EVERY Friday we hand over to Carl and Alex Smith – known online as simply Carl & Alex.
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Fun on floaters down in the woods
LAST weekend was amazing in terms of weather, perfect for stalking carp on slow sinking and surface baits.
As we had family commitments on Sunday, we decided to go for a short Saturday afternoon session on an old lake in the woods near our house where we would have a chance of stalking a carp.
We packed our bucket with a loaf of bread, controller floats, some wide gape hooks and, of course, some suncream. All ready to go, we set off with a target to catch a fish each…
Having walked through the woods, we soon arrived at the lake where it became apparent that over the last few days the carp had been feeding hard as the water was very murky and on top of that, there were big plumes of mud coming up every few minutes.
We thought it would be a good idea to feed the carp with small chunks of bread before we started fishing therefore gaining their confidence before looking for more food.
The set up consisted of a small match-style reel with 10lb Suplex line which is very supple and light, meaning that it will sit lightly in the surface film. The rod I was using was my good old 9ft Dwarf rod in 2.75 lb tc as it is very forgiving when a fish decides to go on one final run!
Threaded onto the main line was a small 7gr controller float to a swivel which connected the hook length which was 8lb Zig line to a size 8 Gaper hook which I would hook on a chunk of crust, or two hookable floating pellets.
Due to all the overhanging bushes and snags, I decided to put my waders on so I could wade past them allowing me a good position to cast to any fish that swam in front of me.
I noticed quite a few carp had come up to take the bread that I had thrown out earlier so I slowly waded out and baited my hook with a small chunk of white bread crust.
Halfway out I became aware of a small carp slowly swimming towards me. I stood still and tried not to make any sudden movement. The carp stopped; I could tell it was looking at the bread above it.
I quickly cast over the top of it and brought it back across the surface until my hookbait was sitting perfectly in front of the fish. It came straight to my bait and slurped it in. I struck to set the hook and it bolted off. It gave the best scrap I had ever seen from a carp less than 4 lb!
I waded back to land and Carl kindly netted the fish for me. The colours on it were amazing, really golden brown and its fins were perfect. I slowly released it and it swam off strong. It was certainly the most fun I have had this year.
I waded back out hoping there would be more hungry carp willing to feed. And there certainly was as after five minutes of my bait being out this beauty came along.
When using a controller float you can hook bread on more lightly, meaning you can leave more of the hook showing and that’s where the wide gape hook comes in. With more gape you can hook baits on firmly but still have lots of hook point showing meaning you are more likely to hook the fish that takes your bait.
The sun had now gone down and it became a lot more humid which really did affect the fishing. I hadn’t seen any carp come up for bread since I hooked the last fish but it was time to give Carl a go before we headed home.
It wasn’t long before I heard a shout from down the bank; somehow Carl had hooked a carp on the surface. I really didn’t think they would take of the surface again that day, but sometimes fish come along when you’re least expecting it. In fact the fish Carl caught was the biggest of the day. Well done Carl!
We walked home very happy. The biggest fish we caught was about 3lb but it really shows that size isn’t everything; it can be so much fun just to catch a fish.
CHECK BACK HERE NEXT FRIDAY FOR ANOTHER GREAT CARL & ALEX BLOG
Click here to read last week’s Carl and Alex blog – and follow their weekly tips in Angler’s Mail magazine.
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