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In Search of Monster Carp
angler pressure over the winter at all,
so you’re reliant on nature waking the
fish up, so it can be a bit of a slow
starter. I have always said that it’s a
very, very typical water of this area in
that it’s deep, clear and weedy, and it
doesn’t really come alive until the
weed starts coming up from the middle of May onwards. I was quite fortunate, as on the first couple of trips I
had over here, the water was crystal
clear, the fish were awake, and they
were very, very easy to find. We’ve got
a great advantage on here in that
we’ve got a boat, and what you can’t
see from the bank, you can see ten
times more of when you get out in the
boat. When the water is clear, you can
see the fish, you can see the spots and
it really isn’t rocket science. It’s not
hard to find them, and the first place
to look in the spring is in the shallow
bays and in the snags, and sure
enough, this year was no different;
they were all there. The first thing that
really struck me when I came on here
was how big they were, because they
had had no pressure over the winter.
Going back to the previous year, I had
finished on here in about the beginning of October, and the fish were at
their top weights then, and I was for(Top) The lake in mid-summer;
I couldn’t leave it alone.
(Below) A magic moment – Thomas,
me, and a 31.
176 FREE LINE
tunate enough to have some good
results then. It was clear early in the
spring that the fish were really big,
and they were more than up for it –
they were all active. I’d come down
and watch them in the bays all covered in clay; they’d all be feeding, and
it was great really, even when you
came down here and you either
weren’t fishing or you blanked, you
could see them, and that was enough
to keep you going and get you fired
up for the next time.
So that was my mind made up
really, I wanted to fish on here and I
was going to give it a really good
bash until the season started on my
other waters. I started over in one of
my favourite spots, fishing in the
edge, which has always been my
strength as an angler. I took a couple
of good fish early on and when you do
that, your confidence is up, and I
knew they liked the bait, I knew the
rigs worked and I knew the areas that
I was fishing were good so that was
great really. To get a couple of good
ones early gives you a real boost to
carry on, and when you know your
methods work, you’re half way there
to carrying on to get good results so
that was really good.
This year was a slight change for
me as well in that Mike Willmott who

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