tell us the depth close in or what the bottom was made from, at least he took the Dive scoring from the Lodge of Plenty members well ;-)
Tanners and Woodpecker are stocked with a variety of fish, Skimmers, Bream, Roach, Rudd, Perch, Goldfish, Carp and Tench. The tench are your normal browny green colour but there is also a high mix of the beautiful golden tench variety, something which I caught on day 1 and was overwhelmed by how beautiful the fish looked. All the fish are in excellent condition.
Stafford Moor fishery rules are simple, don't mix carp and silvers, no method feeder, barbless hooks and a very sensible net limit of 50lb of silvers, 65lb of carp in one net.
The sport is brilliant, with only one day from my week proving difficult for bites, but that may have been down to the angler, not the peg!
Andy Seery is a great help too, letting you know all about the peg your about to try your luck on and even coming round to see how things are progressing and helping out with a couple of suggestions to get more fish in the net.
Overall a place that I will go back to! Thanks Andy and Debbie!
Lessons Learnt from the Silvers Week
Here are some simple lessons that I learnt during my week. MFS has some top class anglers who attended the festival, all of whom where very willing to share tips and tactics to all who would listen.
Come armed with a very light elastic - I was using Diawa Pink Hydroelastic, which is rated 4-6. It was clear that this elastic, in my opinion was a little too harsh as I bumped a couple of fish. Other were using Prestons Original Slip 5 & 6 solid and Middy Green double. When they were lifting for a strike it was clear that the elastic was coming out a lot easier than my pink hydroelastic
Hooklengths down to 0.10 and 0.08, and fine wire hooks such as Gamma Green. Gary (Milo) has advised me on hooklengths and hooks and these were the order of the day.
Sloppy groundbait with a pinch of worm and caster fed sparingly from a toss pot. On the first day of the festival I had fed balls of groundbait, which the skimmers didn't settle over straight away. The sloppy groundbait enabled the skimmers to feed on it straight away. See more on this post.
Groundbait mixed with micro's seemed to work better than just groundbait. It was clear that some anglers where having more success with this approach than just groundbait itself.
Take a groundbait that has a fishmeal content. This is a commercial fishery and as such, the fish are used to and seem to enjoy fishmeal. My mistake on day one was to use a groundbait that was more suited to natural waters with no fishmeal content.
Rigs - set up both the lift method, by using two number 8's above your hooklength knot or loop to loop for the skimmers and also set up a traditional bulk with 2 to 3 droppers. The lift method was working during the early part of the week, whereas the bulk and droppers worked later in the week.
Don't ignore the edges. The margin's are not just for carp, there are some good tench, perch, raoch and skimmers to be had from edge fishing.
Feed little and often and feed to your bites. Starting a line with a single ball of sloppy groundbait and top up via your toss pot seemed to the be the method that was working best during the week.
Finally, listen to Andy Seery, he gives great advice for the peg your about to fish and he knows the fishery inside out. After all, he has been there for 11 years!
A beautiful autumn day with blue skies and a slight breeze greeted us all today at the very picturesque Lodge Pond today with Farnham Angling Society.
With nine anglers it was decided to once again split the section between the two banks, five on the closer bank and four on the far bank. I was hoping to grab a peg on the far bank as I hadn't fished that bank yet. Instead, peg 1 came out, which is probably the best peg on the near bank!
The rods were an obvious choice and infact I had planned to fish the t-bag given the colder conditions. So I had two rods out, a bomb rod, that could be swapped to a small cage feeder if required and another rod with a mini hybrid feeder.
I was considering a pole line for the margin and I had come armed with an appropriate elastic today unlike my last visit! I decided against the pole line and I would use either of the feeder rods to check out the margins if I needed too.
Bait consisted of some dead maggots, a pint of caster…
After a great nights entertainment consisting of beer, bbq and many laughs, mainly at Mr James around the table and a night on the sofa I was up early for another day at How End. Breakfast was a quick run to the village shop to stock up on provisions and most importantly water!
Remember Darren to check the bottle of gin to see whether it's neat or premixed... here end the lesson.
Today I'd be on Yasi's and to be honest a lake I enjoy more than Dani's. The weights on Yasi's yesterday had been quite up and down and one area that I didn't want to end up on was peg 1.
Third last out of the drawbag and I just knew that I was getting Peg 1, not really where I wanted to be if I'm brutally honest however today Pebs had repegged the match as one of the lads had to head home. Peg 1 it turned out now had a free peg either side of it.
No rods, all pole and a different choice of bait today. So the lines where quite simple. Shallow rigRig to the island …
A post Christmas silvers knock up at Sumners Match Lake was posted on friendsbook by Hathers organised by Dave Fifield. Given I was due to fish a three match series to would provide an ideal opportunity for some practice at the venue beforehand.
It was great seeing a lot of the lads, Shedders, Jaapster, Hathers, Pikey, Silvers and Rick to mention a few. No warm bacon butties lads, not this morning anyway.
Temporary Peg 5 which was on the bowl and I think permanent peg 28. The first time I've been in this area and of course I had my old mate Shedders as one of my neighbours!
The water was pretty coloured however I've been having some success on the waggler lately so that came out of the bag as well as a feeder rod, just in case.
Pole lines were 14.5 metres to my right where I'd fed reasonably heavy for the larger skimmers. Margin line covering both left and right hand sides.
Bait was casters, maggots, worms and dark F1 groundbait.