Almost a year to the day in fact since my last post.
So what happened?
Did I die? – Clearly not.
Did I give up fishing? – Of course not.
Did I forget how to write? – I’m not sure I ever knew how to start with.
Did I have an extremely busy year, meaning fishing trips (of which there were a fair few) were squeezed in between other commitments (mainly work) leaving me so utterly exhausted that I couldn’t be bothered to use what little free time I had left to write up my blog? – Yes.
So although work was insanely busy (15 staircases built and installed, 6 handmade kitchens, 12 loads of fitted bedroom furniture and countless doors and windows among many other items to leave the workshop) I still managed to get plenty of fishing trips in.
The early part of the year saw me hammering the local club complex, fishing match for style for skimmers, plundering the main lake for it’s lovely Roach and Perch and delving into the world of Carp fishing. The complex in question has 5 lakes with Carp running into the mid twenties. Two of the lakes are supposedly Carp-free, although I’m told that a few unscrupulous individuals have relocated some of the fish with a view to creating a total domination scenario.
The club also leases a smaller 3 lake complex known as Owls Castle which has some excellent Tench (up to 12lb if the local farmer is to be believed) and Carp up to 29lb.
The largest of the three lakes became my go-to venue during the spring, with the odd visit to the smallest of the lakes which is home to a veritable horde of Tincas. During this period I managed to entice several Tench of over 5lb to take my bait, the biggest being 6lb 1oz.
There were several memorable Carping sessions on the bigger lake as well, with my PB going to the dizzy heights of just under 17lb.
At one point I actually started to get the idea that I knew what I was doing. Needless to say the very next trip saw Carp leaping about all over the place, circling my bait like a bunch of Great Whites around a lonely surfer and me going home with a dry net.
The summer months had me spending many happy Saturdays dozing off on the banks of the Medway, occasionally tending to my tackle and every now and then catching a fish – a few decent Roach, skimmers by the bucket load, Perch (including a 2 1/2 lb beastie) and my first ever Eel.
Towards the end of the summer I signed up for a Carp syndicate at the mighty Bough Beech Reservoir – 285 acres of open water. My mate Chris (who also joined) calls it ‘the South Atlantic’ mainly due to the fact that it’s always cold and windy when we visit. I’ve yet to catch a Carp there, but have managed a decent bag of 1 1/2 lb + Roach on more than one occasion.
A few more visits to the main club complex in early Autumn catching Carp off the top and enjoying the banter and then suddenly it was October and the weather changed. Work also got even more hectic and I didn’t get out again for the rest of the year.
A former employee and good friend Liam got in touch and asked if I was up for a days fishing. I suggested a visit to Owls Castle. An 08:00 start on a beautifully mild January morning was the perfect way to start the fishing year. I only managed the one fish – a small common of around 5 or 6 lb but I was chuffed to bits just to be out there and catching again.
So thats where I’ve been and what I’ve been doing.
As for this year I’ve decided to focus on Carp fishing in the main. I really want to get a twenty under my belt so thats my main target. A trip is already planned for the weekend back to the Castle.
I may even have a go for the 12lb Tench while I’m there.