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#leather carp
All five
This week saw me slip the net under five of lake 8's carp in a session where it all came together. I started with a very old fully scaled first stocked in 1977. Then i followed it up with this (near) Leather. Third fish was a common and the fourth a mirror which was also a partial Linear giving a cheeky 'all five' (Common, Fully scaled, Mirror, Linear, Leather). From a guestimate total population of around 70 i have managed 13 so far with three others falling off and i still have a good four or five sessions left if the weather holds. Once the end of October comes and temperatures start to fall it'll get harder and i'll be thinking of my winter water down in Kent. Until then though i will continue to try and get bites, land fish and eventually get through to one of the very few and elusive lumps. Some of the carp in lake 8 that can be seen swimming around remain uncaught to this day despite the best efforts of many. Should i get one then it will be through the effort of all my sessions not just the one. Successful method was my standard bottom bait rig, my semi-fixed-running-rig lead system and an 18mm K-LO boilie.
#rigs
Kick back
Since I started carp fishing in 1980 I have used many different kinds of rod, lead and rig setup to try and catch carp. In the early 1980's much of my time was spent on a steep learning curve that took me from light 1/4oz running rigs and float fishing to 2-3oz bolt rigs, tight lines, heavy bobbins and high rod positions
#redhouse lake
Redhouse lake Part ten
The last session on Redhouse lake in 2014 and it's the end of a long hard road for sure. Out of 21 days i spent fifteen on the bank and Redhouse pretty much became my home. Fishing as single mindedly as this though can take it's toll and in many ways. The journey of 50-60 miles each way from home was really no trouble at all to be honest. The camping by the lake was a pleasure for the senses and the soul. The food and brews kept my spirits up as well as the visits from David the owner, Alf and Paul the bailiffs, Gordon Owen the tackle shop manager and of course my mate Shaun. The session with my old mate Jeff rekindled the magic of a true friendship. I was constantly busy trying to outwit and out fish the Tench and of course i managed a few gems. For me it was sheer adventure. I was on my own fishing a lake that was forgotten. No-one really knew what was in there and the chance to find out was what drove me on. If life can be measured then i had my fill by the banks of Redhouse lake.
#semi-fixed-running-rig
The Woolpack lake 7 - part three
The winds are still pushing in from the north so a swim on the south bank is required however that's not to be at the start of the session. This week i move into a new swim, find the spots, defeat the seagulls and get to see a few of these old warriors show themselves over my bait. A tense few hours waiting for a run ensues...
#ultimate-fish-mix
TheCarpCatcher Bait
The second most important thing after location as far as i am concerned is bait, it is after all what you put in front of the fish to catch it. My faith in bait is as strong as my passion for it and if i didn't have total confidence in my bait then i wouldn't use it, it's that simple. So this year see's the start of TheCarpCatcher Bait and hopefully it will prosper. At the moment the field testers are getting the chance to get some of the initial batch from the manufacturer and as always their voluntary feedback is always welcome. Last years test went amazingly well and there will be more on the way. The Berry needs developing and testing with it's new format. Then there is Ultimate Fish Mix a culmination of everything that is awesome in a fishmeal bait basically :-) Popups and Bait soaks to develop and test too plus all sorts of other things to give us that confidence and edge that we all want over our fishy foe. If you want to apply to become a field tester for TheCarpCatcher Bait then follow the link, cheers. http://thecarpcatcher.co.uk/notifications.php
#blogging
Responsive blogging
A big part of TheCarpCatcher isn't just about the skills on the bank it's also about the skills in front of the computer. From the fishing and filming comes the editing, uploading and releasing on the web. YouTube, Facebook, Google and Twitter are there ready to suck up your content but of course it can soon disappear in the never ending feed. In 1996 i made a good decision for my future and a bad one for my current fishing, i went to university to study Computer Science. In 2007 i built my first website for TheCarpCatcher when i started blogging. Now fully responsive, for mobile, pad or pc my blog is in it's second year with 300+ posts. I lost three years of carping, but we wouldn't have TheCarpCatcher without it.
#woolpack
Learning time
It's the first week of july, six weeks after my last session on the woolpacks lake 7. The lakes have all been closed for spawning and the change is dramatic. The trees and bankside which were just starting to fill out in May are now heavy with summer foliage. The water is considerably warmer and the carp much more active, split up into small groups and no longer shoaled. This is the time when it starts to get really tough, with an abundance of natural food and the bombardment from the bankside there is a surplus. The long hot summer days and clear skies also shorten the feeding periods lessening chances. It's scratching time, but it's also learning time too, that's the one thing you can always do no matter what the carp or the weather are up to.
#2010
First lake 8 carp
I fished lake 8 for tench back in 2002-5 but always kept my eye on the carp even though there were very few. Then in January 2009 Andy Stafford a long time member bought the lakes and began the revival and i joined a year later in 2010 and caught my first carp from it on my first session. Lake 8 has many more carp now (approx 70) and they are all English gems. The lake has an interesting topography and at around eight acres the carp have plenty of room to get lost. There are still some very large uncaught originals in the lake with the biggest a common, estimated at over 40lb. For more information go here: http://www.woolpackfishery.co.uk/?page_id=84
#tips
The Importance of bait
The great thing about reviewing my sessions whilst editing is that i can analyse them and identify my strengths. Only through this can a pattern of success or otherwise be identified and this film has a message that's abundantly clear and that's the importance of bait and how you apply it. A constant trickle of bait over a four day period has paid off for me on many occasions and the reasons are obvious. We know they eat our bait at there own time of choosing and it's because of this that we have to regulate what's in the swim. Too much and they might fill up and move on before picking up the trap. Too little and there caution remains making it equally likely that they won't pick up the bait. Little and often regulates how much is in the swim but it also gives you variation too. Bait will be spread out more randomly and will be in different states of breakdown so this will see the carp being a lot less cautious and the fact that there is always a few baits in the swim too is a real bonus. The only thing left is to keep an eye on conditions, adjust your feeding accordingly and of course, be lucky!