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kevtaylor

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  1. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to dayvid in A brighter day   
  2. Like
    kevtaylor got a reaction from Its-grim-up-north in Old catch reports   
    This morning will stay with me forever, watching the fight from afar and wishing whatever it was into the net, go on son!
    The shout of all shouts went out, electrifying I got goose bumps! and I just had to reel in, grab some bits and run over there to see this incredible beast in the flesh and congratulate the big man!
    What an achievement, what a year, what a stunning UK BANGER, and what a lovely fella to catch it - truly deserved, very well done mate - inspiring! 
     
  3. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to yonny in Old catch reports   
    Certainly is mate. It's only been caught once more since that day which is mad given the pressure this water sees. A tricky, tricky fish. It's still there, I was sent a vid of it last year from a boat, grubbing about on top of the weed looking massive. Estimated 55+ now😮
  4. Like
    kevtaylor got a reaction from emmcee in Old catch reports   
    This morning will stay with me forever, watching the fight from afar and wishing whatever it was into the net, go on son!
    The shout of all shouts went out, electrifying I got goose bumps! and I just had to reel in, grab some bits and run over there to see this incredible beast in the flesh and congratulate the big man!
    What an achievement, what a year, what a stunning UK BANGER, and what a lovely fella to catch it - truly deserved, very well done mate - inspiring! 
     
  5. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to yonny in Old catch reports   
    Likewise mate. I still owe you one bro👍
  6. Thanks
    kevtaylor got a reaction from yonny in Old catch reports   
    This morning will stay with me forever, watching the fight from afar and wishing whatever it was into the net, go on son!
    The shout of all shouts went out, electrifying I got goose bumps! and I just had to reel in, grab some bits and run over there to see this incredible beast in the flesh and congratulate the big man!
    What an achievement, what a year, what a stunning UK BANGER, and what a lovely fella to catch it - truly deserved, very well done mate - inspiring! 
     
  7. Like
    kevtaylor got a reaction from elmoputney in Old catch reports   
    This morning will stay with me forever, watching the fight from afar and wishing whatever it was into the net, go on son!
    The shout of all shouts went out, electrifying I got goose bumps! and I just had to reel in, grab some bits and run over there to see this incredible beast in the flesh and congratulate the big man!
    What an achievement, what a year, what a stunning UK BANGER, and what a lovely fella to catch it - truly deserved, very well done mate - inspiring! 
     
  8. Thanks
    kevtaylor reacted to yonny in Old catch reports   
    Right, so this weekend signals the end of October and the start of November and signals the end of my season on this lake before I head for the winter water. It was a very tough and frustrating session but as you will see, it all came good in the end with something very, very special. I hope you enjoy it:
    So here I sit writing the catch report I have been hoping to write for a long time. If my page-long catch reports bore you then you're in trouble today boys.
    So...... as many of you know I've had a great year on my water, I started with the big common (albeit down in weight) and followed that up with a string of other decent fish. What has eluded me however is one of the real monsters. The pick of the bunch is this UTTERLY RIDICULOUS fully scaled mirror carp that I set my sights on some time ago.
    I showed up on Thursday with 3 nights ahead of me, ready for one last big push for something truly special. As soon as I arrived it was crystal clear where the carp were, they were showing like dolphins, and unusually the lake was quiet so I slotted in right on top of them. Result. I did not hold back on the bait, I picked an area and basically filled it in with the full intention of sitting on it for 3 days (unusual for me, I usually take the mobile approach). Would you believe it, as soon as I put the spod down after maybe 30 minutes of spodding, two carp smashed out directly on the spot. I was surprised at this as I normally find spodding pushes them out for 24 hrs.
    If I'm honest the baiting hadn't gone as well as I'd hoped.... have you ever been in that frame of mind where none of the spods go exactly where you want them too? When they all land just a few ft off the target? Well... that's what was happening. The hook baits went out great so I was hoping while not being perfect that I'd done enough. I vowed that the next day I'd get my game face on and do it better. Anyway..... those carp were out there on or near my spot all day, and as the sun went down they continued to show into the night, and I went to bed a very confident angler. You can imagine my disappointment when I woke up to my alarm clock at 06:00 without having had a beep. This was made worse when I popped my head out and saw they were still there... showing just off my baited area..... head scratching time......
    The carp continued to show until about 11 am and then it slowed down. I figured that they must have been on the bait, they were everywhere.... so I decided to fill in it again. This time it went miles better, on a six-pence every time, perfect! I knew that the wind was due to pick up big time the following morning so planned to leave the rods where they were from today until home-time if I had no bites..... so I positioned them very carefully and sat back knowing there was little more I could do. Come the afternoon it became clear the carp had pushed off over to shallower water in the bright sunshine, chasing the temperatures, but I was hoping they'd be back that night, and they were....
    2nd night and I'm seeing them top near my baited spot, not quite on it, but close enough for me to go to bed a confident man. I get up at midnight and at 03:30 and continue to see the odd fish but guess what.... the alarms clock goes off at 06:00, not a beep. More head scratching. I watch the carp topping in the area knowing full well they're mugging me off. I contemplate all kinds of changes in this time until 08:30 when I get a twitchy take. It's a tench, and I curse it for springing my carefully laid trap. I unhook it in the water and let it go (I now regret this as it was massive, clearly a pb tench, but I was just too focused on these carp to appreciate it at the time, unforgivable really). I get the rod out perfectly before the big winds arrive and once more I'm happy to sit it out.

    The winds finally arrive and they're every bit as big as forecast. This makes it incredibly difficult to spot the fish. I do see a couple on the end of the wind you'd expect but once more I fully expected them to come back overnight. On my third evening the blanking is starting to get to me, I see hardly anything, I've not caught anything, it's too windy to set up in a new swim effectively and I'd not seen enough to move anyway. I won't lie, it was starting to do my head in and this time I went to bed with confidence lacking. It was a rough old night, 30 mph wind smashing down the pit, I had to get a storm pole out to give the brolly a helping hand, but eventually I drifted off. This time it wasn't the alarm clock that woke me up though, it was an almighty BOSH as an absolute brute smashed out near my baited area.
    Two more massive boshes had me out of the bivvy and looking. I was back in carp mode and confidence was back. It was just getting light and I was confused about the alarm clock not going off until I remembered about the clocks going back. I sat up for the rest of the morning. These carp were showing just to the right of my spot which was great but sometimes 20 yards can feel like 10 miles in this situation. Worryingly all I saw directly on my spot were 3 tench pop their heads out. I was wandering up and down the bank and found myself in the next swim staring at these carp. I called my mate across the way and we were discussing a possible move foe the last couple fo hours when my receiver lets out a single bleep.... then another. "I'll call you back mate" I said as I casually walked towards my swim to land what was obviously another tench. However, I didn't have time to hang up, in fact all I had time to do was launch my phone in the bushes as the left hand rod went into complete meltdown. It's a 10 seconds sprint back to the swim but it seemed to go on forever with that alarm absolutely screaming all the way......
    After what seemed like an age I'm into the waders and I hit it. WHALLOP..... it's no tench. I know that it's a good'n straight away, a plodder, using its weight, kiting slowly over my other two rods and away from the spot, so far so good. It kites maybe 60 yards to the right heading towards shallower water, it's because that's where the weed is. I try to turn it but my efforts are fruitless and it just carries on taking line until the inevitable happens. Everything draws to a stand-still, the rod goes solid, it's weeded me up. Sigh......
    I try for 5 minutes to free it but nothing is really happening. I lost a fish in very similar circumstances over the other side of the lake earlier this year and at the time I thought I'd lost a very special carp (in fact I suspected it was the big fully scaled mirror). I was now contemplating the same thing happening again and after 3 nights of blanking I just couldn't believe it. In one last effort I walked to my left along the margin in an attempt to bring it out the same way it went in and...... BANG, the rod tip slams down, I manage to pull it back, gain a yards of line, and boom, we're back in business. I give it the beans now, it's not getting in the weed again, and I walk out as far as I can to meet it. About 30 yards out the fish rolls and I see it for the first time. It's a big scaly one, so scaly that it can be one of only 3 fish. It's the wrong colour to be one of them so that narrows it down to 2... neither of which I've caught, so the legs start to go a little even though I'm assuming it's the smaller of the 2 carp I think it could be (which is still 37 odd).
    I gain some line and it rolls again about 20 yards out. This time there is no doubting which fish it is. It's absolutely MASSIVE, covered in scales the size of saucers, and my legs go to jelly. The rod tip is knocking as I'm shaking so much and I begin to wonder if it's possible to shake a carp off the hook? The fish dives deep and huge plumes of bubbles erupt across the surface as it plows through the silt looking for weed beds. I just do the only thing I can do... pump it slowly, trying to keep its head up, gaining line inch by inch. The fish eventually tires and before you know it it's on the top taking a gulp of air. The sight of this will stay with me for the rest of my life..... I don't know how big it is but it has to be the most impressive carp I've seen in my life.... it gets closer.... closer.... out goes the net.... over the cord.... jiggle it a bit as it doesn't fit...... and it's in!
    Out goes the shout and every angler on the pit knows exactly what the score is now! I get a cheer from the lads and I stand for a few seconds just staring down at this fish. It's big, real big, and stunningly beautiful to go with it. I secure the net, detach the hook-link and turn round to see the ABSOLUTE LEGEND that is Mr. @kevtaylor who'd wound in and came round to help. I was in bits at this point, a gibbering wreck, shaking, spouting rubbish, just all over the place, so I was glad I had someone with their head screwed on to help out. Only problem was Kev was just as bad as me lol.... he knows how special this fish is and he too was gibbering away.... he even had the shakes lol.... so now we have 2 gibbering wrecks to try and sort this carp out....
    The next 5 minutes is spent giggling like kids, checking out this absolutely amazing carp, having a Fag to settle the nerves. We set the mat up in a little spot down the bank where the light is good, sling/scales zeroed, cameras at the ready... and fetched the star of the show; Mr carp. We lift it out together and give each other a bit of a look as we feel the weight. Looking down at it we're saying that it has to be a foot wide...... we cart it over to the mat and grab the scales. We hoist it up with the scales facing Kev and straight away I can tell from his face that it's every bit as big as we thought it might be. He doesn't want to call it as the needle is bouncing.... around the 50 lb mark!
    We swap sides and I check it out, he's right, it's bouncing between 49.10 and 50 lb. Now I might be greedy when it comes to catching fish but I'm not greedy when it comes to weighing them so I go with the lower option 49 lb 10 oz and the biggest smile I've ever smiled graces my boat race. We do some pics, which I have to say Kev does an absolutely FANTASTIC job of (THANK YOU MATE!!!). We take her back to the water, a couple of returner shots, and then we stand there watching a true British near-50 fully scaled mirror swim silently back out into the depths, absolutely blown away. An hour later I'm packed up and on my way home, mission accomplished.

    So basically, on the last morning of what will be my last session before winter hits, my dreams came true. I really cannot thank Kev enough for his help and I couldn't have asked for anyone more fitting to join me on that special morning, someone who really does know what that fish means..... cheers mate!
    Booya.

    That takes us to the end of 2017 so I'll bring an end to these catch reports. I did actually fish the water again in 2018, trying to catch the last remaining biggun I'd not had. I never caught it (in fact it was never caught again) but I did have a string of other good fish to 43 odd, and a crazy month is September where I had 9 x 30+ fish! Maybe at some point in the future I'll come back to those reports and show you the pics. Until then, have fun lads.
  9. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to Big Bass in What and why.   
    Daiwa Sensor jumbo spool 8lb 1,855m just under £10 use that for float and feeder and carp off the top, iv had carp up to  16lb on it been using the brand for donkeys yeas  
    X line fluoro not sure what breaking strain it’s been on the spools forever use this for small waters where a softly softly approach is needed.....I find i need to wipe the xline during the session as it seems to get dirty I just use a baby wipe must the segment in the water ? 
    Fox Exocet wow what a line highly recommended 👍 first used it in France in 12lb on a big water as I didn’t have a bait boat, 12lb is a bit Stretchy if you give it the big heave ho with a 3oz weight and no shock leader tho ... so I changed spools to the 15lb glad I did the 1st fish took me around a small weed bed, had no problems with a low 30 and a big ball of weed.  The line flys off the spool thin for its bs and sinks ok  
    Braid Berkley Whiplash green diameter 0.12 use it for my spod /marker rod ( which is the same rod ) again had this for so long it’s lost it colour. 
  10. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to Golden Paws in Record Breaking Fish   
    We all like to read stories about fish of monstrous sizes. It seems every lake contains a whopper that a few people have seen but has never been caught. Some stories are told by respected anglers which gives them some credence, others by younger and more inexperienced anglers and the size gets higher by every pint downed!
    Twice in my angling experience I have "witnessed" fish that would make the record books but on both occasions I realised that all was not what it seemed.
    The first was whilst fishing a water in the Cotswold Water Park fishing on Hills Pit. At the time it was crystal clear and I would stalk tench by watching them pick up my sweetcorn baits fished on a float and well over depth for a bit of casting weigh. One day whilst fishing I caught sight of a fish coming along the marginal shelf. My jaw dropped, it looked absolutely huge, far bigger than anything I had caught previously. I watched it for a good 10 seconds and couldn't believe how big it looked. As it got closer, something didn't look quite right and then I realised it was actually two tench swimming in perfect unison but about a foot apart and they had overlapped giving the impression of one big fish. They literally swam under my rod and continued on their journey, oblivious to the near heart attack they had given me.
    The second was on the Throop Fishery on the Dorset Stour. Again the river was crystal clear and I saw so many big chub that day that 5lb'ers seemed to be the norm. I fished an area called the Highbank later in the day and it gave me a superb view of the swim, I could see every bit of gravel on the bottom. I put out a couple of droppers of hemp and corn and the chub downstream seemed to notice straight away. I cast out another dropper and a chub of record breaking size appeared from the streamer and made a beeline for it and ate the hemp out of the dropper before the current could take it away. My knees knocked and my mouth went dry at what I had just witnessed. Then as I looked closer, I realised that is was a silvery common carp probably just into double figures and I managed to calm down.
     

    There must be countless tales of similar events or unexplained mysteries that turned out to something more explainable, anyone else got any? 
  11. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to yonny in What and why.   
    Currently, on my big water rods/spools I have:
    HydroTuff 20 lb - for weed.
    HydroTuff 12 lb (with leader) - for distance.
    HydroSink 22 lb - where braid is the one.
    On my small water rods/spools I have:
    HydroTuff 15 lb.
    I'm a massive fan of HydroTuff as you can probably tell. Its abrasion resistance is the best I've come across and that is the characteristic which I consider to be most important for the weedy waters I tend to fish. The other characteristics don't seem to be compromised too much by the abrasion resistance either. It sinks ok, it even casts ok, which for a snag line is quite unusual. The 12 lb with leader is perfect for getting the distance without sacrificing too much abrasion resistance.
    I also rate the Rig Marole SLS Specimon Tough (another snag line) but it's been discontinued. I still have some left that I use as a leader material.
  12. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to framey in What and why.   
    Usually synchro or Xt in 12lb generally 
    15 lb if weedy 
    X line in 19lb
    and I have just spooled up a spare set of spools with the Korda tapered line in 12lb 
    I used to use big game or pro gold(harder and harder to get hold off)
    dabbled with the pro blend from. Gardner
     along with loads of different ones over the years like
    maxima sylcast gr60 etc
     
  13. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to dayvid in What and why.   
    Strange you say that about Berkely Big Game ,  this is a line I have used for many may years and have found it to be excellent in every way , this is roughly the lines and time I have used them 
    Big Game... 20 yrs + 
    Daiwa Sensor... 2 yrs 
    Wychwood DPM... 5 yrs  current .
  14. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to salokcinnodrog in What and why.   
    I used to test my lines myself, almost as per Kevin Maddocks in Carp Fever, giving abrasion resistance, the point it stretched to before breaking etc, the Tackle Box tests are pretty spot on.
    There are lines that no matter how many tests they pass just don't work for the individual angler. 
    There were some I used or tested that I would not use ever again; Berkley Big Game, Nash Bullet Mono, Ultima lines, even Daiwa Sensor in clear, yet the brown was spot on.
    I loved Shimano Catana, one of the best lines going, it was a shame it was withdrawn from sale.
    I could not get ESP line to knot tidily, the knot strength was awful, for me,  yet a mate loved it and had no problems. 
     
    If Daiwa Sensor has changed then that is sad, as it was it worked when I last used it around 2010, and I had used it from 1994!
     
    The things that cause lines to misbehave are line twist, playing fish on the clutch rather than backwind, 'over stretch' without to breaking point, obviously a snap-off, although at the knot, it may well have damaged the line from the knot to the reel.
    Something else that causes damage is the lead, and lead attachment, it may well crush or pinch the line, or in the case of running leads on run rings, rub and abrade it, and of course, playing fish over gravel, through weeds and lilies, yet how many check the line every time?
     
    But when it goes 'the line is rubbish'...
     
  15. Like
    kevtaylor got a reaction from crusian in What and why.   
    I am a fan of ESP Syncro XT, I found that to be supple and strong, I'd recommend that no doubt.  Then in recent years syndicate rule changes forced me onto a thicker line, so went with Diawa Sensor in 20lb then the next year in 18lb and was fairly happy with it.  Subsequent batches of the same stuff behaved differently some how, more twist in use and a pig to get on in the first place.  My mate has only ever used Sensor as well but he was having the same problems.  I cant explain it so I cannot say anything bad about the line itself, maybe we were contributing or causing the issue.
    Anyway for this year I've chosen Fox Exocet in 16lb because I've seen some good reviews and there is a chance I may need to fish further out than normal or at least have the opportunity to do that.  Whilst I've not used it yet first impression is that  it is the limpest line I have ever seen hanging off the spool, my friend and I were both shocked by how good it looks and feels, fingers crossed it's a good-un.  Will give feedback when possible. 
  16. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to elmoputney in Bedchair hack   
    Well the old Jrc has been modded, currently laying on it and not one cable tie has broken so far, it was old and saggy now its, tight and limber again, couple of things I discovered it does seem to leave loads of sharp bits once you trim them, and also it's worth fitting them all loose to start with then tightening them down all at once, good job well done I now have a quick, light overnight chair again 
  17. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to dayvid in Lets see your Fit birds ,   
  18. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to smufter in Lets see your Fit birds ,   
  19. Haha
    kevtaylor reacted to Big Bass in Lets see your Fit birds ,   
    Here’s one of my mate .... he was always good with the birds 

  20. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to dayvid in What and why.   
    Having looked at the Line/Dia  tests on here , it would seem Fox are very good lines to use .
  21. Like
    kevtaylor got a reaction from snowmanstevo in What and why.   
    I am a fan of ESP Syncro XT, I found that to be supple and strong, I'd recommend that no doubt.  Then in recent years syndicate rule changes forced me onto a thicker line, so went with Diawa Sensor in 20lb then the next year in 18lb and was fairly happy with it.  Subsequent batches of the same stuff behaved differently some how, more twist in use and a pig to get on in the first place.  My mate has only ever used Sensor as well but he was having the same problems.  I cant explain it so I cannot say anything bad about the line itself, maybe we were contributing or causing the issue.
    Anyway for this year I've chosen Fox Exocet in 16lb because I've seen some good reviews and there is a chance I may need to fish further out than normal or at least have the opportunity to do that.  Whilst I've not used it yet first impression is that  it is the limpest line I have ever seen hanging off the spool, my friend and I were both shocked by how good it looks and feels, fingers crossed it's a good-un.  Will give feedback when possible. 
  22. Like
    kevtaylor got a reaction from yonny in What and why.   
    I am a fan of ESP Syncro XT, I found that to be supple and strong, I'd recommend that no doubt.  Then in recent years syndicate rule changes forced me onto a thicker line, so went with Diawa Sensor in 20lb then the next year in 18lb and was fairly happy with it.  Subsequent batches of the same stuff behaved differently some how, more twist in use and a pig to get on in the first place.  My mate has only ever used Sensor as well but he was having the same problems.  I cant explain it so I cannot say anything bad about the line itself, maybe we were contributing or causing the issue.
    Anyway for this year I've chosen Fox Exocet in 16lb because I've seen some good reviews and there is a chance I may need to fish further out than normal or at least have the opportunity to do that.  Whilst I've not used it yet first impression is that  it is the limpest line I have ever seen hanging off the spool, my friend and I were both shocked by how good it looks and feels, fingers crossed it's a good-un.  Will give feedback when possible. 
  23. Like
    kevtaylor reacted to yonny in Old catch reports   
    Right, so with the horrible run of losses now behind me it was time to get on with the season ahead. The short sessions I'd been doing were not satisfying me so on this occasion I booked some time off work. Enjoy:
    So I had a decent sesh the weekend just gone. I'd booked Friday and Monday off as I was so sick of these work overnighters I'd been doing... I just wanted a proper sesh. I turned up Thursday afternoon and had a good look about. I kind of knew the area I fancied and while watching said area I saw a carp jump out.... job done, I'd start here. Went back to the car, grabbed me gear, back to the swim, started setting up, disaster strikes!!! I'd forgotten one of my bags which holds my alarms, rod support, distance sticks, all sorts....
    I checked the car and the kit wasn't there which meant I had a 3 hour round trip to go and get it... IDIOT! I took the opportunity to borrow some distance sticks from another member and found my spots/baited up before leaving. The area was exactly how it was last time I was in here, a longer chuck for this water, tight to an absolutely MAHOOSIVE weed bed. I spodded a couple of kilos around the spots and somehow managed to lose a spod as it came off the quick change swivel I use to fix it. I was starting to wonder if this sesh was doomed from the off.... but at least I had a spare spod at home.
    On the drive home it became obvious that every single road user was for some reason intent on preventing me getting back before darkness. There where also 3 sets of temporary traffic lights that had appeared on the journey. All this during rush hour, I was in bits..... This was not how the sesh was supposed to pan out. Got home, grabbed gear, back to the lake...
    I arrived in the dark, it must have been about 21:30. Got the rods out OK (although I'm never 100% happy with hitting tight spots in the dark) and decided I'd earned a beer so I drank a couple and had an early night. No more sightings at this point which proved to be a recurring theme, no shows at all after about midday for the duration of my trip. My alarm clock goes off at 04:00 and I'm up and about watching the lake for signs of life. I see nothing until 05:15 when I see 2 carp smash out over the top of the weed bed beyond my spots. The next few hours sees the odd sighting here, there and everywhere but the majority are over this weed bed. It's frustrating I can tell you.... there they are, smashing out between 10 and 20 yards behind my spot. They don't seem willing to come any closer for some reason, clearly enjoying the sanctuary of the weed. There's no way I can fish into this weed, it's savage, no chod or long link would present and even if it did it'd be loss-city.
    The day goes on and nothing happens but I've seen enough to persevere, they are right there, I just need to think about my approach. I start by changing the position of one rod. I'd had all three over there but it was a little busy tbh so i reduced that to two. Just a couple of spods tight over each rod this time, I'm sure there's loads of bait still there. However, this time I get the throwing stick out and peppered a kg of boilies right into the weed in an attempt to get them on it and draw them out. The third rod goes over to my left where I'd seen a couple of carp top, I find a small but solid spot within catapult distance so whack a bait on there with a couple of pouches of freebies. Again, no sightings in the evening so I assume they're still in the weed.
    This time I set the alarm for 05:00 and I wake up and watch the weed bed from my sleeping bag. It's still pretty dark but I'm sure I can see activity. In fact, I'm pretty sure I can see a few signs directly over my spot. My thoughts are confirmed when my right hand rod absolutely rips off (which surprised me as I thought the clutches were set pretty tight but this fish disagreed). Into the waders and I hit it. It is absolutely solid in the weed. 10 minutes it takes my to extract it and all that while I'm cursing myself for not fishing completely locked up. When it finally moves I take a couple of steps back to grab the net and that's all it takes for the fish to find another weed bed. You literally cannot take your eye off the ball for second here! Another 5 minutes and I manage to get it moving again and the fight plays out in a more enjoyable manner. A few minutes later it's in the net and I'm staring down at a lovely common carp, a decent fish, over 30 I reckon.
    I secure the net and get the rod back out. As the sky gets lighter and lighter this common gets darker and darker in colour and I realise which fish it is, one of my targets, and I'm buzzing. I call a mate round and we take some snaps, it's an amazing fish, 100% scale perfect in every way, dark and richly coloured, a truly special carp. It turns a rich gold in the sun and turns black when in the shade, a strange but beautiful hue that I've not seen on any carp before or since. It's weighed at 31+ and we return it to fight another day.


    Not much happens for the rest of the morning although I can see plenty of fish on the edge of the weed which continues to frustrate me. The sightings slow down as we approach midday. At 11:00 I'm on the phone to a mate who's also fishing, just discussing what we've seen. There I am chatting away when I see the tip of the rod to the left twitch. As I watch the tip slowly pulls round before the alarms goes mental as a fish rips off with my hook bait! Into the waders, I hit it. Now this fight is a bit spesh, I know there's a huge weed bed to my left so march down into it sending the fish the other way into open water. Only one insignificant issue with a small weed bed I didn't realise was there, the fish spends the bulk of the fight charging up and down, left and right, it is not happy... awesome fun and for once I don't feel like I'm a second away from losing it in the weed. As it get's nearer I can see it's a mirror, a grey one, but when I net it I don't recognise it.
    I secure the net and have a closer look, it's a big fish, slate grey down it's flanks and pure black along it's dorsal, classically shaped, a proper brute of a carp. No wonder it fought so well. A mate walks into the swim, great timing, and we start to do the honours. He doesn't recognise it either and at 35+ we cannot believe we don't know it. The gaffa then shows up (more great timing) and he knows exactly which fish it is; as soon as he mentions its name we click. It's one of the old ones, a proper original, hardly ever mentioned as it's hardly ever caught, a very rare fish, not the kind you can really target, and as you can imagine I'm well happy. It's a stunner for sure and completes a brace of 30s!!! Pics done we send her back..... two special ones on the trot.... buzzing!

    Nothing happens for the rest of the day so I have an early night. Alarm clock goes off at 5 am again but this time it's not feeling so good, the sky is clear, the sun is bright, the wind has died.... I see a couple of fish but activity is at a minimum. It get's hot so I wander about looking for something to fish for. I find a few carp in a bay and get them taking floaters but the birds come and wipe me out and the fish disappear. I know the conditions are set to improve big time, rain on the evening and night, so I decide to stay that last night and hopefully capitalise with another fish. The rain arrives and it's off to bed after a long and uneventful day.
    It's now the morning and even though I told myself I'm having a lie in by 05:00 I'm perched next to the rods watching the water, bite time approaching. It is looking perfect, overcast, drizzly, moody.... and I'm watching carp over the weed bed getting closer and closer to my spots. By 06:00 I'm convinced it's gonna happen and I've got the waders on in preparation. By 07:00 I'm at my wits end, literally sitting next to the rods in my waders, staring at them, willing one to go off, when the middle rod lets out a single beep. The bobbin twitches a fraction of an inch, I look at the tip and it's just pulled down slightly. That'll do me I think to myself as I hit it.
    It's a carp and it rucks like hell. Into the weed bed it goes, everything is solid. I'm used to that now though and I'm happy to to extract it over the course of 5 or so minutes. Once it's free it kites over to my right and I have to go on a wander down the margin to keep up with it. Another great fight and I'm praying I land this to make the extra night worth it. Eventually it goes in the net and I can see it's another grey mirror but with a few scales dotted here and there, it looks familiar but I can't quite put my finger on it. It's another good fish and for a second I think it's a hat-trick of 30s but then have second thoughts.
    I'm on my own now so self-takes it is. When I get it on the bank I take one look at it's tail and recognise it; it's the big tailed mirror I caught last year (in my September '16 catch report). It's a little down in weight at 28 lb 8 oz but it's looking pukka, and another original to boot. I take some snaps and put it back a happy man.

    It starts to warm up and the activity slows so I pack up ready for home. It's been a long and tricky session but ultimately a successful one. Two special fish and a high 20 to cap it off. It's the first time I've spent that long in a single swim for years, in fact last year I did 30 nights and didn't stay in the same swim for more than one night in that whole time. My horrible run of 4 losses on the trot are now behind me and this weekends fish were nailed so confidence is back. Can't wait to get back down in a couple of weeks.
  24. Haha
    kevtaylor got a reaction from yonny in Bitech viper   
    LOL my first alarm, from way back when I was float fishing but had a ledger rod out for carp with a a trusty Bitech Viper giving me constant false bleeps, if you had light enough bobbins/monkey climber it became quite musical and played tunes ALL DAY!  It's safe to say I had no concept of adjusting the sensitivity - thank god Fox came out with the Micron 👍
  25. Like
    kevtaylor got a reaction from yonny in Stalking Rod Advice   
    I should add as Ian says how often do you actually need shorter rods for stalking in the edge? I did 4 years on a stalking water with my 12's there wasn't a problem in any swim ever, I'd go back now with my 12.5 footers.
    I got the 10's for short session general fishing, barbel, pike and carp - but I will leave one in the car from now on just in case I do find that one off spot under the trees and there's a few whackers down there.
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