Not a Junior post as such but, information gathered today at Mangerton Mill Lake should help our Juniors at the coaching session in a few weeks time and a match later in the year.
I fished in the peg next to the small tree that you can see in the bottom left hand corner of the picture. The weather was mostly bright with occasional clouds, but with a brisk and very cold North Easterly breeze that numbed the fingers and an early morning frost.
Having plumbed the depth, I found roughly 4ft at my Top Kit plus two sections of my pole, about 4.5 metres, going gently down to 5.5 to 6ft at 12 metres. I found a sharp and dramatic step very close in, about 1 metre from the bank that dropped down from 2.5ft down to 4ft.
Fishing on top of this step will pay off more as the weather warms up, possibly with paste, meat or pellets.
I started on the method feeder fished roughly in the middle with a 50/50 mix of micros and groundbait and a 6mm pellet on the hook.
With the cold wind in my face, bites were very hard to come by on the feeder. I switched to the long pole with no bites at all. Next was the short pole with banded 6mm pellets and just 3 or 4 6mm pellets as loose feed. I finally got a Carp fishing just on the bottom and a second followed soon after, before a lull set in again.
Another try on the feeder gave me two more Carp but, again, there was another quiet period.
Mangerton had been solid with fish when I fished it previously, so to find it such a struggle was frustrating.
The wind, as forecast, steadily swung from the North East, round to a southerly, then South Westerly direction. The wind eased then dropped and the temperature started to rise.
Fish could be seen sitting just below the surface and they were starting to group up and feed.
A few house martens started to swoop and grab something emerging from the water and, I'm not sure if this 'hatching' from the lake stirred the fish into action but, the fish started to feed all over the lake as if someone had flipped the switch on.
I caught 10 fish one after the other on the short pole line before changing to my favoured Pellet waggler. I didn't really expect to catch anything and it was a surprise when I managed two good carp on the good old Pellet wag.
With the time of year being different to when the Juniors will be fishing at Mangerton, it may not have much of a baring on the conditions that I experienced today, but the depths will not change. Expect depths of 4 to 6 or even 7 feet, much deeper than anything the Juniors will have experienced before.
Despite the depth, I predict that most of the fish will be caught shallow and on the method feeder. If the float or pole is used, then make sure that your rigs are plenty long enough to cope with the depth.
I ended the day with 17 Carp between 2 and 7lbs, and no silvers at all. What started out as a frustrating day, actually turned out to be a pleasant days fishing, despite the cold weather. I'm sure that our Juniors will have a much better day in the warmer conditions.