WOW, where does the time go. Its been a couple of months since my last blog and I have been busy, busy, busy!
July was a great month for PCF holding 2 Socials, one at Holme Fen for the lads on the bait team and the other was a Father and Child social at East Delph lakes in Peterborough, and it was a pleasure help at both events.
Although the social on Holme Fen was a bit of a struggle for most people, including myself, there were a few fish caught including a 45 and a 48 by Warren Summers. The weekend was a great event and lots of money was raised for a local charity, great banter and a brilliant BBQ on the Saturday night.
The Father and child social was the first of its kind that PCF have run and due to the success of the weekend it won’t be the last. The majority of the children caught, if not carp most had a go with a roach pole catching small rudd and roach. It was great to see and a bit of a reality check on how fishing should be, not a big competition but having a good time and enjoying yourself.
As for my fishing, where do I begin….
The beginning of July saw me back down on the Teakettle fishery site and I had 4 nights ahead of me. The first night was spent on the Stock reservoir to check on the fish that are in there. I managed a couple lovely looking scaley mirrors which one day will be located into the syndicate. The 2nd and 3rd night I spent on my nemesis lake Thorney Mere to do some filing for my Vlog on Youtube. I fished one of my favourite swims on the lake called Peaches, I managed a 22lb common and lost a couple but due to them starting to spawn I packed up and moved over the syndicate, Whittlemere. It took me some time to find the fish due to the heavy weed and then took me even longer to find clear areas to be able to present my baits and fish safely. Confidence was really high when I started to receive liners during the late evening and into the night. The conditions seemed perfect and there was an air of expectation. I was woken at first light by a liner on my right hand rod which had me running from the bivvy bare footed only to witness some of the lakes stock spawning in the edge. I don’t know why but it seems every lake I’ve wanted to fish during the late spring/early summer has resulted in the fish spawning whilst I’m there, and I for one wont fish for them whilst they are in that mood. I reeled in, packed up shortly after, heading home to spend some time with my very understanding wife Tracey.
My next trip out was for the social on Holme Fen. As per normal I was fishing with my dad but yet again I drew badly for us and we ended up 13th out of 15 pairs, I’m going to let him draw on the next one!. We ended up behind the islands in a swim called Island Double, a swim big enough for two and plenty of water to play with. Although we saw a few fish over the weekend and I had fizzing over my rods on both mornings nothing materialised for either of us. We tried everything in our armoury, bottom baits, pop ups, solid bags and zigs, it just never happened for us. There were 6 fish caught over the weekend including 2 40’s for a lad called Warren. He broke his PB twice which cost him in fines on the final morning. We run a fines system at our socials and you get find for all sorts. Catching a 30,40 or a 50, catching a PB, Snoring, Farting, Carpy language just about anything but all monies raised goes to the chosen charity of the winning team, all in all these weekends are great fun.
The following weekend was the Father and child fish in at East Delph lakes. This was my first visit to the complex since I was a youngster and what a difference those years have made to the place. James who runs the fishery has done an amazing job transforming these lakes into a very special venue. The draw for this fish-in was done on the childs age, the youngest went first and went up in age order. Once the swims were chosen everyone helped each other to get there gear round to the swims and fishing started straight away. There were several fish caught over the weekend with the biggest being a 22lb 5oz mirror for Lauren Bristow. Due to some swims not producing one of the fathers nipped to a local tackle shop and bought a 5m pole and a pint of maggots. The kids were taking it in turns to catch the roach that resided in the lakes. They were having great fun. I even had a quick go catching a lovely roach, I even got a photo with it lol. As per normal on our socials we had a BBQ on the Saturday night which we held in the social area on the complex which has a big marquee a couple of BBQ’s and benches to sit at, another little touch which makes this venue great.
Well that was July over and done with. I didn’t fish much for myself during the month and when I did the fish decided to spawn yet again!
The summer is always hit and miss, you could fall unlucky and get to a lake full of spawning carp or they could just be laying up in the weed not that interested in feeding. One of the best ways of catching them at this time of year is off the top. There is something special about watching a carp slurp down your hook bait from the surface and bolt off with it. I have done quite a bit of floater fishing this year, it was one area of my angling I wanted to improve on and I think I’ve just about mastered it. It is probably one of the most frustrating, tiring yet most exciting forms of carp fishing.
I only managed two trips during August but on both occasions my floater fishing was going to be put to the test.
Both trips were to Premium Carp Fishing’ Abbey lake in Ramsey. This is a lake I have fished on a few occasions in the past but only recently realised how good a floater water it can really be. A week or so before my first trip A few lads had booked the lake and had something like 50 fish between them with 20+ fish being over 20lb and as I found out the majority of these came off the top.
I armed myself with a few bags of dog biscuits plus my normal summer mix of boilies, The Relish and Coco-Fruit. I was going to be fishing with a good friend of mine and also my dad. We split ourselves around the lake which gave us the best chance of locating the fish. I was off the mark quite quickly with a small common off the bottom. Typically the conditions were not good for floater fishing, overcast, strong winds and rain but the Friday evening the wind died down enough for me to get some fish taking off the top over the Plateau. My controller was soon sailing out over the top of the fish and slowly wound back amongst them. It didn’t take long for my cut down stinky pink pop up to be taken and I was connected to my first surface caught carp from Abbey. Due to how shallow the plateau is the fish had nowhere to go apart from away from me which it did at a high rate of knots! I managed to slowly win the battle and was rewarded with a lovely upper double mirror. I managed another one before the wind picked up again which was blowing straight at me. I caught a couple more during the night but at first light whilst the wind was still calm I got them feeding off the top again. This resulted in a few more falling to my Stinky pink pop up. The fish soon spooked and other than the odd one taking it all went quite. I managed a couple of fish off the bottom during the Saturday night using a Slip ‘D’ rig with a snowman set up and a small stick of the new stick mix.
Sunday morning I was up nice and early watching the water and I noticed a lot of activity to the right of where my dad was fishing. This bank was on the back of the wind so had a lot of calm water out in front of it. I quickly reeled in my bottom rods and set off round there with my floater gear to poach my dads water. My dad soon joined me once I had the fish feeding confidently and we took it in turns catching them. I was spoding the biscuits soaked in coco-fruit glug and hemp oil to our left and let the wind take them over the plateau towards where the fish were feeding. We had a great morning catching them off the top, I think we ended up with about 10 or 12 fish between us including a few 20’s to 24lb, all in all a great weekend spent on the bank.
I was back down to Abbey the following weekend, this time on my own. I set up where my dad and I were catching them the previous weekend. The conditions were similar with the wind coming from behind me blowing in a diagonal from left to right. I quickly sorted out some biscuits and got them in soak whilst setting up my last few bits. The first spod of mixers went out and within seconds I had them taking, and lots of them too. They were bow waving under the surface actively looking for the mixers. Needless to say it didn’t take long to hook into my first carp of the trip, then the second, third and fourth. Although I was having a great time catching them off the top I needed to sort out some spots for the night ahead. I walked round to the boat house which was on my left hand bank with my marker rod, spod rod and a bucket of crushed and whole boilies, pellets and mixed particles.
I found a clear area in the channel and introduced about 4kg of the mix. This area was about 80yrds from my swim so and easy cast and a nice tall tree to use as a far bank marker to aim for.
Once I’d baited up I got back to catching them off the top. This went on until late evening when the light started to fade. Although there were a few still taking I was shattered and went to back. It was all quite on the bottom for the night however fish were back on top of the Plateau first thing in the morning so it wasn’t long before I had the spod rod out giving them some mixers, and as the day before they were going mad for it. I started catching from the off and this continued for most of the day. This style of fishing can be very tiring, constantly casting, spodding, playing and landing fish so come late afternoon I was just about done. With the bottom rods back out I hit the sack. I got tenched out during the night catching 6 of the little green, red eyed carp but come daylight the carp moved in and I caught several in quick succession. Although the bottom rods where rocking I carried on putting mixers out but the wind got up and pushed the fish further away from me. I changed one of my rods to a zig and cast it into the area where I was catching from off the top. It was strange because it took an hour or so to get a bite on a Zig but another followed quite quickly after the first. The wind died down around lunchtime so had another go on the top and managed a few more before I had to pack up and head home.
I finished this trip with 24 fish with the biggest around 24lb. It was a very enjoyable weekend but I was absolutely shattered by the end of it. The wife said to me when I got home she though fishing was meant to be relaxing, I thought it was too!
I won’t be out again now until the end of September due to going on holiday for 2 weeks at the start of the month but when I’m back I should be out on the bank rather rapidly. The next few months are some of my favourite months for fishing so fingers crossed I can make the most of it.
Until next time, get out there, enjoy yourself and remember….. Its only fishing.