My Autumn Campaign – James Conway

Bait-Tech’s James Conway has been fishing a tough Syndicate where bites have been extremely hard to come by. Wanting to get the rods into action he heads to a Club Water…


In my last diary piece I mentioned my plans of giving my syndicate water a good go throughout the autumn. Unfortunately my ‘autumn campaign’ consisted of just 3 nights fishing – all of which I blanked!

In a bid to remind myself what a carp actually looked like before the real winter set in, I decided to head to a local club water for a day session. It is a relatively well stocked lake so is always good for a bite, even at this time of the year.

I had planned the trip a week prior to going, but when the day came around, it happened to coincide with the recent dramatic drop in temperature. My day started with me scraping ice off of my car in -4 temperatures, praying that the carp would play ball in such cold conditions.

I arrived at the lake to a perfect winter scene, with everything covered in a thick layer of frost. I started off in a swim near to the car park, which has a large reed bed to the right. One rod was fished up to the reeds, whilst the other was out in open water.

I was using the New Boilie from Bait-Tech and although I can’t say too much about it at the moment, what I can say is that I am very impressed. I was fishing bottom baits that had been glugged in Bait-Tech’s The Juice and these were used in conjunction with PVA mesh bags of whole and crushed boilies. This crushed boilie mix had received a generous helping on CSL liquid the night before, which had now completely soaked into the boilie pieces. I am a big fan of using liquids in my angling and during the summer months, I tend to use oils. However, once the waters cools oils become harder to digest for the carp, so CSL is the perfect substitute.

Nothing had happened by late morning, so I upped sticks and moved the other side of the lake to a swim that I have caught from in previous winters. This is a deeper side of the lake and with a large marginal snag to one side; it makes it an idea holding area in colder temperatures.

The rods had been out for around half an hour before the one fished to the snag rattled off. The fish put up a good scrap but was soon beat and resting in the net. It was a nice plump upper double mirror and looked great in its winter colours. After slipping the fish back, I gave it another hour in that swim before heading back to the carp park swim, where I would spend the remaining few hours.

The afternoon past without any occurrences, but as soon as darkness fell, one of the rods was away. It was a small mirror of around 5lb, but as I broke the net down and walked the fish over to the unhooking mat, the other rod was away! I attempted to put the net together in the water with the first fish still in it, whilst playing the other fish. Unsurprisingly it fell off, the only consolation being that it felt like quite a small fish.

With both rods now out of the water and it being pitch black, I decided to call it a day. I’d started off that morning questioning whether I’d get any action at all, so 2 fish and 1 loss was more than a result in such cold conditions.

Be Lucky

James Conway
Bait-Tech Carp Team

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