29 April 2012

Twynersh Pit 4

Two weeks have passed since my successful trip to pit 5 at the Chertsey complex and it was now time for a new challenge. A three night trip was organised with my girlfriends brother Jamie and it was decided that the largest secluded lake on the complex (pit 4) would be our target. The week before the trip began on a low after finding out a good friend had passed away and so I nearly called it off but figured I would be better of concentrating on catching some carp then sitting at home.

Pit 4, at four acres is the largest pit on the complex and one of the more difficult waters to tackle. The depths range from around 6ft in the margins to 16ft in some areas. This coupled with the mass stock of bream made the fishing a little trickier and big baiting was out the question. The pit has a healthy stock of carp with some stunning fish to be caught and with carp to 35lb + there was a possibility to improve my PB of 27lb.

I prepared for this trip well in advance and decided to create a bland mix to bait up with ensuring no additives were introduced to keep the bream at bay. This consisted of soaked mixed corn with salt which was then cooked for 30 minutes. I also introduced some evaporated milk into this mix to cloud up the water and increase the baits visibility. To avoid the expense of boilies I opted to create my own from scratch. I created a base mix, flavoured with cream connoisseur and sweetened with molasses. I then began the labour intensive task of rolling my bait before air drying for two days and freezing to ensure freshness. In all I created approximately 4-5 kilos spending a mere £8.
We arrived at Twynersh in the pouring rain and opted to fish the far corner of the lake. This corner gave direct access to an area where no fishing is permitted due to an extremely high bank and dense overgrowth. The fish regularly patrol down these margins in amongst the snags. Jamie decided to fish a couple of swims down again placing his baits close to some overhanging trees. Both my rods were tied up with leadcore leaders (approx 4ft) spliced onto my newly spooled 15lb senses monofilament. One rod was fished with a hinged stiff rig and the other a basic chod rig. Jamie took a different approach and fished bottom baits with short length bolt rigs.
Three hours of fishing had passed when a man walked into my swim and we began discussing various lakes, tactics and all the other carp related discussion material. After he had departed I looked at my rod and it was in full curve. I picked it up and began a short battle with what turned out to be a stunning 15lb common. I figured that because I was fishing locked up to avoid a carp descending into the snags on a pick up, the carp was unable to take line and so was doing battle with my rod without me knowing. The fight was probably short due to the fish tiring itself out prior to be realising I had hooked one! Just as I had the fish on the mat my mate Jamie shouted over that he also had one. The man I had been having the discussion with ran back over from the other side of the lake and took some great snaps of my carp before we went to see what Jamie had caught. It turned he caught a beautiful fully scaled mirror weighing in at 16lb. What a great start, two carp in three hours on a supposedly tricky lake.... result.
At around 6 o,clock my left had rod rattled off and I pulled into a much heavier fish.This fish held deep and plodded about taking line steadily when she ran. After an arm aching battle she was safely in the net, a mirror at 24lb 8oz. That was now two fish in an afternoon with one being a mid twenty.
At 2am the same rod awoke me from a deep sleep, a one toner. I grabbed the rod and begun the fight. This fish pulled so hard it was unbelievable. I was attached to a train and whatever I did I could not bring it to the top layers. Using her weight she steadily plodded up and down for 10 minutes before letting out threes surges taking at least 30 yard's of line of a strong clutch. In the middle of darkness with no socks on, standing in a puddle of mud I said to my self "what am I attached to"?. After no less then 12-14 minutes she was in the net and I rushed forward to see my prize. I was certain I had a thirty in the bag and my heart was racing. On the scales she went 24lb 1oz, a lovely dark common but not the fish I had expected after such an epic battle. It was not the thirty I wanted but I couldn't complain as what great sport from such a healthy fish in prime condition.

On the second day I caught a lovely 6lb tench and lost a carp in the morning. Again the fish put an immense fight but the hook pulled after a couple of minutes. I was so alarmed when I had the take I slipped outside the bivvy, fell on my back and rolled to my rods. It was not the most professional approach to say the least and by getting to the rod late the fish had managed to get close to the snags causing me to put more pressure on the fish which may have caused the hook pull. The other loss was in the early morning on the third day when my Delkim hadn't sounded and the fish snagged me up mid water. I put this down to the bobbin falling of the line and so there was not enough weight to hold the line for the alarm to register .. Gutted. I wondered If I had lost a monster, but strangely enough I was to find out?.

Jamie had been having a great last two nights after a move to the far end where the heavy rain was pushing clouded water through from pit 7. I think he caught a 21lb mirror, 20lb mirror and a 19lb common. The 19lb common was caught an hour after my morning loss. That evening we headed home and as it was Jamie's birthday we were treated to a homemade curry. It was only during this time when Jamie said he had something that I would believe. He then pulled out from his fishing carryall my rig, complete with boilie and leadcore. I was amazed, the fish I had lost ended up being caught by Jamie an hour later with my hook still in its mouth on the other side of the lake. Strange but true.

Dedicated to Steve "Smiley"  Harfleet R.I.P


16 April 2012

The Stick Pit

As an avid fisherman the arrival of closed season really does hit hard and its this sudden arrival that pushes fishermen onto day ticket open access waters. Now, I don't have a problem with fishing these waters as you may know from my exploits at Twynersh , but the expense of theses sessions are significant and would burn a hole in most wallets. Some fisherman take the hit and some wait at home patiently cleaning their fishing kit,  planning there move for the magical June 16th. To avoid these points I decided to try and find a lake in my local area that held a fish or two. Jamie my girlfriends brother mentioned  to me a small secluded lake containing some hard fighting wild strain carp. He needn't say no more and I was on my way to a one acre lake which I have named The Stick Pit.

Although the lake is out in no mans land with only the occasional dog walker putting in an appearance it has been fished and evidence of this litters the dead trees protruding from one side of the lake. Its these tress that have christened the lake The Stick Pit as well as providing shelter for the resident carp. Jamie had fished the lake a few times before and managed two wild looking commons around 5lb on small boilies so there seemed to be a good head of fish to target.
We arrived at the lake equipped with a float rod, net and some sweetcorn. It was decided to fish from a small area of bank that gave direct access to water amongst the trees where we believed the carp would reside. Within thirty minutes or so my rod whipped round nearly being pulled straight into the lake and I struck into a powerful fish. The carp kited into the snags but I managed to gain control and pull her away from danger. Once all the hard work was done I thought she was mine but then as Jamie was ready with the net the line went slack, fish 1 fisherman 0. I hooked into four more fish that day and landed not one!! I decided to return to the lake over the next two days.
Day two proved worse than day one and neither me or Jamie had a take. We did employ a slightly different tactic and baited the back of the trees where we saw the carp moving with boilies. We then fished from the opposite bank casting to the boundary of the snags with chod rigs. I felt a lead down to gauge the depth of the middle of the lake and it just keep falling. I would estimate the middle to be approx 30ft deep!!

After the disappointment of day two I returned to the Stick Pit on my own and reverted back to my tactics of a running lead with two pieces of sweetcorn on a  size 8 barbed hook. I choose to fish in the snags where we had numerous takes on our first visit. Not even ten minutes had passed when I was into my first fish of the day. Again the carp pulled hard as it tried to reach the sanctuary of the submerged trees but I eventually won the battle and she was in the net. The carp was a small common of around 4lb but it was golden orange in colour with blood red tipped fins. A beautiful fish and  interesting to consider how they arrived in the Stick Pit to begin with? I managed another fish slightly bigger at 6lb (approx didn't bother with scales) and lost one. After an hour or so I called it a successful day and headed back home with a smile on my face. The fish were not hugh but great fun on light tackle and better then shedding out a small fortune to fishing an open access water or sitting at home waiting for the season to begin.

7 April 2012

Twynersh 2012 Pit 5

If you are a follower of my blog you may have noticed that I have not  submitted a post to thechoppedworm.com recently. This was due to a combination of both a broken foot and extremely intense university work. In fact I have not been carp fishing since my trip to Linear Fisheries in October with my brother. As soon as my leg was out of its cast and my university assignments submitted I was eager to get back on the banks. My girlfriend is currently pregnant and we are expecting our second, a boy  (Jack) to arrive at the end of May so pressure was on to get our last days fishing together . We planned a two night trip whilst our daughter Freya went to Disneyland Paris with her nan and grandad.
                         I decided to go back to one of my favourite day ticket fisheries Twynersh and fish the small secluded pit (pit 5) located behind pit 2. This small lake of approximately 0.5 acres holds some beautiful carp and has a surprise or two with a near 30lb common reported. It was the perfect lake to get away from the crowd, have some peace and quite and hopefully get a bend in my rod.
                    My tactics for the session were similar to the tactics used at linear fisheries in October and the bait a favourite of mine featured numerous times in this blog. Both rods were tied up with small naked chod rigs and baited with Hi Viz pineapple boilies. I set up a marker rod and made my way to the far bank to have a feel about with the lead and get an idea of the depth. As visible in the below picture of the swim a large sunken tree provided a great place for the first bait to be position near. I was reluctant to cast to close to the tree and allow the fish to snag me up on a take so the plan was to draw the fish from the snaggy area onto my bait. The depth dropped to seven feet almost instantly from the bank and so I fished close to the marginal shelf. I baited this swim from the far bank with a 2kg mix of sweetcorn, chopped boilies (some whole similar to hook bait),cornflakes, 6mm halibut pellets, salt, pineapple flavouring and some van den eyed ground bait.  The other rod was positioned six feet from bank close to my swim, again on the marginal shelf drop off and baited with the same mix.

The day passed uneventful but I was not disheartened as during my research of the lake I noticed most of the captures were at night and so this is when I expected a take. Before hitting the sleeping bag I tightened up my bait runners and marked up my line enabling me to hit the precise spot if I need to recast in darkness.
At 12.30am my rod fished at close range let out a series of beeps and I stumbled out of the sleeping bag. When I lifted into the fish I could instantly tell a Bream was on the other end. To my amazement the fish was quite large and weighed 7lb!!!. I took a quick snap with the help from my tired "didn't have a clue what was going on" fishing partner and jumped back in bed. At 3.30am my right hand rod fished to the far snags rattled off and I again fell gracefully out of my sleeping bag to strike into a fish that was definitely a carp. Luckily for me the fish turned straight out of the snags and after a short lazy fight she was ready for netting. Unfortunately I could not reach the net placed on the grass verge after the bream catch. I called my partner who was asleep and the angry lady with soaking wet feet finally managed to get out the bivvy and pass me the net. She was not amused, tired, had wet feet and was absolutely freezing. It was minus two degrees to be precise. Finally after taking out my other rod I netted a beautiful 16lb common. After the picture I slipped her back, untangled both rods, recast and got some deserved shut eye.

Day two also passed uneventfully and after some unsuccessful stalking I re-baited my furthest margin swim. I also decided to fish the other rod in this area and dropped a bait close to the sunken tree. At 1.30am the right hand rod rattled off again and I pulled into a strong fish. I have honestly never had such a fight from a fish of this size and it made four huge runs heading for the far snags. It just didn't give up and after eight minutes the fish was mine. My back and arms were aching and when weighed the fish only went 13lb!!!. I think the shape of the carp gave it its immense power and it was all rock solid muscle no fat. Another lovely common in the bag.
I caught no more fish during the session but had a great fun. I think Twynersh as a open access venue is excellent and the owners do a great job of looking after the place. Everyone seems friendly and the facilities provided are excellent. I will be returning in a couple of weeks for a three night session and will be looking to fish pit 7. Until then tight lines.