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#ghost carp
Park Farm Ghost
My first ever Ghost Mirror and i have to say i was well pleased and for a special reason. This fish swam around evading capture in my swim for two days. Easily spottable because of its color i saw it constantly. On more than one occasion it sussed my carefully presented fake mixer and only ever picked off the freebies. I saw it go up to my controller and then suss the fake mixer! It really knew the score but it's downfall was my very carefully presented chewed popup. Balanced so the eye of the hook sits on the bottom it accounted for over half of all the fish that came to bottom baits. There is a lot to be said for small strong hooks (Razor point, Arma, G-Point) fine strong braid (Pallatrax Steam link, Ace Camo core) and a very carefully thought out and presented bait than a pub chuck eh :-)
The Woolpack lake 7 - part six
Episode six is the first part of a three night session i did on lake 7 back in August 2016. A rare chance to be on my own on lake seven and an opportunity to see how they react without the usual bombardment under ideal weather conditions. The constant heat and southwesterly winds had been replaced by cooler northwesterlies and even though fish were showing half way up the lake my instinct told me to get on the end of a summer northerly, set my traps and wait.
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...
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.
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
As swims go this isn't a bad one eh? This is Almatret on the Catalonian side of the river and on the other side your in Aragon. The border at this point runs exactly along the middle of the River Ebro. Spain has what they call autonomous communities which are in themselves nationalities within the Kingdom of Spain much like Wales or Scotland. So if you go to fish in spain then you're most likely going to be fishing in Catalonia or Aragon. And therein lies a problem as they also have unique differences in their language so you dont just need to learn Spanish, you also need to learn some Catalonian at least. However dont fear, English is and has been for centuries one of the most adaptable languages in the world taking on many words from other cultures, so most Spanish speak it! Anyway i digress, back to the swim. Its 307 meters wide and has depths over 11 meters. Old olive groves litter the closer in areas as well as massive boulders, sunken trees and most likely the odd ship or three littered here and there. We get the odd twig floating down river, they get trees and the odd bloated 100lb+ catfish! I kid you not, snaggy isn't the word.
Choice of swims
I suppose i lean more to a laid back style than say a focused one, i would never think to fire out pebbles instead of boilies in an attempt to trick my fellow anglers into thinking i wasn't baiting up and actually fishing singles. I would never cast into someone else swim and i would most likely never setup opposite to someone and i would always fish as far away from everyone else as i could. Bankside etiquette is important, more important to me than catching a few fish. This is why i like to be on my own and this week i managed to not only get a choice of swims, but be on my own (if only for a while). So here is the start of another session, a flat calm and respite from the northerly winds. All coming up in episode seven of The Woolpack lake 7.
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.
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