I started the month of August on my syndicate lake, I had been catching consistently all year and with a good head of big scaley fish to target, I saw no reason to change venues. After a good look around I decided to setup in a swim that rarely gets any attention. After getting the house up, I got the leading rod out and after a couple of casts I found an area between two weedbeds, just ten wraps out. I decided to put two rods on this spot and spread a good amount of bait over the top. My third rod went out of a solid bag cast accurately towards a small hole in the weed.
I faced a constant battle with the coots that dived on my spots for two days. Eventually they got the better of me and I was forced to move swims. I had seen a few fish show themselves in-front of a nearby swim, so I packed my kit up and moved round. I flicked a lead towards where I had seen the activity and unsurprisingly the area was lovely and clean. I put two rods on this, with a good helping of bait and my third went back on my original spot, where the coots had given me so much trouble.
The following morning I had an early take in the early hours and landed a lush 13lb fully. A few minutes later I had another take and after a short fight, I landed another fully, this time weighing 14lbs. I got the rods back out, the pictures done and then shortly after had my third fish of the morning, which resulted in a lovely 23lb 2oz common.
I was really glad I had made the effort to move and happy that I was on a few fish, so I decided to repeat the process every evening for the remainder of the trip. By the end of the session I had landed 10 carp, the highlight a brace of commons weighing 32lb 2oz and 32lb 10oz.
I returned on a Thursday a couple of weeks later. I was keen to get down a day before the Friday rush as it was a Bank Holiday weekend. As luck would have it I managed to get back into the same swim. I set my rods up and found the same spot that had done a few bites on my last session. There were still fish in the area as I had seen a few showing out in-front that morning. The spot was about the size of a brolly and was surrounded by weed. My third rod was cast to the main spot in the swim at sixteen wraps. I knew the fish were likely to respond to a bit of bait, so I put 18 spods on the right hand spot and 15 over the main spot. I was still using the same tactics that I had used all year. My main line was the super strong Pro XM in Light Blend, which is ideal for playing big fish in weedy conditions. My lead set-up consisted of a simple Covert Lead Clip and Tail Rubber, with a length of CamFlex leadcore to keep the line around the rig pinned to the lake bed. A blow-back presentation was tied incorporating 25lb brown Sink Skin and my favourite hook pattern, a size 6 Covert Incizor. Hookbait was an 18mm Tuna and Garlic bottom bait, tipped with a matching pop up from Urban Baits.
At 2:30am the following morning, I had a take on the right hand rod and after a short fight I slipped the net under a 17lb 8oz mirror. After a couple of pics, I got the rod back out on the spot and grabbed some sleep. At 4am I had a take on the rod on the main spot, but after a fish slowly plodded off unfortunately the hook pulled. I was a bit gutted, but pleased to have bagged one on my first night. I recast the rods that evening and introduced 24 spods over the top of each spot. There were plenty of fish in the area and I hoped during the early hours they would get their heads down.
The night passed quietly and I couldn’t believe that I hadn’t had a single bleep. The fish were in front of me, but I wondered if I had put too much bait on the spots. I kept the baiting to the minimum that night and got the rods sorted for what I hoped would be a busy night ahead.
At 2:30 am I had a take from the right hand rod but unfortunately lost it in a thick weedbed. I was a bit gutted, but got the rod back out and headed back off to bed. I was woken at dawn by a nice steady take, one of those that you know a big fish is responsible for before you pick the rod up. The fish instantly flat rodded me and was almost unstoppable before it weeded me up. I kept steady pressure on it for a few minutes before it came free of the weed, only for it to go into another weedbed nearby. I kept steady pressure on the fish again and after 25 minutes I could feel the weed bed slowly breaking up. On the misty surface I slowly led a weedbed the size of my bivvy slowly back towards the bank. I had no idea whether the fish was still on still. As the weedbed got closer, I knew I wouldn’t be able to scoop the whole lot up in the net. With my waders on, I put the rod back on the rest and went in. As I broke away the weed from the leadcore, a big fish wallowed next to me and then shot off. I quickly grabbed the rod and my mate that I was doubled up with woke up to all the commotion. I slowly played the fish back in and within a few minutes the beast was safely in the net.
When I walked over to get the fish out, I saw it was decent one and it had a big single scale on one of its flanks. I said to my mate it was a fish known as Single, but he didn’t believe me. The scales shot round to 44lb 8oz, which confirmed it was Single and a new PB to boot. I got some great shots and whilst doing some returners, my right hand rod ripped off again! After a 10 minute battle, I slipped the net under a lush 28lb common. I couple of hours later I rounded the session of with a 22lb 10oz mirror, which finished my month off perfectly!