Staying Versatile


craig_versatile_1The one aspect of carp fishing that I love and that always keeps me buzzing is staying versatile and ringing the changes. Fishing to the different situations and conditions, always staying ahead of the game and making sure the bites keep coming.

One 24 hour session I will never forget is one a few weeks back where I caught 11 fish in 24 hours on three different methods and by being mobile. Putting in the effort really paid off on this session.

I set up on a new westerly wind, it was blowing straight into the swim, nice and overcast but still really warm, it looked and felt right for a bite. I got the rods in position and placed them where I had managed a few bites before. It looked so good but no signs of fish at all, nothing was showing anywhere round the lake.

It was a warm day, so I kept feeding a few spots in the edge and watching for a floater opportunity. After feeding a margin for a few hours I started to see signs of feeding fish. Reeled in one rod and put it straight on the spot, size 6 Gardner talon tip, and 2 grains on the Incredible Edibles on a 6” inch rig with a small bag of pellet was the tactic.

craig_versatile_2Rod was out for about an hour before it sprung into life, single toner and rod hooped round I was in on the margin spot. The fight didn’t last long, a quick battle to keep the fish out of the reeds it had soon rolled and hit the net. A nice 22lb common laid beaten in the mesh. By this time late afternoon, early evening had came and I was starting to see a few fish give themselves away, and the swim choice was bang on as they had turned up in numbers, head and shouldering over the spots. I knew it was going to happen.

Hinge stiff rigs on heli setups sitting there primed and ready to go. Most of the night went without a bleep but at 2am it kicked off, started with a mid double common then followed by two fish at 28lb. A stunning common and an even better fully scaled mirror. Two fish I had never caught from the venue and was absolutely made up with. These all fell to a spread of 18mm Poloni boilies and white pops on hinge stiff rigs.

These fish had really made my session but being an angler that’s mobile and cannot pass an opportunity and seeing so many fish showing on the other side of the lake it was a big pack up early on the sunday morning and moving onto them in the pouring down rain. Even though there was a massive low pressure and it was pouring with rain the fish just seemed to be so far up in the upper layers. Goes against everything you think about carp fishing, but three zigs went straight out into the zone.

It wasn’t long and the 10ft zig dropped back and I was in. Only a mid double but a bite straight away was well worth the move. I then placed another rod on a 10ft zig and before you knew it all three rods where on 10 ft zigs and I couldn’t keep a rod in the water. I ended up banking 7 fish in 2 hours making the total 11 fish in 24 hours on three different methods. Stalked in the edge, over a spread of Poloni boilies and on zigs.

Ringing the changes, staying mobile, putting in the effort in and getting the tactics right can change a good session into a red letter day.

Craig Mortimer
Carp Catcher

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