Syndicate Lake (Coarse) (6)
Arrival time: 11.00
Weather: Sunny / cloudy.
NW wind was behind me but it caused sideways drift, making it difficult to control a float.
Swim: Lily pads
Tackle: 14ft Shimano Speedmaster match rod, Shimano Exage 1000RC reel with 5lb line and 14 hook.
Baits: Sweetcorn and luncheon meat.
Fish: Two carp and 16 roach. Best carp 11½ lbs. Best roach 1lb 2oz
Today I decided to try for the roach. I started with sweetcorn and took two roach with the first two casts, the biggest around 4 oz.
After this it went quiet. I was having some difficulty casting to the gap between the lily pads. The cross-wind was troublesome and the overgrown mangle of bramble and shrubs behind me limited the backcast. I changed to a light ledger but things seemed to have gone very quiet.
After a while I reverted to the float and started catching roach again, but mainly small fish. I therefore decided to try luncheon meat, as a means of selecting larger fish. After a couple of missed bites, at 15.45 a less than positive bite resulted in me connecting with a good fish. At first I thought it may be a large roach, but after a very short pause the fish moved off and it was clear that it was probably a carp. The fight was a bit lethargic. Strong pulls rather than frantic runs, and a number of times it pulled away from the net as I thought it was ready to land. It was a nicely conditioned fully-scaled carp of 8¼ lb.
I was still having difficulty casting the float accurately so decided to finish the day on the ledger. A very small Arsley bomb fished with the match rod. This enabled me to cast between the lily pads and cut down the amount of movement on the bank. I also decided to stick with luncheon meat.
At 17.55 a positive bite rewarded me a roach of 1lb 2oz. I had a number of other bites that I didn’t hit.
Packing-up time had been set at 19.00, and at 18.30 the bobbin sailed up and I connected with a heavy fish. I thought “this could be a problem” given I was on a light match rod and 5lb line. Fortunately the fish didn’t burrow into the lily pads, although I had to give it a fair amount of side-strain to keep it out. It also made attempts for the marginal reeds either side of me, and countless times surged away from the net as I tried to bring it in. I was worrying that the 14 hook may come away but fortunately I finally managed to net the fish, a partially scaled carp of 11½ lbs.
This was a real bonus, both in terms of hooking such a good fish and getting it in. It was now 18.45 and I had a couple of more casts hoping I could pick up another roach or two. I had one good bite but didn’t connect. Interesting that the rudd didn’t put in an appearance today.
In all I caught 16 roach, so I did have my ‘roach day’. The carp were a bonus and I came to the conclusion that light ledger is the way to fish this particular spot. I also think that sweetcorn is always going to catch the smaller roach. Many were very small, and the largest was only around 6-8 oz. The luncheon meat on the other hand tempts the pound plus fish.