Firs Lake, Winter Warmer

Firs lake at Fir Tree Fishery is an extremely impressive looking bit of water, has a great deal going for it and is maintained to a very high standard. The access is brilliant, with spacious hard standing pegs which  are very clean with good margin, central track and island depths, the island is approx fifteen meters from the peg I was on, but it did look like it was wider and more narrow on different pegs but not by a great deal. The day started off with a -3 on the temperature gauge in the car,  with the gear freezing on the side of the bank and my pole sections freezing together I didn't have high hopes for a big  bag of fish, just some bites would have done. The Firs lake being the main match lake has a good head of decent silvers in it, and with very little small bits in this lake, when the float went under you knew it would be a decent fish.

I settled on my pegs and the other lads did the same and got set up, I fished two lines to start, a five meter line and eleven meter line, at the deepest area of my peg, hoping a few fish would be sulking down there. I fed red maggot with maggot on the hook, and slow was order of the morning, but i kept feeding little and often and eventually a few bites started to come my way. I made a mistake to start with, when I got a fish from one line I concentrated on that line for too long and from my experience of the day, I should have moved to each line after each fish as I am sure each fish spooked the others. The Chub and Ide I landed would usually have signs of feeding in the back of there throats, but there was nothing in every fish I landed, which meant they were not competitively feeding and more opportunists on the day.

I continued to fish the two lines to mid afternoon, then gave in and baited the island at fourteen meters at about four and a half foot and left it for a about half an hour and went over with double maggot, and the float buried strait away for a chub and then out for a second and thought I had cracked it, but the same at the two shorter lines I had to keep moving between them all to pick off a fish at a time, while feeding in small amounts each time.

I found keeping the rig moving and alternating between swims turned from what could have turned from a bite less cold winters day, to a very rewarding day on the bank, a great deal to learn about winter fishing and this venue, as the bag of fish I put together was hard a hard slog, but more than worth it. I really enjoyed the day and kept my head down and worked my swim, which is the advice I always give out when asked about how I fish my pegs, working the swims feeding accurately and consistently and reading how the fish are feeding and adjusting to to ensure more bites and more fish in the net.

Big thanks to Fir Tree staff for looking after us and this water is only going to go from strength to strength over the coming years.

Water: Firs

Peg: 3

Tactics: 5 & 11 meter pole line 0.11 main line, 0.09 hook Length, size 18 hook, 0.6g Dino Roach Cesar float, fished on the bottom. 14 meter line to the island, 0.11 strait through to size 16 hook, 0.4g Dino Chi Chi float fished on the bottom.