Was thinking about this one through the week as i knew big weights were on the cards, but in the back of my mind was the fact that the fish could be spawning and would make the fishing hard.
Still a plan was formed in my mind which would be just the two lines one at 4 metres and the other would be just the top two. Well the day finally arrived and i woke up to bright blue skies and warm weather which was a nice change from the weather we've had to fish through lately. Got to the venue and there were in fact a few fish spawning but not the amount i thought there would be so " who knows i thought". At the draw one of our members Steve was saying that he come over the day before and the water was alive with spawning fish, so we really had no idea how it was going to fish.
We decided before the draw to leave the shallow part of the lake out so the randy fish had somewhere to spawn and we also decided we would not fish any closer than a metre to the bank, again to protect the spawning fish.
We finally did the draw and i drew peg 10 which was the opposite side of the lake and i wasn't too disappointed as there's that many fish in there it doesn't really make a difference. I arrived round at my peg and as usual studied my peg to see if my plan would still stand as i planned it.
So i set up two rigs, on the 4 metre line i had around 4 feet of water so i went with the 4x4 maver invincible on 4.6lb line to a size 16 preston hook, the shot was spread out on the last 18" from the hook with the last shot about 8" from the hook.
The top two rig was a smaller size maver float again on 4.6lb line straight through to again a size 16 preston hook, same shotting pattern and i still had about 3ft of water on this line.
On the whistle i cupped in a 250ml pot of 4mm pellets on each line and started out at 4 metres and for the first 15 to 20 minutes had nothing but a few dips on the float, Steve on the peg to my left went out on the method and had a fish first cast and Tim to my right had gone on the top two and had a fish almost immediately, not what i was expecting.
Anyway this made my mind up and i too went on the top two and had a fish straight away on the paste and for the next hour i had another 5 or 6 and also had foul hooked and lost about 20.
For the next couple of hours this carried on the same i even tried different depths, not feeding and fishing away from my feed but the foul hooking and losing fish continued but i was still in contention as Tim was having the same problem. I could see the rest of the guys round the lake were struggling so i knew it was going to be close going in to the final hour.
The last hour arrived and suddenly Tim was starting to catch well almost every put in so i came off the paste and tried some sweetcorn and then i was too catching well but a bit too late i thought.
So the final whistle was blown and i knew it was going to come down to myself, Steve and Tim for the win and i did notice Pete down the other end of the lake had a good last hour so even he could figure.
It turned out that Tim had done enough with 98lb 7 oz and i Had come in second with 87lb 2 oz Steve was third with 55lb 6oz.
I actually think the fish were just on the process of finishing spawning as not one fish was caught round the lake was carrying any spawn, but they were still not feeding right. So when we return later in the year the weights could be huge so i'm looking forward to the return.