Tony's Carp Column - Pt1
Mainline team member, Tony Welch, begins a series of articles and carping updates!
The rigs were cast in an area with all three no more than 25 yards apart, I then set about adding a kilo or so of free offerings spread over the rods, a mix of Cell and New Grange boilies. I had a few liners over night and at 6.30am the right hand rod was away and after a short battle I had a real old warrior in the net, a mirror of 17lb. The rod was recast with a further helping of free bait. In no time at all the same rod was away again, just as I was doing some self takes of the 17. This time a common was nicely nestled in the folds of the net and this one hit 25lb 10ozs on the scales. I was enjoying myself to say the least. Next up the left hander dropped back slightly and then roared off. A small fullyscaled was on the other end, around 10-12lb and I was in angling heaven, getting action like this on Argal is rare given it's stock, size and depth.
The best was yet to come and at 11am the right hander ripped for a third time and after another great fight I saw a distinctive shape in the way of head and shoulders and I thought to myself "That's the Big Fully!" It was 20 years after the first time I landed this stunning fish, and there it was in my net again. After successfully spawning the fish weighed 28lb 4ozs but that was immaterial. I took some self takes, treated the hook hold with Medic plus and returned her as soon as possible none the worse for her latest experience. It was an over nighter to remember and nice to relive all that history.
The next session saw me at another local reservoir which is on the up. This reservoir is effectively square in shape and around 8-10 acres in size but there is something about it I really like, just can't put my finger on it! Perhaps it's the location as this little ressie is dark and quiet at night with no traffic noise whatsoever. It has a general silty bottom but some nice weed beds, which I love! It holds a nice little stock of carp up to mid 20's and I normally use it as a winter rod bending water. It's not easy per se but I'm normally confident of bagging a couple on an over-nighter.
On this session I arrived later than I wanted and dropped into an open water swim where I saw a fish pop it's head out. The same end tackle was employed that I had successfully used at Argal and the rigs dispatched out to a range of 70 yards. I then set about spraying a kilo of Cell and New Grange over the top leaving plenty of room between the freebies to get the carp moving and feeding at speed. This in turn making the rigs extra effective! The mist rolled in over the Cornish countryside making it a good evening to be out and not in front of the tv. The night came and went, but the morning feeding spell put 3 fish in my Outreach net. It was a cracking, enjoyable nights fishing and the rip roaring takes in the morning topped it off.
I went back to this lake the week after and fished one of the weedier swims, again on another quick nighter. Commons of 14lb, 16lb and a 21lb mirror on this trip had tripped up on the naked chods over Cell and New Grange freebies. It's good to have different rigs in your repertoire, the key is knowing when to employ them to give you the best chance of success on that session.
The last couple of over night sessions I have done have been on a syndicate lake which I have joined. I can't say too much about it but it's an awesome place. 35 acres and shallow. Extremely silty and full of naturals. Only half of the lake can be fished and stock wise I have no idea, apart from its very low! Maybe only a handful of carp!! Its approximately 2hrs drive from home depending on traffic. You may think I'm mad fishing a lake like this but consider this; It's such a small syndicate the place is hardly fished, deserted banks. The unknown element, anticipation is everything to me, it's so exciting. Pitch black and so quiet at night, peaceful is an understatement! Its hard work too, getting to swims and walking around causes problems which is off putting to most anglers. Its because of these reasons the lake is so appealing rather than off putting. Catching any carp will be a result and there is always the chance of a chunk. This lake used to be regularly fished for carp some 15 years ago and has been untouched since. Suits me down to the ground!
My first night was a recce really and was blanked in style, however in the morning I saw a nice mid 20 plus chunk crash out in the middle, well out of casting range. I then saw the aftermath of another show which just had to be a carp. I planned on fishing the middle from a particular swim on my next trip however the wind put pay to that and I set up in a large bay. I heard a crash in the night and was confident, but blanked in the bay. Prior to leaving I dispatched several kilos of Cell and Grange into the lake, into several different areas. I can't wait to get back up there!
That brings you all up to date with my limited fishing of late. I'll be back again over the next few months with a further update, showing off some of the new Gardner products in action and hopefully a few trophy shots of some rare carp to boot!
All the best,