TheCarpCatcher
 
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Boilies, Popups, Hard hookers, Paste & Glug
#basemix
The fly test
I am a great believer in keeping things simple. The more complicated something is the more likely you are to fail. These are two of the simplest baits i make. There are no added flavours or oils etc in either bait, only the eggs needed to bind them. The yellow one has two dry ingredients. The brown one has three, but the third ingredient makes all the difference. I know a fly isn't as smart as a carp but, the instincts are pretty similar. These two baits amply demonstrate the 'food signal' approach to bait and how keeping it simple, makes it easy to understand and the easier it is to understand the more likely you are to succeed.
#film
The Woolpack lake 7 - part four
It's the last week of May 2016 and the weather is in a downturn with cold wet driving northerly winds day and night. When i arrived I counted plenty of cars in the car park so i knew it was going to be tough getting a swim on the wind and a walk around the lake soon revealed little option. Now it's at times like these when you think your chances of a fish are small that you must push on. Places like lake seven are not easy prospects and you need to spend as much time on the lake learning as you can. So even if a session looks like a write off, you must still go. Remember if it was just about catching fish it wouldn't be called fishing.
#kick-back
Tighten up
In some of the later episodes of The Woolpack lake 8 it's been noticed that i have changed over from my Delkim ES bobbins to my old set of Fox Swingers and there is good reason, tightening up. If you have read the article Kick-Back (http://thecarpcatcher.co.uk/thecarpcatchers_blog.php?post=425) you will know that the weight of the bobbin is important in the setup as it helps hold everything tight and keeps it all in balance. Another important point about the Fox swingers is the way the clip works and the fact that they show up drop backs far better than any other bobin i have used. Again with the kick-Back setup this is important because the first indication you will often get is a drop back as the tension in the line is released on a pickup.
#bottom-bait-rig
A real Gem
It gets busy on lake 7 early in the year so i delayed my first visit until this week. However when i arrived at the lake almost all the swims on the West bank were taken so i opted to walk the East bank with my water bottle, and try and find a swim that gave me the most clear water. For a while i was torn between two swims out of a possible four choices but i eventually settled in a swim in the south east corner. The wind was blowing from the North west straight into the area i was in but would be moving to the south south-west. In the final twenty-four hours it would be moving back to the North west. Despite the rain temperatures stayed up giving me the confidence to keep feeding the spots, building them up over the session and wait for the turn in the wind. On the last night it turned and i had a nice carpet of bait out from 1-3 days old lying in wait. Just before first light on the last morning the right hand rod ripped off with this 31.6lb common on the end, as my good friend Martin Lawrence said, a real Gem and a great way to start my year. Successful setup was my semi-fix-running-rig, my standard fluorocarbon bottom-bait-rig with a 18mm K-LO Hard hooker.
#2009
Pingles pool - Last of the Cuckoo's
Pingles Pool is an old clay pool situated in rural fenland and it is full of beautiful, fat Mirrors and Commons. It has been twenty years since I last fished and laid eyes upon this lovely little pool and in those following years many fish had been added and grown on with the olduns. The lilies had taken over all of the shallow margins and bars while some of the old mighty trees had crashed into the lake margins. Renowned for it's moods and the ever-surprising fenland weather the pool has an atmosphere all of it's own. Let the adventure begin!
#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
#2014
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.
#k-lo
Fluoro K-LO
Something that's been missing from my bait box recently are these, fluoro popups. What with getting the full range of The Berry sorted it slipped my mind and now of course is when i need them the most. The weather over the last six weeks has been hot with days when there isn't a breath of wind and it's at times like these that an inquisitive bite can get you that bonus fish. So with the weather looking like it's going to continue hot they're sure to get used. You can get them here http://thecarpcatcher.co.uk/bait-k-lo.php
#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.