Carp Fishing – Now And Again The Carp Read The Script – By Lewis Read

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Carp Fishing – Now And Again The Carp Read The Script – By Lewis Read

It would be quite true to say that my results for the time and effort I’ve been putting in haven’t been great in the last couple of months. The impression that most anglers seem have – based on the snap shot assumptions built up from seeing loads of cheeses in the press, is that Welly is bordering on easy.

Whilst it’s got a decent head of fish (120-130 fish in 35 acres) it can be anything but a push over! It’s been properly sketchy all this year – with anglers fishing over bait catching next to nothing as the fish carried the excess baggage of eggs. Without weed the lake took an age to warm through and then when (or if) they spawned they did it in an extremely covert manner as no one knows exactly where or when it happened. They certainly didn’t go for it in the woodwork (thank god!) and must have spawned somewhere fairly well hidden – maybe even in the silt? A few had a little go a couple of weeks ago – maybe it was more than was seen…

The hot weather broke a little last week, and when I arrived at the lake – yet again – on Friday afternoon the wind was pushing on a fresh SSE wind straight into a corner of Bramble bay and one of my favourite swims on the pond. It looked utterly delicious and I couldn’t resist a quick night in there after walking round the lake for several hours hoping to see a definitive sign.

I knew the wind was going to quarter round to a westerly in the morning, to an area that I may have been priming occasionally [cough] so I had a little lead about and set traps for the night in ‘The Up and Over’ in the hope that there would be a fish or two in the bay.

I ignored the shower just after midnight despite being under the stars (good old Gardner sleeping bag covers!) and woke at 4 to see the ‘Clintinator’ bimbling around in his swim and guessed he’d caught one just before dawn. ‘Campaign angling’ being executed superbly once again by the stocky fellow in ‘his’ swim…

Sitting there watching the dawn unfold I felt quite underwhelmed. When they’re in the bay in numbers you normally know and I sat intently watching the water until 6 without seeing any significant bubbling or visual activity anywhere near me. The lake was like a millpond; picturesque twirls of mist slowly shifting around – it really was a lovely morning to be up early.

If the CARP were there they weren’t giving the game away; so by 6:30 I was packed up and round on the Reeds bank just as the ripple started to trickle down the lake towards me. It felt alive and when I saw a fish show out in The Wides water I was content to take a chance and set up on the end of the forecast westerly knowing there were fish down this end…

Moving early meant I could get rigs set before many fish followed the breeze down, and then when the world and its wife went into spod and thrash mode my swim would be quiet and the lines draped unobtrusively flush to the lake bed.

I hadn’t fished the Cold Swim before so I un-looped the Pocket Rocket off my spod rod and put on a dumpy 2 ounce Bolt Bomb and had a flick about to see what was what. It was all pretty straight forwards and I elected to fish the middle and right hand rods at short range over the back edge of gravel seems.

Each rod had “Ze Mugga” (German) rig on Trick-Link hooklinks baited with a balanced Carp Co Nut Mix boilie; and a dozen casts with a little spods deposited a nice spread of whole and chopped matching boilies around the hookbaits and a few were droppped a little further out beyond into the thicker silt. The left hand rod went into the corner, where the wind was battering in, on a Clone and a slow sinking hook bait over a smooth silty spot amongst choddy leafy mud…

It was only 8am and the wind was picking up all the time, piling the full length of the lake. With all that done I squeezed the shelter into the tiny swim and sat back hoping. These fish often back off the wind, but in reality this is relative to the water temperature and I knew that any fish down here may be triggered to feed by the extra oxygen created by the warm wind.

You know sometimes you are content with your lot. The lake was a bit busy so I had little option in terms of a meaningful move anyway so settled down. Bite time has been in the early hours but there is always hope and conditions were bloody glorious! Smuggly I sat looking at the lake and the other anglers casting and baiting. Mwah ha ha ha haaa – sometimes you need to think strategically on these busy waters, especially at weekend…

Then at 5:30pm a rare daytime bite had me up and in the water as a big carp tried to put some distance between us. It was a heavy ponderous fish and I was shaking like a leaf after dropping a couple for obscure reasons the week before I really wanted this one in the net…

After a good battle a big high/wide back and head came out the water and rolled into the net. It doesn’t matter how often you see these fish the size and condition is breathtaking! I looked down in awe at an ENORMOUS ghosty and laughed like only a demented carper looking down on a huge carp in the net do…

Jamie (the very nice bailiff) came round and assisted with the delicate process of unhooking and weighing and photographing the beast. It’s always hugely appreciated and the Long Ghostie went back with just a sore lip and a few scales treated. Wow! The frame on this fish was on another level and a weight of 47lb indicated that she’d had a little spawn…

I quickly wrapped the rod back upto the correct range, clipped it up on eth reel and tested the Mugga. Ouch! Nice. Just the way it should be and I hastily tied another hook bait and hooked a fresh PVA bag on. Despite the breeze it went out inch perfect to the far bank marker first time. Same again with the bait (same quantities of freebies) and time to catch up on sleep as Friday night is ‘sleep deprivation’ night at Welly so I fancied a Saturday afternoon siesta.

After my little snooze I spent the evening wandering up and down the bank looking for signs and saw a few fish here and there. Let’s be honest – I wasn’t moving so was settled. Normally, I’m looking to move as soon as I’ve set up so it was a nice place to be (mindset wise).

Dawn arrived and with it a new SW wind. It was still blowing down my end, but it wasn’t quite as perfect as the day before. I was slightly disappointed not to have had a bite over night but conditions looked good and I messaged the ‘long suffering’ (lovely) wife to see if I could hang it out till 6pm so I was there still for the time of the bite. ‘Approval’ was offered so I settled down biting my fingers in anticipation. It did look good…

The affable Dr. Dave had on recently sauntered off at just after 9am when the RH rod pulled up tight and I jumped in the lake (the swim is to small to have the rods on the bank) and whatever I’d hooked BEASTED me!

What a fight! It was another big fish that seemed to have a rocket up its vent that ran me ragged for 20 minutes. It’s lovely when they do that. It’s not just about the fish is it? The battle means so much…

Finally a spikey dorsal and a big back came gurgling towards the net and another cracker was safely enveloped in the mesh. This one was real corker of a fish – lovely orange and chestnut colours on her shoulders and flanks and pretty much everything I love in a mirror carp… The thrill was intense and Dr. Dave, Jay and I “ooed and arrrrhhh’d” at the fish as we efficiently weighed, photographed and released another Welly gem…

At first we thought it was ‘Scruffy Bob’ at a really low weight, but now we have compared more photos it’s definitely a different one. At 40lb 8oz it would have been a really (worryingly) low weight to be Scruffy so I was doubly pleased. Another future whacker pushing through? Maybe…

Wednesday work night literally can’t come fast enough now. Oh how I love fishing this lake! Excitement beyond simply thrilling – the place is simply off the scale…

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