Old Lake Latest Catches week ending 25/2/18
55 lb of bream wins match before temperatures dropped
Lots of good backing weights on pellets and Method feeder
Bonds carp still responding despite the cold
Milton Lake roach to 1 lb on maggots
Five zander to 6 lb in late afternoon
Chilly weather and snow expected midweek, but 10 degrees by next Monday
THIS WEEK’S FISHING! (In brief)
A couple of days of mild weather before temperatures dropped to just above zero proved an ideal time to target the Old Lake’s bream, as anglers in the latest Steve Gardener midweek match discovered.
A 55 lb winning net, with another of 52 lb and plenty of backing weights, showed the benefit of being out when the weather is mild in winter, and carp anglers have also reported feeding activity from the lake’s bream.
The Old Lake’s zander have also been taking an interest, lake regular David Pocock catching five to 6 lb on his latest visit, late afternoon being the most productive time.
On Bonds Lake, Paul Benefield showed what can be done, with a nine-carp catch of fish to 8 lb, though it took a while for the carp to respond.
And on Milton Lake the cool weather meant a good chance to target the specimen roach without other species nosing in, one angler landing two 1 lb fish in his multiple-fish catch on maggots.
It looks like a chilly week in prospect, with daytime temperatures struggling to stay above zero and night-time values likely to reach minus 4. Any rain looks set to fall as snow, and with less sunshine than we’ve enjoyed of late, there could be surface ice on the lakes, though in the past anglers have still caught fish in these conditions. There is a suggestion that next weekend could bring a lift to around 5 degrees C by day and zero at night, triggered by the Full Moon on Friday morning, and with it a respite from the snowfall, and then a balmy 10 degrees on Monday week. Monday and Tuesday of this week look set to bring snow showers and cloud with 1 degree, and overnight temperatures of minus 3 or 4, followed by the sunniest day on Wednesday but zero by day and minus 4 by night, before further light snow on Thursday and minus 1 by day with minus 2 at night, and then the final snowy day on Friday but with 2 degrees by day and zero at night as the Full Moon brings a change in the early hours and temperatures rise. Saturday should continue the slight climb into positive figures, and an end to the snow. Winds look set to be consistently light to moderate easterlies or north-easterlies, bringing in the chilly conditions from Siberia, in what is said to be potentially the coldest February week for five years, but swinging round on Friday night to south-westerlies, as the change to milder, wetter weather takes place.
• The predator fishing season began on October 1 and continues until March 14.
• Anyone who fancies being part of the night syndicate of anglers who are allowed to fish Temple and the Old Lake after dark for a £50 joining fee will be interested to hear that there are places available. To apply, get in touch with the office on 01306 883621.
• Anglers are reminded that fishing on Temple and night fishing on the Old Lake is available exclusively to members of the Bury Hill Specimen Carp Club. Membership cards must be carried at all times when on the fishery, and be available to bailiffs when they carry out checks prior to the evening lock-up.
OLD BURY HILL LAKE – GENERAL & BOAT FISHING
The Old Lake bream are renowned for their willingness to feed in cold conditions, and they showed how obliging they can be this week by providing match weights to 55 lb.
The Steve Gardener midweek contest was won by Mark Hathway with fish to 5 lb on Method feeder and 8 mm white Sonubaits Band’um pellets cast to the island from peg 28.
Steve Gardener was second from peg 37 with 52 lb on similar tactics, ahead of Terry Harrison in third, and it was noticeable how well the fish fed right around the lake.
That window of mild weather before the drop in temperatures was enough to persuade them to have a search for food, as several carp anglers discovered this week when their baits were picked up by bream.
Ray Parker, from Guildford, also had a few bream in a pleasure session, fishing a small open-end feeder and double maggot at peg 14.
On the predator front, David Pocock added to his tally in what has been a successful season for him, with another five zander to 6 lb, all on legered roach heads in the late afternoon.
There are just a couple of weeks to go of the predator season, and with them at their heaviest weights of the year, there is always a chance of something very big coming out before the final day on March 14.
TEMPLE LAKE – CARP
A slower week for reported catches on Temple, but anglers are still fishing, in the hope of being on the bank when conditions trigger a feeding spell. In particular bright pop-ups with a high leakage rate or bottom baits tipped with buoyant yellow or pink artificial corn are good winter offerings.
Bonds regularly produces multiple catches of carp to double figures on a variety of methods, from pole to feeder and straight lead to waggler.
Paul Benefield was back for some more action, and although it took a while to get the carp feeding, he landed nine to 8 lb on Method feeder and 12 mm wafters cast tight to the island again.
When a good few fish can be landed on a very cold day, it shows what sort of sport will be on the cards once this spell of low temperatures is over, which could be just around the corner, judging by the forecast.
Milton Lake is the place to try for a catch of prime roach, using a waggler on a running line or pole just a short distance out, close to the pads, where they can be lined up with a little-and-often loosefeeding approach. And in the mild spells there are crucians, tench and bream to be caught, along with occasional carp.