Posted by Aqua Products Monday 22nd May, 2017
The Perfect Campaign


I’m always keeping an eye out for certain fish and future waters to fish, but have always found that my next target will more often than not depend on where I’m fishing at the time. Everywhere I can think off, I have fished a lake and heard about new waters (and particular big carp) through lads I have met along the way if you like. A lot of the carp I have fished for are not known across the whole country and I have learnt about these fish via word of mouth rather than seeing them in the press etc. It’s an extension of where I am fishing at the time if you like. It seems to happen naturally and you get a good feeling about somewhere and this then inspires me to fish it. From a small lake near Stoke on Trent (where I caught my first forty pounder) and after chatting to a chap I met on there, I began to learn about a day only water in the Midlands, home to some really lovely big old carp. From my time on Stoneacres, I met a few lads who also had fished over on Black Swan and also St Ives which inspired me to fish them waters and after all the stories and seeing pictures of them special carp, this really created the required buzz. I think speaking to the other lads fishing the same lakes; they will reveal little gems that are not so well spoke about. From fishing in Reading for the past season or so I have learnt about loads of fish and waters, some that I hadn’t heard about until I came down this neck of the woods.



Finding out as much infomation about the fish and the required tickets to fish for them is a must. A lot of the fish I’m often fishing for are old and with the increasing amount of otters about, you could wait five years to get on a water, but by the time you are able to fish, the big one could be gone or the otters have decimated it. There is, without doubt, a number of waters well otter fenced and it’s these waters that tickets will be in high demand, so future planning could save you a season or two twiddling your thumbs waiting for a ticket to land. Who you know in fishing plays a huge part and carrying yourself the right way and being polite to everyone goes a long way. On certain waters, someone down the line may know the owner really well with one phone call and you could be in, it’s as simple as that in some cases.



A lot of lakes have an appeal to why I’m there, often it will be a certain fish that I really want to catch. Black Swan for example, I had heard about a couple of rather special linears, got a few pictures of them and dearly wanted to fish for them. I do try and do as much research as I can, but the real learning only starts to happen when you are fishing the lake. Through speaking to fellow anglers over time, I have gathered so much information on previous captures. Where certain fish come from, the time of year and if I can, the moon phase too. Something will always fall back on a certain fish a particular trait that it gives away.  I always listen to what people tell me and take bits in to consideration but I like to make my own mind up on things. I go off what I see or gut instinct and this will always go above the past records. If I think I need to be in a certain area and people tell me a fish never gets caught from there, I don’t care, I will fish it if It looks right.  I do like to have a recce or two before I join the lake. A walk round can be enough to either give me the buzz to fish it or not fancy it. I have a few lakes in mind for when I leave Dinton, so in this case I will drop in and have a look before I plan to fish it. Work out which banks certain wind hits, if there are any obvious holding areas like snags, lily’s, islands or inaccessible water. Google earth will give you a good indication of any shallow ground out there. Particularly in the spring, carp love shallow water, so identifying certain areas before you fish will give you a good idea of where to start.



I do fish as much as I can in the winter, but around the festive period I tend to stop carp fishing and fish the rivers as I can still get my angling fix without being away for too long. It is then that I strip all the carp gear down, re-spool all the reels and spare spools, make sure I have two of everything I need tackle wise. Everything I need in the tackle box and once again in the van as spares. I take loads of leads of all sizes and shapes, which can cover every situation I may be faced with. This is also a good time to get my hook baits rolled. There are two mixes I tend to use and I will do around six one-egg mixes of both and in various sizes and colours. I will make enough to last me at least the season and freeze them after a good week of drying. I like to keep just enough to fish with so that they are as fresh as possible all the time.



When you’re travelling a lot for your fishing (like I have to) you don’t half clock up some miles up and down that motorway. You have to make sure everything is tiptop condition and in full working order. Regular services, checking the oil, tyre pressure and so on are so important. I recently bought a new van, but that still failed on me last week! By having cover though, it was in the garage and I had a courtesy car on the day, so it didn’t prevent me from fishing.



Like most of us I have a Mrs and I work. My fishing tends to involve driving down on a Sunday afternoon, which gets me enough time to get the rods out before dark. It takes me a good three hours (on a good run), so I make the most of the time that I’m there. I will stay until Wednesday early afternoon and be back in work on the Thursday. It all about making sure everything is sorted before I go and because this is a weekly routine, I have to be organised so that I can still spend some time with the Mrs and maintain that work life balance, enjoy what you do and have an understanding of it all. My fishing is my everything. It has never been about ‘look what I have caught’, it is about personal goals and achievements to me. I set myself goals, often very optimistic, but that is what drives me to achieve the best I can.  When I’m fishing I give it my all. It can be big baiting campaigns, long walks and big moves, it doesn’t matter what it takes, as long as I don’t affect any others, I will do it. If I know there is a big weather change coming when I leave, I will try and get clips for spots in the certain area and bait them for a starting point the following trip, in case the fish are still there when I return. If the fish are showing at night, I will sit up and listen to where they are and find out exactly where they are showing. In a nutshell, you only get out what you put in and that’s in every aspect of life, give it your all and enjoy the journey.





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