Syndicate Lake (Coarse) (10)
Arrival time: 12.30
Weather: Cloudy and warm becoming hot when the sun broke through (20 ℃).
Swim: Lily pads and NE bay.
Tackle: 12ft Drennan Barbel Specialist, 8lb line, 10 hook.
Bait: Luncheon meat.
Fish: A few roach.
After some unseasonal May weather the forecast was for a warm sunny day and it didn’t disappoint, although the fish did!
I started at the Lily pads swim and immediately saw carp cruising further out into the lake. I went for quite stiff tackle and started fishing the margin with luncheon meat. To my delight a few carp came into the margin, swimming literally in front of my feet, so they obviously weren’t alarmed. Unfortunately, although they cruised over my bait, none decided to swim down and take it. It was an occasion when I think that a floating crust may have worked, but I hadn’t taken any bread. In fact I had nothing in the way of floating bait.
I tried putting a light ledger out to where the lily pads were just starting to break through the surface, obviously responding to the warming weather after a slow start. This produced absolutely nothing, despite being an approach that worked well last year. The carp had now disappeared.
Given the lack of sport I decided to make my way around to the eastern side of the lake. Armed with secateurs I cut my way through the brambles that had grown across the path. Vicious things that spiked me a number of times. There was one large carp cruising in the south-eastern corner. I decided, therefore, to move around and give this previously untried spot a go. It had now become very muggy and moving my tackle across what was a bit of an obstacle course proved both difficult and hot work. Having finally settled I put my first cast in a tree, basically because the swim as restricted by trees and my cast had to accommodate these restrictions. The equivalent of a hook in golf!
Having retackled and cast it was soon clear that the depth off this bank, like the south-western corner, shelved very quickly, the line descending at a sharp angle even though I had cast effectively along the margin. I was being pestered by flies in the trees. After a fairly short time without a touch, I decided to move again, as I didn’t feel that the spot was that promising. I went to the NE bay, where there’s a platform and you fish over reeds that are low at the moment but, if not controlled, will render the swim almost unfishable later in the summer.
The actual bay off to the left only produced nibbles on the luncheon meat and there were no signs of fish movement. I tried, therefore, casting to the right, dropping the float just off some reeds and lily pads. The water was deeper than in the Lily pads swim and I was soon getting fairly positive bites that I suspected were roach. I had completely the wrong set-up for roach fishing. Too heavy and no real striking action in the rod, so although on many occasions the float slid away I missed most of the bites. I suspected reasonable sized fish as I was using a fairly large piece of luncheon meat. A couple of times I felt a fish only for it to come off. Eventually I hooked and landed a beautiful roach of about ¾lb. I then caught a couple of smaller ones. It was now 19.30 and I had set that as my packing up time.
So, not a very productive day but a bit more learnt about the lake. I think next time I may tackle up for roach and keep the heavier rod handy should there be any cruising carp. I caught roach up to 1¼lb last year and I’m sure that there are bigger ones in there. I may also go a bit later and stay into the evening.