freeline-25 - Page 84

Berkshire Blanks and Nene Nomads
Carl with Blackeye at 46lb.
weed bed to the right of the road
swims and heading into a large bay to
the left and back again, so I dropped
into the swim nearest the weed. Clear
spots were hard to find in the dense
weed, but I did find a couple of areas
to present a bait. The night was
uneventful with just a few liners, but
the following day the fish were back
on the surface enjoying the warm
sun. Surface fishing was hard
because of the gulls, so I tried an
adjustable zig fished just under the
surface. This rig was out for just a few
minutes before I received a series of
beeps on the rod. I looked up to see a
swirl on the surface and I knew something had shown an interest in the
yellow Edge pop-up, but I didn’t
realise the fish was still hooked until
the line pulled out of the clip and the
tight clutch started to tick! I bent into
the fish and it tried to power off into a
weed bed, so I clamped down on the
spool to stop it reaching sanctuary,
but the 12lb pre-stretched line didn’t
hold and it parted at the knot. I was
gutted, but I thought there would be
another chance, but instead I just
watched bow waves cruise over the
bait all day.
The area around the lake has the
reputations for being a bit dodgy with
respect to car break-ins. It seemed
that in the past a lot of unattended
cars were getting targeted, so I
moved my estate to behind the swim
at night. It was a bit tight for traffic,
but the lane was very quiet, so I figured it wouldn’t matter too much in
the hours of darkness when the
trucks weren’t using the road. At
some point in the early hours I heard
an engine ticking over behind my
bivvy, and I assumed it was just
someone waiting for oncoming traffic,
but the engine was ticking over for
too long and I heard no other cars
pass, so I got up to investigate. I could
see the silhouette of a 4x4 behind my
car, and there was someone in the
passenger seat, but no driver. I then
noticed what must be the driver looking through my car’s windows. I
instantly though I was about to be
turned over, so I grabbed my spare
storm bar. I’m not really used to these
situations, and the adrenaline was
pumping in anticipation of what was
to come. I racked my brain as to what
the best course of action would be
and decided to make my presence
known from a few yards away, by saying in my best hard man voice, “Can I
help you?” The silhouetted figure
looked up, moved round to the back
of the car and took a few steps
towards me. I thought, here we go;
this is all I need! But then I noticed a
shape on his shoulder, and it was a
radio – they were police! I felt like
having a swing at him with storm bar
for scaring me half to death, but I
thought better of it. After a few pointless questions about why I was
parked there they soon drove off, leaving me enduring the rest of the night
without sleep!
I spent the next few sessions chasing the fish around. If I found a small
group in a bay I would get my traps
set at the exit to try and spark an
interest as they passed over. However, I was struggling to get to the
lake consistently and I would often
miss a week due to family or tutorials.
I managed to escape for four nights
now and again during the following
weeks. One such four-nighter I must
have walked over 30 miles in search


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