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Showing posts from April, 2018

Match Day One.

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 It's been a very long time since I fancied a match in fishing, it's an idea I've had for a while but only just decided to give it a go. I must admit, however tough it was, it was good fun. The stiff competition was partner in crime Brian and my brother Richard who decided to leave the carp alone just for one day, as did I! A day off from T.H.P.C ( The Hundred Pound Challenge) gave me the opportunity to relax and know that there wasn't miles of walking empty banks in search of one fish.  Our destination was the Marsh Farm complex and Crucian carp, along with Tench were the target. The parameters of how the match was to be conducted were discussed and the points system agreed upon got me quite excited. We settled upon swims fairly close to each other so that we could update each other on how we were progressing. Honesty obviously was key to success of the match as we were self adjudicators.  Crucians were worth 4 pts.  Tench were worth 2 pts.  Anything else was w

T.H.P.C: Part Five: Playing It Cool.

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 Since my extremely successful visit to the canal I have embarked on a further two without a sniff from a carp. The first resulted in 12 miles walked for 3 bream, no carp to show for my effort. The second visit was more of a power walk armed with a rod, the intention to fish for carp if seen was there but conditions were poor. Visibility down to just a foot ( possibly owing to increased boat traffic due to the warm weather ) and the lack of sunlight as a day of April showers dominated the forecast.  A couple of short trips elsewhere on a stillwater provided a bit of sport with carp to just over 15lb, nothing large however showed itself and the quest continues. Pastures new for me soon as my canal target comes into focus. Just where will it come from I don't know, all I do know is I won't give up until I find it. Best just over fifteen pounds, good fighters. Hard to locate carp amongst that lot!

T.H.P.C: Part Four: Taming Towpath Titans.

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 As part of my "One Hundred Pound Challenge", a thirty pound plus specimen is the target and with the amount of sunshine we've had recently it has given me the opportunity to go and explore. Many miles walked, not many fish seen. However, that is the canal systems for you, very sparsely populated, but, when you do get the opportunity, you really have to make it count, as they are often fleeting. Just to make it harder than their pond dwelling cousins, these fish are smart and nomadic.  For 3 years I have marched these banks, with a combined visit count of around 40 trips, my return ratio to carp has been light. Three carp weighing in at (25.4, 23.9 & 15+) has illustrated just how tough it is. I believe I am a fairly competent angler in these situations, so to struggle as I have it really puts the task into perspective.  Not every visit is the same and this trip just illustrates why keeping your eyes open at all times pays off in the end. Knowing roughly where a

T.H.P.C: Part Three: Off the Top Madness.

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 There can't be many more scenarios that I feel well and truly at home with, stalking carp is something I have done since the age of five. A personal best of 16lb 1oz was achieved before I turned six!. All these years later and I am still doing it, no doubt it will also be a part of the sport I will always partake in.  A handful of short morning and afternoon sessions have resulted in some good sport although the carp haven't been as forthcoming as some might expect given the perfect conditions for stalking. Clear unbroken skies accompanied by the warm sun with the addition to practically no wind has made conditions the last few days ideal.  As I said, a few have come out and here is the little collection during those trips. A mix of low to mid doubles have fallen to the ever faithful bread flake set to slow sink or remain on the surface.

T.H.P.C: Part Two: I'll Take That.

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 The 14th April was a date pencilled in for the end of the crucian carp season on Enton Mere. For the past two seasons I have now spent upwards of ten trips trying my hand at some of the countries largest specimens, if you want one, typically this is where you try. However, and this is what some anglers won't tell you, its not easy. I may have touched on this in the past and I am happy to re-iterate that feeling.  During March and early April the target was a solitary crucian, not setting my sights high enough? I kid you not, a bite was something to get the blood pumping on what turned out to be some of the most baron hours I've experienced, period. My initial idea was just to fish from around 6pm when I arrived through to maybe 10pm to see what would transpire. The answer was almost immediate. Surrounded by anglers, some of whom had had success and others cursing their luck, I had a steaming run on my right hand rod, the sort of take you'd associate with a tench or car

T.H.P.C: Part One: It All Starts Here.

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 The starting horn has sounded, the "one hundred pound" challenge has begun. This will arguably be one of the toughest challenges yet, the simple fact a "stillwater" forty pound carp is not an easy feat. Surely this will test my ability to the maximum, any practice that I can get on various waters where I won't necessarily catch my target fish, it gives me some time to sharpen my skills, when that time comes, I will hopefully be ready. Young'en around 5lb.  A few small waters containing decent heads of carp into the twenties have been my recent ports-of-call, along with a morning's angling on the "Nomad's canal". This alone will kick my arse should I not get it right either, these carp in particular do not respond well to being pricked or lost, so once I have done the hard work of tracking and tempting them, it will then be down to easing them in and fight the urge to rush them. Scraper double. Fiesty one around 8lb.  To

Toughing It Out For Crucians.

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 This particular post covers three trips which have been embarked on over the past week. Fishing recently has been tough owing to the topsy turvy temperatures where overnight temps have ruined the daytime improvements. It has to be said that with the poor conditions I'd hazard a guess that everything is now a few weeks behind schedule, that ranges from the dormant inhabitants waking up to begin feeding with spawning in mind, through to spawning. If temps do not begin to improve soon we could easily see Tench and Crucians spawning off a lot later than usual.  The latter part of that brings me to a little stumbling block as it closes mid-April until mid-June. The lake I am targeting is well known for it's monster crucian stocks for which I have had the pleasure of dipping into albeit fleetingly. This time last year the opportunities to target them were few and far between, what a difference 12 months can make. Colder winter temps and prolonged spells at that have illustrated