freeline-22 - Page 151

Five Forties
The 350 Acre Pit
t was September in the second year fishing over the
baited spots on Point One,
and a good friend of mine,
Carl, fancied joining me for a
couple of nights as my fishing
partner was to be going away to visit
friends in Somerset. We decided in
the run-up to our couple of nights that
we would bait the spots heavily with
particle and boilies. We were to bait
every other day for the week running
up to our two night. By the second
night the spots were getting cleaner
due to the many spods of particle it
had seen. As the session drew nearer
I couldn’t help feel confident. Friday
soon came and as usual the day was
dragging at work. Eventually five
o’clock arrived and once again I was
bombing down to the lake.
The conditions on arrival looked
spot-on with a gentle wind pushing
right into the baited area. I couldn’t
help but smile, as it looked although
we’d got the weather on our side. As I
dragged the marker over the baited
area I couldn’t believe just how clean
it was. It was always clean, but it was
now double the size it was previously.
Rods were fished at 70 yards to the
baited spots with a 2kg of Active-8
spread between them. Again rigs
were kept simple with a simple 18mm
bottom bait on all three rods. Unbelievably all that dragged me from my
bed on the first night were two snotty
bream. I couldn’t believe it – I was
sure it was carp that was responsible
for cleaning the spots.
The second day passed by really
quietly which was nothing unusual
for the big pit. It was around 12.30am
when I turned to Carl and said, “It’s
bite time.” We were just discussing
how the conditions looked bang-on
for a bite, when two bleeps on my
Delkim shattered the still evening air.
As I watched, the bobbin lifted from
its position then jammed up against
the alarm, and as the line ticked from
the spool I gently lifted into the rod
with anticipation. The rod replied
with a faint head-banging on the
other end. The fight was far from
explosive and within two or three
minutes the unseen fish was at netting range. I flicked on my red LED
headtorch and through the crystal
clear water I could see a dumpy mirror shaking its head. I could see it was
a reasonable fish as it glided into the
net. I rolled up the net cord, and staring back to me was a rather fat looking mirror.
At first I thought it was an upper
20, but when I went to lift it up I was
surprised how much it took to lift it
onto the mat. As we peeled back the
mesh to see my prize I was met with
a carp that looked truly massive. It
was a very short but wide fish with a
bulging stomach and it appeared to
like eating its boilies. As we hoisted it
up onto the scales I couldn’t believe
it; they read 40lb 2oz. I had caught my
first forty and although not a great
looking fish, it was still a massive
achievement. Over 350 acres of water
and I had just caught a forty; it was a
dream come true for me. I spent the
rest of the year after my capture of my
first forty fishing Point One again, and
was rewarded with a couple more fish
up to a common of 32lb 4oz; a personal best at the time.
The following year, the spring on
Point One never started, and a string
of blank nights had me thinking a
change of tactic was needed. I was
going to track the fish down and fish
for them wherever I could find them.
The problem was the big pit carp didn’t show very often and even on a hot
spring day it was still hard to find
them. I started following fresh winds
and baiting areas then checking them
the next day to see if anything had
been eaten. The weekend before the
August bank holiday I was again due
to have a couple of nights with a good
friend of mine, Smithy. The weather
was looking prime for fishing a swim
known as Motorway Point; it received
a southwesterly wind and luck should
have it a 30mph wind on the Friday
was due to arrive.
I met Smithy at the entrance to the
Canal Bank and we both drove to
Motorway Point. It was the Thursday
evening and the wind wasn’t forecast
to arrive till the Friday lunchtime so I
wasn’t too despondent when we
walked onto Motorway Point to find
not a breath of air. I knew the area
well, and it wasn’t long before the
rods were cast to their spots. The left
ro d w a s fi s he d to the ba c k o f a
weedbed in 12ft of water at 30 yards,
the second rod was fished to the back
of a hump at 40 yards (I had taken a
couple of 30s off this spot a few weeks
previously), and the right rod was
positioned to the back of a bar at 70
yards. All rods were again fished with
simple bottom bait rigs; the only difference was I had changed my hook
First blood on the local club lake –
17lb and a rare one, the Mosaic.


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