Brothers Carl (left) & Alex, aged 16 and 12, are the youngest bloggers in our mix.

WELCOME to our Friday blog. Every Friday we hand over to Carl and Alex Smith – known online as simply Carl & Alex.

Two of the keenest youngsters we’ve come across, with a passion for making a variety of fishing videos, they’ll provide a youth dimension to our new blogging mix.

We hope you enjoy the blog, written by Alex, and share it with your friends on Facebook and Twitter by clicking the icons above, or by the “old skool” method of telling fellow anglers!

Feel free also to comment by using the special space at the bottom on this page


QUEST FOR A 20/30!

AS you may know, we are both on our quest for a 20lb carp. I managed mine a few months ago and since then I’ve had a 26lb carp that was the lake record. So all we had to do now was get Carl his 20!

Carl & Alex setting up their rigs

We arrived at the day ticket Tanyard Fishery, in East Sussex a warm, humid day. The carp were basking in the sun but weren’t feeding however we were hopeful that the evening would be bite time.

As we were hoping for Carl’s 20 he set up in the most likely looking spot near the inlet on Specimen Lake 2. Speci 2 holds some of the biggest carp at Tanyards but can be the hardest lake on the fishery. I set up opposite him in the car park swim and we both positioned our rigs and baited our spots.

The rigs consisted of a length of supple braid about 7 inches long, a size 10 hook and a piece of shrink tubing to help the hook turn better. On the hair was either 3 grains of artificial corn or a small chunk of Peperami. We kept our lines tight to the bottom of the lakebed by using small blobs of tungsten putty. We fed mini pellet over our pepperami rigs and corn over the other spots.

We fed our swims throughout the day but left them until the evening, before casting out. Carl stalked for a while and a few fish were interested but nothing was caught. As darkness fell we positioned our traps and managed to get some sleep.


A few hours after dark Carl was woken by his bite alarm sounding, but soon after striking the fish came off. There was no more action during the night although come the morning we found a lot of the carp at the deeper end of the lake. We had learnt something: the carp seem to go to the dam end of the lake at night when the water cools down.

Carl tried stalking again with a few large fish sucking in but quickly spitting out the bait. It was all a matter of striking at the right time.

With the wind picking up and heavy rain showers developing we decided to get our carp rods out and hide in the bivvy. It rained non-stop for about two hours, but when it finally subsided the fish seemed to be feeding heavily around the island where I had baited a little before the rain.


Specimen Lake 2 at Tanyard Fishery


Later that day my friend Michael turned up to see us as he had just passed his driving test. He, Carl and I were all crowded around my swim when one of my bobbins shot up to the rod and the bite alarm screamed! I struck into it and a heavy fish whizzed towards the other side of the lake pulling line from my clutch.

Whatever I’d hooked desperately wanted to go around the corner of my swim into the pads and reeds. All of us had seen the fish a few times and Carl jokingly said it was Shoulders (a known 30). All I knew was that I was connected to a very strong creature, and one that wasn’t giving up!

Suddenly everything went solid but we could still see the fish stuck in some weed. Sam, who was fishing along the bank, said that someone had to go in and net it! While they discussed who should go in, I was praying the size 10 hook would hold…

Michael took off his shirt and trousers and waded out into the lake. His feet sunk down into a foot of silt – lovely! He had just come to see how we were doing and now he was soaked!

With a bit of difficulty Michael slipped the fish into the net. I could not believe it…. what a huge carp! Thanks Michael, a true fisherman’s friend. When we all peered into the net we knew it was one of the big ones!

Steve, the bailiff, came along and confirmed it was Shoulders, the well-known 30. I was speechless, the most amazed I have ever been, I didn’t know what to say! It weighed 30lb 4oz, I could hardly lift this incredible fish, and a new PB 4lb bigger than my old one.

I went in the lake with it and had some photos taken. Sam threw a bucket of water over me (a tradition for catching a fish over 30) but I didn’t care. Even now I can hardly believe I actually caught it.



There were no more fish that session but it can’t be long now before Carl gets his 20lb carp!

Thanks again Michael, Sam and Steve for helping out!


Click below to watch the video now…






  • If you want to see more of the lads’ videos for free, now, just browse the Carl & Alex channel in this website’s new TV player.



Here’s the list of all our exclusive new daily blogs and when they go live:

MONDAY: Carp crews on rotation – Korda, Fox, Nash and ACE.

TUESDAY: Steve Collett, Mail contributor and ultimate all-rounder.

WEDNESDAY: Angler’s Mail HQ – yes, us!

THURSDAY: Specialists from Pike Anglers Club, Korum and Pallatrax, on rotation

FRIDAY: Carl & Alex, Angler’s Mail juniors and video diary makers.

SATURDAY: The Angling Trust – guys at the governing body.

SUNDAY: Colin Mitchell, veteran coarse angler and top journalist


Click HERE to find more recent blogs


Don’t miss our latest issue – with free line. Be sure to get the magazine every Tuesday.