Myself and Steve Baker planned another session to Biddulph Grange on Sunday 15th January 2006, in the hope of catching my first carp of 2006, and Steve in the hope of fulfilling his target; to catch the venue biggie known as "Willy".
The on the day previous to our session on the lake, the weather was mild clear blue skies combined with mild night-time temperatures, things look set for the carp to be on the feed. The downside to this however was the unexpected frost the night before the session, and Biddulph being near Biddulph Moor, is very high up, with the downside being it would have been rather 'chilly'.
Nevertheless we arrived full of hope and expectations, and managed to get the swim we wanted, with only two other angler son the lake. Conditions seemed to pick up as the sun broke through the clouds, combined with a nice wind, for me seemed good things to get the carp 'mooching'.
We both decided to try the new Korda Maggot Klips, and combined these hookbaits with PVA bags of maggots. We found the PVA provided by PCI an essential piece of kit, providing a good strong brand of PVA, able to withstanding the dampness of the maggots, without bursting before hooked and cast out - ideal. I also tried what I like to call a 'combination bag' which comprised a small selection of crushed boilies, pellets and maggots.
PCI PVA: Ideal for maggot PVA bags and 'Combination' Mixes
I opted to fish my baits quite close, within thirty yards of the bank in fact, in the hope that the carp would be patrolling the marginal shelf/slope. However we were fishing as a team, so Steve tried to cover the other options by fishing his baits dead-middle of the lake. A tactic which proved successful when he received a carp-like take just 10 minutes after casting, however it was unfortunately a chub. It was between 2lb-3lb, but certainly gave us confidence in the new clips and the rigs, so Steve re-cast to the chosen spot, as we anticipated sport in the day ahead.
After about two hours, we were checked for our licences by the bailiff, and as a result the other anglers were invited to leave the venue, as they had not got the specific ticket. GREAT!
I found this great as one of the anglers was fishing a swim that I wanted to try a bait in. So after they had packed up, I cast a rig to the chosen spot. I had opted for a PCI Pineapple/Banana Pop Up, over a small bed off maggots.
A couple of hours later I received a 'funny' take on that rod, as the line steadily tightened and the run seemed to get faster. I anticipated this turning into a 'full blown screamer' and hit it, however I did not connect with a fish
Fishing toward 'The Boathouse'
This was sadly the only other action of the day. However we really tried that day, trying different spots, and basically covered 60% of the lake with our baits, which either mean that the carp weren't as active as we thought, or they were at the shallow end of the lake.
I have yet to catch my first carp of 2006, my time will come I believe. (PRAY!)