Top Quality French Carp Fishing
NEW Lake Record caught on 26th. April 2017 at 76lb 15oz
and 14 different 60lb plus carp And 2 known 70lb plus carp.
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Chapter 12 Two steps Forward and One step Back
Now I'm going to try to paint a picture which has intrigued me and which might go some small way to explain the excitement of owning a fishery. Back in 2010 I was lucky enough to bank "The Long Common" at 51lb 2oz. The capture came out of the blue and remains very special in my memory.
Since then she has remained elusive and has been lost at the net just once to my knowledge but I am convinced she is probably hooked and lost on more occasions. However, this year saw a very warm and calm spell immediately following spawning and the big females were laid up in the upper layers over the weed recovering from their exertions. In order to check that none were carrying obvious injuries I drifted silently over them with the boat.
I was able to recognize some of the obvious scale patterns and Clover, The Half Lin and several others of the "A" team were on show. Whilst standing in the boat watching, a very large common slowly emerged from beneath me and moved across the top of the other fish with no sign of panic. This fish was significantly longer and broader than any of the other carp but i obviously couldn't see the depth. She just gave this impression of being simply enormous and the size of her scales was mind blowing.
Later in the season I was able to watch her from the bank on a few more occasions and, luckily, I was in the company of other anglers. To say that they were excited would be a massive understatement and on each occasion we were able to see that she had a good depth to go with her length and width.
I think it's safe to suggest that she is probably currently the biggest resident of our lake and could easily be nudging 70lb. We just need to see her put on the bank so that we can get a proper weight and some up to dates photos.
Right bait is the next subject. We thought that we had a good bait company in place last year but they decided that they weren't prepared to adjust any of their baits nor the standard colours of pop ups etc. This was disappointing to say the least as our initial talks had suggested that we would end up with a high quality bait which was "designed" to suit the characteristics of our lake. Add to this that it was down to us to take the orders, fill in the specific paperwork dictated by the bait company and transfer the money to their account and perhaps you can see how I felt that the "give and take" had disappeared.
Anyway, we had several options waiting for us to act upon. One of them was a company called Eclipse and my initial discussions indicated that Dave was someone who agreed with my philosophy that almost any bait would get eaten but that some waters would "disguise" the flavours more than others.
We started with one of his standard baits and adjusted it several times as the season progressed. I was fishing with it and reporting back with my findings. That sounds very clever but in all honesty I was already aware of what we needed to improve based on the "failings" of previous baits.
I had been aware for many years that a fishmeal base would give us the best growth rates but this would make the next step more difficult. One of the important factors was to keep the bait fresh after time in the water. We had tried many baits over the years and they had come back smelling of the lake bed clay within a couple of hours.
One method that seemed to help had been to add citrus acid in the forms of lime or orange oils so we again tried this route as a starting point. We got the bait working well and it was outfishing all other baits but I still wasn't satisfied. I spoke to Dave and suggested that we might get a better "food signal" if we added some spices. My feeling was that we now had a food bait which the fish would home in on and the next step was to get that signal to last for 12 hours after casting out. Our lake is high pH so the citrus signal would overcome this and the spices may actually produce a continued signal as the flavours were diluted.
I suggested that Dave might like to do a few days on the lake so that he could see at first hand how the bait was affected. During the lead up to his trip he produced another fishmeal bait with a very spicy base mix plus an additive which must be used very sparingly as its cost alone is £250.00 for half a litre. In trials, the bait worked immediately and I then took a small quantity of the boilies and added a light "glug" of two substances in order to try to make these hook baits give off an extra signal so that the fish were attracted to the hook bait quicker. It began to work immediately and we were then able to get an optimum level of glug for the hook baits and these will now be available for 2014.