freeline-21 - Page 150

Horton, Fosters and Midnight Mixers
which so far this season was yet to do
a fish. There were lots of fish showing
in front and the fizzing suggested that
it wasn’t just fun and games – looking
good! Both baits were underarmed
two or three rod lengths out with a
spod full of hemp and corn over each.
Due to the brambles in the swim it
was quite tight, and after dark I made
the mistake of walking onto the platform where I got tangled in the brambles, and as I moved I got my right
hand line frapped up in them too. Very
angry now, as I thought it may have
moved my lead (disaster/paranoia), I
thought I’d chance it and leave it,
which turned out to be wise or lucky,
and at 5am the next morning the
same rod was away. An awesome
take, a good scrap up and down the
margins, and a bodged first attempt
at netting eventually ended up with a
chunky stockie in the net. It was
Spotty, looking good at a spawnedout 34lb 8oz. Lovely old job, and
before they spawned this would have
been one of the bigger ones, having
been caught at 43lb-plus.
Spunky left later that day and I
moved into Springate’s as the fish had
moved to the right, but after two
nights there it looked like it was over
and time for a move. I moved into the
Gate where I had seen a few shows
the previous evening, did the night
there and come the morning I was
ready for another move. Keith had
turned up and dropped into
Springate’s making me wonder if I’d
made a mistake, and it turned out I
had – a spectacular one, but I didn’t
know that yet. I went for a lap and
found Vince in the Scooter, who suggested I go in the Spindly Tree based
on what he had heard during the
night. As I was stood in his swim
poncing his tea one lumped out on
cue in the Spindly, and the decision
was made. Bucket down and time to
go find my barrow, back in the swim I
decided to have a marker about and
try to find an area that wasn’t covered
in horrible rig-wrecking weed. Eventually I found a nice smooth area that
felt clean, stuck a mega-maize hookbait and a little bag on it and flicked
half a dozen spods of sloppy stuff
around it. Now for the right hand rod,
which was to go about 15 yards out
on a little gravelly bit by a big
As I was trying to find this area Del
walked past and confirmed my mis-
take, saying Keith had just landed one
of my most wanted, the awesome
Boxer! Fair play entirely to Keith and
there’s nothing to say I would have
caught it had I stayed there, but he
was fishing a single cast to some
fizzing, and when he wound in from
the spot he hooked the Boxer from to
pack up, he caught a bit of my sweetcorn loose feed! Anyway, I found the
spot I was looking for and popped my
marker up, flicked my rig next to it,
and standing over my rods put a spod
onto the marker, then put my spod rod
down to the left of my rods. I grabbed
my marker rod to reel it in and had a
Thinking I had wiped myself out or
got my boot tangled in my line, I
looked down to see my hanger jam
into my alarm. Awesome – a bite!
Chucking my marker rod in the tree to
get it out of the way, I lifted into the
fish and saw my spod line lift up out
of the water draped over my mainline
as I’d left it bobbing about. Then that
had to be passed over my mainline
and go in the tree too, but at least
now I was free to play the fish with no
added obstacles, or so I thought! After
a short while the fish started coming
towards me quickly, and at this point
I realised I hadn’t set my net up yet.


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