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Monday, 30 November 2009

psv xmas

westerliegh was the venue for this one and with both lakes being used i wanted a draw on the new lake as generally you get more bites as there are lots of small carp skimmers and roach to be caught.i was happy with my draw as i pulled 23 on the new lakewhich was 2 past the aerator, basically it was a 2 rig job one 4x12 rig on 0.12 line and an 18 808 for over and the same for down the edge. on the all in i cupped some soaked micros in 3 spots against the far bank reeds and began loosefeeding a few casters down the margins.
first put in over on 4mm and a missed bite , next put in and i connected with what looked liked a 2 pounder ,shame it was hooked in the tail though, and the hook pulled after i had made a couple of stabs at it with the net.then it went daft as the skimmers showed up , and at about 3oz a time the can be a right pain on soft pellet. so i switched to single maggot , which the little buggers tend to hang on to. about halfway through i started to drip a few casters in with the micros which improved things as i started to get some nice roach and a couple of small carp also i got to admit i also foulhooked a 7 lb fish which stuck for a change and after a 10 minute tussle was safely netted, that was a proper bonus as no one on our lake seemed to be catching.all i had down the edge was 1 small carp(1lb) and a bumble bee perch, so i stayed with the far bank swims as at least it was regular bites wit caster hook bait being best as the fish were slightly bigger than on the maggot as tiny roach were nailing that on the way down . yuo had to keep moving between the 3 areas as you would catch a couple then the bites would stop so you would go to the next swim and thats how it went to the end, by rotating the swims i kept putting small fish in the net right to the end.
as the 2 lakes were being paid out as 2 matches i didnt mind that it turned out that the old lake had fished well with some good weights on the cards. back to our lake and i weighed 17 lb , which was just enough to edge out mark mark radford who had 16.12.
overall the match was won by neil(i cant draw)mercer on peg 2 old lake with 43.5 taken on corn off the back of the small island all small carp aprox 35 fish so he had a nice day.
2nd darren north 38.3 peg 15 on soft pellet
3rd ryan jordan 31 lb peg1
tony rixon 17 lb peg 23 new lake
mark radford 16.12 peg 30 new lake
paul elmes 15.6
it was then back to the midland spinner pub for the prizes and buffet which was done by paul elmes,s wife marie and very good it was as well and she is 7 months pregnant as well with there first child so good luck to you both.
highlight of the evening was dean malin getting hold of the wrong end of the stick and thinking certain people were taking some bags of groundbait they werent entitled to, he wanted to take people outside for a fight the language was terrible he even blamed me as i was sat next to them, but when some one explained to him that all they had taken was his and mine which we both had said we didnt want, so fair play he did come back with a huge slice of humble pie and apologised to everyone. i,ve seen it before and i do find it quite funny but it dont pay to laugh at him at the time , friends or not , but i did give him a bit on the way home .
and it pissed down all day thank god for goretex.
and as always the prizes sorted out by mr wilson were excellent

Sunday, 29 November 2009

home bitz

just a quick mention of a conversation i had with judith the other night. for one reason or another the conversation ended up on the subject of dogging. as judith wasnt to sure what it was all about i had to explain what happens at these gathering(or so i have been told). after which she went bright red ,asking why this was she went on to explain that after going back into work after weekends , when she quite often goes to a dog show her male colleagues would snigger and ask how she had done at the weekend with her dogging and not realising what they meant would iether say no good or ok , and this has been going on for 2 years, poor girl, i feel sorry for them next week

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

tony and me practicing our 80,s disco moves on the rocks out of sight or so we thought !!!!!!!!!!!

back to landsend and i found myself on peg 1 not to bad as it has framed a bit of late.
3 rigs , one 4x14 .14 line to a 16 808 for soft pellet and corn at the bottom of the shelf towards the island and the same rig for down the left hand side.
a 4x12 .14 same hook for up the shelf on the left and a 4x16 caster rig at 4 mtrs with an 18 808 to.10.
at the start i cupped in some softened 3mm towards the island and some at 14.5 mtrs down the edge up and down the shelf . then i started at 3 mtrs on the caster ,it took me 10 mins to get a bite(not a good sign)and i bumped it, next drop and a small perch was soon in the net, after several small roach the bites just stopped , after changing the depth and shot still no bites so on the hour i put a soft pellet on the 4x14 rig shipped it out to 13 mtrs and i would like to say it went straight under but it never , again a 10 minute wait befor it went under and i hooked one 2 foot off the bottom, probably no where near the mouth as it came off after a few seconds, then no bites again, not even liners, i tried putting some more pellet in but that didnt shit or bust i cupped in a generous ammount of caster and switched my attentions to the left hand side , starting down the shelf i had 1 quick bite on corn then nothing again. i didnt expect this , a look up the shelf and first put in a loist fouler. next drop and i got one in the mouth but i lost it under my keepnet. i was getting the occasional liner so there did seem to be a few fish up on the shelf so i decided to concentrate on this area moving up and down the bank between 14 and 16 mtrs but apart from a lost fouler nothing again. with 1 1/2 hours to go i had 1 carp 1tench from the island on caster and some bits. so nothing to lose now so out with the catty, i should have done it earlier as bela bakos was on 24 (opposite) on sunday and had a few shallow on caster, what a difference i began to get liners , had some perch and 3 more carp as well as losing 4 more carp 3 in snags up the edge and one under my pallet(i,m sure some of these carp are crossed with chub)also i had some decent perch and lost some good perch, thats the price you for using heavier elastic . i should have got the catty out earlier cos it definately made a difference, still another lesson learnt. the match was won by dale howsen with 31.7 on peg 21 with soft pellet at 13 mtrs
2nd nick duckett 29.11 on peg 11 and he also had top silvers with 14.5 all on maggot at 14 mtrs
3rd mike duckett 27.4 peg 15
4 th alan oram 24.13 peg3
5th martin lenaghan 21.2 peg 5
6 th tony rixon 18.7 peg 1
oh well there,s always next time.

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

some pics and shop bitz

for those of you with bird tables and moan about rats, mice and squirrels being a nuisance spare a thought for the hardings, this is what happens when you get a visit from a baboon lmao.
tony,tony judith and barbara on the coastal walk at tsitsikamma to the storms river mouth

tony harding with a 30lb hammerhead, i would have caught one aswell but he did me some dodgy rigs

me in fancy dress with a 45 lb spotted gulley shark

southern right whales at hermanus, totally awesome.

just a quick mention for the whitehall one , unfortunately he fell off the mortal perch last night and kicked the bucket. i may have to get a whitehall 2.

for those of you that know the shop , will know that it is a great place for stories and gossip, one of the best stories this week was from martin mcmahon recounting a day when he was young and nelson still had his eye, he had been given a job to shoot some rats in a shed , unfortunately the task was done quite quickly and all the rats were done in, sat there feeling bored they had a divvy up and martin was despatched to the pet shop to see if he could purchase some more rats, problem was all he could get was a hamster, letting it go in the shed martin nor his mates could bring themselves to shoot it so again martin went to the pet shop but this time he came back with a cage and took it home, so much for being a 6 ft 3 ex bouncing hard man lol.

Sunday, 22 November 2009

out of africa into landsend

at least on me hols the wind was warm, not today though showers, 30 mph wind and 12 c, at least anton page drew me 13 which is in the corner and out of the wind. so a 4x14 castwer rig with .12 to an 18 808 , and 2 corn / soft pellet rigs with the same 4x14 floats(impact 6) with .14 to a 16 808.
started by cupping in some casters at 11 mtr up the edge some softened 3mm at 14 mtr up the edge and some at 13 mtr at 2 o,clock into the deeper water which has been scoured out by the aerator.
starting on the caster i began to get bites from small roach , then after 20 mins i had a 3lb carp , then back to the small roach again, so i potted in more caster but could only get small roach, so after an hour i went to 14 mtr up the edge on soft pellet and had a small carp (1 lb), then no bites again, a change to corn and in the next 30 mins 3 hooked and 2 landed then nothing again so mre feed and time for a look in the deep water at 13 mtr, which is normally a banker in this peg , unfortunately i had fabio on 15 and he fed at 16 mtr to his left which means that there was 2 of us trying to catch in the deeps which tends to stop either of us catching and it did with fabs getting 1 carp and me getting 1 carp and 1 skimmer, i did try to catch there several times during the day but to no avail . back to the caster line and still only small roach so that was a waste of time with there being only small roach over the caster line it probably meant there were none of the big perch around so i decided to ignor the caster line and try for the carp.
i also went to 16 mtr towards the island , by swapping between the island and the margin i ended up with 9 small carp, and treble maggot on the hook seemed best cos as i wasnt feeding any caster or maggot the small fish dont seem to be to much of a problem .
it was a low weight match with kev molten winning off peg 19 with 8 carp and 1 tench for47.13 taken on meat between 9 and 13 mtr
2 nd was jason radford with 7 carp and 10 lb of silvers for 44.13 on corn and caster on peg 11.
3rd andy bryant 43.13 peg 31
4th alan oram 43,10 peg 32
5th tony rixon 30.11 peg 13
6th m lenaghan 27.5 peg1
silvers dean malin 22.8 peg 17 maggot right over

Friday, 20 November 2009

back home

i know tony and barb will probably read this so i want to say a big thanks for looking after judith and me for the 16 days we were there, it was one of the most relaxing times we have ever had, and tony and barb certainly know how to make you feel at home, and those of you that know them wont be suprised to know they have a stunning house in a stunning location, and within a shortish drive you can watch whales , walk through forests, see incredible coastal views or walk along largely desereted beaches, is it any wonder they are adament that they wont be coming back.
my last fishing trip was to target ragged tooth sharks in the lagoon at the bottom of there road, but unfortunately again the weather was against us with a gale force wind howling up through the estuary, we gave it a couple of hours but with not even a tug we decided to knock it on the head and go home to drink some wine, at least we had managed to avoid strictly come dancing(sorry barb but the gay on the right wants shooting).
the last couple of days were spent at the addo elephant reserve, its a 350,000 acre nature reserve, and bard had managed to book one of the lodges overlooking one of the floodlight water holes, as it is a prime spot for seeing one of the three black rhino which live in the park , and we werent dissapointed as just as the light was fading 2 of the buggers came down the hill had a quick drink , then they were gone just as quickly, but also there were kudu, buffallo and lots of birds and with tony,s expertise on the braai(barbie)it made for a good evening.
its a nice reserve as you can drive around yourself spotting wildlife at your leasure, considering there are 450 elephants in the reserve they are still difficult to spot , on the first day we saw about 50 , but on day 2 we only managed 4 god only knows where the other 446 were hiding.
to be fair the air temp on the second day was only 12 c so we werent expecting to much, there are a couple of places where you can get out of the car to look around but its not really recomended as there are signs telling you to be aware that lions could be close by , but as none had been seen we thought it would be safe , so after a leg stretch and a look around it was back into the car, i did joke as judith was last back to the car we should lock the doors but mr harding wouldnt do it, which was just as well as about 150 mtrs down the road we came upon 4 lions , judith wasnt really to impressed especially as i just happened to have our personal insurance documents with me,(just kidding dear). we spent the next 30 mins taking photo,s and video,s of a lioness and her 3 10 month old juveniles playing and watching us , no more than 30 ft away. there are only 8 lions on the reserve and one of the guides has been there for 9 years and not even seen one let alone four. there are far more things i could talk about but i would be here all night , when i have got the pictures sorted i will put a few on , but i cant do it and there is no one here to do it for me.
any way back home now and its off to landsend fishery sunday and after looking at the forcast it dont look good. and back in the shop tomorrow.

Monday, 16 November 2009

not quite so extreme

tony decided it would be a good idea to visit a place called maedebank, which is one of the easier walks and safer of the rock warks on robberg, which is a huge peninsula jutting out into the indian ocean, so after parking up we made the short 20 min walk down to the mark we were fishing ,and to be fair it was easy walking.
rods were soon put together ,one with the usual paternoster type thing ,then tony put together something called a slide rig, which entails casting an 8 oz gripper as far as you can and when the lead has bitten in you attach a big bait , in this case a whole squid of about 1 1/2 lb to a special one way clip which is then slipped over the line at the rod tipand let slide down to the water . now for the clever bit , you hold the rod high and start to shake it back and forward and as you do this the bait travels down the line away from you and only stopping when it reaches the sinker, what a brilliant way of getting a big bait out 100 mtrs plus.
with both rods in the water the waiting game began,it wasnt boring as the time was spent catching mullet for bait, it must have been at least 2 hours till tony had a bite on the slider rig with the fish giving a big slack line bite with the fish travelling to the left, tony tightened down struck and missed(lol). winding in the bait there was a big bite out of the middle of the bait probably a small shark. so he quickly baited up with a whole fresh mullet and slid it out again and sat back to wait.
it was my turn for a bite next and with the line peeling off the reel i tightened the drag struck to be met with a few seconds of solid resistance then the line went slack(gutted) i thought i had done something wrong but no i had been bitten off , the shark had swollowed the 12 inches of 150lb and bitten thru the 120lb nylon 10 inches above that , tony made another rig up this time with a 2ft 150lb steel trace which was cast out and the wait began again. tony had the next bite with lie peeling off the reel he was just about to strike and it stopped, waiting for 10 mins to see if the bait was picked up again but no so it was reeled in for inspection, no teeth marks meant it was probably one of the big rays(up to 200kg)which frequent the the bait was untouched it was slid out again , it wasnt long before the mullet fishing was disturbed again . and this time tony,s strike was met by resistance and a fast moving fish was on the other end, after a short fight 5 mins i was sent down the rocks to grab the leader and drag an angry little hammerhead shark of about 35 lb up the rock, christ they gets pissy when the come out of the water, trying to bite anything near, quick photo taken and it was soon back in the water.
i was the only one to get another bite but the fish dropped the bait, so as it was time to leave the baits were wound in , then it became apparent as to why the bite didnt develop, mr harding had somehow managed to secure my bait to the trace about as far from the hook as was possible, it was right by the top swivel !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! so to bites and 2 trace errors i didnt believe mr harding could be so nasty , and he didnt get the coffee,s in on the way back, never mind he is taking me to the estuarey tonite to try and get a big ragged tooth shark by one of the road bridges as they have been getting some up to 100 kg so i will let you know, but there will be some serious rig checking done.

Thursday, 12 November 2009


as i said tony was going to take me to groot bank as this was the easiest {ha} places to go.
so the alarm went off at 5.30 am and a quick wash and brush and it was off to pick up one of tony,s young protoges up , Brandon Willmer,who is one of the up and coming youngsters on the local beach scene. it was a one hour drive to the mark of which the last 7 1/2 k was down through a forest track which is still home to leopard, lynx and not to mention puff adders and boomslangs all of which can give you a nasty nip!!!!!!!!!!!!. after parking and unloading the gear it was a 2 min walk to the beach which was easy then it was a 1/2 k walk to the rocks then 1 1/2 k walk or should i say in my case scrabble over rocks boulders crevices and around rock pools(now i wasnt looking forward to the journey home), but what a place, not only was the scenery amazing with waves crashing onto rocks all around us but the rocks gave way to amazing long golden beaches with not a soul in sight, and where else could you go and be greeted with the sight of a 50 ft right whale with its calf by its side,and further out in the bay humpback whales going somewhere only they know, also i saw seals , pods of bottle nose dolphins and to cap it all a great white leapt clear of the water about 500 mtrs out all amazing sights but to see them all in one day is something else.
back to the fishing and it was first blood to tony with a doughnut which is a type of doggie which curls itself into a circle and it stays that way until you put it back, then he had a striped cat shark which is also like our doggies but striped. then it was my turn for a bite but its not so much a bite as line just being stripped from the reel, but unfortunately the fish dropped the bait , a quick check of the bait which was still in good shape(mullet head on a 8/0)so it was lobbed out again . i didnt have long to wait until line was once again dissapearing from the spool but this time the the strike was met with resistance and the fish started to take line against a tight drag, unfortunatley i was fishing close to rock pinnacle which partly due to inexperiance and a lack of confidence on the rocks and not being able to jump round the rocks like a mountain goat i couldnt get enough angle on it to stop it getting back to the rocks and it went solid. game over.
to be fair sport wasnt hectic but both tony and brandon(if any of his teachers read this we did make him take his books and revise on the rocks) did manage a couple more small stripeys and doggies before tony hooked a smoothhound of about 7kg and they pull really hard as it did manage to pull tony across the rocks. once you get in close you have to send someone down to the waters edge to grab it, so thats why we brought brandon, i dont know if he is stupid or brave but he seems to love it and today was a calm day with only a 2mtr swell but you still need to watch out for the odd rogue swell that can catch you out, and as for tony he is just as daft and seems to thrive on rock hopping, even the man in the local tackle shop said he was mad likening him to a dassie which is a large rodent which lives in and around the rocks and looks like a big guinea pig and to be honest there is a likeness.
it wasnt long until i had another run and i also had a hound of about 7 kg and they give a good account of themselves even on the heavy gear we were using 100 lb leaders 45 lb mainlines on rods which can cast up to 10 oz plus bait.
next cast and again line was dissapearing from the spool and the strike was met with solid resistance as the fish took line tony told me to stop pulling like a pussie and give it some , so i did and i soon had my first spotted gulley shark under my feet, and again brandon was sent down the rocks to land it. they dont weigh fish here you measure them then convert it later. mine went 155 cm which works out at about 45lb. i did hook another a bit later which i got under my feet which made me think the fight was over (wrong) it turned tail swam against the drag and ended up in the same snag as the first one(bugger) to be honest it did feel bigger than the first one but i will never know.
we were going to pack up at 4 so at 12 mins to 4 brandon slung out with a small mullet head on and by 5 to he was hooked up with the moving bottom, this could be a long job as tony has hooked large fish and played them for 5 hours only to lose them(ha ha) but he played the fish well and it was by the rocks ready to land that took another 5 mins . i would like to say that i was a help but apart from holding brandon,s rod while he helped tony drag it onto the rock that was it. there it was about 150 lb of black skate which was duly unhooked piccy,s taken and slid back un harmed, which is more than can be said about brandon he fell over cutting his leg pulled a muscle in his back playing the skate as hard as he could and the tail af the ray whipped round catching his figer tips, you can see how steve irwin was killed by one of these as they are lightening fast and the sting was probably about 8 inches long. after that it was a quick pack up a 2 k walk back to the pick up and a 50 k drive home of which branbon slept all the way , any one would think he had had a hard day. back to tony and barbs for a tasty braai(barby)a few glasses of wine then bed.
the hospitality of the people here especially tony and barb is as good as would get any where in the world and the food is second to none, whether barb cooks or we eat out and it is very cheap to do the latter meaning i have probably gained a couple of pounds but in all fairness tony has been trying his best to walk it off me .

Monday, 9 November 2009

south africa first days

arrioved after a 12 hour flight(boring and cramped), we were met by tony and barb at cape town airport and the welcome was as warm as we had expected. after a quick wash and brush up at the airport, we took the what should have been the short drive to table mountain, but as i have come to realise over the few days that we have been here tony,s sense of direction is shit and if it wasnt for barb we would have probably ended up in one of the local townships.
back to the mountain and after the short walk (sorry i meant lift ride) we stepped out at 1067 mtr,s above sea level to mostly brilliant views over the sea and cape town, after a short walk around the top it was off to the restaraunt for dinner, by our standards the food was nice and even though we only had the small plates the servers managed to get plenty on. by the time we went down the mountain the mist had formed over the top giving it its table cloth appearance hence the name.
getting back to the car again it was a short drive back to cape town and a walk and a cappuccino overlooking the harbour(lucky barb was navigating lol), after that we had a longer drive to stellenbosch to some self catering accomodation where we were treated to the south african bbq known as a braai ably prepared and cooked by tony and barb over a wood fire , dilicious.
around the acommodation we saw wildebeast, zebra,elan and spingbok and they all came within about 50 mtr,s of us at times.
after 2 nites there it was back on the road again to go to hermanus for the whale watching, and what a brilliant couple off hours that turned out to be, as we pulled into the carpark we looked out into the bay and about 100 mtr,s out was what i thought was a rock, no , it was a female right whale with its half grown calf next to it, and as we looked out we could probably see 10 more in the bay and further out they could be seen breaching and tail slapping, but it was to get even better ,as we walked out on to the point where the whale caller was blowing his horn the whales were actually coming in to about 40 mtrs out and these animals weigh in the region of 40 tons which is about the same as 10 fully grown african elephants(pics to follow). i found it quite a humbling experiance to be stood watching some thing so big and so gentle with its young and to think these animals were nearly hunted to extinction by humans and they are still hunted by the japanese for scientific purposes, cos i dont think these animals are daft as i got the impresion they were as interested in us as we were in them, and i must admit it gave me goose bumps just to stand and watch them, it has been one of the most impessive things i have ever seen, and as we went for another coffee there were some tail slapping out in the bay and it seemed to be a signal to leave as the whales seemed to leaving the bay and heading out further.back to the driving and after about 5 hours during which we were treated to some lovely scenery as we seemed to be following a mountain ridge all the way. it wasnt until we got to mossel bay that the scenery changed again this time it was a much greener look with tree,s and wooded valley,s and hillsides all the way ta knysna and the harding homestead. and again we werent dissapointed it is a beautiful house set in a really stunning location overlooking a large valley lots of native plants and animals which includes its own baboon troop , bushbucks and to many birds to mention , we have our own part of the building with en suite and he is now taking bookings for the 2010 season(ha ha ha). and as for food i aint been dissapointed yet as barb is an exceptional cook and all the local eateries are spot on and you certainly aint ripped off, and the staff are friendly and eager to please.
thats enough of that , now for the fishing tony is taking me to groot(great)bank on weds to hopefully get anything from cat shark and rays to great whites, but we could blank as tony fished an inter club on saturday anc never had a bite(somethings never change do they). but we are taking tony,s bait bitch, brandon who is a local up and coming under 21 who luckily listens to everthing his uncle tony has to say then he does the complete opposite and does well.
now providing i dont get pushed into the path of a gt white or fall prey to one of the wild leopards which are still here i will be back on on thursday to let you all know how we done.

Sunday, 1 November 2009

away on a high

, landsend match and speci lake today , 26 booked in originally but due to sickness and bad weather we ended up with 21(strange how some people cant go cos they got flu but are ok to fish on saturday mr foale lol).mike west rushed into the draw bag as he wanted to draw for me , and i got to say i wasnt to miffed with 36,as i have won off it and it is always good for a few fish.

3 rigs today , a 4x16 caster rig for down the edge on .12 to an 18 808, a 4x12 rig on .14 to a 16 808 at 16mtr at 2 and 10 0,clock for soft pellet over 3mm and a 4x10 corn rig for over on.16 to a 18 xedion hook.

at the start i cupped in some 3mm at 2 and 10 , some corn and 3mm over to the island and started loose feeding caster down to my right at 3mtr, befor the all in the wind was coming from the south but as i was feeding it changed direction and came from the west which turns landsend into a bit of a wind tunnel(great). starting at 10 o,clock with a 4mm softy on , i never had a touch plus i couldnt hold it still as the gale they had forecast had now arrived, so i decided to go to 2 o, clock as it was with the wind so thought i might be able to gain a bit of presentation, i did manage an f1 and a couple of roach but the wind was making it nigh on impossible to hold it still.

i loose fed some 3,s at 4 mtrs and after 5 mins i had a skimmer then lost 1 then the small roach found my soft pellets so i knocked that in the head. a look on single caster down the edge and the perch were there in numbers and sizes from 1oz to about 1 1/2 lb. the wind by now had changed direction slightly meaning that every now and then i could hold my rig over whithout it being blown into the bushes and by cupping in and not catapulting i could get carp to take the corn hook bait. so the rest of the match was most enjoyable, when the wind blew hard i fished down the edge for perch and when i could i pushed over to the island and had a carp .
by the end i had had about 15 carp and a lot of perch for a total weight of 136.4 the perch went 23.14 all in all apart from the wind i had a really enjoyable day
2nd was me bitch from hartcliffe dean malin on peg 24 with 58.11 with 11 carp on caster
3rd alan oram 52.2 peg 32
4 th gary wall 46.10 peg 29
5 th andy bryant 46.7 peg 22
6 th dave evans 38.13 peg 21
silvers were won by john bradford on peg 27 with 26.14 again mainly perch on castwer close in.
i,m off on my hols on tues , off to south africa to stay tony harding and his wife barb, i should be doing a bit of shore fishing hopefully for sharks the rest of the time we will be sight seeing and whale watching, i will hopefully manage to keep you all informed as to how i am doing via the blog but dont phone me as it will cost us both a fortune