Guest Blog With Lee Colford – Written in the Stars

New Beechwood Baits team member Lee Colford wasted no time at all putting The Musselberry to good use.  He has some very clear targets he wants to achieve on his local canal, here’s Lee with his lovely write up titled ‘Written in the Stars’, to explain how his first trip using The Musselberry panned out.  Over to you Lee!


Written in the stars ??

Thinking how to start, as I attempt to put into words the events leading up to the capture I’m about to write about.
The more I think about it, the more I’m sure this one had my name on it. Not because I believe I earned it, more a belief that somehow fate dealt me a hand. I’ll start at what I believe is the beginning, and if I happen to hold your attention till the end, let you decide if I’m right or wrong.

My mum had taken our eldest two daughters to the caravan for the weekend, meaning a nice quiet one spent with Laura and our 11 month old baby poppy. Going fishing hadn’t even Crossed my mind, well only a little bit!
After being dragged round the town shopping all day, Laura must have taken pity on me and as it was a nice sunny day suggested going sitting down the canal for a few hours and I could get the rods out. Result!
In fairness I didn’t expect to catch, the area we were going didn’t really have any features that would tend to hold the carp during a warm day and was chosen more for comfort, as the bank was a nice grassy area for Laura and the baby to sit and enjoy the weather.
Over the next few hours I managed to spot the odd ghostie and was even told by a passer by that there had been a larger carp in the area a day or so previous, but still no bites were forthcoming. It was whilst here that I received the email from Gav, inviting me to be part of the team at beechwood baits.
As we packed up that day, knowing I was going to wholeheartedly accept Gavs offer, I decided that I might as well put what bait I had with me in and give them a little free meal. It wasn’t much, a few hundred baits at best, but I split it over the two spots I’d been fishing as well as a dozen tigers.
That evening I emailed Gav to gratefully accept his offer and generally ask a few questions, with me making my first order the next morning, to be collected Friday.
Suddenly things were falling in to place, having read and re read the website and the Facebook page I was really excited to give the musselberry a try, and I thought as I had seen and been told of the odd carp in the area, as well as putting bait there, the canal spot would be as good as anywhere, as long as it was a night session as I felt once it quietened down there was a chance of one paying a visit. Over the next week I paid a few visits to put a dozen tigers and a bit of pellet on each spot. Before I knew it Friday was upon us and 6pm I got the nod to meet Gav and collect my musselberry, we had a quick chat and I mentioned I was going to drop on my local canal the following night. I also mentioned that as yet I hadn’t been fortunate enough to catch one of the commons that went 25lb + and I only needed that to complete the set, having already had mirrors and a ghostie over that weight from the canal.
Once home with the bait the first thing I did was put a few hundred baits in an air dry bag so I could put some on the spots, and once it was dark that’s exactly what I did.

photo 1
The following night couldn’t come quick enough.
Saturday dawned wet and windy and I couldn’t help but notice the air pressure had fallen fast too, it was going to be a long day. With the kids rained in they go a bit stir crazy and with me only having fishing on my mind it was a recipe for disaster, but thankfully they seemed content to sit upstairs watching DVDs all day, Leaving me with my thoughts.
I was due to leave at 7pm but at 4pm I couldn’t help but go down and “check nobody was fishing my spots” that’s what I told Laura anyway.
Truth be told I was hoping to see fish in the area and I wasn’t disappointed as after five minutes I noticed a ghost carp come gliding past and under the bridge, game on!
Come 7pm the baby was teething something chronic and after helping to get her settled is was 7:40pm by the time I left home, thankfully it’s only a short walk, and by 8:10pm I was all set up and I sat down to read a bit of my book.

photo 3
The next few hours were quiet, but for a bream and by midnight I was ready for sleep. I must have only nodded off for half hour or so when I again had to deal with a bream on the margin rod, as I reset it I decided to leave putting a bag of stick mix on and just lowered in as was, with a few more baits to top up what the bream had no doubt eaten, then went back to bed.
I’m not sure if anyone else does this, but when night fishing I tend to stir a little every few hours and lay partly awake for a moment or two before drifting back off. I’m not sure if things disturb me or if I’m just expecting the unexpected but that’s how I was when my alarm suddenly let out a few quick bleeps followed by the sound of the hanger hitting the rod. I was fully awake now and throwing the sleeping bag from over my head I turned to face the rod just in time to see it pulled from the alarm, as whatever was on the end tried it’s hardest to pull free.
Once I picked up the rod the fish came away from the danger of the bridge and swam left, over my other line with no drama and I followed it along till I felt there was no danger then played it a little harder. It wasn’t doing much but staying deep, and at no time did I assume it was big.
After a minute or so of going round in circles I managed to get it near the surface and could see the head of a decent common as it rolled and went back down, but not for long as I lifted again it came straight up and in the net first time. I looked at the time as I secured the net and sorted my bits out and it had just gone 5am. No one about to help out so self takes it would be.

photo 21
I still hadn’t looked what exactly I had caught and it was only as I went to break the net down to carry it to the mat that I suddenly realised I had something a bit larger than I anticipated. I won’t lie, I done a little celebratory dance and shouted out loud something which can’t be put into print but went something along the lines of “get in you beauty” (swearing removed)

photo 31
On the scales it went 26lb 4oz and was a new personal best common, with that I had also completed the set of 25lb+ carp from the canal and on my first session on The Musselberry!!

photo 1

Written in the stars? I’ll let you decide.



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