Carp Fishing – Persistence Pays Off
Craig Mortimer grits his teeth, battles horrible conditions...and ultimately gets his reward!
It was the dreaded Friday 13th and after a hard day at work I was soon on route to my local syndicate, when I say local it was very local indeed and only a five minute drive from work - happy days!
Now I don’t think anyone can forget a few weeks’ back with the amount of rain and the savage conditions we had (contrast the week we have just enjoyed!) But I promised myself this wasn’t going to get the better of me. When I turned up it was about 5:30pm but it felt - and looked - more like 10pm as it was so dark due to the thick deep black clouds which looked like they were ready to burst at any minute.
I soon made my mind up which swim I was going to fish; I went on the basis of seeing a few fish showing and the knowledge that the swim had produced a few fish in the past few days. Now I must say this isn’t my style of fishing as I normally walk around for an hour or so watching the water and planning from there but with the weather that just wasn’t going to happen. First things first, rather than get the rods sorted it was a case of sorting out base camp before everything got soaked!
I finally got sorted and after a few casts and feeling around with the lead I found spots I was happy with. It was very weedy in front of me so I opted to use long, running Chod Rigs with fake corn as the hook bait laid over the top of Bait-Tech Parti Mix in the weed. Now this is usually a brilliant tactic but this time around something just didn’t feel right and after a short while I knew the fish had done the off and moved out of the swim as everything was just too quiet for my liking.
I had set my alarm for first light and when I woke up the bobbins hadn’t moved an inch; a totally bleepless night and I knew I had to pack up and move to get on the fish. But, and it was a big BUT, I had to contend with rain the size of golf balls coming down hard and fast and un-remitting. Awesome carp weather but not the best when you haven’t got a change of clothes for the next 24 hours; I held out for an ease in the rain and was off...
I had seen a few fish show a couple of swims up from me at a range of about 60-70 yards but I couldn’t find any clear spots so again I set up a long running chod with the lightest lead I could get away with to reach the distance. I started spodding over a wide area with the Bait-Tech Parti Mix to make sure it was laying perfectly on the weed to try entice the fish into swim and get them feeding.
By 6am the following morning the sun was out beaming onto the water and after loads of fishing showing and plenty of activity over the baited spots that night I still hadn’t had a pick up; I couldn’t believe it I just couldn’t get a bite and this was the first time I had struggled on this syndicate. There was no way I was leaving on a blank so I packed up and went on another search.
I hunted everywhere, all over the lake and, in the last swim I moved into, the water was black full of carp cruising about and sunning themselves with their backs out of the water. The 6mm floating Bait-Tech pellets went straight out and sure enough, after five minutes of watching, they started to feed off the top.
This was probably going to be my final chance of catching one and I had to make it happen. After half hour of feeding them and getting them confident the rig, baited with a trimmed down white Bait-Tech pop-up went out. Fish were taking all around my hook bait - it just had to happen – or so I kept telling myself, and eventually it did as the pop up disappeared and the bubble float skimmed across the surfasce - I was in!
All I had to do was keep its head out of the weed and guide it through the pads in front of the swim. If only it was that simple, the fish headed for the biggest weed bed in the lake and stayed there, locked up solid. I couldn’t believe it and all I could do was keep the pressure on the fish and pray it would come out. After ten minutes of keeping everything tight I assumed it was off and that was it but then I felt a few kicks of the tail, it moved, and I was back in touch.
I thought it was all over now and the fish mine but no, the lily pads came into play next...After five minutes of trying to dump me in the pads the fish, thankfully, finally kissed the spreader block and my net was christened with this stunning mirror. I was over the moon, not just with the fish but the fact I had kept working at it and was finally rewarded. It wasn’t a massive fish but an old original carp and one that I was delighted to have in my album.
I guess you could say the moral of this article is that it doesn’t always happen as easy as you hope or expect and the key is never to give up; being persistent will always catch.