My Season on Priory – Mike Salisbury

Bait-Tech Carp Angler Mike Salisbury has enjoyed a great season on Essex venue Priory Park, here he looks at his final session of the year and the season as a whole…

With only days remaining before the traditional close-season that is still in operation on Priory Park, I decided to squeeze in one more 24-hour session this week. I arrived late on Sunday afternoon to find that several swims on the deeper side of the lake were occupied, but the shallow side was completely free. Naturally this is where I headed, and it proved to be a wise choice. Approach-wise I didn’t change much from my previous session apart from stepping up the amount of bait I put in as the fish were definitely showing signs of waking up and getting on the feed. I baited each spot with about 30 Triple-N boilies initially, and positioned my multi-rigs baited with matching pop-up hookbaits over the top. My left hand rod was fishing underneath a snag tight to the island, and I didn’t even have a chance to put the line in the roller of the alarm before it was away! A paddle-like tail slapped the surface of the water underneath the snag, and after a few hairy moments I had extracted the fish and got it sulking in the net. What a cracker this one was! At 19lbs it was no monster, but this scaly mirror was definitely one of the best looking carp I’d ever caught. Shortly after I was in again on the same rod, and this proved to be a very spirited fight from a 13lbs mirror.

I received constant liners through the night but no takes, so I arose wearily at first light and repositioned the rods. A glut of day-ticket anglers turned up shortly after, and with the additional line pressure in the water I wasn’t too hopeful of more action, but just before midday I was in again on the left rod, and this turned out to be a beautiful ghostie common that shone like a bar of gold in the sunlight. I sat it out for the rest of the day and contemplated heading home, but at 4pm the indicator on my left hand rod slammed up into the blank and I quickly got the rod low and applied pressure to extract another angry park lake carp from the snags. This one ran me ragged in the shallow water, so much so that I thought it must have been a much bigger fish. As it transpired it was a 23lbs common which wasn’t one of the lakes “A-Team”, but it was the biggest of the session and certainly a welcome capture.

My Priory Park campaign began in earnest in September 2016, and since then I’ve managed to put 20 carp on the bank, including the lakes current largest resident at 30lbs. Whilst I’ll be fishing elsewhere over the close season, I’ll still be popping down to the park to trickle in some Triple-N so that the fish can enjoy some of that nutty goodness in preparation for the new season. I still have a few target fish to catch, so my quest will continue in the summer.

Tight Lines

Mike Salisbury
Bait-Tech Carp Consultant

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