Well, these are crazy times aren’t they!?! Something you’d never imagine would happen in our lifetime, lakes closed, shops closing, no fishing… NO FISHING!!!!!!
Jesus, what are we going to do? The only thing that keeps us anglers somewhat sane is wetting a line at any given opportunity. Now we’re confined to our house, having to spend endless hours with our family and trying not to kill each other. Oh well, what better a time to sit in front of my PC (safely nestled away from the kids and missus) and flick through some of my captures and memorable moments from last year, until 3 weeks ago. My god, has it been that long already?
Around this time last year, I managed to get a ticket on a very well-known water in Essex. The lake in question is only small in size, around 4 acres, but crammed with some very good looking and very big carp. Unfortunately, I only managed to get in around 25 nights but managed to catch a few, with a couple unfortunately lost.
When I started on there, my approach was always going to be very simple. With the lake only being small I chose to fish the margins, or at the most 6 wraps out. Fluorocarbon was a must so 3 spools of 16lb Mirage were grabbed off the shelf in work and spooled up ready. The reason for using fluorocarbon was because of it’s amazing sinking properties, and let me tell you, this line sinks like a broken battleship! Apart from this I know I can always rely on it’s amazing strength and abrasion resistance when playing fish. The lake bed mainly consisted of large polished areas of clay amongst weed beds, so after donking the lead around to find a suitable thud, and also finding clay on my lead, I decided spots like this would probably be the best place to set my traps, offering impeccable presentation on lovely dinner plates.
Rigs and lead arrangements were fairly simple; a helicopter set up compromising our Covert Tungsten Chod Beads and Sinkers, with a Drop Out Chod Safety Clip safely nestled into the softer silt coloured Covert Buffer Bead. The reason for the C-clip was to help eject the lead safely if the fish managed to get snagged in the bountiful weed or reeds.
My chosen rig was the good old hinged stiff, with the boom section made up of 8” of 25lb Invisi-Link and the hook-section itself made using our ultra-high memory low viz-green 15lb Stiff Link. Hook choice was easy, a size 5 or 6 Specialist Sharpened Chod Hook with a medium bait screw on the D for attaching the pop up. Ok, whilst we’re on the subject of bait screws I must point this out, I hear time and time again about anglers being cautious of using them, because they are scared the bait will fall off, or the weight of the screw will make the rig sink. Well, in all the time I have used these screws I have NEVER had any of the above issues with them. I always test the rig after I have ended my session and the pop up is still as buoyant as it was when I first screwed it on. With most brands of pop ups being so buoyant nowadays, please let me re-assure you they do their job to perfection, even when cast distances in excess of 100 yards!