Trip No 33 Carp Fishing – 2017

I am out for a few nights over the Easter weekend – as the wife and kids have gone to visit her family in Dorest.


My original plan was to fish with Rob on the Mill Pond.  We thought that if we left it until the Saturday am before I arrived, we would get a feel for the number of anglers on over the weekend.  If we were lucky, they may only be fishing two nights (being Thursday/Friday) and then head home.  Unfortunately, this back fired on us and 4 anglers arrived late Friday afternoon and were on until Sunday.  Plan B, off to the Airfield Lake I go (also with the same notion that most of the anglers would be off home by noon, after already having done 2 nights), well my luck was in and with only 5 angler’s fishing – including me, on a 60 arce lake.


After an hour or so of looking, chatting, working out where people had fished and what my best options where, I settled for one of the island swims.

I spombed out a mix of Catalyst & Betafin Pellets soaked in minominos & Betafin liquid, the Catalyst boilies which had also been soaked in the Food Dip.

Both rod’s had pop ups on to start with and if I had no joy, I would change over to a Snowman rig.

First day & night

There turned out to be more sunshine than I thought there was going to be today.  This took the chill out of the cold North wind and gave me a positive feel about the afternoon and evening.  This was not to be and the first 24 hours past without a fish, which is not an unusual occurance for this lake.  It being so shallow, an average of 3.5ft in the area I am fishing, I had also had a lot of bird activity of in my spots.

From Swans to Tufts and even Gulls diving down, the clarity of the lake is way better than previous year’s.

Second day & night

With a friend joining me today, a move may be in order, we shall see what fishy signs there are this morning.  The cold winds are still about, I may well be fishing the warmest area of the lake, which is one of the reasons I picked it.

Looking very appealing for a bit, I must say.

With the fish showing a couple of swims down to the right of me and being unable to cast there.  A swim move was clearly in order, all done and dusted by the middle of the afternoon, I soon found a couple of nice spots that the fish had shown themselves.

With the light fading slowly, I poured myself a glass of wine and remember that I had not eaten much at all today, better fix that then, Ridgemonkey time.

Third day & night

All that happened so far after the swim change, is that I have had a couple of bleeps on the margin rod and a good night sleep – not quite what I was after.  I was feeling a bit shocked this morning, I thought the move was the right thing to do yesterday.  I will have to mull things over and see what the morning brings, before I make any rash plans today.

There’s a bit of wind on the water and the wind is from the North, which is behind me, and the forcast is that there is going to be a frost tonight.

After a lot looking and thinking about my next move, staying or moving on to another swim or even going home.  As the family where away, I didn’t feel like a good option as I am just as comfortable on the lake as I am on the sofa at home.  So I felt it was time for a good look around the complex before I made my mind up.

After about an hour and a half of looking around, I knew I was better off staying put and seeing what the final night brought.  There was no other area which stood out.  Therefore, I got back to my swim and rebaited with fresh catalyst hook baits as well as tiny bags soaked in the food dip.  I placed these back on my stops and settled down to a rainy night under the brolly.

At around 2330 the left hand rod burst into life and I was finally attached to a nice common – well 10lb of fish roughly.  But it was a fish and a blank saver.  I was not going to complain.  We all must learn somthing from fishing, never give up, you will get there in the end.

Until next time.


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About richardhandel

I would like to give a brief snap shot of my life and introduce myself; My name is Richard Handel and was born in 1965 in Suffolk. I have worked as a UK Operation & Intermodule Manager for a shipping company. I live in Hampshire now and am married with 2 young children, both girls so I am a bit outnumbered even the cat is a girl! I have been fishing since I was about 7 years old. I started on small local rivers in Suffolk, then moved onto gravel pits and then carp fishing. My personal best is a 39.08 mirror, over recent years I have started river fishing again, on the Hampshire Avon, this is a nice break from the carp lakes. My life has turned a big corner this year, the company I was working for relocated their Operation centre to Estonia. I was offered a job at the head office in London. This would have meant a 5 day commute and working in Stratford. As a family, we did not fancy this, as I would hardly spend any time with the children (and the Mrs). So after 22.5 years, I was given a nice redundancy package and with my wife is working full time. I became the house husband. This has meant a complete turn around in my fishing, as I can pick and choose when I go. I have found a splendid new syndicate to fish this year, which includes 5 lakes and some 8 miles of river with only 150 members. It's an amazing change to the way I am able to fish. I am now trying to start my own tackle business and make a bit of a name for myself in the world of fishing, as I have retired from real work. Richard
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