The Ups and Downs of Winter Part 3 – Lee Riley

Continuing his reports on his Winter match fishing exploits, Lee Riley heads back to Partridge Lakes this time armed with some new products!

After the first two parts of my Winter match diary I thought I’d share and update you on how things are going with some new products in my armoury! With the weather being so up and down at the moment it’s hard to judge exactly where the fish are going to be and more to the point if you’re even going to catch any fish.

I’ll kick off at Partridge Lakes for an open match, I have decided to attend to get an insight to what’s going on as the following day is round two of the individual winter league. A seriously cold day with a strong wind blowing across the lakes I managed to draw a really good peg in the form of end peg 173 on covey 6 this can be a good peg as you’re on the other side of the bowl from peg 156 I’ve attacked the peg in the same way I did when I drew peg 156 pretty positive to be honest but with the strong wind coming from left to right I had a slight incline that the fish might move further down the lake following the wind I’ve started dobbing with bread flavoured with The Juice for 3 fish in the first 40 mins which was ok as others were struggling. After this line died I opted to start my feeding lines one with pellets and one with maggots I then went on to tick over off a couple of lines but now all lines to end the match with 28lb 10oz which was enough to win the section as the fish had followed the wind meaning the end of the lake produced two 50lb+ bags of fish. It’s weird as I’ve caught better over feeding Carp and Coarse micros rather than maggots which isn’t the norm on cold days.

Onto the following day’s round two of the winter league so I was hoping to get to try one of the other lakes as I keep drawing coveys, and yet again it wasn’t meant to be I drew an awful peg 161 0n covey 6 it’s in the back channel as I call it the fish are either in there or not and you guessed it they weren’t I’ve fished a real negative match due to the day before weights from there only difference was we had an overnight frost I haven’t had an indication till 2 hours 45 mins into the match where I was already miles behind peg 156 was sacking up and peg 159 was nicking the odd fish as he’s able to fish towards 156 I’ve stuck to my guns and had a little run of fish even managed to hook a rouge carp that bust me at the net I was gutted peg 156 blitz the section with 95lb peg 159 had 9lb 12oz for 10 f1s and I had 10 f1s for 9lb that put me third in the section dummy was well and truly out as that carp had cost me big time.

On the Sunday I was booked on to fish the open match but I was asked the night before would I able to fish the winter league teams of four as they were a man down, I didn’t want to let someone down so I opted to give my place up on the open match, arriving at the venue the team captain had already drew the pegs and handed me peg 113 on covey 5 so I still couldn’t get off the covey canals, on arrival at the peg it was frozen over but only with cat ice so a gentle three swim approach was needed one in front of peg 114 and two swims cut at 45 degrees from each side of the platform to 13mtrs across so I left a big area of ice for cover, I have plumbed 4 swims for attacking, it’s taken 1hr and 20 mins to get my first indication I’ve then sat and waited it out on each line for one bite as you couldn’t string two bites together this gave me 11 f1s and three gudgeon on the all out looking round the lake this wasn’t too bad I’ve weighed in 15lb which was enough to win the section for the team and also end up 2nd on the lake overall it fished mega hard I think it switched off as the ice started to melt and go into the lake.

The following weekend was the third round of the individual league after last round I was hoping for a much better result as I was already on 5 points after two rounds plus I really wanted to try one of the other lakes, at the draw I drew one of the other lakes wahoo but disaster was it was a dreadful peg in the form of peg 14 on ribbon its round the back of the lake with no features to the peg I was gutted, on arrival I picked myself up and decided to give it my all I was going to attack the peg and try and catch everything that might live there and to do this I was going to attack it with the new Special G Dark ground bait this would be the first time I have used this mix I was hoping it was as good as Green and Gold as those are my favourite ground baits in the range. I’ve mixed up about half a kilo and plumbed my simple four swim approach two with ground bait and two without just in case I’d over fed them with ground bait I spent the first two hours plugging away on maggots before seeing everyone was struggling so a quick look on the ground bait swims produced me a bite instantly an ide of 1lb and from then on I caught small roach and I mean small also the odd better fish I ended the match with 2 f1s and one decent skimmer and one ide about 1lb then the rest was little roach and gudgeon which gave me a grand total of 10lb 4oz which was unbelievably enough to win the section as 8lb was next best weight! The new Special G Dark didn’t let me down I was over the moon with that result from there as there was some good anglers on better pegs but that side of the lake had switched off and my silvers approach was right on the day.

I hope everyone is out catching plenty and if you need a dark ground bait for those clearer waters I can honestly recommend Special G Dark it’s such a fine mix full of those fishmeal attractors that commercial fisheries go mad for! Give it try and see if it can put those few extra fish in your net as it did for me.

Tight Lines

Lee Riley

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