Fortune favours the bravest anglers in icy conditions
With the banks of most lakes resembling frozen soggy sponges, local rivers – and the odd canal section – turned out to be the best bet for most over the weekend.
Continuing its current trend, whole lengths of the Upper Ouse seemed alive with silvers. And while that is good for match anglers, it is also benefitting pikers as chunky mid-sized snappers are caught increasingly frequently.
And, while more usually found deadbaiting lakes, Floyd Edwards was among those making the most of running water sport at the weekend as – on Olney's water – he went stalking and had the 11-pounder pictured, among others.
ALSO on that section Paul Hodgson had a 6-1 chub. Elsewhere Phil 'Mr Chub' Mapp had another brace of five-pounders, and at the other end of the size-scale Gary Maton and Bill Bradshaw spent Monday bagging quality dace on 'the bully' Ouzel at Newport.
THE national barbel record, held at 21-1 by Adams Mill since 2006, has finally been beaten by a 'Sussex river' fish one ounce heavier.
OLNEY's Tuesday Ouse open also saw a lot of dace and roach caught as Paul Caton won with 14lb ahead of Neale Shearn 11-5 and Pete Laughton 8-2. Dave Partridge proved he is still about with perch of 2-12 and 2-4.
TRING Old Codgers, canal, Leighton Buzzard: Chris Howard had 15-3 of skimmers and roach followed by Richard Gibbs 10-14 and Simon Pavey 6-1.
TOWCESTER Vets, canal, Stowe Hill: John Balhatchett 14-14, Rob Rawlins 12-4, Paul Minney and Les Ramsden both 5lb.
MK Vets, canal, Bradwell: Charlie Lancaster 12-5, Kevin Smith 8-13, Martin Cunniffe 7-15. One section produced some 50lb...the other 7lb.
TOWCESTER/Nene, Tove: Balhatchett 7-11, Mick Goodridge 7-3, Bas Eaton 3-13.
CALVERT, Ouse, Buckingham: despite last week's good catches only a handful fished this week's event. Tony Richardson 6-13, Dave Lewis 6-9 and John Weatherall 1-9.
OUTCASTS, canal, Castlethorpe: Dave Haddon 6-15, Paul Scrivener 2-2 and Ray Hickey 0-5.
LINFORD, canal, Wharf: John Hough, 3-12.
RAY Ward from Olney caught Elinor trout water's best of week (again) – a 5-2 rainbow on black and orange lure.
A 3lb perch – which didn't count – was caught during a pike match on the Abbeys pits.
FIXTURES: Saturday: Olney Christmas match, 01234 24006; Tring open pike match Marsworth reservoirs, 07983 242456. Sunday, MKAA Christmas match, tickets from local tackle shops.