I’ve had a few carp from the new syndicate but I’ve been less than impressed with their size, the lakes biggies had spawned successfully and as a result, the water was overrun with commons in the 2-6lb range. After 4 weeks of these small fish I decided to give the syndicate a miss for a while, it does contain some decent fish and I will visit again at some point in the future but for now I decided to head back to one of my Cheshire carp waters for my first overnighter since I tweaked an old back injury back in June.
I arrived at the lake to find only 2 anglers fishing and one of them was packing up, he’d done the night and lost a couple of fish and with other duties at home and the Edgbaston Test Match to watch he was pulling off. This was good for me, he was occupying the right hand main point swim which just happened to be one of the most productive swims on the lake.
Back in February 2007 I’d bought myself a brand new aqua m3 bivvy and having looked at the weather forecast for the weekend I thought it would be best to take my m3 rather than fish under my usual stealth brolly. Rain was forecast and the extra protection from the m3 would be a big help in staying comfortable and dry. I set up slowly during the afternoon and got myself well organised. When it came to the rods I brought along a couple of my daiwa infinities as the fishing was mostly long range, my preferred tfg x series rods were nice playing rods and they cast a long way but my infinities just had that little extra bit of power and I needed as much help as I could get to reach the 'out of bounds' far bank.
My two infinities I fished ‘on the chuck’, single odyssey xxx pop ups fished as single hook baits on a helicopter rig as far over to the far bank as I could cast, one rod was tight, the other about 20 yards short. The far bank was out of bounds and the fish tended to hold up here to avoid angling pressure.
The third rod I fished at about 60 yards over bait. My odyssey xxx baits are rolled in 20mm size so 60-80 yards with a catapult was a relatively easy target to hit.
With the baits all out I sat back to listen to the afternoons cricket, England seemed to be in a good position to win the test match but as the afternoon wore on they lost what little advantage they had as the South Africans dug in. I was still listening to the test match early evening when a delkim holding one of the ‘chuck’ rods let out a few bleeps, the monkey climber rose a few inches, then fell again. I watched and wondered what was going on when the monkey slowly started climbing again, that was enough for me, I tightened the clutch, wound down and hit it. Normally I’d expect the rod to hoop over but on this occasion it didn’t. I hit fresh air with no fish on the end. I scratched my head and wondered what had happened. A tench perhaps? Or had I been done by a carp? There was also a possibility I’d picked up a trailer, quite a few carp had been trailing line and rigs this year with quite a few anglers cracking off whilst trying to reach the fish on the out of bounds bank. I’d never know exactly what happened so after thinking about it for a while I simply checked my hook point to make sure there was no problems then put my rig out again and settled down to listen to England loose the Edgbaston test match!.
This particular Cheshire carp water is known to produce in the early hours of the morning so I had high hopes of a run as it went dark, 2.30am until about 9.00am was regarded as the hot time for takes and a few fish showing at dusk gave me some confidence for the night ahead. Just after dark a carp crashed out twice at close range, the fish was just 30 yards out and far closer in than I was fishing!. Because it had crashed and not rolled I chose to ignore it. In my experience crashing fish are not feeding fish and I’ve not done well casting at carp that show this way, if the short range fish had rolled I’d have put a bait on it straight away but not this time.
My decision not to cover the crashing carp may have been a costly one. I slept through take time without a sniff of a fish and when I woke up at 9.00am I was a little disappointed not to have had some action. I had a drink and a bite to eat, packed my gear and headed for home at around 10-ish. I let a few of my mates know I’d blanked and after talking to one of them who fishes the lake a lot, he was of the opinion I’d dropped a howler by not covering the crashing fish!. As only an occasional visitor to the water I accepted his opinion and next time I see a carp crash out on this venue I’ll make sure I cover it, although I still maintain that casting to carp that crash is generally unproductive.