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#the berry
Give it a spin
This is the final test batch of The Berry which i have just received fresh from the manufacturer and it's dead right. The last batch caught for me first time out, all it needed was a slight tweak to the level of attractors and a small change to the basemix. They have done a first class job and so tonight i am going to pop out and give it a spin. The weather is looking unsettled so if i can get the location right and find a hole in the weed i reckon my chances are good. As soon as i get back from fishing i will get the Popups, Hard hookers, Paste and glug sorted and it should be on the shelves shortly.
#woolpack
The Woolpack lake 7 - part five
It's my first week using my new Trakker Tempest brolly something i have been wanting to sort for a some time. Weather for the week is westerlies and sunshine and the swim choice is the south bank giving me a great view of the lake as well as a chance to fish the exit of the drainage channel and put a bait near the sanctuary of the southwest corner. The lake has just opened after a six week break for spawning and so has been very busy with plenty of pressure on the fish so i am expecting it to be tough.
#nickolls lake
Ninth anniversary
I have just completed my second session this year on Nickolls lake down in Kent and as it happens i also celebrated the ninth year of TheCarpCatcher. It's amazing to think that over all those years the format has remained the same, the only change i guess is me and my beard! So to celebrate i ventured into the wild area again taking two trips with the barrow on what must be a half mile trek. Four days in a JRC 60 inch oval brolly in torrential rain, fog, boiling sun and a driving north-easterly, some nice carp, plus eels! lots of em!! I ain't no pussy but it's good to be home and i'm ready for the tenth year.
#willow lake
Pushing the limits
This picture was taken in 1991, that's my son Marcus who is now 25 years old wearing my hat. As you can see i started fishing with my rods up over 25 years ago now so it's not something that's new to me.Things like this can be just fashion of course but as i said a few posts ago i consider using the the rod setup also as part of the trap by enabling the rig and the lead system to perform differently. Just recently over the last few sessions i have been pushing this to the limit and with some astonishing success. However as with anything you push to the limit you always find the edge and so have i. So this week i will be taking all that i have learned through my successes as well as my mistakes and dialing it back a bit, fine tuning it. This for me is what fishing is really all about, finding a method, getting it to work and hopefully bagging a few before it all changes.
#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.
#scenic
Ironing out mistakes
Last weeks session on Frisby lakes was just what i needed to get back in the groove before i start my year on the much tougher, Woolpack lake 7. You get rusty and so ironing out mistakes and trying out things is best gotten out of the way early. So apart from the usual setups and rigs I also managed to get out my sharpening file and hook doctor. I have been touching up the korda choddys, taking some of the beak down just past the barb and bringing the hooks up to needle sharp, I also practiced taking the micro barb down slightly as well, with pleasing results. I tried a couple of new hooklink materials as well as bedding down the new line on the spools. I caught fish too! and that doesn't harm the confidence. I gave the K-LO it's first outing and that held up sweet, with five kilos going out over the three days. So next week it's another practice session just in case on Nickolls lake down in Kent, then on to lake 7, I hope i'm ready.
#underwater
Understanding carp
If anything the underwater footage of Valley should have dramatically changed your view of this small intimate little pool. It should also confirm that carp do indeed hibernate during the colder parts of the year. http://thecarpcatcher.co.uk/thecarpcatchers_blog.php?post=163 It's not the first time that i have pointed out that the hardest waters to fish are often the smallest. Carp more than any other fish learn about their environment and can associate any change with danger. The one thing i have noticed on Valley is this 'sensitivity' to their environment. It's tangible, their posture and the way they switch off or just avoid areas when your about. Valley pool has given me a great chance to do what i love and that is to study the carp. I truly believe that this is paramount to becoming 'the complete angler'. Results and numbers don't matter in the end as you forget them. Experiences with carp, close up, learning their secrets and their ways stay with you forever.
#st ives
Bivvy Tramps
Who are your top five carpers of all time? How about top five carp captures, or even better, top five bivvy babes? Join Kes and his camo-clad mates in Tommy's Tackle shop to sort out the important carp questions of the day. Kes has been a camper far too long, but he's determined to prove himself by catching the Fat Lady from St Ives Lagoon. Lying on his narrow-boat bunk he dreams of being an X-treme carper, tackling rock hard waters like Fen Drayton and Wraysbury. Unfortunately his plans are put on hold when he gets involved with a new ultra commercial carp fishery, and caught up in a whole lot of trouble with bunny huggers, and the worst Ouse valley flood in living memory. Author Martin Lawrence brings the carp world of Kes and his mates to vivid life in this imaginative fenland tale of camaraderie, dreams, opinions, car boot sales, heavy metal, carp captures, antis and disaster. This totally original book will quickly find a cult following from the legions of carpers who share Kes's aspirations and love of carp fishing. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Bivvy-Tramps-Martin-Lawrence/dp/1871700825/ref=aag_m_pw_dp?ie=UTF8&m=AUTN9R1ZEQUDF
#old school
Twitcher hitting
Back in the day... Twitcher hitting! And we still have them today despite our best efforts. How often has you alarm just suddenly gone off with an odd bleep? How often has your bobbin moved up an inch only to immediately settle back? And how often have you put it down to line bites? But what if there is just as much chance of a fish picking up your bait as there is it running into your line? Sure you can screen out the odd bleep when the wind suddenly picks up, but the one thing i have learned over the years is that if the alarm sounds is most likely a fish. I think it's well worth considering the affect this all has on results over a season. I will certainly work on my setup this year to try and iron out any guess work. So when the alarm does sound...