So the days and nights were passing without any action to the bite alarms, and it was somewhere around seven nights since my last fish out of my syndicate. It was head scratching time...
On numerous times I'd had fish going crazy, sending huge plumes of bubbles up as they troughed, getting closer and closer until they were on my spot, and even then not a sniff.
Thoughts of using zig bugs even crossed my mind as I could not for the life of me understand what I was doing wrong. Other lads were catching, not loads but enough to make me start to get frustrated and wonder what I was doing wrong. I continued to scratch my head.
After having a chat with a few lads, who kindly gave me advice and tips, I decided I wasn't doing a great deal differently apart from trying a different bait approach. This seemed easy enough to rectify.
I was hoping to get down at a decent time on the Friday for a 48-hour session as this was going to be my last for a month; however, unfortunately, due to work commitments, I couldn't make it 'till the Saturday morning.
Arriving early morning, it was half busy and I did a circuit but didn't see anything where the free swims were. A mate was about to move swims and it was a swim that I had previously fished and had them going over me, what made it better was the sheer number of fish down in front of that area. Rods baited with double tiger nuts and a couple of pouchfuls scattered around the area, first cast and both leads hit the spots. I was happy to set up camp.
Climbing a tree, I scanned for fish - hoping they would come in. Within ten minutes, I could just make out two huge shadows - like submarines drifting in under the ripple. The water was so clear I could see the mouth opening of the one in front (like it had been feeding). When they got within 15 yards out, I just stared down at them - I couldn't believe the size of them! I estimated both at 45+ and then a smaller 30 came in and sidled up to them. The biggies then drifted off the way they came in and the 'smaller' one went over to my spot and I watched it feed.
Then I looked out and just made out the shape of one of the biggies drifting back in. It must have picked my bait up almost straight away as next thing the clutch went into meltdown! Playing it, it was hard to tell if it was any size but a stocky would have made my weekend. Then when it got within 20 yards, a large broad back emerged and I thought 'this looks like a chunk'. In the net! I looked down and just stared at it! It was bloody MASSIVE! I instantly knew that this was a new PB and I was in total and utter shock.
At first, I thought she was a new fish to me and one I really wanted to catch - but, unfortunately, it was a repeat capture (not that I really minded of course). I certainly wasn't grumbling in the slightest.
With the help of a few lads, we got her out, weighed and took the rudimentary photos before being mesmerised watching this fish of huge per portions, a fish that when I first started carp fishing 20 years ago I would never in my wildest dreams ever imagine I was capable/lucky of catching one of this size. She pulled the needle round to 47lb and I still can't believe I've caught a fish of THAT size.
A big thanks to the lads who helped with trying to help my perplexed self out, and for helping with the fish on the bank. Lady luck sure shines down on me when I eventually am lucky to catch on as both of the one's I've had this year, have been not only lumps but absolute corkers!
Written by Vinnie Cole