freeline-29 - Page 74



Exclusive Croatia
55lb common – peg 11.
the island at around 145 yards, and
Christian fished the left side into the
open water. We started catching fish
from the off. I had a triple take on the
first night, but it resulted in three low
doubles for me. This would turn out to
be an all too familiar tale for the week
on my side of the peg. In the first
three days, I must have caught close
to 30 carp, but all low doubles to mid
20s. By the end of the week my
biggest fish was 32lb, which was
slightly disappointing, but Christian
managed a 64lb mirror, and I was
buzzing for him. At the end of the
week, I had a choice to make – I could
either stay on at the lake for a further
week or go and explore some other
lakes in the area. I decided to book a
hotel near Lake Rakitje, an area I had
heard great things about and that I
was keen to explore.
At Rakitje, my wife Ashleigh joined
me for six days. We had a lovely room
with a hot tub and a view of the entire
big lake. We spent the first few days
riding pushbikes around the area
exploring new lakes and eating pizza!
We found some lakes with very large
72 Big Carp
carp that I will be back to fish in the
coming years. We were also able to
watch a large carp fishing competition unfold on Rakitje. I can only
describe the amount of spods hitting
the water as similar to the blitz!! It
was unbelievable watching pair after
pair take it turns to spod as much bait
as possible into their given peg and a
real eye opener into the European
carp match fishing scene. I saw
anglers from most countries around
Europe, Croatia, Slovenia, Germany
and Czech Republic to mention a few.
Another lake nearby really caught my
eye, and I certainly will be back there
at some point in the next few years.
By the 15th September, it was time for
Ashleigh to head back to England
and leave me and my van to carry on
the fishing adventure! My next stop
would be Sumbar.
Upon arriving at Sumbar, it was
very busy! Almost every peg had two
anglers in with three rods each,
which is the norm in Croatia. I opted
to start in position 11, and after
speaking to the anglers leaving the
swim, it didn’t seem a great choice.
They’d had no fish in five nights, but
they weren’t fishing at the range I had
been recommended to target. I had
been told to aim for an area in around
three metres of water just off the bar
that runs directly out from peg 11
straight into the middle of the lake. I
put three rods on the spot at around
150 yards and proceeded to spod
10kg of boilies on top for the first
night. I really wasn’t expecting anything to happen on the first evening,
but at 1am, my left hand rod pulled up
tight and straight away I felt a big fish
on the end. After a 20-minute moonlight battle, where the fish weeded
itself three times in total, I slid my net
under a big common carp that turned
out to be 55lb. A very good start
indeed!
The following night at the same
time, I had a mid-40 mirror – my first
mirror carp from the lake – and
another 50lb common. Although I
was catching fish at a steady rate of
one or two fish per night, I felt as if I
was only picking off the odd carp that
came in my direction from the middle
of the lake, where most of the fish





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