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A fantastic week’s fishing with carp to 54 lbs 8 oz plus 4 x 40s,  15 x 30s, 7 x 20s, Sammy x 4 and 1 x catfish too large to weigh!

This week we welcomed back Ian & Jason along with their wives Kathryn and Deborah for their 2nd visit to us. The lads booked me for the tuition last year and were happy to fly solo this year so after a quick spin round the lake and a few words of advice, I left them to settle in and get fishing.

I had to pop over to the lake on Sunday and before I left I had a ping on WhatsApp that they’d already had 3 carp! When I arrived at the lake, my phone rang again and Ian asked me where I was. “I’m here mate, just arrived”, “Oh good, he says, I’ve got a 45lbs mirror in the net!” Talk about timing 😂 It was great to shoot some pics and video of a superb carp known as “The Sub”. 

⭐ If you want to see some fish playing action and live commentary from the guys, check out our TikTok page: https://www.tiktok.com/@matt_collins_carper

⭐ And click here to see all this week’s fish captures

By Monday morning the running total was 9 carp! I found myself back at the gîte as the TV was playing up (new TV now installed!). I wasn’t far away when Jason messaged me to say that Ian had got a massive mirror in the net so I swung by again for another photo opportunity. I certainly don’t make a habit of this but the guys wanted to have me involved so I was only happy to help. The big mirror turned out to be Mr. Angry who’s obviously on a bit of a mission. Weighed in at 54lbs 8oz which is very close to the other weights recorded so it’s basically a 3 way split for the lake record. Weighing a fish of this size accurately is not easy and TBH we don’t really mind what the number is. He’s massive, fit and very strong and Ian had one hell of a job controlling him from the home swim!

Although Ian might have taken the glory of a couple of chunks, Jason was holding his own and trading Ian blow for blow in the carp catching stakes. On Tuesday he bagged himself a proper chunk. This time a carp known as “Lilly” at 46lbs. He also banked himself a big catfish of 59lbs the night before. Wonderful stuff 👏

Bait & rigs

This year the guys focussed entirely on my “veggie” approach using a tigernut with a tigernut popup on the bait screw. Most rigs were positioned with a bait boat and they filled each trap with plenty of the Nash small seed mix and lashing of house pellets. Even fishing this one trap at a time approach they were catching so well and going through a serious amount of bait so I had to dish them out another 25kg sack of pellets on Tuesday. 

On the rig front they went for my blowback multi using a trick running inline with the Nash inline lead insert. They also added a telltale indicator to this. Ian is a dentist so he’s got proper skills when it comes to hook sharpening. Jason very wisely takes advantage of this and so all the hook prep falls to Ian… team work makes the dream work! In the right hands, this approach is absolutely deadly and the guys struggled to keep rods in the water. Talking of which, they only used two rods each as they prefer to fish as a pair.

There was no set bite time this week with carp coming day and night. We also saw short, sporadic bursts of spawning activity but that didn’t seem to affect the fishing in any way.

The runs continued on Wednesday with another 9 carp landed (that’s basically unheard of). The guys had to wind in on Wednesday just to have enough time to eat! Absolute madness 😂 

On Thursday afternoon they said things had calmed down a bit then the evening came and this time it was Jason who was hauling. With two carp in the afternoon and then three more when the light went 🤣

Ian hooked a massive catfish shortly after and they managed to get it along. Jason hopped in the water and attempted to wrestle with the beast that was over 6ft long. Cats of this size are incredibly powerful and this time the catfish broke the mainline and sulked off. We are counting this as a capture as they were in direct contact with it. It was just returned a little early and in an unconventional manner! 

The guys absolutely smashed it this week. They worked hard at their fishing but they also had a bloody great time doing it. The girls did a great job of feeding and watering the lads and got fully involved for every capture. Well the ones during daylight hours! It was fantastic to see them again and to see them do so well. Huge congratulations guys, you made it look easy which is absolutely not normal here 👊! Can’t wait to see what you get up to next year 😊

⭐ If you want to see some fish playing action and live commentary from the guys, check out our TikTok page:


Brief details of your catches:

23x Mirrors: 54lbs 8oz (Mr. Angry), 45lbs 12oz (The Sub), 45lbs 12oz (The Sub), 46lbs (Lilly), 40lbs 8oz (Magnum), 39lbs 8oz (Dink), 36lbs 5oiz (Bournville), 35lbs (Planets), 33lbs 6oz( Clint), 32lbs (Two Tone), 31lbs 7oz (The Little ’O’), 33lbs (Stardust), 31lbs 12oz (Lady Marmalade), 31lbs mirror, 31lbs (Oscar), 31lbs (Oscar), 30lbs 11oz (Petals), 30lbs (Discus), 28lbs 8oz (CoCo ), 28lbs 4oz (Charlie Brown), 27lbs (Big Finn), 25lbs (Four Scale), 23lbs 14oz (The Little ’A’), 21lbs 5oz (Baby Scaley)

5x Commons: 40lbs (The Box Common), 30lbs 3oz (Vinnie Common), 30lbs Common, 30lbs Common, 27lbs Common, 21lbs Common

2x Catfish: 59lbs, too large to weigh

Sturgeon: x 3

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