DAY 4 - THURSDAY 9th August

There hadn't been many hours between getting to bed and getting up again and the grey skies and soft drizzle didn't stir the greatest enthusiasm for going outside. But 12 brave souls of the team did make it out by 7:30am for a fishing charter on Lake Erie. Britannia enjoys a strong maritime heritage so it was with confident pride that team GB stepped clumsily aboard with our coolers full of beers and snacks. "England expects that every man will do his duty" - If Chris's duty (to Wales?) was to drink several beers before 9am and Andy's duty was to lose his sunglasses overboard then we did Nelson proud. And we felt right at home; or rather "we still feel quite at home here" as Matt put it when asked what it was like to be in one of the colonies by skipper Chris Clements.

We were split across two boats with Captains Darrell and Chris taking great care of us. This split was of course a great excuse for an inter-boat competition but the fishing was slow for the first hour, with Ed's excitement in getting the first bite on his boat being short lived when the fish was deemed too small and the wrong type of fish. We were after yellow perch but it tooka while for Danny to catch anything except a tasteless fish that he described as "only eaten by the Chinese" on account of their more omnivorous appetite than our western pallets. It was like fishing with Prince Phillip. After a bit of hunting about, both boats found themselves above a hungry 'school' of fish (though Danny, a keen ichthyologist, was fast to correct captain Darrell's terminology throughout the trip, this time with 'shoal') and we were pulling fish out almost as fast as we could re-bait the lines. We also ran out of beer half way through and respectfully requested replenishment from the other boat. As we started to head back to dry land, they obliged, but with two bottles of beer that were suspiciously warm. They turned out to have been refilled with Lake Erie's finest water. We were confident, with nearly 90 perch, that we were winners of the fish-off, but the other boat had well over 100. The final tally was over 200 yellow perch between the boats, a healthy 43lbs of fish which took the Port Clinton Fishery (who cleaned them for us) aback as by far the biggest haul of the day.

While we waited for the fish prep, some of us found Port Clinton's very own Underwood's Grill, who were great hosts and even gave a discount for us being shooters (as opposed to just friends of Jon Underwood). The rest of the day was free for naps, prepping shooting kit or running errands (and stop signs in Parag's case). Ross finally completed his range based tasks and at 5pm we had a team meeting along with special guest and legendary ammo maker JJ Jackson. Ross ran us through the next day and his various notes on the range (including important advice on observing stop signs) before DC briefed us on some key rule differences. A double checking of chamber lengths followed courtesy of Jon and John, while chefs Jacqui and Holly prepared the fish (with three different marinades) to be cooked by manly creators of fire Danny and Jumbo. Except Danny fell asleep, so James stood in - one of two James Watsons to dine with us that evening.

Team dinner in the garden was followed by team lounging by the lake watching the big thunderstorm, counting seconds to check the lightning wasn't getting closer, and eventually noticing that all the water 30 yards away had gone white... and the white was getting closer fast... and as everyone fled towards their rooms, the heavens opened.  11am start tomorrow as we all head to the range for the first time  - love to tour