Back in 2004 I was fishing on Alders Big Lake situated in the heart of the Medway Valley, I was coming to the end of my time as I had caught most of the good fish in there. Around this time some good friends of mine were fishing some lakes just down the road on the Larkfield Complex. There were at that time 5 lakes that you can fish on the Larky ticket, but the one I had my eye on was called Johnson’s Railway Lake.
The lake held around 35 to 40 carp with 9 of them going over 30lb, so a mega stock of old carp. In fact, all the Railway carp are very old historic fish and jet black in colour, so they are very special indeed and have been fished for by some great anglers over the years. Good old Rob Maylin even wrote about the lake in his book “Basil’s Bush”. The Railway is around 9 acres in size with 13 swims, very deep and gin clear and most of the year can be very weedy so it was extremely challenging fishing indeed. The one thing I learnt very quickly about the Railway Lake carp was that they have seen it all! They were very clued up old carp……
I had spent the 2004/05 season fishing on the lake right next to the Railway Larkfield No2, they are split by a causeway bank so only a few feet apart. I was keeping an eye on the Railway and when I felt the time was right the following year, I just had to have a go. In the end, it was late in the summer of 2005 when I decided to move onto the Railway, fishing 2 nights during the week, along with the odd Friday night too.
I’d just done my last night on Larky and decided to fish the first night on the Railway in a swim known as Middle Road, I found a nice silty area at about 60 yards and elected to put a couple of single yellows out for the night. I was lucky enough to catch one the following morning, a carp called the “Scaly Mirror” that was a wicked dark heavily scaled upper 20lb fish. I started to bait a few areas around the lake too, as it had quite a few of the regular guys fishing it at the time, many of whom became some really good friends over time. I pulled off for the winter, as the Railway had no winter form at all, and decided to head back there around March the following year.