Sunday, 13 December 2015

Fishing Review of 2015



Well it’s December and I’ve hung up the carp rods for a while so I thought I’d end the year with a review of how my fishing went in 2015, I did this last year and it was good to look back at the up's and down's you get in carp fishing.

I didn’t make too bad a start to 2015, I was into some winter carp quite early on in the year and my best winter result was 3 fish in one afternoon caught in early February. This result followed up some success in previous weeks as I’d been catching during January too but only one carp per session. Unfortunately these carp were all caught from a ‘no publicity’ club lake which is why there is no winter blog entry for 2015.

By the end of February I was impatient and I really wanted to get back onto some harder waters and bank myself a decent fish. I moved from my winter runs water the first week in March and this proved to be a disaster for me. The runs dried up and I found myself banging my head against a brick wall for the whole of March and April, a mistake I certainly don’t intend to repeat next spring!.

May saw the PAAS annual forum social, this year it was at Cromwell Carp Lake again and it brought my first blog entry of 2015. It was great to catch up with the lads again and although it turned out to be another hard trip, I managed to winkle out the second biggest fish of the social, a 22lb 12oz mirror, this was despite coming out of the draw last again!. You can see the brief highlights of the Cromwell social and the footage of my first twenty of the year being weighed and photographed below.

Cromwell Carp Lake Social 2015

I quickly followed up my Cromwell twenty with a stunning upper double fully scaled mirror, this was my first fish from a ‘no publicity’ Cheshire carp syndicate I’d joined so again the story of this carp never made it into print, suffice to say, being my first fish from a new water and such a looker, I was extremely happy with it!.

After two good results in May I took my first break from carp fishing when the river season opened on June 16th, I spent the rest of June and most of July fishing the River Severn in Shropshire. Although this blog is called the North West Carp Blog, originally it was called Angler's Diary. I swapped the name of the blog after a couple of years because I thought it better reflected the writing I do. My Angler’s Diary blog is still there and I decided to resurrect it for any non-carp related fishing I do and you’ll find an entry about my River Severn Barbel exploits on there, along with the odd video clip like the return shot below.

Returning a river severn barbel

August saw me back at the catfish lake in Cheshire. There were two reasons for this, firstly I felt like catching another Cheshire Catfish and secondly, the carp sessions I had been doing were all blanks!. In fact that one syndicate success back in May turned out to be my only fish from that lake in 2015 as I blanked session after session. I did indeed bank a catfish though, in fact I caught a few using the rather bizarre technique of feeding the birds!, I kid you not!, check out the video below. I’m gutted I knocked the camera when I got up to strike the run, had it not been for that the video would have been awesome as the catfish put up what could best be described as an epic scrap. The bird feeding, run and photographing are all there though and it’s well worth a watch, the catfish in the film weighed 22lb 12oz, same size as my Cromwell carp believe it or not!.

A Cheshire Catfish caught by feeding the birds!

In late September and early October I got back amongst the carp again with a run of fish to upper doubles, these were all caught on a big reservoir whilst fishing at range. I actually recorded some of my casting, all of my fish came at ranges over 150 yards and you can see the video of my casting technique below.

Long distance casting technique

As well as getting back amongst the carp I managed another decent Catfish late in the season, this one turned out to be my biggest fish of the year at 23lb exactly. I was happy with my two biggest catfish, they definitely filled a gap left by the lack of 20lb carp this year. I finished up with just the one twenty from Cromwell and looking back that seems a little disappointing. I certainly hope 2016 brings me a bit more luck when it comes to catching bigger carp.

My biggest fish of 2015, a 23lb Cheshire Catfish

At the beginning of November I hung up my carp rods for a while, I might possibly have made a mistake doing that as November has been incredibly mild but I fancied another change so I put the carp gear away and decided to do some lure fishing for perch and pike instead. I’ve written a couple of pieces for my Angler's Diary blog where you can read what I’m up to at the moment. As usual these days, there are videos accompanying my writing and you can see the odd pike or perch being hooked and caught.

Ultra light lure fishing for perch and pike

I’m still just lure fishing at the moment, it’s actually a really convenient way of fishing as I can just roll up at the canal and do an hour or two when I feel like and that’s ideal at this time of year. Once Christmas is out of the way I’ll be dusting off the carp rods again and going in search of some winter carp action so until next year, have a great Christmas and New Year and tight lines for 2016.


Mark.