I always enjoy myself when meeting up with the ‘Wildbore’ and I’m sure the next 24 hours will follow tradition. Pulling through the gates of the Richworth Linear Complex I notice a big ripple on the trout lake to my right. The waves do their job in confirming my thoughts that the session is going to be both cold and windy. I continue my chug along the track, making my way towards to Jake over on Brasenose One.
I give Jake a call as I near the lake in order to pin-point his location, he answers in quick time “I’m setting up on the far bank, a few swims before the point mate” he replies. Luckily you can drive all the way round Brasenose so the journey is effortless.
Once in the swim I enquire as to why Jake has chosen this area of the lake, “ The bloke dead opposite has had a decent flurry of fish and according to Roy (The head bailiff) the carp have been held up in that area for a few weeks now. All the swims on that bank are taken so this is about as close as I can get. I also saw a couple of fish clear the water out in front of this swim so it’s definitely my best bet option so far. ”
With the information I have just been given it seems that Jake could well be in for a few fish. I know that the Brasenose residents often show themselves at range on here and I’m curious to see what resistance the carp he saw were at. Jake can cast a long way, in excess of 160 yards so it isn’t going to be a problem for him to reach them, I am just intrigued. “ They were at 108 yards, on pretty much the same mark.” I’m all for being precise but I wasn’t quite expecting a reply like the one I just received. I asked how he could be so accurate, “As soon as I saw them I cast a bare lead straight on top of them and then clipped up the rod. Once the rod was clipped I used the bankstick trick to record their position, which for the record was 27 rod lengths.”
“For the purpose of the feature, can you please explain exactly how the bankstick trick works?” I asked Jake. “Yes of course, it’s is actually quite a simple process and best of all it will help you to be super accurate. Firstly, once you have found your spot you need to clip your rod up using the line clip on the side your spool. This will trap the line in place and ensure that only the desired amount of line can leave the reel during the cast. The next step is to place either two banksticks or pegs in the ground, a rod length apart from each other. Once you have done this, place the lead next to one of the poles and then gradually wrap the line round them, counting the wraps as you go. Eventually you will hit the clip and no more line will be able to leave the reel. It is at this point that you need to record the distance, in today’s case 27 rod lengths. This is an excellent way of marking where certain spots on your lake are. With this method you are able to write them all down in a diary or phone for future reference. This will save having to use a marker rod each time you fish the swims and enables you to get fishing quickly and without causing too much disturbance. It’s a method I use a lot.
With Jakes gear now set up I was as he begins to get his rods clipped up to the desired range. It takes only a matter of minutes before he is ready to attach his rigs and cast out, first though he applies a few spods of bait. I ask him why he is introducing bait whilst he has no rigs in position. “By putting a few spods out now I am aiming to get some fish interested in the area before they move off. I’ve got to tie a few rigs and pva sticks up before I can cast out so I ‘m hoping the spodded bait will hold fish in the area whilst I do get them prepared.”
The wind his hacking into Jakes face from right to left, making the work with the spod rod look tiresome. There’s no stopping Jake though and he lands several casts perfectly on top of the area. With his bait now in position it’s time to sit down and get the rigs ready. Rigs are always subject of conversation and looking at what each individual angler uses is always interesting for me. I enquire into what it is Jake will be using during his stay, “ I’m going to start with short N-Trap hooklinks and size 6 Wide Gape’s. I like to add a rig ring and shrink tube to my hook too, I think this helps the rig perform. These will then be combined with little pva sticks of CC Moore bloodworm bits and fished over the bait. “
Jake sets about getting his rigs tied whilst I have a rummage through his buckets for a peek at his bait. He has a nice variety of goodies but has opted to fish with the bloodworm. Jake has a lovely little bag of ready-made stick mix and a bottle of matching liquid, which he will be using to create both his spod and his stick mix. ‘I’m matching the two because if they are eating the spod mix then that’s what they will be searching for. I want them to actively searching for my hookbait/stick mix combination rather than just taking it by chance.
Before long Jake has all three rods in position for the night ahead. Two of his rods have been placed on the baited area and the other has been cast a little further and out and to the left. “I’m going to use one rod as a roving rod, I’ll move it around every now and then in the hope of landing it amongst some carp. This is a good way of both locating and catching fish during the winter.”
The night is drawing in and darkness is only a matter of minutes away, the moon is huge tonight though. There was a full only a couple of days ago and it is still ever present in the sky, making for great fish spotting opportunities during the hours of darkness. After a quick tidy up we sit down and get the kettle on and watch the sun go down.
It’s been dark for a few hours now and Jake is yet to have seen or caught anything. The wind has picked up quite steadily and is really hacking into a small corner to our left. “If that wind doesn’t push a few fish around then nothing will.” says Jake as he stares out at the water from beneath the moon.
Weather temperature is gradually dropping but I think we are both pretty confident that Jake will receive some form of action during the night. A fish tops somewhere out in front just before we retire to our sleeping bags, adding to our expectation of carp. The fish crashing is nice little something to go to sleep thinking about.
Despite our confidence the night has failed to produce any carp for Jake. He is up and about, watching the lake like a hawk for signs of carp. The sun is slowly creeping its way out from behind the trees and it makes a nice winters morning.
I play with Jakes mind a bit, explaining how he better not draw a blank and that he should make the most of the next few hours. He plays it cool but I can see the fear in his eyes. “I’m just going to keep watching until I see one, I might even have a move to the other side as the hot swim will be free soon. Until then ill just get some solid bags prepared and hope I see a fish somewhere.”
I know Jake has used solid bags a lot and I am interested in why he has so much faith in them, “They’re so reliable and effective. A solid bag offers the opportunity to place a bait absolutely ANYWHERE you like and guarantees perfect presentation. Not only this but due to their shape and density the can be fished at distances in excess of 200 yards. The solid bag allows me to watch for carp and then cast to them with 100% assurance that my rig will be perfectly presented and ready for action, every time. There isn’t another presentation that offers this.”
Time is ticking and panic is starting to set in. Jake decides to reel in and go for a quick wonder around to the other bank for a look.
Jake arrives back with no intention of moving, “There is already someone dropping in the freshly vacated swims on the opposite bank. We will have to stay put here.”
Finally a fish shows itself in front of Jake, it’s a long way out but is still within casting range. “That’ll do, I’m going to get a solid bag right on top of him.” says Jake. Without further ado Jake attaches his pre tied solid bag and leader then launches it out and into the zone.
It is only half an hour or so before the rod is away and Jake finally connects with a carp, a carp he certainly doesn’t want falling off.
The battle is typical of the Brasenose carp, “They really do scrap in here, the deep water allows them to really go for it.” utters a hesitant Jake as the carp strips line from his spool. The carp is by no means happy but eventually Jake slides the net under his first carp of the year. Its clearly a chunky fish and on the scales a reading of 21lbs is shown. “Whey!” says a now happy and relaxed Mr.Wildbore.
The pressure is off now but Jake doesn’t waste any time in getting the rod back out into the now ‘hot area’. In fact, Jake repositions two of his rods in that area to really maximise the chance of action. “In the winter the carp are often locked down in one or two large groups, hopefully this is area holds one of those groups.”
The re-cast rod is away again, the fight being no different from the last, long and spirited due to the range it was hooked from. Dipping the rod tip Jake gradually gains line on the carp before once again coming off victorious, netting the fish first time. “It’s a bigger one than last time for sure El.” Says Jake as he hoists the fish up onto the mat.
We get the weighing done as soon as possible. The fish is just over 24lbs and although Jake has managed to get himself soaked in the process a smile for the camera is far from a struggle for him. With the fish returned Jake once again sets about repositioning the rod.
Jake has definitely landed on the fish as before he can even think about recasting the rod his other solid bag rod is away. Jake runs to the rod as soon as he can, making contact with another carp. “It’s going off now.” Jake says with a laugh. With that the rod springs back and as quick as its going off, its fallen off. On return the rig is fine and a cause for the hook pull is unknown.
No more action has come to fruition and it’s for us to head home. I ask Jake to sum up the session for us, “On the whole it has been really enjoyable. There was a bit of a worry in my mind earlier before I had received any bites but thankfully it all turned around. Today just goes to show how crucial your location and time spent watching the water can be so during winter. If I hadn’t seen that fish show this morning then there is every chance we could have missed that window of opportunity and gone home without any carp.”
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