I had finished my shift at work and was looking forward to having the next seven days off and doing a bit of fishing. Due to the hot weather we are experiencing at the moment my plan was to fish a couple of short overnighters with the hope of bagging one or two fish during the night once the temperature had dropped slightly. We have all turned up at our chosen venue on a warm day only to find the carp totally uninterested in anything other than basking in the warm rays of the sun. So my theory was, that once the sun had disappeared and the carp had finished sun bathing for the day, they might decide to have a munch during the cooler hours of darkness.
The syndicate I fish has a reasonable stock of carp with the average size being quite high, one of the bigger residents is a fish known as Black Spot which has topped the forty pound barrier on a handful of occasions. This is a fish that has eluded me for a few seasons, I have caught her once at a weight of 36lb 12oz but since then, she has slowly gained weight and is without doubt one of my target fish and one that would fulfil my dream of an English forty.
On arrival at the lake I decided to have a wander round and the fish were well spread out around the lake, there was a warm north easterly wind blowing down towards the narrower end of the lake and on my return to the car I spotted a group of six fish cruising along the margins, one of which was a very big mirror. Could this be Black Spot? She had a liking for this part of the lake and had been caught from this end a couple of times, both being when it was hot and also when a full moon was on its way. With this being the case I decided on a swim at the narrow end of the lake where I could access the reed lined margins where I had seen the fish patrolling.
To briefly describe the swim, on the far bank I had a reed line that ran between two willow trees and to the left on my near side a snag that sits in the margins. I decided to fish one rod tight to the left hand tree and a rod as tight as I could get, without being in weed, to the far reed line. On closer inspection, casting a lead across to the reeds I found that it was clear for about a rod length “off” the reeds and then there was a bank of weed before the bottom became clear again so my second rod was placed on this spot. As for my third rod I dropped this in the margins just off the snag. By wandering around I was able to bait all three spots heavily with Mistral Baits Ten Pellet and a mixture of 15mm and 20mm Purple Plum boilies. My rigs, as always consisted of a size four Covert Mugga tied knotless knot style to some Subterfuge Supersoft fluorocarbon fished in conjunction with a Covert Lead Clip and a Plummet Leadcore leader.
I had thought about sleeping under the stars but after a couple of hours of putting up with the mosquitos trying to eat me alive, I was very glad of the cover my brolly coupled with a Mozzi net thrown over the top had to offer! At 10pm I decided to hit the sack, I was in a confident mood and just as I was dreaming about catching an English forty, I had a couple of bleeps on my middle rod that was cast tight to the tree. On closer inspection I’d had a drop back and just as I decided to lift the rod up the bobbin started to rise and I was into a very spirited fish, after a few minutes I slipped the net under a lovely common which on the scales went 24lb 8oz. I already had my camera set up on a tripod so I got a couple of snaps of my prize and returned her before attempting to get a baited rig back on the spot tight to the tree. I had clipped up but with all the overhanging branches my task wasn’t going to be an easy one, however on the first attempt I hit the clip and got a bosh as the lead hit the water. “That’ll do” I thought as I headed back to my pit!
A couple of hours later at 2am the same rod was away again and after another epic scrap I landed a lovely 23lb 12oz mirror, again pictures were taken and I then returned her and as before set about hitting the “spot” tight to the tree. The carp gods were definitely looking down on me and as before I hit the spot first time! The next time I awoke the sun was just starting to rise over the trees in preparation for what was forecast to be another scorcher, I hadn’t caught Black Spot but was more than happy with my takings for the night, this was made even better when totally out of the blue I had a take whilst I was packing away and after a short battle I landed another common. Not the biggest in the lake at 20lb 4oz but an absolute stunner, when they look like that the size is irrelevant and it’s always nice to see some of the lakes bigger resident’s offspring working their way through the ranks.
It just goes to show that even when the conditions aren’t perfect due to high pressure and extremely warm weather by fishing short overnight sessions, at times when the temperature has dropped a little it’s still possible to bank some carp and despite not having the big girl, I headed for home a happy angler with three 20’s under my belt. Maybe I would have her next time as my thoughts turned to my next session which would be in a couple of days? You never know your luck, so watch this space!