FL10 (All 218 pages) - Page 211



Learning and Earning
(Above) Even in the net I didn’t think
it looked that big!
(Below) One angry fish.
play my fish hard too, and on all of the
venues I fish, with the weed and
snags factors, playing a fish gently
and letting it run will almost always
result in a lost fish. Even going out in
the boat to free weeded fish can put
immense strain on line, hooks and
hooklinks, and I simply hate losing
fish through inadequate tackle.
Back to confidence for a moment; I
have to acknowledge the debt I owe
to those from whom I’ve learned
things I truly believe have worked for
me. When struggling it’s easy to
doubt your own methods, but these
days all is never lost, and there’s a
wealth of knowledge to be gleaned
from magazines or other anglers. I
have always found others willing to
assist, and even more so the ‘names’
in our sport. I’m always willing to
learn, especially as one new thing
may not be revolutionary on the
venue you’re on at the time, but if you
take it away and use it where no one
is trying it, you may have yourself a
m a s s i v e e d g e. T h i s k n o w l e d g e
exchange must be a two-way deal,
though. I’m grateful for what I learn,
so I’ll always help others where I can.
On my present lake I’m very much
alone during weekday sessions, and I
lose the opportunity to share my findings with others, which is my simple
reason for not being hugely experimental. Basically, if it’s working, why
change? Boring, yes, but I simply
want to give myself the best chance
while I’m down there, and I exploit
the time I have to the maximum.
Meanwhile, with my baits and rigs
sorted, all I really had to calculate was
location. In previous years I had often
used baiting methods to gain results.
On big fish venues where the fish like
a proper feed, the big baiting strategy’s a winner, and indeed on here it
proved to be even more so with the
general lack of angling pressure. I
would often sneak over a couple of
days before a planned session, fully
loaded with bait that was covertly
piled into the lake, only to return and
hopefully reap the benefits. However,
it wasn’t long before this method was
adopted by others, and fair play to
them, as after all, it did produce the
results. The only negative aspect to
this was that I found myself only fishing swims that I had previously
baited, even to the extent of not looking round for fish or moving on showing fish, such was my focus on the
FREE LINE 211

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