Saturday, 5 November 2016

Bemm River Competition 21-23/October
It has been a long time since the ‘Bemm’ has spoilt our annual competition with such unpleasant weather.
Friday was the pick of the weekend with some sunshine, minimal wind and no rain. Saturday and Sunday morning were somewhat a contrast with no sun, lots of wind intermittent rain and plummeting temperatures.
Friday saw the retired members of the club take to the water with great gusto.  Jack and Ken Waller headed for Siberia  where some large fish were caught (by Ken anyway) whilst Don and Ken Bittner ended up at the river mouth where 9 fish were caught in 20 minutes ( but the next 5 in 3 hours).
Yours truly followed Bill and Kath up the river because on Thursday they had caught 29 fish although most were 28-29 cms-but where there are fish there is always hope. I did get a bit of a scare as we had travelled slowly across the lake but once in the river it was “a little more throttle” which raised the front of the boat and allowed the bilge pump to start pumping out LOTS of water – panic stations and I was over the back to check the bungs which were tightly in place which was not very reassuring as I didn’t know how I had holed the hull but a quick taste of the water, much to my relief, had a distinct absence of salt. While the boat was at Lakes Outboards it had obviously been left out in the rain—went much better without the 30 liters of ballast.
As per Thursday the fish were all small and interestingly they made very tentative bits so it was strike on the slightest movement of the rod or line. Luckily I had a phone call from Don skiting about the 9 fish  ( one was 40.1 cms) so it wasn’t too hard to head for the river mouth where I managed to catch 4 fish all of them keepers.   
Friday night half the crew headed for the pub for the evening meal whilst the rest ate at Cosy Nook. Jack ordered pork chops and was amazed at the size of the chop and even more amazed when he discovered another one under the first. The meals were very generous and   of a high standard.
Saturday was very interesting as wind was up and there was a bit of a chop across the lake—this made it very hard to tell if you had a tentative bite because the tip of the rod was up and down like a yo-yo.. A lot of time was spent in the river hard up against the southern bank out of the wind. It was here that Owen Bennett caught his winning fish of 40.6cms and Dave Veenstra caught his non-winning flathead of 52cms (we don’t have ‘other species’ any more) although he did manage a 39 cm bream.
Shaun Myers again managed to out fish his father and as expected won the junior award as well as the secret weight.
David Bell was probably glad he had to leave the water early as it couldn’t have been very pleasant in his open clinker built boat but he had cooking to attend to – the spit roasts had to be started.
The meal David provided for his fellow members was superb –all eighteen members and two guests were served roast pork and beef along with roast potatoes and pumpkin. Helen also spoilt us with grog soaked cake and ice cream for ‘afters’. Congratulations David for a job well done (see you next year).
A game of five hundred was held in one corner with four ‘serious’ players helped along by the onlookers who felt no shame in offering advice which harbored on cheating.
It poured with rain most of the night and on arising on Suinday morning the weather looked about as promising as the day before, with wind and intermittent rain showers so it was not surprising that no one ventured out but all went home early with some like Don henry being unable to resist a pie or two at Orbost.
A great weekend very much like the ‘old days’.

Robin Widdowson