A Scaley Hardwick Thirty For Liam Hodges

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A Scaley Hardwick Thirty For Liam Hodges

I’ve just come back from a 48 hour session on Linear Fisheries Hardwick and Smiths. I started the session by having a good look around and with there only being one angler on the whole lake, I was spoilt for choice. I had a good look around Smiths Pool and saw very little activity in that side. As I was stood in the swim that looks straight in front of the channel between the two lakes, I saw two fish top around 60 yards out off the road bank swim in Hardwick.

Liam's successful Hardwick Smiths end tackle.

I was quick to get around and after standing in the swim for ten minutes I saw another two fish roll. I quickly headed back to the car and grabbed my kit. I knew this area of the lake really well, so there was no need to get the marker rod out. On a previous session I had located an 11 foot clear area on the back of a weed bed at 92 yards. I got the distance sticks out and did (23) wraps and got the rods straight out to the spot. My rigs consisted of two feet of Gardner Plummet Leadcore, a 2.5oz flat pear inline lead, three inches of 25lb Trickster braid and an ever faithful size 6 Covert Mugga hook. I added a big shrink tube kicker to flip the hook around all this was then put inside a mini pva solid bag. I then put about 15 spods of hemp, maggots, corn and chopped and whole LH1 boilies from West Country Baits.

Nothing happened for the few first hours until 8pm that evening when the left hand rod came to life and shortly after I landed a cracking low double mirror. After getting the rod back out, I topped the spot up with another three spods of bait. At 1am the same rod screamed off again and I slipped the net under a nice 24lb mirror. Whilst I had the fish in net the middle rod also ripped off and I managed to successfully land another low double. Two fish in the net at once, a great result and proof that the rigs and the bait were working really well.

After sorting the fish out, I soon had both rods back out with another six spods out to keep the swim alive. During the next two hours I managed to bank a two further doubles. The spot soon slowed up and five hours passed without any further action. It was about 9am now and I had seen two fish top at about 130 yards range, so I decided to cast a solid bag at them. It proved a good choice as within twenty minutes the rod was away with 16lb mirror being the culprit.

The scales read a new pb of 33lb 9oz, which beat my old personal best by 3oz. It was one of the best looking fish I ever caught!

Little did I know what would happen just five minutes later. I was tying a fresh pva bag and having a chat with a mate to let him know what I’d had so far, when the left hand rod slow started to tick off. I picked the rod up and it was clear straight away that I was attached to something special. It took thirty yards to forty yards of line off the reel on the first run. All the way in this fish used its weight to full effect and after twenty minutes I finally caught a glimpse. I was attached to one of the carp I had been after all year, one of the big scaley fish that Hardwick is famous for. The next five minutes were torture and after I managed to safely slip the net under it I was able to breathe a sigh of relief. Once on the mat I could see the Covert Mugga had done its job, the fish was absolutely nailed. The scales read a new pb of 33lb 9oz, which beat my old personal best by 3oz and it was one of the best looking fish I ever caught.

The rest of day was quiet until the last night, when I landed three more fish including 25lb common. A session where I ended up banking ten fish, a session I will remember forever!
The rest of day was quiet until the last night, when I landed three more fish including 25lb common.

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