FL09June - Page 156



The Manor
(Top) Back goes the Northern.
(Above) I was happy to say the least.
(Bottom) Sunrise over the Manor.
stayed at home that week, but me
being me I didn’t listen. I’ll learn one
day, maybe…
I fished 48-hour sessions for the
next five weeks, but had nothing. In
fact only one fish got caught, and that
was not until early March when an
upper 30 mirror came out from
Mum’s. Time was running out for me
to catch one more decent fish, as my
ticket was to expire at the end of the
month, so I booked ten days off work
in order to fish the last fortnight of the
season.
It was Sunday 15th March at
around 10.30pm when I pulled into
the gates of the Manor to fish for the
last time. After sorting things at work,
I was now here for the long haul, and
intended to fish to the end of the
month in the hope of just one or two
more. A couple of fish had graced the
156 FREE LINE
banks in the previous few days running up to my arrival, but the water
temperature was well below the seasonal norm, and the forecast didn’t
look great either.
Although a little apprehensive, I
was still confident that I could winkle
one out if I fished well. As I pulled into
the car park there was only one other
car, and I knew who it was and where
he would be. I had a walk around the
lake and after a good look I opted to
go back in the End Pads, as the wind
was gently blowing into it and the
last few days had seen slightly
warmer conditions, though night time
temperatures were still dropping to
well into the minuses. It certainly didn’t feel any warmer than previous
trips, but the fish were known to get
up there in the spring. As I was going
to be there for a while, I only flicked
the rods out with singles for the night,
as I wanted to get them spot-on in the
morning. At first light I wound all
three rods back in, had a good feel
around with a 1.5oz lead, and on my
left hand rod I found a little spot at
around 30yds. It was a small clear
area in amongst some fresh light
weed, just off the front of a died-back
lily bed. When I bought the lead back
in it had a fine layer of clean clay on
one side of it. I unclipped the lead,
replaced it with a 3oz Atomic Dung
Bottle bomb, and then clipped on my
hook link. This consisted of a 12in
length of the new Nash TT 20lb
Stealth fluorocarbon fished hinged
style with a size 6 Uni hook. I then
tied on a 15mm Amber Attract Choc
Malt cork ball pop-up.
I recast the rod to the spot, and
when I felt the lead down I got a
lovely donk as it landed on the
lakebed. That was good enough for
me, and I fired out just ten 15mm freebies around the spot. I fished the rod
on a slack line, as I didn’t want to
spook any fish that were coming in or
out of the area. I then turned my
attentions to my middle rod. After a
few casts with the light lead, I found a
lovely area at about 60yds tight up
against the reed line on the opposite
bank. Either side of the spot I got a
soft landing but on this spot I got a
real thump!
Just as before I changed over leads
and clipped on the same set-up hook
link and hook bait. On the re-cast it
landed lovely, and I was more than
happy with it. I then walked round to
the opposite reed line and baited with
around 15 or 20 freebies. I fished this
one on a tight line, as I was tight to
the reeds. The final rod was fished
down the right hand margin at 10yds
to a clearing in weed just off the reed
line. This rod was fished snowman
style on the Skin-Up Stiff hook link
with an Amber Attract long chop
hookbait topped with a 10mm white
chocolate pop-up. Again a scattering
of freebies were fired out over the
hook bait, and this rod was also fished
slack. I tied markers on all three rods
so that I could recast easily if I needed
to, even in the night. With all three
rods now re-cast, and all in positions I
was more than happy with, I settled
back and put a brew on.

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