After bracing fish the previous week, I was naturally eager to have another go, in an attempt to hopefully get amongst the fish that the syndicate lake held. With the pressures of life very evident, catching wasn’t necessary as I was using it as an opportunity to release the stresses and strains of everyday life, so catching wasn’t compulsory, but a welcome addition if it did happen.
Surprisingly, a change of bait was in evidence, as I was in a privileged position to have access to the new bait on test at CC Moore, namely the Pacific Tuna. It may have been looked upon as a slightly mad position, to change from something that had just produced your best ever result, but after speaking to the main man, Ian Moore and with his passion and in depth analysis of this new creation, it was very evident that this was something very special and something to behold, so I swapped over and would fish it exclusively on all my rods with immediate effect.
My first night using the new bait was filled with anticipation. I arrived in the evening after work and trotted off down the hill, lake bound. It was busy, with only one swim available, so was happy just to drop in for the night and try my luck.
A quick lead about in front led me to believe that the fish had not visited the areas in the shallows, which they would normally have done. The normal gravel areas had silted up and were very choddy, littered with detritus.
With this bottom very evident, I opted to fish a Northern Special pop up over this uneven bottom, so I would at least know that I was fishing effectively. This was fished on the edge of Pacific Tuna freebies with about 100 whole and chopped freebies spread around a 3 metre radius.
The night was quiet for all involved, but all-too-soon, daylight had arrived and it would soon be time to reel in and everyone had blanked. Whilst sat there watching the water, I was very aware that the birds were avoiding my main spot like the plague. The coot would repeatedly stare into the depths and I knew fish were there and just felt that it was a matter of time before one made a mistake, or I had to reel in. A time-bomb was ticking…
Just before reeling in, I walked along the bank to a neighbouring swim, telling Kenny that I thought I had a chance, when my Neville squealed and a quick dash back to my rods meant that I was instantly connected to something chugging around in front of me.
A brief fight quickly followed when a relatively new, upper double stockie mirror sailed into the net which had recently been introduced into the lake, over the winter. After a quick snap, it was soon swimming back into the depths. It had fallen to a Pink Northern special over Pacific Tuna Freebies so I was relatively happy that the new bait had produced the goods, especially when the others had failed to catch.
A blank had been avoided and the bait had produced on its first outing, albeit from a slightly challenging swim, which to be honest, mad the result even more gratifying. The following week was a full moon which also kindly fell upon a bank holiday. I was meant to be angling on my mainland water, but due to events that conspired against me, I would be forced to stay local and a weekend on the syndicate was called into play, as a back up plan.
I arrived in the morning and spent a couple of hours walking around trying to seek out the fish. I started setting up three times before packing back down and moving. I was conscious that sooner rather than later I would have to make a decision as others would be turning up, so for the fourth time, packed up and moved to the other side of the lake, where upon I had seen the most activity in the last hour.
By teatime, I had been wiped out four times by a trailer and was really upset that my traps were constantly being messed up. Jack Petit turned up and went across the other side and was also being made to suffer, being wiped out on many occasions too.
As the local church chimed 12 midnight, I had a quick stutter of bleeps from the Neville and quickly leapt at the rods. Upon feeling the line, which had been limp, was now bowstring tight. I quickly tightened the drag and pulled into the unseen giant, as it surged off towards the other side of the lake and then started to make its way up the bar. If felt a good fish and the surging runs, along with some head shaking led me to believe that a common was the culprit.
After 25 minutes of battle, the fish sailed into the net and sure enough, a common was my prize. It was the Spring common, evident by the patches of mucus on either side of his back. I phoned Jack who funnily enough answered within a couple of rings and was soon trotting around to see what all the fuss was about.
The common was weighed in at 41-6, being its first excursion to the bank in well over a year, before clicking off a few images and then releasing him into the depths to disappear again with his comrades. The Pacific Tuna had done the business, with a snowman set up combined with a Northern Special topper.
The next night produced nothing as the fish turned off, so packed up and moved onto another lake. The big common was due out anytime soon and I even managed to get in a swim that had common form. I got two rods on spots that had produced the big girl in the past, but my effort had been in vain as no one caught.
I looked upon my Friday night as my own little piece of salvation, so with life in turmoil, I craved the little amount of time I thankfully got to save my sanity. I therefore arrived a little later than usual at the lake, to be greeted by Jack having a take and filming him being royally beaten up by the carp in question, an upper 30 Mirror.
After the weighing and photos had been done, I quickly skulked off to get myself sorted before dark completely disappeared. I got my two bankers in place with snowmen set ups installed, only to have my main spot be taken out by another trailer and cursed as I had to now attempt to get it back in place, which was no mean feat in itself, in complete and utter darkness.
The snowman set-up was again dispatched and soon after the liners started on that rod that would carry on, right the way through the night, meaning that sleep was very hard to come by. At about 5am when the light was just breaking, I lay there, with stinging red eyes, cursing at the thought that I had hardly slept and could not believe that I would soon be packing up with my weekly fix over, when I was brought back to reality with a short burst of bleeps and with the line slightly tightening, I was soon on it and in!
The fish had kited right and had initially picked up some sticks that littered the bottom, but with a bit of pressure I managed to get it moving before it somehow came to life and was all too soon, very aware that I was about to be taught a lesson!
The fish tore about with gay abandonment, going wherever it liked. I had no control whatsoever and the longer the fight went on, the more I was convinced that one of the lakes jewels was attached – 45 long minutes passed before finally, the fish succumbed to my pressure as Jack lifted the net around his very wide back.
We were convinced that it was 45+ as the girth on it was quite surreal. The scales settled on 42-10 which was more than enough for me. A snowman hookbait with NS topper combined with the ESP Reverse Combi Anchor Rig and 2oz Leadshed weight in full force, with the hook settling 2 inches back. This meant that the past month had produced no less than 4 x 40+ for myself that I was eternally grateful for and the coming weeks ahead, with the temperatures still very low for May, the possibility of more to come is also very evident, which hopefully the Pacific Tuna will show, after the recent quartet.
Until next time, keep looking and never give up on your dreams.
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