Since my last article, detailing the lead up and capture of that lovely Heart Tail mirror, the fishing at Welly has been a bit of rollercoaster of emotions if I am honest. The relentless run of Tench continued with yet another PB of 9lb 8oz. They clearly like what was on offer, as I have literally been catching them everywhere that I fished around the lake.

Unfortunately, I also suffered the indignity of 2 losses from carp – both to hook pulls with one being almost beaten and at the net… That one which to be in the 50’s club, which was a hard pill to swallow. I kept reliving the moment over and over for days after, I was so close yet so far, hero to zero!

Despite lots of bites I felt a change of tactics was needed.


A few weeks ago I was up at GT-HQ and I had a nice catch up with the UK Sales Manager Martin and Carl (international box manager), and after a bit of general chit chat we got onto the subject of rigs. With extra sharp hooks and how refined things have become and Martin went on to explain how he thought years ago you’d get a carp refuse or eject a far more basic or old-skool crude rig, but once the rig was accepted and inhaled properly and it tightened, they were nailed. Whereas, the refined mechanics and super-efficient rigs of today are converting more bites, but not necessarily always hooking them in the sweet spot, occasionally catching them on the fringes of the lip whereby the older generation rig would have been ejected. This naturally led me to think about things in detail. What Martin said made perfect sense to me, no wonder they call him ‘Smarts’!

I needed to come up with a plan to help remedy my issue with the abundant bites off the Tench and Bream I was catching. Now I do not dislike Tench or big Bream per say, but they are not the intended species, so this train of thought took me right back to the drawing board regarding approach, rigs and bait.

I was not going to come away from using my boilie of choice, ABS Custom Nut, because I have the upmost confidence in it. Instead, I decided to compliment the boilie by including some Tiger nuts too. In fact, I took a bit of advice and pointers off some of the guys from the Gardner Team, which has come in very handy. What I decided on was a mixture of whole and chopped boilies, mixed with whole and chopped tiger nut. I elevate the attractors with liquids prior to going fishing, making the whole thing a bit more ‘supercharged’.


The next step was a slight change in hook bait to try to deter the other species, so I opted for some specially prepared Tigernuts fished drilled and balanced with cork on a ‘Turbo German Rig’. This was tied with 25lb Invisi-Link fluorocarbon to make it rig crude, but not crude.


I decided I wanted to fish a longer shanked hook, and in this case the good old Covert Dark Incizor, with the view that when it’s inhaled the hook point is positioned further back in the fishes mouth, which will hopefully catch hold a bit deeper in the softer flesh. One thing I have noticed on the Welly Carp is a very tough-skinned bottom lip which might explain the hook pulls. Also, because it’s a balanced bottom bait, I thought I’d go for a slightly smaller size, meaning the point should be finer and sharper in its raw form, meaning I can fish it straight out of the packet on the deck safe in the knowledge the point won’t dull or bur over quite as easy as a doctored point which I favour on a pop up especially with a light lead.

Well, over the coming sessions, I’ve put the plan into action and I’m pleased with the outcome. I’ve not had any Tench or Bream, but 3 bites from Carp, with all 3 landed and well hooked. Thinking about it, two of the battles have been proper angry ones, with the last one lasting a full 20 minutes before I finally got the net under it.


The change of tactics has been a pleasing one and I kick started with a lovely 27lb 14oz mirror and a 32lb 8oz Common. These were followed up with a proper lovely dark mirror, known as the ‘Rudder’ weighing 41lb 14oz!

Unsurprisingly, I’m keeping my fingers crossed that my current run of fortune continues. I would also like to add a big thanks to Rob, Steve and Anthony for the assistance with the fish pictures of late.

Tight lines…