FL13 - Page 188

In Search Of Monster Carp
margins, with a stealthy approach,
and sitting back from the swim. Tight
lines had become very much the
vogue in the early 80’s with line clips
and everything, but I noticed from
fishing in the margins that fish would
bump into the line and spook. It didn’t
take me long to realise that a slack
line approach was a lot better, and
this was another thing that was
totally different to what everybody
else was doing. I went for a small indicator, pulling yards and yards of line
off the reel, and letting it lie flat on the
bottom way back as early as 1982 or
1983. I still do that to this day, and it
has only become the norm over the
last five years for people to put their
indicators on the floor and have a
slack line. Thankfully it was something that I was able to use 20 years
before anybody else did it.
Several waters made the headlines
around this time, and I got to hear of
Savay, the North Harrow Waltonians
and Harefield – all famous Colne Valley pits. But before I get onto the
Colne Valley, which was my next port
of call after leaving Arlesey behind
me, I’ve got to tell you about the last
couple of trips I had up to Waveney.
The first one was with my good
angling buddy of the time, Simon Day.
We planned a week’s holiday, and we
were going to get on D Lake no matter what. We pulled into the car park,
and it was absolutely rammed out. D
Lake full, E Lake was full, and G Lake
was full, so every swim was taken on
our first three choices of lake. It was
July and that was the time everybody
took their holidays in those days.
So we had a word with the guys on
D Lake and found out when they were
leaving, and the guys in swims 2 and
3 were leaving on the Wednesday or
Thursday of the week, which would
enable us to have a couple of days in
there before we had to go home. We
decided to fish on C Lake, so we
weren’t far from D Lake, and if these
guys decided to pack up early or anything, we could jump straight in there.
C was a bit of an unknown quantity; I
don’t think there had been a 30 out of
there, but there were some 20’s, and
there were a couple of swims which
backed onto D Lake, so we dropped in
there. It was an interesting couple of
days on C Lake, and we ended up
meeting a couple of people, one of
whom at least I’ve remained great
friends with over the years. It was
actually after I’d moved onto D Lake
and into swim 3 that somebody came
and fished in swim 4, and that turned
out to be Steve Alcott of all people.
But let’s get back to setting up in
swim 3 of C Lake... We knew that fishing the margin spots would be the
thing, and close into these first two
little swims were some bushes down
to the left for me, and down to the
right for Simon. We decided just to
plop our baits out under these bushes
and bait up quite heavily, and we had
a nice few days in there. I think we
ended up with about ten fish, something like that, and I’ve actually put a
picture of Simon in there with a couple of doubles from C Lake. We had no
unhooking mat of course, and the fish
are on his lap. Mats didn’t exist in
those days, and it was some years
later before they came out. In those
days you just looked for a nice soft bit
of grass, but you know, we still looked
(Top) Geoff Kemp, bait supremo in the
early eighties.
(Below) Henlow Grange produced a
44lb carp in 1983 (-ish), heavily
spawned. I was straight after it, but it
was never caught again and was
thought to have died on its first ever


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