It was March 2015, and after arriving at the lake after work on the Friday evening, I selected a swim and began the rush to get the rods out before dark. Fortunately, I had fished this swim a couple of times during the autumn, so I knew of a few good areas. The weather conditions were overcast, with a strong south westerly wind blowing, and by the time I finally finished setting up it was around 8PM.

I positioned one rod out to my left and the other two rods were cast straight out towards a swim on the opposite bank, landing on nice features. With the hookbaits cast out I mixed around 4kg of hemp with 2kg of sweet corn, and then added 2kg of various sizes of Live System boilies and deposited 10 large Spombs accurately over each rod.

Presentation wise I opted to use Hinged stiff rigs as this meant I could present my hookbaits just off the bottom away from any debris or low-lying weed that could hinder the hooking potential of the rig. The hinged stiff rig was tied using 25lb Trick Link for the boom section at a length of roughly 8-10 inches and the pop-up section of the rig was tied using 25lb Tripwire to a size 6 Covert Dark Chod hook. All rods were fished on lead clip set ups with a 1m Camflex silt coloured leadcore leader.

My first bite came the following morning shortly after first light, the left-hand rod pulled up tight and after a steady battle resulted in a 21lb 12oz mirror. After weighing the carp, I placed it in the retaining sling and got the rod back out as quickly as I could, to maximize my chance of another bite. The rod had only been out no longer than 10 minutes when it was away again! I picked it up and the fish began to take line, heading down the lake towards the deeper water. I had to get in the water and wade out as far as I could get to enable me to gain a better angle on the fish and avoid the line grating through the trees to my left.


It was evident I had hooked a better fish, as there was just no stopping it to begin with, and the fish knew exactly where it was going. The fight lasted around 20 minutes and the carp was determined to get into the marginal snags, but after a few tense moments under the rod tip I was able to slip the net under a huge mirror – one that I did not recognize at first glance.

Whilst the fish was safely in the folds of the net, my friend Ash made his way round the lake to assist me with the weighing. As I lifted the fish out of the water and onto the mat, we identified the it as one known as Brown-Ones-Mate. The carp looked massive and had not been out for a few months, and the weight was a massive shock to us, and I was absolutely over the moon. It felt great to catch one of my target fish from the venue and to make things even better it weighed 40lb 2oz! A new PB at the time and my first UK 40lb’er.


After photographing the two carp and safely returning them, I had the chance to sit down and recap on the mornings action. I was soaked head to toe, but that didn’t matter in the slightest. I was absolutely chuffed!

During the remaining 24 hours of the session I went on to land another five carp, including three 20’s and two more 30’s. A truly memorable session indeed…