Roach Pit

The Roach Pit is a very well-known lake in the UK and I was so lucky to get a ticket there. However, with my age, knees, and developing hip issues, it came too late for me. Some of the swims have steps down to them. You are nicely tucked away from the world, but it was not good on my body to fish these swims.
The other issue for me was getting out of a boat after being in there for 30 to 45 minutes looking for spots and putting the baits out. When I got to the landing stage to get out, I had to more or less roll out the boat onto the landing stage. Luckily no one ever saw me doing this, it was definitely funny and why I decided to write about it a bit more. I never ended up with me on the lake but it was certainly a bit of a worry at times and in the odd swims I had to step out, that was entertaining. I did say to Ian once, I would video it but never did, it would have been funny. I thought long and hard about rejoining but thinking about the boat and knowing that you need to use one on a fair amount of swims. It does give you the greater ability to find clear spots amongst the weed and then you have to play the carp from a boat as well. I really didn’t feel that limiting myself to certainly swims and the possibility of putting the carp’s safety at risk was acceptable. I have strong feelings about fish safety, we all know they can survive out of the water as long as they are kept wet, but I did feel that lifting them out of the water onto the landing stage after I had been playing them in the boat wasn’t a good idea – my knees, etc don’t always do what I want them to do! This was a very hard choice to make, but at the same time, I was invited to join a newly created syndicate. After looking around the water, it clearly was a no-brainer and I had to join it. Which in turn made dropping the Roach Pit ticket a lot less painful. Little did I know that at the last minute this would fall through – thanks to the land owner. But that’s another story for a future blog, once I’ve got over the disappointment of being given the chance to fish a virgin water with some real lumps in it. I have compiled all my Roach pit blogs for easy reference for anyone who is interested in fishing there

Trip 21 Carp Fishing – 2021

I’m finally on my new syndicate (doing my first trip). It was before Christmas that I last did a night and it feels like a lifetime ago and quite strange, to say the least.
I arrived just after 7am for the draw and had a trip around the lake checking out the swims as we went around. I was number 6 or 7 out of the hat, this was perfect, as I’m the newbie and I prefer to keep myself to myself for a few months. This gives me time to formalise myself with the water, the swims and slowly get plugged into the lake routine. I picked one of the swims that I quite liked the look of, not necessarily in the best area, but close enough that I felt I was in with a chance of a bite. For the past 3 day’s, there’d been a strong SW wind blowing which was gale force at times, it was an incredibly cold wind, overcast and grey. I didn’t feel that end of the lake was that favourable. I quite fancied the shallower end, but I was beaten to it by 3 others and didn’t fancy being the fourth man down that end, too many rods etc, we can use 3 here.
Hooper’s After 3 hours of hard graft – there was a long list of Noddy nightmares (as my friends at Carp Cogs would say), it was so bad at one point, I just started laughing, I’m sure I will let slip what happened at some point, but not just yet, way too embarrassing at the moment and for my first trip on new water! Moving on.
This lake is very weedy and quite hard to find a clear spot, you can go out in a boat and bait up/drop your baits. I didn’t feel it was right to do this on the first morning, with so many anglers doing the first night for some months. So, with the aid of my Deeper and the marker rod, I finally cracked 3 spots and got the bait out, with a nice load of freebies. One thing I will say is that the Pike do like a pink boilie. As you guessed it, I hooked one on the retrieve, which managed to pick up the Deeper, marker rod lines and cut through the marker braid. Which by some miracle I retrieved and spliced it together (one of my nightmares). I was planning on using 3 different colours pop-ups and flavours, just to see if there’s a preference until I get some idea of what works best here. The wildlife could be an issue, but with the sheer volume of weed stacked with naturals, I may be lucky.
The night was uneventful, except the fog and a cold easterly blowing in through the door. I didn’t hear or see anything at first light in front of me, but from what I’ve been told, there’s a good chance of a bite up until noontime. I’m going to sit still till then. I spent a bit of time weighing up my opinions and decided that staying put, despite an early start for work on Wednesday morning, was better than going home today.
I found the perfect spots and baited up using the boat. This was so much less aggro than spombing for 30 minutes over each spot. You can even put your hook baits out as well, which I’ve not done in this instance. As I feel it helps to zone into the range you’re fishing and helps at night to recast after catching a carp.
With this swim, you need to get into the water to avoid the overhanging tree. I’ve moved my margin rod to the same area as the middle rod and will keep my fingers crossed for today.
Morning soon arrived, it was time to get the kit down and head off to work. It’s been an enjoyable two night’s on the syndicate and I meet some nice people. I’m certainly looking forward to getting to grips with the place over the coming months.
Until next time Stay safe Richard ————–

Trip 24 Carp Fishing – 2021

Location – Roach Pit Hours – 69 hours Swim – Wind Tunnel
This session, I’m out on the new syndicate water for a couple of nights.  I arrived just after noon, I think I will have to adjust my arrival time, as there were still plenty of members still fishing.  I very nearly had to wait for a swim I fancied.  Don’t get me wrong, there were certainly a few available to choose from.  I’d done some research into the area or part of the lake where I felt it would give me the best opportunity for a carp. When I arrived, I did a lap of the lake to get a feel for where everyone had been fishing.  I had a good look in the snags and this swim floated my boat the most.  There’s a large plateau off the side of the island which gave me the option of putting a bait near the island, off to my right along the margins or even in the bay area (if the lake is pretty quiet over the 48 hours period).  If I really fancy it, I’ve the option of a third night, but we will see how the first 48 hours go.
All 3 rods are spread out over the plateau covering a good chunk of water.  I’m hoping that as the weather is due to be a lot warmer and the wind is due to swing around to the south, which is almost into my face.  The wind is supposed to flit about a bit between south west, south east, and a southerly.  This is all pretty favourable for my swim, if the carp venture out of their spring hiding holes and fancy warmer waters I’m hoping they visit the plateau. I’ve put out about a kilo of my ground bait mixture which is spread between all three rods so they are all connected together and I’m fishing 3 types of hook baits, Smokey Jack, Classic Corn, and Catalyst this will give me (or the carp) plenty of options.
I have a friendly swan (or cygnet should I say) who may get on my nerves after the first 24 hours.  I’ve sunk the tip of my rod, which will hopefully stop any false bleeps.  It’s just into feeding up and down my margins.
The night was bleep and frost free, when I woke up, I was confronted by a wall of fog, so thick that I couldn’t see the island.  It was all gone by 9 am, the sun was shining and all set for a beautiful day.
The wind picked up from the south and was blowing nicely into my face.  The left-hand rod gave a couple of bleeps and the reel ticked away slowly.  I picked up the rod and found myself with the first of a few tench I was to have this session.  It was a nice size and over the size limit of having to put it on the stock pond, which is lucky for me as it is a long walk to the other end of the lake from this bank.  It was still early and plenty of time for another take, a fresh bait was put on and cast back out.
A view down the long bank. My plan was to reel in at 1 pm and spend an hour or two in the boat.  I will do some exploring with my Deeper, and then get my bait back out there for the afternoon and evening. By 3 pm I’d moved 2 of my rods; 1 to a completely different spot and the other just a couple of wraps further out onto the plateau.  I put my second bucket of bait out over the three areas.  I didn’t feel the need for a great deal of bait at the moment, only a few carp had been captured over the past few weeks.  They were clearly not on the munch for bait yet. It’s now time to sit back, enjoy the view with a bite to eat and a brew.  Fingers crossed for a carp this afternoon or overnight.
Another lovely morning and after a couple more tench in the night, I’m getting even hopefully that a carp will soon pick my bait up.  It will happen at some point along the way, that I’m 100% confident about, which is why I don’t get caught up I’m blanking all the time.  I’m just happy I’m out on the bank and confident that I’ve given a 100 % into my fishing.  It will all come together, take it seriously and focus on getting it all right, let the rest of it just flow and you will enjoy fishing a lot more. I’m hopefully going to do the same as yesterday and wait until 1 pm.  I will then reel in, get out in the boat again for another hour, map a bit more of the lake and then get the rods out for the last night.
It’s a lovely time to be at the bank 1 30 pm and I was out in the boat baiting up my swim.  I was taking a good look about and towing the Deeper behind the boat mapping the lake as I go.
Covering a lot of ground in the boat is extremely handy, as summer gets closer and more anglers are about, I want to be able to cover so much ground each trip. Everything is all set for the last night and I can’t do anything more than I’ve done.
My last morning arrived and only one tench in the night.  There was less disturbance in the swim, except for the geese charging about and honking all night.  The joys of spring fishing!
It’s been a pleasant few days and nights on the bank and I’m looking forward to my next trip on here. Until next time Richard ———–

Trip 25 Carp Fishing – 2021

Location Roach Pit Hours – 24 Swim Webleys
I arrived down the lake around 1.30 pm to find a lot of anglers still on the lake.  This was a bit of a shock, so I did a lap of the lake and came to the conclusion that all the swims I fancied fishing were occupied and all the others I didn’t fancy. So, I popped over to my other syndicate to have a moan at anyone I could find, sorry guys, but it did help me a lot and I headed back to RP to take another look.  I have to try and work around this somehow. This time there where at least half the number of anglers about and I found one of the swims I fancied called Webleys free, that will do me.  The wind had certainly played a part in my swim selection as it had been blowing from the north east since Saturday morning.  The wind had picked up, it’s very fresh outside at the moment especially out of the sunshine.
I’d watched another angler set up in here last week and had some idea of where to start looking for spots.  This certainly helped me set up quicker than expected. Two rods were positioned off the side of the island.  One closer than the other and the third rod was 3 quarters of the way across on a lovely clear spot. I took the boat out and baited the area around the sides of the island.  The wind rapidly pushed the marker float back to where the boat had been moored up.  I’m hoping there may be fewer people about tomorrow and I can get out there again with my Deeper.  I’m only here for 48hrs this week, so I’m not sure I will get the chance. The only interruption was a swan who was partially obsessed with the weed in front of my swim and its favourite patch to munch on was under my three rods!  After a couple of pickups and a completely trashing of two rods, I repositioned them as far left as I could push them over without causing me any issues with the trees.  It would be a right pain if I hooked a fish of any sort, but it fixes the swan issue until about 9 am the following morning when it very nearly got me again.
The catches have been happening a lot more in daylight hours, so I’m still waiting for my rods to burst into life at any moment.
I decided that it would be better to head home today, the cold north wind was still blowing and there was due to be another frost again tonight.  I felt it would be better to head back at the end of the week, before the Bank Holiday weekend. Until next time Stay safe Richard ———–

Trip 33 Carp Fishing – 2021

After a fabulous week camping in Wales with the family – we had not seen for just under a year. It was great to catch up with him and also some fabulous friends on the camp site.
The prospects of the carp spawning very soon are very high, my campaign needs to get going again. After the recent setback with the volume of anglers fishing, I really need to get back out on the Roach Pit. I’d decided the best plan of attack, was to arrive after 3. 30 pm and hopefully the weekend anglers will have packed up and gone home. This is just a temporary option as when things start to get back to normal, my wife won’t be working from home and a big rethink will be needed. When I arrived, it was pretty quiet and after a walkabout, I settled for peg 5. I’d been out in the boat looking for a spot, but the lake was not crystal clear yet and pretty much impossible to see the bottom. A couple of anglers were on either end of the lake, so somewhere in the middle felt the best option. Also, as I had been away and lost touch with the water (as you do), I was still looking at fishing different areas, this area just felt perfect. After finding a clear-ish area with my Deeper and checking out the lake bed with the marker rod, I decided that with the lack of time available, to find 3 spots and bait up with the boat or face a very noisy spombing session in this narrow part of the lake. I decided that I would stagger 3 rods over different wraps would cover this area nicely and if necessary I could find another spot to put a rod on tomorrow afternoon. I baited up with 3 kilos of chopped Classic Corn Boilies and a bag of Nutty particle mix, spread over this area (which is not much more than the size of a bivvy). I fished 3 bags with Classic Corn wafter and a 12mm PPS pop up. I then set about sorting the mess out and getting the overwrap on – I still like to fish with one as it actually keeps the bivvy cooler. With any luck, one of these 3 will rattle off tonight with a carp. The next 24 hour’s passed by with no action; other than 3 bleeps about an hour ago. I was hoping would materialize into something,  I’d made the decision that I would leave the baits as they were, I have great confidence they will be perfectly fine and the positioning was spot on, so there was no real point in any unnecessary disturbance to the area. There was sufficient bait out there and this tactic may just catch me a carp. The baby geese had been feeding on the grass bank behind me all day and keeping me amused when they were jumping up and down the steps. With a lovely bright summer’s morning, I was up early and hoping for a first light bite. The carp were crashing out nearby, but I couldn’t 100% locate them. I felt I was definitely in the right area, this part of the lake is the narrowest part. I was hopeful that my baited area would attract them in and trick them into some feeding. With only a few hours before pack up time and the heat of the day picking up quickly as the was a lack of cloud cover, I didn’t think there’s any reason to stick around for any extra time today. I’m hopeful of another trip before they start to spawn and the lake is closed for a couple of weeks.
We shall see where I end up next trip! Until next time Richard ——————-

Trip 40 Carp Fishing – 2021

I was really hoping that as England were in the final of the Euros that the lake would be empty, but with modern tech you just never know. It has always a great night to fish going back over the year’s.
I arrived down the lake just before 2 pm as I’d arranged to meet Ian to hand over some wafters and pop ups in the entrance to Meadow Lake. Which is about 200 yards away from this lake. I left in plenty of time as I just can’t abide being late and you just never know what the traffic across the forest is doing. As I has made good time, I was able to take a quick walk from one of the car parks for 15 minutes and much to my surprise the lake was empty – other than two cars in the main car park. They may have been packing up, as I never found them before I had to get going. After seeing Ian and having a quick chat, I was off back down the lake and into the same car park as before and started to have a look about. Much to my surprise, I found some carp going along the edge of the weed by a shallow gravel margin. There were a good 5 carp out there, so I quickly headed to the swim near by which had access to this area. The front of the swim was full of weed that had blown down the lake, the wind was pushing into this corner. It was due to swing around a bit over the next few days and they could easily bug out, but as I’m not one to miss an opportunity, I grabbed some kit and most importantly my marker rod. It was clear where 2 rods could be placed, I would rather only stick one over there if I could find another couple of spots. The other issue was my set up had to go on the bank, as I had no way of attaching my pod to the platform. This would make things a bit interesting, but with a little effort, I got it sorted. I was still seeing carp, but the weed was horrendous in front of me and the rain had finally arrived. So, I quickly flicked all 3 rods out along the margins over about a 50 yard length, until the rain stopped.
I was looking out the bivvy, in the pouring rainm, just watching a great crested grebe go by and it suddenly stopped and backed away. I took note, quickly grabbed the Deeper, flicked it to the right and drifted it in the wind. Bingo!
I reeled in all my rods, once the rain had finished and headed out in the boat with the Deeper scanning around for that spot. After a little time, I located it and dropped one of my fox mini hex blocks on the spot. I drifted about for a bit to check how big it was, not to bad. I had also picked up a smaller area closer in, which was very problematic to find, but after 10 minutes or so, bingo, this one was a lot smaller but I thought it would be possible to under arm cast to it. This would make thinks a lot simpler. I scattered a good helping of bait over both spots and headed back to shore to sort the rods out. Then it was back out to retrieve the hex blocks as there’s no way I’m leaving them out there, with my luck I’d lose my first carp on them.
The weather conditions overnight where horrendous and the rain continued until noon time. I waited ever hopeful for a take, as carp where clearly still in the area; just not visibly feeding on the spots I had found. By 2 pm (when the sun was finally out) I was ready to get the rods sorted before yet more heavy rain. My bay area was getting full of carp cruising on the surface, but I needed to get out in the boat and get searching for at least one better spot in the area I’d seen the carp fizzing in over the course of this morning. I’m hoping to get this done by 3 pm and if I push the carp out, they will drift back in over later afternoon and the evening. Fingers crossed, the only other way around it would be to wait until later and get wet again or just not bother, tricky choices. I came to the conclusion that if all the rods came back clean on their spots, I wouldn’t need to get out on the boat. I could catapult a few boilies out, at random intervals over the afternoon without any chance of spooking the carp. They where all perfect. This is brilliant news and will definitely keep the disturbance down. I also flicked the middle rod over to the far margins for the afternoon and may have a cast about later in that area as I’ve seen carp topping and fizzing up. It’s certainly nice to watch a few carp cruising about this afternoon.
After yet another bleep free night. I’d come to the conclusion that I must be fishing the wrong holes in the weed. This bay was full of fish last night and there had been a few crashing in the early hours. I also get the feeling that some may move out into open water. I’m a bit surprised that I’ve not had any tench, which isn’t a bad thing, but there’s certainly been a few of them flapping about. This also leads me back to the fact I’m not quite fishing the right spots. It’s just gone 9.30 am and there are no signs of carp on the surface or under the tree’s. I’m hoping to get the time to get out on the boat with the Deeper and do some more mapping and you never know, I may just find a few more spots hideaways.
There is no rain forecast for today, which will make it nice to pack up and to be able to go home with dry tackle is definitely a bonus. Next weekend is looking like a heatwave, that will certainly be fun and my choice of swim will definitely focus around shady swims. Lucky for me, this place has plenty of them.
It 10 am and time for a slow pack away, which will take me up until noontime I’m sure and may be beyond to get everything dried out. Until next time Richard ——————-

Trip 41 Carp Fishing – 2021

After last week’s trip, I was as keen as mustard to get back down the lake and into the same sort of area – as long as there were clearly signs of carp.
I arrived a lot later then hoped for, my phone was playing up and I definitely needed that sorted before my planned 3 night’s on the bank. That’s if I can cope with the heatwave. I’m definitely not a fan of any temperature over 23C and it was a barmy 28C but, if all went well, I’d be fishing 16ft of water and that would be a few degrees cooler than the surface temperature. Which according to my Deeper was reading 26C on the surface.
The car park was empty, that’s a good start I thought. I got the bucket from the car and placed it in the swim I was looking at and then walked back to the gate, along the path looking for signs of carp in the snags. Not a sausage. Not a good start. I walked past the swim and along to the next swim, I didn’t see anything on the top. This is what happened last week. I headed back to the swim and sat on the bucket watching the open water, as another angler walked by, he was thinking of moving as there were 5 another anglers down the other end and I had spotted 2 further brollys on the far bank. As I was watching the water, a flat spot appeared out at the range I was planning on fishing and then a couple more. Well, something was out there and as no one else was catching, it could be worth a shout. I got the kit from the car and found the boat allocated to this area, which was where I had left it last week. I sorted out the Deeper rod and headed off out into the lake looking for the point where the weed stopped and then after the harder spots.
Once I had was satisfied that I had dropped both my fox mini hex blocks in the perfect spots, I baited a line of chopped up boilies and particle etc.
Once I was back on land (which is nice as I’m not as young as I used to be and getting out of a boat is certainly much harder this day’s and I don’t fancy a swim). I flicked the marker rod out a couple of times and the bottom felt absolutely awesome. I also leaded around with each rod at various wraps until I was happy with the drop, which didn’t take many casts. There where still the odd flat spots showing and I was getting very conscious of spooking the carp. So, I decided to finish setting up camp completely before I flicked out the rods onto the spot for the night. As I was very happy with how it all went, I may just leave them out there for the next 48 hour’s – something that works extremely well on the Airfield Lake. As the afternoon past, a couple of carp cruised by off into the corner where I was fishing last week. This felt a good sign. The wind was freshening from the North East, it was a lot cooler and due to swing around to the south. This would be right in my face, a cool evening was heading my way and with any luck a few carp would drift this way over the next 24 hours.
The night was very quiet on all fronts – no bleeps or any signs of carp. I was up early and looking out for showing carp. I’m still very confident that I’m in the right area and there’s a good prospect of a bite. It’s going to be another hot one, but the wind is due to pick up again from the south later on this afternoon, which I hope will bring the carp on. Just after 1 pm, the wind finally shifted and I could feel a nice blow building through the bushes where I was hiding behind from the direct sunlight my bivvy was getting. I decided to take another look along the margins and also see if anything was starting to drift along here. Sure enough, I found a couple of carp enjoying the sunshine.
This is an improvement on this morning, with any luck a few more will follow and fancy a feed after dark. They where reports of rain coming, but that has changed to more eastly now, shame that would have certainly helped. After another weed burg took one of my lines out, I decided that I needed my tips lower down and the line not so far out, as the weed should drift by my swim. I also felt a change of bait couldn’t do any harm so I switched over to brighter wafters and more fruity flavours. You just have to keep experimenting until you find the right combination. As dusk was slowly approaching a couple of fishing topped, not to far away, fingers crossed for tonight.
I need to put some thought into staying another night, it’s looking pretty dead put there and the prospects of another day in the heat. I suppose would be the same if I was at home. At the moment, I don’t feel like I’m in the right area, but I don’t believe that all the carp have piled up at the other end of the lake. After all, I’m trying to hunt out the bigger carp and not those new stocks, but you do need to think of the future of venues .
I’ve come to the conclusion that going home today would benefit me, I could spend a day with the wife before she is back at work, the kids would be over the moon. Also the weather is looking so much better at the end of the week and with any luck the heatwave will break. I do believe like humans the fish don’t like the severe weather changes and will get use to the heat and start feeding again. I also believe they can tell a weather change is on the way and they are very likely to wait until that happens before they get their heads down again. In this week’s case, this will be in a couple of day’s and based on that I think it’s time have a slow pack up and head home. Until next time Richard ——————– I hope you enjoyed them. Until next time Richard