This blog follows me on my travels to try and catch specimen freshwater fish of all species including carp, tench, pike, barbel, perch, roach, rudd and chub. This blog also looks into the various tactics, baits and rigs sucessfully used to catch specimen coarse fish. I have also included a venue guide giving information on open access waters accross England. This is located on the menu to the right of this page under Choppedworm venue guide.
05/06/18 - After some great success on another lake
bagging fish up to a new PB of 8lb 14oz it was time to move back onto the main
lake in search of that elusive double figure fish. I have been fishing this
particular lake for over three years now and despite putting in a considerable
amount of time I hadn’t managed to catch my target.
I planned a long session in late May as my last real attempt to catch one prior
to spawning and this would literally be my last session of the season so If I didn’t
managed my target fish I would have to wait a whole year until I returned.
I arrived at the lake on an extremely warm
afternoon and was lucky enough to find one of the swims that has a record of
producing big tench free and so I decided to start fishing here. Obviously I
would move if I spotted fish rolling elsewhere on the lake but during this time
of day it was a good place to start. Following my session on the other lake in
which I landed twenty or so tench in 24 hours on a hard 40 acre pit I was confident in the rigs and
bait that I was using and so stuck to what I knew best. In this particular swim
I had to fish at a longer distance of about 40 yards and so made sure I was
baiting accurately with a spomb and fishing in between two prevalent bars that
were visible from the bank.
The evening soon arrived and I kept my eyes
peeled watching the water for rolling fish that would give away their location
and was lucky enough to see two tench roll where I was fishing. I was confident
of a take but nothing materialised and the night passed uneventful. I was up at
3am with a coffee waiting for the sun to rise and once visibility was good
enough to see the area I was fishing I caught sight of a tench rolling a bit
further out. Following this another rolled in the same spot and so I decided to
leave the rods for an hour and if I didn’t have at take I would move them to
fish further out to the showing fish. They were only ten yards passed my
spot so it wasn’t necessary to move straight on them and I was hoping they
would move onto my bait but I was convinced they were occupied with the blood worm
beds. This particular lake is extremely rich with natural food and the tench
don’t even need anglers baits to sustain themselves.
Finally I decided to get a rod further out and
three hours later it was away. I bent into a fish and was convinced it was a
carp as the weight seemed to heavy for a tench but further into the fight I
started to think it actually could be a big tench. It wasn’t unstoppable as a carp would be
and just felt heavy plodding around and not taking much line. Now my next
challenge was to bring the fish over the bar which went from about one and a
half feet down to seven very suddenly and it’s a real problem when playing fish
to ensure you don’t get cut of or snagged. I have lost tackle just reeling in
cage feeders in this swim so when playing a big fish it can very worrying
indeed.I could feel the line grating
and so lifted the rod as high up into the air as possible andpatiently persuaded the fish over the danger
area and into clear water. It didn’t take long and the fish surrendered surfacing quite a way
out and I started to ease her closer to the waiting landing net. I could see
she was a big fish and the reality set in the this could be my target tench that
for years I have been trying to catch. Luckily she played ball and didn’t go on
another run which allowed my to scoop her in the net.
After taking some time to recover from all the
excitement I peered in the net and nearly lost it when I realised how big she
actually was. Never had I seen a tench of such proportions and although very
fat with spawn the frame of the fish was enormous. I managed to get a carp
fisherman fishing on the lake adjacent to take some photos and help with the
weighing. The scales went 11lb 3oz and I was in fishing heaven. My previous PB
was 8lb 14oz and I had now jumped straight to 11lb 3oz. After taking some
pictures I returned the fish and marvelled as she swam back into watery home.
What an incredible creature and I feel so privileged to have caught it. All the
time and effort over the last three years had finally paid off. I packed up
early finishing the session after just one more night and went home to spend
some time with the kids.