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Pads Lake Plundered
stunning fish, he did seem to be
unlucky when it came to the bigger
ones. I think his personal best was
about 25lbs. Well he hoisted this one
out the water, and it was pretty clear
he had bettered it; the only question
was by how much? To me it looked
like an upper-20, about 27-28lbs, and
Ady agreed. One thing we were to
find out was that these Simmo fish
are deceptive in terms of how heavy
they look. Either that, or we need to
lay off the wine! We pulled her up
onto the scales, which revealed a
weight of 31lbs exactly. I don’t know
about Ady, but I was in a bit of shock
and found it confusing really. How the
hell can we bag two fish, and two 31’s
on our first night? Well, that’s what
we had done! A big shake of Ady’s
hand and it was time for him to get
soaked and slimed up!
One of the headlines on a paper in
the newsagents that day had
described the pending storm as due
to be 'The worst in the last 20 years'.
Well, contrary to my capture, the
rough weather was now well and
truly with us, and the wind was hacking down into our bank, making
things decidedly uncomfortable! I did
my best David Bailey impression with
the camera though, and the shots
came out not too bad. Following the
picture session, I tried to persuade
Ady that the thing to do, what with it
being a new PB, and his first 30, was
to strip off and get in for a couple of
returners! He was having none of it,
though! Wimp! Once the fish was
returned, I was still feeling pretty
tired; it was now 2am, and I just
stripped my waterproofs off and
crashed out into bed for some much
needed sleep. The storm however
had other ideas, and continued to
grow in strength blowing straight into
the now firmly closed door of my
Titan. Unfortunately it was the only
place in the peg that would accommodate a bivvy, and I had no choice
other than to face the storm head on!
There were a couple of occasions
where I thought we were going to
have lift off and the whole lot would
end up in the Car Park Lake with
Heather, but credit where it’s due, the
Titan held firm – impressive. Sleep
was fitful for the rest of the night, and
I was regularly woken by the strong
Three 31’s – who the hell is going to believe that?
62 FREE LINE
blasts of Atlantic air. It must have
died down a bit sometime though,
because I woke around 6.30am after a
couple of hours of unbroken sleep,
and things seemed relatively calm,
but it was now raining cats and dogs!
From the inside of the bivvy, with the
noise being amplified in its confines,
it sounded horrendous. I turned my
phone on, and I had a text from Ady
enquiring if I was awake. I informed
him that I was, and five minutes later,
in an expedition worthy of Scott or
Fiennes, he appeared at my bivvy
door looking like a drowned rat.
It would seem we had both underestimated how cold it was going to
be, as now on the dawn of our first
morning, we were both freezing. Not
only that, but my waterproof trousers
and extra clothing were in my car.
Only one thing for it, join in the expedition! Ady helped me drag the rods
in, and we wandered down to the
cars, reflecting on what an amazing
start to the session we had had. Back
at the car I took a chance of being
arrested for indecent exposure, and
pulled on my thermals, accompanied
by an extra jumper and my water-

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