This last week or so has been as hectic as ever. Despite having been out for a couple of months, Kev’s DVD The Final Account is still flying out the door which means he’s fast developing an RSI signing all the covers!
Rarely does a week go by without a new shipment arriving with a new product or two. One of the biggest sellers we’ve just got back in stock is the H Gun Oval Brolly. It’s a cracking piece of kit at a fantastic price (under a ton) and you might be surprised at how many of our top consultants use them for their quick overnighters.
It’s not been all work though! I went to a small section of the river Ouse in Bedfordshire and after a lengthy walk along the section I had decided on a couple of likely looking spots to drop onto for the first couple of hours into dark. This particular section used to have a good number of barbel but after speaking to the local tackle shop I was politely informed that they had almost disappeared. I was gutted to say the least, but the chap in the shop did say there were still a few chub about so I thought it was worth a shout. I spent an hour in my first spot without a single tap on the tip, so I quickly moved up to my next swim that featured a nice deep hole with a good undercut bank and a lovely snag at the bottom of the run.
Like most of my river sessions of late, I was simply using a light ledger to hold bottom and a piece of meat that had been soaked in the Fish Frenzy Whisky Magic Mix flavour. It wasn’t long before I had my first chub in the net and at 4lb 4oz it was a real result considering the temperature was well below zero. A few casts later and I had managed to bag another smaller fish before it was time to get some sleep ready for the following days pike fishing trip.
I had decided to spend the day pike fishing at a lake that is very close to my heart. The water is run by Dunstable Angling club and it’s where I cut my teeth in my early fishing days - even to this day my pike and rudd PB's come from there. It’s a long walk to the water so travelling light was the only option with just my rods, net, unhooking mat and rucksack on my back.
I arrived at the water before first light eager to cash in on the early morning feeding frenzy - how wrong could I be!! To cut a long story short I couldn’t even catch a livebait, the place looked dead and after working my way through 5 different varieties of sea deadbaits I couldn’t catch a pike either. This lake is STACKED with fish but there was something wrong - there was a cold easterly coming in, the water temperature was ridiculously low, I hadn’t even seen a fish dimple the surface of the water and after 6 hours on the bank I decided to knock it on the head and head off to a section of the Ouse in Milton Keynes to see if that was looking any more promising.
I walked a good stretch of the river with my Dad and it looked SO SO good - bit of colour in the water and it appeared to have not been fished much recently - either peg looked like it could be full of fish and both of us quickly grabbed our gear and headed off in search of some afternoon sport. How wrong could we be! We both fished hard for the next three hours and it just wasn’t going to happen - Dad eventually caught a dace of a couple of ounces, but I sadly turned what I had hoped to be a productive day's angling into another blank! It was just one of those days, there was a chill in the air and the fish just weren’t happy.
Not one to admit defeat, later on in the week Kevin and myself did our usual mid week overnighter at our local syndicate. Having had the product samples through for a few weeks, I went in all guns blazing with the Zig Bugs! It was absolutely freezing and I thought my only chance of a possible take would be to intercept something in the mid layers as they certainly weren’t going to be troughing on boilies!
Kev fished on the bottom over rock salt but did fish one rod with a big bag of maggots and actually bagged himself a nice perch of a couple of pounds. For me it was my second blank in less than a week - never great but we did get a hell of a lot of work done and I woke up to a beautiful morning with the sun bursting through the clouds - sadly it was time to reel in though and get off to work.
Kevin with his perch
Time to pack up...
That weekend I couldn’t fish as I had to go to Holland to do a show but on my return I was greeted with the huge fall of snow we had received and I only had one thing running through my mind - I needed to catch a snow carp!! This was easier said than done because as well as the huge amount of snow that had fallen we also had a deep lid of ice covering all the still waters in the area. First point of call was my local park lake where I knew the mass of birds would have kept at least some parts of the lake open - I was right - the birds had kept small areas of the lake ice-free, but between me and those areas there was thick ice!! I visited the lake twice (for a couple of hours each time) with a Cobra Spod rod - 40lb braided mainline and a 8oz lead and proceeded to try and cut sections of the ice away by sawing through it with the braid and using the heavy lead to cut into the ice. This actually worked until the temperature dropped every evening and it all froze over again!!
I wanted this snow carp badly so my only other option was to smash a hole on one of the ponds we have at work. The ice was ridiculously thick, but eventually I had succeed and I was finally ready to get a bait in the water. Bait choice was to be the ever faithful Tutti Frutti (see photo SEVEN) and it wasn’t long before I finally had my prize in the net – a lovely winter common of a couple of pounds or so. I did carry on fishing but decided to get the video camera out so to find out what happened next please check out www.nashtv.co.uk for the remainder of the story!
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Winter Common Carp