How annoying and frustrating it is to know the carp are in the lake, but whatever you try they’re just not having any of it. Well that’s exactly the scenario I have been faced with over the past two years, fishing a lake down in the south of the country.

Don’t get me wrong by saying I’d blanked; the odd upper teen and twenty had graced my rods, which I am more than thankful for, but they were not the thirties I knew were in there and desperately wanted!

As any angler knows, you start to question just about everything and haven’t a clue where to focus your attention. Is it down to location, bait, rigs or a combination of all these things? You even start to question your ability as an angler.

Well as anyone can imagine, I played around with all these things trying different combinations of this and that and much to my frustration didn’t seem to be getting anywhere. To top it off I was getting just a little frustrated with people saying something along the lines of “You’ve got to work your way through the smaller ones in order to catch the bigger ones”. Probably the last thing I wanted to hear sometimes! 

Then one Saturday morning I woke up looked out of the window and decided that in my opinion it was a perfect day to go and spend a few hours on the bank. So that’s what I did and boy I’m glad that I had!

I opted to go very light with just two rods set up on combi rigs and ½ a kilo of 14mm boillies. After watching the water for just 15mins I decided where to cast my rods and promptly did so.

Within the next hour the first rod had a screaming run and an 18lb was in the net. No more than 10 minutes later the second rod had a series of beeps that quickly developed into a take and I was into my second fish. Now this to me was a miracle on this lake and I was desperate not to lose this fish.

I don’t think I have ever played a fish so cautiously in all my life. After what seemed like forever, the fish was in the margins and I could tell I had hit the jackpot, I was so worried it would escape the net somehow.

101208IMG_0352_336846566.jpgWhen it was finally on the unhooking mat I could have jumped around the bank in excitement, but all I wanted to do was weigh it. The beautifully scaled mirror weighed exactly 30lb and I was over the moon.

Okay so it wasn’t the biggest fish in the lake, but it was the thirty I had been waiting on for two years. It shows that with a little perseverance you can achieve your ambitions in the end.

With my confidence taking a boost let’s hope it’s not another two year for my next one out this lake.

Samantha Collins-Ratcliffe