Slider fishing in Malären, Friday 16th May 2014

After the previous weekend’s struggles at the Swedish Masters’ Team (SM Lag) competition in Tranås, I needed to get out and catch some fish to restore some confidence!

On Thursday evening, I pre-baited a swim in a local bay close to home in Malären using up some unused ground bait from the SM laced with dead pinkies, sweetcorn and stewed wheat. I’ve fished there a few times before and caught many roach, generally of a good stamp. I’d not fished it in the spring though, so it would be interesting to see if the fish were there. The water was still pretty cold and this Friday was the first warm day since a much warmer spell a couple of weeks back that tricked us into thinking we’d get an early summer in Sweden this year.

I fished a 7gr slider “Belgian-style” (see Sliding Across Frontiers) at around 20m and got a bite most casts out. I did not feed at all during the session as the bites were fairly consistent and I wanted to see just how many fish were about without topping-up.

I ended the session of 4.5 hours with 103 fish. 2 were skimmers of a little over a pound with a grumpy old looking roach just under a pound. The rest of the fish were mainly roach with the odd perch and a few björkna. I estimated the catch to be in the region of 10 kilos. Most fish were caught on triple red/white maggot, a small dendra or mix of caster/maggot.

I did not fish it hard and I think I could have caught more with a float that would have settled faster in the 6m depth.

I aim to go back soon and fish the whip to see if the fish are catchable closer in too, but at least for now I know I can still catch fish!

Slider catch

103 fish for about 10 kilos

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Tubertini Extreme Match 7700 13m Take Apart Pole

I’d been wanting to change my take apart pole for over a year so when I collected the Tubertini from Lars at Swedbait I was keen to get it elasticated and out on the bank.

The pole and top kits arrived in nice durable tubes one for each top kit, one for sections 5, 6 and 7 and one each for the 11.5m and 13m sections.

Tubertini Extreme Match 7700 with top kits in tubes

The base pole (part number: *0110**) does not come with any top kits, so you need to choose from the range of 9 Evo kits. The base pole weights 815gr for 13m and comes in sections no longer than 170cm. The 11.5m and 13m sections are identical in diameter and profile using Tubertini’s “Parallel Lines” mandrel.

The pole uses the same mandrel as the top-of-the-range Evola 9000, the Evola Carp and Extreme Carp 6500 and 5000 poles.

There is also a 65cm extension available (*0061**).

I chose 6 of the standard kits (*1864**). I will later add an Evo Carp top kit (*1865**) to be converted into a cupping kit.

I initially set up the top 4 kits (5.1m in length) with Daiwa Hydroelastic’s in Pink, Blue, White and Grey. I used Preston Innovations Dacron connectors from yellow (small) to Blue (X-Large).

Pole tips with markers and dacron connectors

Pro Slide Tip, patented by Tubertini

Tubertini have introduced a patented system called “Pro Slide Tip” where the tip of the pole is reinforced (5mm outer diameter) and the internal part of the hole (3mm in diameter) is smoothed out so that a PTFE bush is not required. So far, I have rarely bumped a fish, so the system seems to work.

ProtectapoleI have added PTFE nose cones from Protectapole who confirmed that the sizing of each section is similar to the Tricast range of poles. These cones help to protect the male ends of each pole section as you put the pole together. I bought cones for sections 3 through 9. These are not particularly cheap, but are cost effective when you consider the price of repairing sections.

So far, I have used the pole on a couple of pleasure sessions on Fyrisån in Uppsala and for practice and the SM on Lidan. The pole has performed fantastically well. Whilst I have not yet hooked and played any whoppers on the pole, hooking into small fish on the strike is much better than my previous (cheaper) pole.

Whilst this is not a top-of-the-range pole, I can really recommend the Tubertini Extreme Match 7700 to any serious amateur match angler. Just go and see Lars Lennartsson at Swedbait for a great deal. I’m sure you won’t be disappointed. I’m not!

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Tråkiga i Trosa? Absolut inte!

For my first coarse fishing (rather than ice fishing trip) in 2012, I took the long drive down to Trosa to fish in the stream before all the boats are put back in the water.

The main purpose for going, apart from dusting off the cobwebs, was to try out some new toys I’d bought over the winter: a Prestons Innovations 13ft Sentient float rod (with a 2 foot extension), a Daiwa Whisker 2508 reel and a Cralusso Surf float.

I set up a little upstream of Dr. Phil who was testing out some Dino bolo floats off the end of the rod top. Although expensive at about £7 (80kr) each, the Cralusso Surf float is designed to allow you to fish in flowing water beyond the rod top and hold back. The floats can be used on running line or pole.

Pegs were just upstream and on the opposite bank to the Bomans Hotel

I fished the 4gr model but given the flow over-shot it by an extra 1gr; keeping a tight line between the rod tip and float then keeps the float top above the water whilst giving a very sensitive bite response. The shotting pattern is much like you might expect for a flat float on the pole with the bulk was set up between 6 and 12 inches (15 and 30 cms) off bottom with a few small droppers beneath, dragging on the bottom. Hook was a size 12 Tubertini Series 18.

These floats can be overshot by as much as 100%, depending on the strength of the flow, inched through the swim, held back hard, or even dragged back up stream! It takes some time to get your head around the concept but they work incredibly well.

Whilst I fiddled about with the setup and got used to how the float performed without a baited hook, Phil started catching from the first put in. The weather held up and although a little cold to begin with the day turned out to very nice. A few of the friendly Trosa AFK lads came by to say hej.

Groundbait for the day was 2/3rds Van Den Eynde Turbo Black and 1/3rd VDE Supermatch laced with casters and corn. Hookbait was maggot, corn or corn/caster cocktails. It was pretty much fish a chuck: roach, björkna (white bream) and ide. Phil who was fishing closer in was quicker to land each fish so he ended up with more in the net, but I had a great day fishing further out, surfing the float into position, either holding back or inching through the swim. Most fish were 8-12oz and a 4oz roach was rare!

Ide, less than half the size of the "one that got away"

Phil generously gave me 25kgs, though I think it was closer to 20kgs. It didn’t really matter (although I was annoyed to lose a big Ide), the day was about experimentation and blowing off cobwebs. It certainly did that and Trosa is anything but boring! Direct Google translation of this blog post title, “Boring in Panties? Absolutely not!”

20-25kgs, depending on who you ask! Photo: Dr. Phil

Acknowledgements: My thanks go to Percy of Trosa AFK for the loan of his Leatherman tool to free my landing net from a quick-release attachment I’d forgotten to take off the night before and to Phil for the loan of a spacer bar so I could use my keep net (a couple of those “first session of the season” mistakes).

Read more about the day on Dr. Phil’s blog.

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Johan Nuddatten’s Brother Bob on Sky Sports Tight Lines Podcast

Bob Nudd visited the Bothy in last Friday’s podcast, download here (.mpv format).

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Casini Exxxxcellence Alborella Whips

After getting a mauling by the Bleak Masters at DM3 on Fyrisån at Uppsala over the weekend I went on a spending spree and got myself a set of shorter whips.

Casini Exxxcellence Alborella Whips

These Casini whips are beautifully made and come in lengths from 2m to 5m.

I already have a 5m Colmic Virtuosa with 6m and 7m versions on order, so went for the 6 shortest lengths. The specs are:

  • 2m: 30gr in weight, 15mm diameter at the butt
  • 2,5m: 40gr, 16mm
  • 3,0m: 50gr, 17mm
  • 3,5m: 70gr, 18mm
  • 4,0m: 95gr, 19mm
  • 4,5m: 115gr, 20mm
  • 5,0m: 150gr, 22mm

These are stiff, very light and stylish without the gaudy graphics you sometimes get on (especially cheaper) whips and poles. The joints are reinforced well and taper nicely to the easily replaced tip section. The handle has a nice texture to it that should prove great to hold.

I can’t wait to get out and give them a try!

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Örebro Open, 7-8th May 2011

Well, what can I say? I had a shocker (at least on the Sunday). Buoyed up with my 5th spot at Arboga I was looking forward to this match.

Day One

On Saturday I drew peg D39 opposite the marina entrance and managed to wangle out 3.340kg, beating my neighbours either side (with 2.16kg and 2.2kg) in a section labelled, by the eventual winner Mikael Tono, “D is for Disaster”.

For the record, I fished (for the first time ever) at 13m letting a 2gr Dino EA Champion 2004 float ease down the peg, varying the depth and shotting pattern throughout the day. Maggot and caster hookbaits on a size 16 Tubertini Series 2 to .10 line gave the best bites. I threw in regular small balls of groundbait with just a little feed just to keep a scent in the water. I sensed there were not a lot of fish about, so I did not want to overfeed them. With less then 10 minutes to go a larger skimmer of about a kilo decided to take a double red maggot and single caster bait, 15 cms off bottom. After a short fight on a no. 4 elastic it was in the net. I ended up 7th in section, beaten by those drawn furthest from the marina entrance.

Day Two

Hoping for a better draw on Sunday, I drew A7, a peg I had had about 16kilos from in a pleasure session a couple of years ago. I had Phil to my left on A6. I was more optimistic about the peg but had Mikael’s words from the evening before in my head, “A is for Awful”. And, by God, was he right!

Fishing at 13m I struggled to get bites with very few fish coming no matter what I tried in terms of hookbaits, shotting pattern or depth. Soon after my neighbour on A8 landed a nice tench, I decided to change tactics and cast a feeder to the far side. I was getting indications but the bites were unhittable and there were quite a few snags. I came back onto the pole line, but it was no better.

To add insult to injury, an upstream wind started blowing, making my “Banana pole” (Phil’s words, not mine) hard to handle, and too be fair, I was fishing like a plonker anyway.

I switched to a slider, fished about 2/3rds the way over and took 3 roach, one of a fairly ok size. The slider was proving difficult to fish consistently though, and so I decided to sit out the remaining hour on the feeder at 2/3rds distance. Again, I had indications but could not connect with the bites despite changing the feeder weight, hooklength and hook sizes and patterns.

I was so disgusted with myself that I didn’t bother to weigh in the 10-20 fish I had for what was probably less than a kilo.

Lesson learned this week: Match fishing is not pleasure fishing! But it still beats golf.

This coming Saturday I’m up for more punishment at the Feeder match in Nyköping. Hopefully, the draw Gods will be on my side this time! 🙂

 

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Halacska Open 2011, Arboga 30th April – 1st May

After weeks months of preparation and waiting, my first fishing session and match of the season finally came around.  I had intended on a practice session somewhere in Stockholm over the Easter weekend but I was struck down with man flu.

I got to Arboga on the Friday afternoon to take a look at the river as I had never fished there before.  After he finished up mapping out the pegs and clearing the bank, I sat with Johan upstream of the match length to see how strong the flow was and to make sure my elastics were working well.

Setting up flat floats

A steady 10gr flow was the verdict reckoning on being able to get away with 8gr on the match length away from the turbulence caused by the bridges upstream.

After a sleepless night because Johan spent the night “herding elephants” through the hostel bedroom, Phil turned up after driving through the night from the Scan Masters. It was then a quick breakfast and a short drive to the venue to meet Russ and Tommy from metmask.com to collect the bait and the first part of our orders from Roger’s emporium metebutiken.com.

I drew peg 2 which was to be the upstream end peg as a few competitors dropped out at the last minute. I set up a couple of 8gr Dino EA Champion 2004 and a 10gr Cralusso Shark and two lines (10m and 13m) were fed at the start. Groundbait, a mix of Geers Voorn and Mondial-F Etang with Mondial grilled hemp added was laced with corn, chopped worms and maggots.

I fished the longer line initially but soon switched to the inside line as the wind began to increase. I don’t have a lot of experience fishing a long pole and I was fearing a breakage. Phil to my right in peg 3 then fluked caught a huge Bream so I knew I was immediately behind. Fortunately, after switching from maggots to worm on the hook I started to catch steadily and the fish were of a good weight-building size. I finished the first day with about 9.5 kg, second in section A with Phil beating me with 10.5 kg.

Day 1 Catch

The next day I drew peg 17, the downstream end peg. With a weather forecast for even stronger winds, I planned to concentrate at 10 metres no matter what. I had Anssi and Tom to my left fishing 13m, but there was no way I was trying to compete with them at that distance.

I caught from the off on triple red maggot under the 8gr Dino, inching the bait down the swim like trotting a stick float. Apart from two quieter spells when the wind was over 30kph, I caught throughout the match. Unfortunately, the fish were much smaller than day 1 and despite landing a 1+kg bream with 25 minutes to go I finished under 9 kilos for the day, and way down in the section easily won by the overall winner Tom Östlund with 22+kg.

Not a bad start to the season, let’s see how I do at Örebro!

Big thanks go to Tommy and Russ for delivering to the venue and to Johan for his hard work organising the event. It was just a shame not to see more anglers helping out to clear up after the match.

Metmask - purveyors of top quality fishing bait Metebutiken - Fishing tackle for the match angler

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Stocked Up with Hook Ups!

In the past I have used plain old rubber bands for retaining the hooks on made up pole top sections. There are a number of problems with this setup: the two biggest being that when trying to move the rubber bands up or down the pole, I’d have to take out the rig from the band or it would wrap itself around the hooklength; and rubber bands simply degrade and / or break very easily.

I’ve been looking around for different alternatives but it wasn’t until my first visit to Dr Phil’s Toyz Room that I saw a pack of the Twister Hook Ups from Real Ideas. As soon as I saw them I knew this is what I wanted.

Real Ideas Twister Hook Ups
The Hook Ups are made of nylon so they can be easily slid up and down a pole without wiggling about and they won’t degrade like rubber. The Hook Ups are locked in place on the pole by simply twisting the eyed tags around each other.

The Hook Ups also solve another problem for me. I have 5 top 3 kits but only 3 top 4’s for my pole. If I want to keep more than 3 rigs made up that are longer than a top 3 I have to keep the extras on winders, banded to a top 3. This is no problem with two different sized Hook Ups on the same pole. Watch the video to see how you can use the two different sizes together to keep a long rig on a short top kit. Bloody marvelous!

I contacted Nick Palmer, the inventor and I was soon placed an order of 50 packs for myself and the other Match Anglers United club members.

I’m now stocked up with 10 sets: that’s 70 Hook Ups, 10 in each size.
Boxed Hook Ups

Nick was also kind enough to send me another of his inventions, the Clever Claw Mark 2 a hands-free way to keep a pole steady. This look like a fantastic bit of kit. I occasionally suffer with a bad back, so I can’t wait to see how the Clever Claw performs. Watch this space for a review as soon as the ice clears!

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Hooklengths

My new season preparations are now underway. Whilst back in the UK over the New Year I got my hands on some of the Preston Innovations In Box Hooklength Boxes: one small and one large.

The large box is now filled up with 6 each of 30 / 40 / 50 cm long 0.11mm Preston Innovations PowerLine with size 14 Drennan Carbon Feeder hooks and 6 of each length with 0.13mm / size 12.

Feeder Hooklengths

Feeder Hooklengths

The small box is still a work in progress but will be filled with 6 lengths each of 15cm PowerLine with Tubertini Serie 2 hooks in the following combinations:

  • Size 20 hooks to 0.07mm diameter line
  • Size 18 hooks to 0.08mm diameter line
  • Size 16 hooks to 0.09mm diameter line
  • Size 14 hooks to 0.11mm diameter line
  • Size 12 hooks to 0.13mm diameter line

I use a Tymo LetraTag LT100H for the labels inside the box with plastic rather than paper tape.

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Match Anglers United – website is now live!

Match Anglers United LogoAfter a (too-) long incubation, the Match Anglers United website is now live and kicking!

The site is quite basic at the moment but there are big plans to expand it, along with the club itself, throughout the year.

Why not send the MAU members a message using the form on the home page?

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