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22/08/23 - Tuesday Club #5 - Lysander Lake - Silverlake


Lead Junior Coach checks personal hygiene: Coaches outnumber juniors: New Bog Tent makes impressive debut:

Where? Oh, where have all the juniors gone? Where? Oh, where can they be?

The figures were a little depressing with just two Shrimps jumping off the barbie to join us for our first trip to Silverlake. This only goes to underline why we do not have any/many events in August. No one comes… Five was cut to three and three became two with one no show.

Two it was then.

I came out on Sunday to post the notification signs out at Lysander Lake, and I felt glad that we were not fishing that day. It’s quite open down at Silverlake and always a bit breezy. But this was more than breezy. This was particles of roof coverings being dislodged breezy. This was Seagulls flying backwards breezy. Leave your pole in the bag breezy.

Walking up the bank one way was like wading through a river of treacle. But walking back in the other direction was more like being ushered out of a night club at 3am.

I prayed that the weather wizards at the Met Office had spat on the bones to get an accurate forecast for Tuesday.

Tuesday looked promising, with little or no movement in the trees around Chateau Howard. But that meant nothing because Silverlake has its own microclimate. Anything could and probably would happen at Lysander Lake.

We had been granted special permission to drive down to the lake to offload the Shrimps and their ever-growing collection of fishing tackle. Even so, it felt proper naughty driving along a track normally forbidden to mere mortals such as us.

I took the brave decision to position myself in the nearest available swim so that I wouldn’t have to carry any of my equipment further than six feet. There was no way that I was breaking any steps records on my ‘Fatness App’ today...

Following the sad demise of the ‘OG’ Bog Tent, The Son of Bog Tent was bigger and better than before. The test would be challenging for both of us because Silverlake is the windiest venue this side of Todber Manor. I could probably have picked a better place to erect a brand-new and totally unfamiliar tent than here, But I couldn’t have anymore ‘Jungle weeing’ happening at our events. Besides, there is absolutely no cover except the thistles and pricky gorse bushes that inhabit Silverlake. Delicate tushies could not be expected to widdle in the wild here. In a slight breeze, I emptied the contents of the new tent on to the ground. No instructions… How hard could it be? I quickly wondered if the poles were held together with repelling magnets because as fast as I put them together, they would separate once more. Poles finally assembled; I unfolded the Nylon cover. Wow, he was a big lad! No silly Nylon tunnels to thread the poles through, just some nifty webbing loops including a central loop. I immediately threaded it up wrong causing me to cast anxious looks towards the car park and track to see if anyone I knew was arriving, or if anyone else was watching a seemingly incompetent oaf fighting with a toilet tent. I was safe and, once I had sorted the correct order of ‘Loopage’, Time to fix everything in place at the base of each pole. The new tent has stupid wire clips that are simply held in place by tension. Release the tension and they just fall out, which they did with alarming regularity. Round and round, I went, popping the clips back into what seemed like at least 43 pole ends! Finally I had it all clipped up and ready to fix to the ground. The pegs supplied with the tent were made from a mixture of soft metal, and wet spaghetti. Bending, as they did, every time they touched something tougher than grass. I pegged it to a satisfactory degree and sprinted (Yes, Sprinted!) to grab the mega-hyper-super heavy duty pegs we use for the banner frame. Much better, but twice as long… I managed to beat them into the ground using a lump of flint and wondered if, at any point during the last 30,000 years, if an ancestor had sat on this very spot, doing something similar? (But not with soft metal/spaghetti tent pegs…)

The subject of the tutorials for the penultimate Tuesday Club was going to be Pellet Wag and Paste. Two of my favourite methods of fishing. Si Wag had arrived by the time that I was ready to start fishing and he witnessed a bite first cast. Happy days! I thought… This might be a tutorial to remember. I bagged a usual (common) Carp of around 6 or 7lbs, but it took twenty-minutes to make him understand that I wanted him to be hungry. Nothing else was forth coming so I switched to the pole and paste. One tiny F-1 later, and I was less than convinced that today’s lessons would prove fruitful.

Everyone’s favourite Sergeant had arrived in the Wookie like shape of Jezza, so I stopped fishing and chewed the fat with my fellow coaches. Soon we realised that it had gone ten o’clock. No sign of anyone. Was this going to be our first strike out? At about ten past the hour, I recognised Kit leaping through the gorse bushes like a frightened Gazelle. Well…At least we had one… I directed him and mum Jen to drive down the track to the lakeside.

About ten minutes later, I noticed a missed call from Tina. She, like Jen, had driven to the main Silverlake complex but, eventually they found us, and the flock was gathered…

We were due to be joined by Jack Davies but, by 10:30, I assumed they were not coming. I must change my deodorant…

I dived straight into the tutorials and, by a show of hands, it was decided to get both done together. They probably thought that if they got the droning out of the way early, they could get on with some uninterrupted fishing for the rest of the day.

With only two to talk about, this will not take that long. Kenzie had his one-woman entourage back this week and Tina was giving it her all. Fully invested in her boy’s new sport/hobby, Tina is loving this new stationary Kenzie that fishing has created. Usually, Kenzie is an adventure child and is normally found moving around at high speed on scooters. Tina can be quoted as saying that she cannot believe that he can sit still for so long! I remember my mother saying the same thing. Only for me it was a lack of patience that she was amazed at rather than excess energy. The Sgt and I were both rather impressed with Kenzie’s blossoming casting skills. It was paying dividends too judging by the number of Carp that were being fooled into having a munch on his feeder. Kenzie is coming on nicely and was talking about entering the competitive arena very soon.

Kit found the first part of the day a little more of challenge because he was trying out the Pellet Wag as shown in the fishless demo. You could tell that Kit had been listening to the instructions carefully because he didn’t catch anything on it either! Kit set up a feeder rod and produced a collection of casts that anyone would have been proud of and was rewarded with a sprinkling of Carp to show for his troubles. Sadly, the day got expensive when he lost his feeder due to, what we decided was, some tired line. We respooled his reel and he was ready to go again.

After a short lunch break, Kit wandered round the lake with Jerry who had found some Carp ripe for the picking. Armed with a Pellet Waggler, Kit tried to snare one of these ripe Carp, but instead found himself squirrel fishing* instead. (Do Squirrels live in gorse bushes?) More expense as Kit donated his Pellet Wag set up to the Gods of the second island. He trudged back to his seat box and found a few Carpsies close to the first island without any further tackle donations.

I would love to regale you with more tales of fun and humour (Why break a habit of a lifetime?), but not much else really happened in my presence. Apart from when Jerry tried to beat me to death with an unhooking mat. He blamed it on the wind, but I know my truth! Fortunately the only injuries I sustained was dislodged glasses and a knocked off cap! The day was cut short for me because I had to vamoose at 3pm because M’Lady had a doctor’s appointment soon after.

Even the bog tent came down with little fuss…

The next event (Tuesday the 29th of August) is a practice booked on Ash Lake at Todber Manor for those who are fishing in the Senior Junior pairs match. See Spond for details…

Thanks to Jerry and Si who made themselves available today, and to Tina for just being there!

See you soon! Tight lines, Juniors Secretary…

*Squirrel Fishing = Getting caught in trees or bushes…

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