AFTER losing a good fish the previous week at Blithfield, Paul Garner returned anxious to settle the score with the famous reservoirs big pike.

With some stunning specimens coming from the Staffordshire stillwater

this winter, Paul was hoping to increase his best from the lake for this winter of 22 lb, and perhaps even knock on the door of the 28-pounder he caught there last march.

After a very quiet first day, Peg One brand manager Paul and his boat partner Gordy Howes set about the Sunday with a combination of slowly retrieved and tolled around the margins of the lake. First blood came to Paul with a brace scaling 18 lb and 22 lb on a single drift. Gordy then chipped in with a 13-pounder and a 10-pounder from other areas of the lake.

With the day rapidly running out the pair moved to an area of the lake that had produced a couple of fish on the first morning and after trolling no more than 30 metres Paul latched into a heavy fish, which turned out to be this really short and chunky pike of exactly 25 lb.

With just minutes to go Gordy howes hit into another big fish in another area of the lake that had again fallen for a slow trolled bait in around 10 feet of water. After a terrific scrap Gordy netted another fine fish of 25lb 12oz to make it a day to remember for the duo.

Successful tackle for former Angler’s Mail columnist Paul consisted of an 8 ft 60-80 gram lure rod to a Shimano Exage 40 reel loaded with 50 lb Berkley braid and a 60 lb Titanium trace, and a 7-in perch pattern crank-bait.

For more stunning pike pictures, and substantially bigger pike – including the week’s biggest – grab this week’s Angler’s Mail magazine.

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