freeline-24 - Page 109



The Long Road to my First Fifty Pounder
M
y old mate
Mick Jermaine
first told me
about the Charity Lake, otherwise known as
Lenwade, and he introduced me to a
really nice bloke named Dave, or
‘Cockle’, who had an abundance of
knowledge about the venue. He
helped me to get my ticket and gave
me a rundown on the place. Dave had
fished the water for years and had
caught the big girl three times; his
earliest capture in September of 2004
at 25lb 8oz. Darrell Peck had just
started on there and the big girl,
known as Baby Face, had previously
been out at over 50lbs. It was a chunk
of a fish and I really wanted to catch a
mirror of that size.
I have had really bad luck over the
years… First of all I fell in love with
Wraysbury and dreamed about catching Mary, but the closest I got to her
was the day she swam under my boat
and I followed her for while as she
glided along – a memory I won’t forget, but sadly, as we all know, Mary
passed on. Later, I fished for a big mir-
ror called Starburst at Willington in
Bedfordshire. I was once again getting into the fishing and enjoying
myself when she was found dragged
up on the island, half-eaten by an
otter along with the next biggest resident, a big common called the Warrior.
Still in my search for a massive mirror, I finally settled on the Yateley Car
Park Lake with Heather the Leather in
my sights. I so much wanted to catch
this historic fish and I was gutted
when, on my third season, I got the
news that she had been found dead.
There seemed to be a pattern here,
and I was starting to wish that I’d
fished for these old fish a long time
ago. Even the Cotton Farm big common died while I was fishing there. I
actually lost that one on my first
night, looking every bit near 50lbs at
the time. You’ll read later that my bad
luck didn’t finish there – oh no – the
Fat Lady was next! The time I spent
chasing a dream carp without actually getting my target adds up to a fair
few years.
So the Charity Lake now seemed a
good venue to have a go at and to
catch this big mirror. By the time I got
my ticket, Darrell, in his usual form,
had caught the big girl at 49lbs and
was away. Before I had even set foot
on the water, the second biggest, Red
Cheeks, that had gone close to 40 had
turned belly up. I knew that couldn’t
have been anything to do with me, as
My second fish, the Greedy Linear, off the top – 28lb.
FREE LINE 109

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