Week Commencing: Sat 21/10/2017
Shane Cook’s up a Monster Haul of Carp on the Road Lake
Where on earth has the year gone? It doesn’t seem like five minutes ago since we welcomed the first anglers of the year on the Road Lake. Then just as quick as it started, we are suddenly on the last week of the season prior to the winter closedown. What would the denizens of the deep have in store for the group of nine anglers visiting this week….only time would tell.
The weather has been fairly stable for the last few weeks, with primarily S/SW winds and high air pressure. The stale wind is well overdue a change, and the only thing which seems to move the carp around the lake is the air temperature. When it has been cooler, the fish back off the wind, and when it is warm, they get right on it. Daytime temperatures during the week ranged from 15 to 20 degrees, with overnight lows of 8 degrees. The air pressure was stable at 1025, but characteristically high for the time of year.
After having the the walk-round, Shane Cook had no hesitation in going into Turtle’s Corner. In previous weeks, the swim had continued to produce bites, with the fish holding up at the back of the island, and then being picked off as they moved out for food. After chatting with Andy the Bailiff, Shane opted to take the battle to the carp and fished two rods at 21 wraps down the tree line, and one in open water. It had been noticeable over the last few weeks, that the fish had been visiting the margins more to feed, so the two rods fished at 21 wraps were placed side by side in the margin; one in 8ft, and one in 10ft. Shane then simply walked down the bank to bait up by hand.
After a quiet first 24 hours, he was into his first fish after dinner on Sunday evening. A Common of around the 27lb mark made it a good start. We say “around 27” as in all the excitement, Shane forgot to weigh it! That first bite heralded the start of a very memorable session for Shane. He was baiting up after each fish with 2 kg of Mainline Link boilie, Cell and Gigantica Pellet. From that moment on, things went from strength to strength and Shane really got into the groove. His running leads and Ronnie Rigs baited with white Pop-Ups were a winning combination, and despite continually changing colours, white was right. He ended up landing a staggering 55 carp topped off by Rose Bud at 54lb 8oz, and only lost six fish, making him the top rod for the year on the Road Lake. Feeding on a little and often basis, Shane used 70kg of boilie and pellet during the week, which really got the fish feeding hard. Sensible fishing, and being well organised resulted in a mega haul that will live long in the memory.
Korda’s very own Marketing Manager, John Wilkes, was out on holiday for the week, and coming out second from last in the draw, he was a little deflated that he had ended up in Shingles, which hadn’t been productive for a couple of weeks. After a bit of a Pep Talk and getting over his initial disappointment, John set about getting some bait in and establishing a baited area. He started off fishing 2 rods at 14 wraps towards the island and one straight at TP1. Baiting with Mainline Link and Gigantica pellets with the Spomb, he was baiting on a little and often basis.
It was a slow start for John, and he was still fishless on Monday, however, it was noticeable on Tuesday morning that the fish were showing in the area, but were beyond his baited area. A couple of rods cast longer at 18 wraps brought him his first bite after only a short period of time. Quickly landing a high double, John was super keen to maximise the opportunity, and rebaited quickly, then recast. A mini tragedy occurred when John transferred the fish from the net to the sling, adopting a faultless catch and release policy, the fish sensed freedom when he lifted it from the net to the sling and promptly disappeared into the depths….I’m sure I heard it chuckling as it swam off!
Things then picked up nicely; John was baiting consistently and picked up fish, mainly during the day, and experienced a double take, landing some stunning fish. Initially, the average size was on the small side, but in a quick spell he landed fish of 28, 31 and 34. He landed his biggest fish of the week on Friday afternoon, when a chunky 45lb 8oz Common slipped up for the first time in two years and 13lb up in weight! John has named the fish “Golden Virginia” as his Grandad who taught him to fish used to carry his hooks and leads in a tobacco tin. Picking up ten fish during the week, John was using IQ D-Rigs and on the Korda Heli-Safe system and during the week he used 40kg of bait.
Mark “Chippie” Chapel decided to drop into the Beach, and after the last angler landed three fish on the Friday night, he wasted no time in getting organised. With fish showing close to the bund, he put all three rods across at 23 wraps and was in action almost immediately. He was using whole and chopped Mainline Cell and Link boilies which he glazed in Sticky Baits Amino glug. Keeping it simple, he then walked down the margin and fed by hand, casting across with combi rigs, comprising of Korda Boom in 25lb and a Dark Matter braid hook section. Hookbaits were either Double Krill Dumbells or Mainline Link Wafters. By Sunday teatime he had already landed five fish to mid twenties, but then disaster struck and the fish moved out of the area, not returning during the remainder of the week. Chippie remained confident with the approach, and stuck to the task, but unfortunately that was the end of the action.
Mark Whittle was first out of the draw bag and chose Tea Party 1, where a few fish were showing in the area. Setting out his stall to fish all three rods at 16 wraps towards Turtles Corner, he introduced a couple of kilos of Duster Baits Kriller X boilies. Rigs for the week were Ronnie Rigs set up on the Korda Heli-Safe system with Dark Matter Leaders. After a frustrating couple of days, with no fish landed, Andy the Bailiff suggested moving out a couple of rod lengths further. Within a short space of time, his Pink Fruit Pop-Up was picked up by a nice 27lb Common to get the ball rolling. At this point he chose to move all three rods out to 18 wraps to see if he could pick up more fish, and was rewarded with a Mirror of 40lb 4oz which he named “Errol”. During the week he used 30kg of bait which he introduced with the Spomb and throwing stick, and finished the week on three fish.
Road Lake regular Richard Stansfield went into Bachelliers and decided to split the rods, fishing his right hand rod at ten wraps at Single Boards just off the back of the wind line, and two at 21 wraps along the left hand margin. He baited up with Mainline Link mixed with Cell and presented a Banoffee Wafter over the top on an IQ D-Rig, using a Size 2B Korda Kurv. After a very frustrating start with the fish being ridiculously active on a night, Richard finally managed to snare himself a lovely 31lb Mirror. It came on the middle rod which was fished at the bottom of the marginal shelf. Proof indeed that perseverance pays dividends. Well done Richard.
During the walk-round, the swim which clearly had plenty of fish showing was Birches, and James Clarke had no hesitation in selecting in at the draw. But putting three rods out into the area where the fish were showing did not bring the hoped for response, so he upped sticks the next morning and moved into the vacant Decoy swim. With fish showing off the bund he put all three rods at 14 wraps in that direction and in the early hours of the next morning he had a steady take and after a slow, dogged, “big fish” fight he slipped the net under a huge mirror. The mighty “Hammer” had made a mistake again; and made him a very happy man, weighing in at 51lb. James used a mixture of Cell and Hybrid in 18 and 15mm, using 25kg of bait during the week. His successful rig was a German Rig, comprising of Korda 20lb IQ2, Size 4B Korda Kurv baited with a white pop-up.
Based on its incredible big fish reputation, Pedro Castro was keen to get angling in The Poo swim. Chopped Mainline Cell and Essential Cell mixed with Gigantica pellet were the bait choice for the week. Rigs were Size 4 Kurv’s on IQ D-Rigs, fished in conjunction with running leads. He fished one rod at 7 wraps down the right hand margin, one at 16 wraps towards Turtles, and one straight out in front at 10 wraps. After a quiet start, (The Poo can be a slow burner) Pedro had a pick up which he unfortunately lost not long after hooking it. Undeterred, he kept plugging away and finally got another chance which he made the most of, by landing a very pretty 28lb Common. He was baiting up with a combination of catapult and Spomb, and Pedro used at total of 50 kg of bait during the week.
Matt “Hunty” Hunt started off fishing in Dunkerque and after a couple of days seeing fish in front of the vacant Billy’s swim decided on a move. After having a cast around, he selected a couple of areas to fish, one being straight out at 20 wraps, and the other at 17 wraps towards the treeline. Baiting with a couple of kilos of whole, chopped and crushed boilie with the Spomb got things underway. He was using running COG leads and an IQ D-Rig with a Mainline Link Wafter, and proving that the move was worthwhile, he caught a nice mid twenty Mirror, before the fish appeared to vacate the area.
What a week it turned out to be; Shane really capitalised on the situation, and had the week of a lifetime. Whilst it is very easy to say, he caught loads because the fish were on him, it isn’t that simple. We see the very same situation on a number of weeks, but the anglers don’t always make the most of it. Shane was very well organised; he had his rigs pre-tied and baited. When he landed a fish, it was unhooked in the net, the rod was recast, then he baited up and then he sorted the fish out. This allowed him to make the most of the feeding windows, and speed up the run rate. 70kg is a lot of bait, but he fed the swim continually, on a little and often basis to keep the fish coming back to the baited spot. If he hadn’t had a bite when he felt he should had one, a recast would often bring instant results. Top angling.
In total there were 77 carp landed including two fifties to 54lb 8oz and ten forties amongst them. What a great way to end another fantastic year; the lake continues to go from strength to strength. We can’t wait for 2018....are you going to come out and join us?
Until next year...