Over the past month I had lost the buzz for my fishing. No matter how hard I tried to get it back I just couldn’t quite do it. Even popping to one of my local waters for a quick overnight trip and landing 2 fish to 26lb still didn’t seem help.
All of my spare time is spent at the lake; whether it be walking, seeing friends or having a pint at the world’s most expensive pub that happens to overlook the lake. For some reason, I suddenly felt like the amount of time spent at or around the lake was just pointless. Like there was no purpose to it! At least that is how I felt right up until last Tuesday morning anyway.
After work on the Monday evening, I decided to go for a walk down the lake, as I was planning on fishing once I’d finished work on the Tuesday. The weather was lovely, the sun was shining and a steady, warm westerly was blowing right down into the bay.
It didn’t take me long to find the fish. In actual fact it took the best part of about 30 seconds. First of all I spotted one, then two, then three and so on… It was obvious the fish were down here, and there were lots of them.
I had to make a decision and without too much thinking I was off back home to get my rods and some supplies for the night. The next half an hour was a bit of a rush. You know how it is. You find fish, you get excited, and you rush to get some traps set.
I arrived back at the lake, and sure enough, there were still numerous carp cruising about from around 20 yards to roughly 40 yards out. At this point my confidence was sky high, and I couldn’t wait to get the rods out.
As I had work the next morning, I thought that my best bet would be to fish bags to where I had been seeing the fish lurking in this shallow weedy bay. The reason behind this is that I didn’t want to start casting around, potentially spooking the fish out of the swim.
Three solid bags were tied, containing nothing but crushed boilies and some 3mm pellets. Each rig was baited with a 15mm hookbait, each mounted onto a super sharp size 6 Mugga, each finished exquisite rig filling me with nothing but confidence.
All three rods were spread out around at about 30 yards range as this is where I had seen the most carp swimming.
Not even an hour after putting my rods out, the liners started. Bobbins lifting up off the floor, smashing into the underside of the rod, and then gracefully falling all the way back down.
It was around quarter past nine, and the fish had seemed to have moved down lower in the water. However, they were rolling over my left and middle rod, still giving me liners. Things were still looking more than promising…
I lay there that evening, under the stars, gazing up through the gaps in the trees. I even spotted a shooting star whizz on over my head, and for us carp anglers, the obvious thing to do was to wish for an almighty great big carp to grace my net by the morning.
I awoke around 5 o’clock the next morning to a savage liner on the left hand rod, that caused me to jump out of my bed and scramble out to the rod. After becoming aware it was a liner, I sat back on my bed and watched out at the lake.
It wasn’t long before I saw them showing again. This time they seemed to be a bit further to the left (around a rod length away from my left hand rig). About 30 minutes later they completely stopped showing.
The next fish I saw was a couple of hours later, around 8’ish. It just gently rolled not that far from my middle rod, showing nothing but a huge head and a lovely orange looking flank. I was certain they were still here, and I was right. There were plenty of them ‘head and shouldering’, cruising around on the surface, rolling…
I spent the next hour and a half waiting. Waiting for one of the bags to rip off, but it didn’t happen! Feeling slightly disheartened, I looked at the time. It was 9:56am already. That meant that I only had an hour before I had to reel in and leave, so I decided to put a zig out to where the fish were cruising around.
In my armoury, I used a whittled down white pop up, mounted on to around 5 and a half foot of Gardner 12lb Zig Link and a size 11 Covert Mugga.
I cast the rod out to where I had been seeing them. The lead quietly plopping in, with the hookbait following nicely untangled and leaving nothing but two small rings in the water.
I hadn’t really ever fished zigs, so I didn’t have an awful lot of confidence in them. However, judging by the two splashes I was sure that it was presented efficiently.
I took a short walk up the bank; just up from my swim to see if I could see any more fish in the bay. I was stood there for no longer than a minute, before I heard a single ‘beep’ come from my alarm. Hastily, I made my way back to the swim, and soon realised that there was a swan right over my zig! With my mind set on thinking it may have been the swan, I sat back and checked the time.
10:14am, just over 10 minutes after putting it out, the zig was away! I hit into what felt like an extremely powerful fish. It rapidly kited left, taking me into a large weed bed and stopping dead in its tracks. I kept a steady, constant pressure on it, trying not to give it too much stick as I was only fishing a relatively low diameter hooklink.
After about 10 minutes of the fish being weeded up, I began to pull a little harder, trying my hardest to free the fish from the weed. Finally, I felt it move, and all we saw was an extremely large mirror come up to the surface just past the weed bed that it had previously been stuck firmly in. I was back in contact with it.
She continued to plough left and continued to take more line, leaving me no choice but to jump in fully clothed. After a short while she was ready for the net, and luckily Rusty was already in the water ready to do the honours.
In she went, and straight away we knew what it was. It was a fish called ‘Bobble’, and it was the second biggest in the lake, coming out at 53lb+ just two months previously.
Due to having to be at work in less than an hour, everything seemed to be a bit of a rush. We lifted the fish up onto the bank and unhooked her and then took her to the scales. 45lb 10oz. My 2nd 45lb+ fish this year, and a new personal best for me!
With the fish safely in the retainer, I called a couple of people for photos. Half an hour later, Craig turned up and took some lovely shots. Then we returned the fish and I was at work on time.
What a perfect end to an unplanned over nighter!