James Cooper's Blog

On the Jubilee bank holiday Monday I was asked if I fancied fishing an open on Chard Reservoir. I jumped at the chance as I love fishing this venue, and opens on there are few and far between.
On arrival at the ressie it was clear to see that the wind was blowing up the towards the pegs in the forties. This is where the speci boys always fish
and the fact the wind was blowing that way, meant that it was where everyone wanted to
draw! Into the bag and out comes peg one; I couldn't have been any further away if I tried!
Still, I had the dam wall section to fish if nothing else. On arrival at my peg I set my box up in the water and sat down to take a look at my peg. About 40 yards out I saw a bream roll, so this gave me a glimmer of
hope. My setup for the day was quite simple; two Daiwa Tournament 11ft tip rods coupled with Daiwa TDX reels, loaded with 6lb Drag Line. Both of these were set up to an in-loop running feeder; the only difference was that one had an hair rig on
with a size 16 MWG to 0.13 N-Gauge and the other had a B560 in a size 16 also.
On the all in I punched out three feederfuls, containing a mix of 50/50 Ringers dark and original, plus some free offerings of dead red maggot,
micro pellets and some corn. I then went out over the top with two dead red maggots, 45 minutes passed, during which I recast every seven to eight minutes just to keep some feed going in and the tip pulled round. Lifting the rod, I was met with a firm ‘nod, nod’ on the rod tip as bream number one was hooked.
I managed another two or three bream before things started to slow up; it was time for a change. I hair-rigged an 8mm pellet to see if this would improve my catch rate. The change was incredible as over the next few hours I managed to put another 12 bream in the net.
The bites started to dry up going into the last hour, so I changed over to hair-rigged corn and managed to put a further six or seven bream in the net.
At the ‘all-out’ I knew that I had done well in my section, as two people to my right had blanked and I didn't think a lot more had been caught further along either. At the weigh in I managed to put 99lb on the scales, comfortably winning the section by over 50lb. Back at the results, I was surprised to see that I was also 3rd overall in the match. Beaten only by two pegs in the high forties.
Looking back, I think one of the things that helped me win the section, was the fact that everyone fished at 35 reel turns. I decided to fish at 50 so that I had a line all to myself.

Tight Lines

James Cooper.