FREE LINE 03 - Page 144

Springing into the Valley
of a broken 24mm bait and a scattering of chops, and the other was fished
with a 10mm barrel with a few broken
freebies and micro pellets in a bag, so
I felt I had all bases covered. With the
darkness encroaching rapidly, I settled back on my bedchair, opened the
pages of my latest literary obsession,
and the hours ticked by until I felt I
was re-reading the same pages over
and over again. As riveting as the life
of Sir Ranulph Fiennes may be, I
couldn’t absorb any more of his triumphs over adversity and turned in
for the night.
Such is the position of the swim,
the first rays of sunshine to break the
horizon immediately fall upon your
slumber zone, and I was awoken to
another glorious morning of azure
blue, cloudless skies and motionless
bobbins! I couldn’t believe that I
didn’t have a take under the canopy
of the trees, and it was mildly disheartening after all the effort I put into
the baiting and placement of the rigs
– I felt they were definite bankers. Oh
well, another day, another strategy
35lb 4oz mirror, part of the brace.
needed, and perhaps it would throw
up another surface whacker, as the
conditions looked perfect for chucking out a mixer or two. After a nutritious breakfast of smoked bacon and
fried egg sandwiches, washed down
with a flagon of tea, I was ready to get
my head into gear for the day’s
assault, and as soon as the carp were
beginning to put in appearance on
the top, the bottom baits were
retrieved, and the surface set up put
into action. The fish seemed a tad
lower in the water today, and hardly
any of them were breaking the surface with their backs, never mind
slurping at flotsam as they drifted in
and out of my little corner of the lake.
After several hours of clearly flogging
a dead horse, I decided on a rethink,
and opted to set up some zig rigs to
see if that would trick one of them
into a bite. After a quick plumb
around in some of the rare clearer
areas, I set one of the zigs at 4ft and
the other at 5ft, and both were baited
with minute bits of cork on size 10
Fang Unis, having recalled the Hof-
gartners’ successes on it. The hooklink material for the zigs was 8lb Reflo
Powerline, and they were attached to
the new Nash Weed safety Clips with
1.5oz leads, which would ensure they
discharged in the weed, an absolute
must in this situation.
I don’t know which scenario is
worse, sitting behind bottom baited
rods, not knowing whether carp are
near you, or watching them swim
within inches of your bait and getting
your heart beating like a drum in
anticipation of a take. I was absolutely
on edge as a steady procession of
carp came in and around my zigs, but
they just weren’t interested, or so I
thought! I was deeply embroiled in Sir
Ranulph Fiennes’ campaign in Oman
when the right hand rod bucked
under a savage take, and the alarm
began to wail as a carp had succumbed to the appeal of a 5-6mm
trimmed bit of cork! The fight was frenetic as my unseen quarry powered
under the canopy, and then through
weed, and did everything in its power
to get free. All I could do was hang on


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