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In Search of Monster Carp
because he was always the man with
the particles; he was always the first
one to have something new. I remember him coming round, giving us a little nudge, and saying, “I’ve got a new
particle” He went off across the other
side of the lake, caught two fish that
afternoon, and I remember thinking,
Christ, first time out with this new
particle, and he’s caught two already.
Then he caught another two or three,
and we were all dying to find out
what this particle was, but he just
wouldn’t tell us. A couple of years
later, he came round and said, “That
particle I was using, it was peanuts.”
But looking back, what a great result,
because everyone was so busy looking for a new particle, that they forgot
about the old ones, and of course
peanuts were a brilliant bait. I know
they are frowned upon a bit now if
they’re used to excess and all that,
but they were a brilliant bait and still
are. So Stalker Dave just went back to
peanuts, which no one was using by
now; the carp still loved them, and we
were all fighting amongst ourselves
and creeping round trying to find out
what he was using. We’d all used
them ourselves anyway and forgotten
about them, so that taught us a good
lesson there – don’t forget a good
bait. New baits aren’t always the best
ones; once a good bait, always a good
bait.
The particles were working my
favour, and I particularly remember
one time. I had met two brothers
when I was fishing Bulphan Park,
Ollie and Kevin Wagg from Essex; I
haven’t seen them for years but they
were good old boys. We used to meet
up down there and they said they
used to fish this lake over in Essex, in
Colchester called Layer Pits. I had
never heard of it, but they said there
were loads of carp in there and he’d
seen carp jumping all day, and this
t h a t a n d t h e o t h e r. T h e y s a i d I
couldn’t get a membership, but I
could borrow one of their mates’ tickets or something, and I thought, well
yeah alright, it sounds good. So one
day, I went over to Essex on my little
Honda 90, because I still had that. I
remember going down the M25 actually on that, because we met up at the
Tunnel and he said “Right, follow me
down.” I had to flash him and tell him
I was a learner, and that I wasn’t
meant to be on a motorway on a
Honda 90, and he said, “Well, we’re on
154 FREE LINE
it now, what are we going to do?” So
I said, “We’ll better keep going and
just hope for the best.” So that was my
first bit of law breaking I suppose, on
the motorway. But we got there safely
anyway.
We pulled in the gate, and the car
park was up high and it had bushes
all around so you couldn’t see the
lake. It was early in the morning, and I
remember Ollie going over to the
bushes, looking over, and calling me,
saying “Here, come and have a look at
this.” I remember looking over the
bushes at the lake, and I have never
seen a sight like it; there were carp
jumping everywhere from one end of
the lake to the other. I have never
seen so many carp out of the water at
the same time; there were hundreds
and hundreds of them, and I thought,
Christ, this is going to be alright. So
there was a few things happening
around that time, as I was saying to
you earlier. It was the time when Zen
and Mick Lindsell were fishing there.
I didn’t know Zen or anything like
that, but he was a very inventive
angler. I remember this guy getting
these rods out of his car, it might have
been Zen, I don’t know, but it was the
first time I had seen anti-tangle tubing, and he’d invented it. I remember
looking at this tubing on this bloke’s
line and thinking, Christ, I haven’t got
a clue what that’s for, but it looks
good, so I got some tubing from
somewhere just to use because it
looked good; I didn’t really know
what it was for then.
G e tti ng ba c k to the s to ry, w e
walked around to this, not a point, but
like a curve at the mouth of a bay sort
of thing, which gave the three of us
room to fish together. I was in the
middle, like piggy in the middle, and
there was one on the left and one on
the right of me. I had this little spod
made up, like a little plastic pod of
something or other with a few holes
in it, which was to get my peanuts
out. I would fill this thing up with
June 16th and an opening day mirror. I’d found the fish a few days before so I
knew where I had to be.

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