As per usual my seasons fishing so far has been a bit random and varied,I tend to get invitations to attend various big carp matches and events both in the UK and further a field abroad.
After enjoying a few nice sessions on one of my all time favourite venues Kingfisher lake on the Bluebell complex near Peterborough and managing carp up to 39.6 I was off to a pleasing start to my adventures and happy with my quick results.
I got extremely close on my second session to catching the lakes biggest common, I saw the big rascal cruising around taking sedge flies as they were hatching off the bottom and popping up towards the surface. After being mesmerised watching the carps behaviour for about 20 minutes I climbed down the tree and prepared a rod with a Zig rig set to present the hook bait just a foot under the surface, on the hook I used an Enterprise black zig bait, trimmed down with scissors to mimic the shape of the Sedge fly’s. The big common circled around a number of times and then cruised up to the zig bait and sucked it straight into its mouth, I could see all this from up the tree and despite the carp erupting off as it felt the hook the rig came adrift as it spooked. Quite unbelievably this happened a further three times, and on a few occasions it had the line sizzling across the surface only to get shut again. “so near yet so far” imagine seeing that little lot an out in front of your eyes. I doubt I would have guessed just how close I was to nailing that big common had I not been up that tree watching.Just plain unlucky I guess on that occasion.
I then went off to Romania to fish in the annual competition at Tancabesti Lake also known as the Two Brothers Lake just outside Bucharest, this is a great competition where pairs from across Europe compete for the 10,000 euros winner takes all first prize, my team mate as usual was Jason Cann, this year the organisers had made a change and three team members were allowed so we let well known American celebrity angler Larysa Switlyk join us after she badgered us to let her join us on the comp so she could see what a big competition was like. She also wanted to film some of the event for TV exposure round the world, so our sponsor PVTV were happy about this as they had a rather attractive addition to the team to film during the event, that kind of publicity is good for them so they were happy.
After the big pre match party we got to the draw and despite us praying for a bit of long overdue luck and us wanting to better our previous years 4th place we got a poor swim. The year previous we had a swim that gave us access to the main body of the lake which suited our long range tactics and this showed as we took off into the lead for a fair part of the competition, only to be caught up at the latter part of the comp and see the ten grand fade from our grasp. This year we had a shallow near end swim which only had one weed bed that we knew would hold fish but which was certainly not a winning swim. We concentrated all 4 rods on this weed bed and with our accurate casting managed to put up a fair old show beating our neighbours either side which is all you can do really. We had carp to low 30s on our tactics of baiting with 18ml Fruit Smoothy and Relish boilies on a little and often basis. Hook baits were 18ml food baits tipped with either fluro pop ups or Enterprise corn or Maize. Larysa had a crash course in carp fishing tactics where she learnt how to tie rigs European style and how to bait up with a throwing stick which she had never used before. I think she has become quite a convert to carp fishing and she said that carp are now her favourite species to fish for.
Next stop was Rainbow Lake in Hostens, near Bordeaux in France, I was lucky enough to secure a swim in early August with my good friend Guy Aitkins, we doubled up in swim 12 for the week but found the fishing in the area slow, with hardly any fish moving or showing at all. After the first 3 days I had caught only a low 30 on the bottom and the swim looked dead.
Guy is a very keen surface angler and he really wanted to try to catch his first Rainbow carp off the surface, despite him introducing chum mixers constantly we had not seen a single bit of interest from the carp the whole time. Guy then decided to try a zig rig on one rod, he set the zig at 10 feet in 13 feet of water the hook bait was a cut down pop up. Guy opted to cast from the bank despite a boat and echo sounder being available, being ever the traditionalist. To our amazement not 15 minutes later the very same rod was away with a mid 20 being the culprit, amazing, tell you what I’ve never tied up two zig rigs as fast in my life, what we saw gave us a rush of confidence in the zigs. I opted to use fluro boilie hook baits on the zigs instead of plain brown just as a comparison, very soon I had banked 2 carp with the biggest being 37 pounds. At night we tipped our zigs with glow in the dark corn to see if this would work, again it did. Guy lost a very big carp like this when it ran him over a gravel bar and cut his hook link despite us giving chase in the boat, it was a shame as I am sure it was a monster. It just shows how experimenting can turn a session around. Just out of interest I managed a very nice carp of 54lb on a food bait on the bottom in a deep gulley later in the week.
Any how see you next time. Tight lines Frank Warwick