freeline-23 - Page 202

The Traveller
stunning common of 41lb 10 oz, my
fourth UK 40. I was shaking; I was
like, what shall I do? I wanted to keep
it quiet. I left it safe in the net and
used a bankstick to prevent it from
going anywhere. I jogged round to an
old guy I’d never seen before and
asked him if he could take a picture.
He said, “Yeah, sure,” so off we went. I
got some great pics and put her back
safely. Great – no one knew about it.
I’d caught a 40 from a highly pressured water that no one had a clue
was in there! Although it is 50 acres
they can go missing for a while.
The following year I had a further
six 30s to 35lb, all caught in different
circumstances – zig, single, heavily
baited spot, freelining floating bread
at 20 yards out and a solid bag. I was
ringing those changes throughout the
four seasons. Many anglers are just
one-trick ponies; they are afraid of
trying something different. Let me tell
you – keep trying as many ways as
possible to catch these carp. You’ll
surprise yourself like I have done. One
day for example on a bank holiday
weekend 34 anglers were on. I moved
into the only open swim left on the
Trent Bank as I’d seen fish show
around 100 yards at 4am when again
everyone else was zipped up. I moved
into the swim within an hour and got
my baits on the money with small
(Top) Help For Heroes Charity event I
organised at Christmas raising £500
in minus-12 conditions.
(Right) Winter 2011 sunrise, A1 Pit 6,
Not one fish came out all weekend
to any other angler, but I had 24 in one
day! What a result! Everybody was
talking about me but they weren’t
there in winter doing their homework
like I was. They weren’t baiting up at
2am like I was and they weren’t willing to move like I was, so I kind of
thought that my hard work had paid
off with that result alone.
One day I’ll go back to Pit 6 and try
to catch the big mirror I have seen
with a bright red belly, but for now
I ’ v e m o v e d o n t o p a s t u r e s n e w,
another challenging water of 150
acres with stock of 80 fish. I have so
many methods, tricks and tactics to
catch any fish from any water I go
on… Another classic example was a
social on Baden Hall in winter. It was
cold and not one fish had been out
since Christmas so I knew it was
going to be tough. I’d never fished the
water before like a lot of the guys, but
the first two hours told me everything.
They were all using maggots or
hemp, spodding away and disturbing
their areas. With one chuck of the lead
I found some nice silt at 100 yards,
baited it with 20 baits and fished a
small pop-up over it. Every four hours
I put in another 20 baits. I was confident to leave the bait in for the 48
hours of the social, and at night I’d
bait up again twice. I knew I’d get fish
feeding just by using a food source
boilie instead of maggots. They get no
nutrition out of maggots, but as we all


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