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Park Life

17/07/2021 - Tactics & Edges

Different plans

It has been a very different start to a fishing year for us all. With all my tickets surrendered to concentrate on more European trips then the outbreak of Covid and travel bans! Add to that a completely different job with all the hassles shift work likes to throw in.

I also live right down on the coast so in a nutshell its very limited to where you can fish unless you want to be doing the traveling I was doing up and down the motorways to  Nottingham and Newark! Travel costs have put a stop to that so I had no choice really but to fish a local “Park lake”.


The lake in question I fished over 10 years ago and was notorious for bad things happening and hassles in the dark of night but things change and reports of problems seem to all have disappeared. So without further ado off I went and got my membership and for a few walks to see if I could put a plan together. Each time I visited I was able to see good fish in a few nice looking spots. I spoke to many of the lads fishing, most were more than willing to share info on stock and swims choices. I would say I had walked the place every other day for a few weeks and had started to bait up a few likely spots too. It’s a busy place so the plan I had in mind was to find a spot that I could reach from at least 3 swims. The spot in question was not too far out I could just about use a catapult to get the bait going in.

I had the local council to thank making the spot catapult range! Unbeknown to me a week or two before my first trip they had planed to repair work further down the park so the lake was drained. I would guess a drop of over 8 feet of water! It was a shock but as time went on it played straight into my hands. You will see from the photos the abundance of exposed swan mussels it was not going to be overly easy to fish. These fish loved to feed in the edge and you can clearly see why. With this bait source somewhat out of action they would have to feed elsewhere. After a good week or so of baiting up it was time for my first session. I actually had that feeling back of excitement and the buzz of getting the gear ready. The car was packed and off I went. I arrived and with a big smile on my face. The spot I had been baiting was free, all three swims that gave me access to the prebaited spot were devoid of anglers so being a tad old school out went the marker float to the spot. The float popped up nicely but what came next was really interesting, I had noticed no one using marker floats at all, within 3-4 minutes the float was being bashed and there were signs of feeding below it. I put this down to the fish being inquisitive to something new.


My bait choice this season is the DT Bait Developments Fish Blood & Orange range. A quality bait that has a tendency to pick out the better fish. My lose feed/spod mix would be chopped boilies with hemp and maize and a large coating of the FBO DNA liquid. I will share a funny storey in my next report about this product.

Out went about 20/25 spods of mixed particle and chopped FBO boilies all had been soaking in the FBO DNA liquid for a few days. Again after a few spods of bait the fish were really inquisitive and coming to the spod to take the bait. I really found this strange as it’s not what you would call a runs water! Add to that a local angler came round asking questions as he had not seen the like either.

Personally I put this down to their inquisitiveness and the lack of water post spawning. A perfect storm so to speak.

With the rods all out on the spot and signs that they were feeding expectations were high but nothing, a real head scratching time I changed a few things and still nothing. I was getting the odd indication but no full on takes. From next door a young lad came into my swim asking all sorts of questions and watching what I was doing even asking my what my new bait was I was attaching to my hooks………..I then explained it was a PVA nugget that’s used to protect the hook etc……..asking about what the marker float did and why, asking about spodding and how to get accuracy. He must have been with me a good hour or so I didn’t mind at all as all the questions he asked were real. Questions if you’re new to carp fishing you should feel free to ask it’s about learning and passing knowledge on so we all enjoy our hobby more we can all do more to help others. Then he gets a one toner!!!! I kid you not no landing net set up no scales so I run over and help then no camera or phone so I took some nice snaps for him plus mentioning he should really have his net ETC set up before hand as you never know when you’re going to need them. What I did notice was his bait arrangement and with that in mind I knew I needed to make another change!

Evening came on the first night and all I had so far was a small carp of about 14/15lb from a spot that seemed to be rocking with fish. I sat there watching with a cold drink when all of a sudden the rods started to come alive. It was utter madness one rod went then the other. At times I had 3 rods going at the same time. I know it sounds mad but I ended up taking a rod away from the spot as I really couldn’t cope with the mayhem, I’m far too old! In between fish I was also spodding out more bait just enough to keep the spot ticking over.

As the night went on I continued to catch steadily but all the fish seemed to be the stockies that the club had introduced until a lovely common, sorry it’s a mat shot, as mentioned it’s a drained lake and no other anglers to help. It had obviously had a really good spawn but went 25lb 12oz. I was a happy chappy and I was getting into the better fish.

The next morning it had all died down thank god and with the rods having a kip so did I. I needed the rest it’s certainly a younger guy’s hobby nowadays lol.

Late morning I woke up and decided to reel in and recast the marker to the spot. No wraps as I knew once the marker went out they would be back being nosey. Again as soon as the marker went out and had settled the signs started again. Bit more bait, restricted this time as I was rapidly running out of bait!

I recast two rods to the spot and it couldn’t have been longer then 15 minutes and away they went again. This time I had a tench for my troubles, while I stood looking at what I had in the net, the middle rod bleeped twice and then gave a one toner stripping line of the spool at a great rate of knots! I lifted into the fish and knew it was one of the better ones. A long fight, deep and slow all the right signs it was a better fish. What seemed an age went by but it was safely in the bottom of my net.

I unhooked it and secured the net and then thought I needed proper photos this time…. Not a mat shot.

No one was around, not even the local dog walkers that invade the place. So a phone call to a good friend and lucky for me he was home and at the lake within 15 minutes to do the business for me. Thank you Kev. The fish I had caught was one of the A Team a fish called Quasimodo. Normally comes out between 32-35lb so I am told. For me it weighed 28lb and Oz’s so another fish that has had a really good spawn this year.  Photos done and fish safely returned I then put out the last of my bait and went on to catch a few more of the smaller fish and it was time to go home and plan the next session……….talk about excited.

Till next time, tight lines all.