Since that time I have been involved in a small way with field testing some of the newly developed base mixes, pellets and the Liquid Robin Red.
Now in case anyone doesn’t know, Ken is also the godfather of the Cornish carp scene and I just happen to have grown up fishing for carp and other species in the beautiful county of Cornwall. So many of my blog posts are based on my real fishing experiences in Cornwall and Devon and - if I am honest - I have no real interest at all in fishing up country as everything I need and enjoy is here on my doorstep.
I don`t know if I have mentioned it before in the blogs I have done but another side to my angling is searching out and then angling obscure and sometimes neglected lakes; these places don`t always have leviathans in their depths, but that`s not what I’m all about anyway; to me it`s about spending time in the glorious countryside and having fun – it’s the anticipation and excitement of not knowing how the day will end…
In this time and era of social media when everything is `out there` and easily accessible, isn`t it nice to know that special places still abound?
So let’s talk about one of my latest trips - this time it`s across the border into Devon on a well-run fishery that`s up and coming for certain and this one is very well known; however, to add a little spice to the writing, it’s a venue on the complex I had never seen or fished before...
[It’s very rare for me to do more than twenty four hours on a session, sometimes my overnighters can last no more than fifteen hours, or, a day session in the cooler months of around six hours tops. To me this is part of the challenge of my style of angling, and if you don`t have your `head on` you will fail to catch...or get lazy... It`s all in the preparation that you do at home that is crucial to success].
However though, on this occasion I had a rare forty eight hours at my disposal on a new lake (for me).
Such is my confidence in Haith’s products it is a foregone conclusion that their products would feature heavily in the session. So I’ll mention the baits that I used and the tactics employed…
First up, I didn`t just look at the nearest swim to the carp/park [lol]...I spent a long time slowly walking around the eight acre lake mentally evaluating each swim that I was drawn to. Not only from an angling point of view but also from the angle of `if someone else turns up, how would this affect my chances?’
A small kingfisher caught my attention - whilst I was watching the neon flash of blue, the left hand rod was away!
Straight away I could tell this was a big fish, in fact I actually feared for my lovely players rod as I have never seen it compress like that before, whatever it was on the other end was the `boss` because I had no control over it and was heading very quickly towards some wooden piling. I need not have worried as the hook fell out [i was relieved to be honest]... later, a regular told me there are some big cats in the lake, so who knows what it was? Not to be discouraged I rebaited with my home made bottom baits…I`d only placed around ten freebies in the marginal trap when I was away again - this time I made no mistakes and a lovely lightly scaled carp was carefully unhooked in my carp cradle which I quickly photographed. I was happy and now very confident of a good session in the making...
Angling is all about confidence not only in the bait and tackle we use and put our faith in. Such is my level of confidence these days that I have reduced the amount of tackle I take as far as I can so I thought I’d show readers my pouch…
Now what you’re seeing is all I carry on a day session or longer… It’s the smallest Gardner version and contains everything I need to fish for carp - no big cumbersome tackle boxes for me! Actually it’s a separate philosophy of mine for the last few years: less is more. However, it seems many others realise you don`t need mountains of kit to be consistent.
When I started carping it was on an old wildie pool overlooked by a crumbling weather beaten Manor house, a beautiful quiet place...but what comes to mind is that my outlook on fishing has not changed; you see I`m not interested in catching the odd big carp - what I set out to do is remain consistent wherever I angled and to enjoy the natural environment and to respect nature…and to have fun...and to a greater degree I have achieved all of that and more.
Anyway back to the session: I did indeed remain consistent as most of my action came during the daylight, and oddly for the first time not a bleep on the fakes. On this occasion the home made Robin Red bottom baits were superior.
There are other ways to catch carp and specimen course fish; by this I mean angling methods that seem to be forgotten in this modern age, and not just sitting behind three rods.
And so there are two sides to my angling and my diverse usage of Haith’s products:
The other day I only had a few hours to fish at my disposal and I didn`t fancy lugging my [minimal] carp set up around so my thoughts turned to autumn/winter roach with the chance of a big perch or two...
For this approach I have on purpose restricted to owning two rods only: a 13ft four section power float and a travel avon/quiver by John Wilson. Now I have chosen these rods for portability coupled with a favourite centrepin and Mitchel 300 [version six]...it`s all I need to catch my favourite fish the perch and big roach.
I invariably target the margins, the biggest feature on any lake. Close in and keeping quiet is what I do. I use Haith’s hemp prepared previously, plus corn and the Liquid Robin Red poured over the top and then mixed up with a trimmed down spork tool. For the hook bait I love prawns and bitten down prawn sections - its deadly! Especially if you dunk them in the Liquid Robin Red.
To get bites from perch, I use a bait dropper depositing small amounts of hemp and corn around my chosen spot. This brings in the small silver fish and then, hopefully, a big stripy or two. Sometimes though you will tangle with a carp as they also love the prawns, too.
Anyway, on the session I mention I was disturbed no less than three times whilst roaching by low double figure carp, great fun on a centrepin reel loaded with 5lb line with no more than 50 or 60 yards of line on the reel...[ more line means bedding in ]. You can either float fish this way or quivertip with a slackened line. Either way it’s a great way in the cooler months to fish.
To me there is nothing nicer than a few hours fishing in the winter; you get out into the countryside and get your angling fix. Even better is the warm feeling that if you use top quality products, such as from Haith’s, you`ll have a good time indeed.
As I was saying my outlook on angling has not changed. Read on....!!
When I was five the teacher at school called me to the front of the class… Then I was asked to mime what i did for my hobby at the weekend… I demonstrated taking out of the rod bag a three piece fibre glass, metal ferruled 10ft float rod, then I attached the imaginary centrepin reel, set the rod up complete with plumbing the depth with a quill float. I then caught and disgorged a small roach which was returned, unharmed. As you can imagine, there was stunned silence - no one understood what I was doing and it was then and there I realised that angling was more than a hobby... I was proud to be a fisherboy, and that’s the way I still see it today.
Enjoy the countryside and your fishing…