Getting Things Started Part I

Getting things started – Part I

It’s the end of February now when I’m driving to one of my favorite public venues. Day dreaming about scales and tales.

A new carp season is on its way, and with the extreme high temperatures for this time of year a lot of carp anglers are pretty much ahead of nature. With temperatures up to 20 degrees at noon and minus -2 at night the carp might get a little confused, and so do I. What is best strategy for today? Questions the more, but little to none answers in theories. First thing I need to do when I get there is to take a walk and observe.

In this time of year, location is key for me. It happend quite a few times that I won’t even unpack unless I see some signs of carp. I’ve been on too many blanks after simply unpacking and putting my rods out on a very sweat looking swim and not catching anything. This time of year is all about polaroid glasses and walking boots for me. Something that I had to teach myself in order to catch more. There’s a big need in becoming one with nature, only then you can read her signs and feel her moods.

When I arrive at the venue another angler is just about to leave. The venue is not that big, approximately 10 acres and is best fished when you have it all to yourself. We have a quick chat about last night, he did manage to catch one, which is promising and gives me confidence. As it is still February the metabolism of the carp is not fully functioning, they might be on the scout for an easy snack but baiting up the spot with only 4 single bollies or 8 halves is enough. I decide not to, and cast my rods out only with single hook baits. From earlier experiences I know that a bottom bait is best weapon of choice for this place. I prefer to use a simple blowback rig between 12 and 18 centimeters long, depending on the silt conditions and the time of year. In wintertime I prefer to use a shorter rig because the fish move less and will makes contact with the lead easier.

First bites

Around 23:00 in the evening the first rod that I placed carefully underneath some overhanging groves takes a run. When I land the fish I realize it is one of the best looking fish of this venue, a stunning 12.0 kg mirror. This gives me good confidence for the rest of the night. I’ve had a good night of sleep when around 07:00 in the morning the second and last carp of this short overnight session calls in. It is a smaller common carp that weighs approximately around 9kg.

I take some photos of the fish and sit back and relax a little in the first rays of sun before I pack up my gear and hit home. It was a successful night! I’ve got some leads for the upcoming weeks because I will be back for more very soon!

The remarkable thing is that I caught one, in the heaviest of wind and the other one at the shallower side on the pond. Did they split up? Are they on the on move? Sure thing; they are feeding! And that means they’re getting easier to catch. Before I leave I provide both swims with halve a kilo of boilies. Later on the week I’ll do it again to make the carp familiar with my baits.

So; left on Monday after fishing and dropped a kg, came back on Thursday to drop another kg. And I will be fishing it next Monday. The plan for Monday is not to feed up on arrival but only start with single hook baits unless I get some bites or very good signs of active carp. They are willing to have a snack and that’s all I needed to know for now. Stay tuned for part 2 of this story!

Alessandro Sempre

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