My first trip to the lake came in late March. It was unseasonably warm for the time of year with temperatures of 19 degrees centigrade. The area of the lake I was fishing had lily pads starting to reach the surface next to an island. I cast one method feeder to this spot in the hope the Rudd would be patrolling there. The other method feeder was cast about ten yards to the left in open water between two islands. It took only a few minutes to get my first take from open water and as soon as I pulled into it I knew it was no Rudd. The first of MANY Bream was netted, unhooked and slipped back into the Lake.
It was now heading into the evening and the sun was getting lower in the sky. Just as I was thinking the were not Rudd feeding I had a take that felt very different to the Bream. I knew it was a Rudd when it popped to the surface and those golden scales glowed in the evening sun. I was so happy to net the fish and get a result the first session on the Lake! It weighed in at 2lb and I was happy enough to pack up and go home right then. But I was soon attached to another fish when the alarm sounded and the bobbin slammed the rod blank! This again I could tell was a Rudd and when it splashed on the surface I could see it was a bigger fish. As I suspected the fish was indeed bigger than the last and weighed 2lb 5oz. It was definitely a good time to pack up and leave for home. A brace of twos on the first trip left me grinning from ear to ear!
I had a few more trips over April/May and caught many more Bream. I would not be surprised if I caught well over 100lb of Bream in the half dozen trips I had. The action was crazy! I always caught Rudd too which was fantastic but nothing quite as big as the first trip. The biggest was just short of 2lb. I also had the odd bonus Tench which were very welcome as they put up a great fight on the light gear I was using. I plan to carry on having the odd trip there in the summer but I will be fishing from my boat. It will give me access to so much water that cannot be fished from the bank.
After a few trips to the lake Bream bashing I needed a change. I left the feeder rods at home and took my predator kit with me as I fancied chucking out a couple of dead baits for the Pike and Zander for an evening. I also took a light jigging set up to chuck around if the ledgered baits stayed static. A guy had just left a swim where he had been fishing for the Bream. I went in the swim after him as I know the bait he used will have attracted the smaller bait fish the predators like to feed on. I decided to cast a small crayfish type jig around to see if my reasoning was well founded. On my first cast I felt something grabbing the jig but when I struck nothing was there. This happened a few times so when I felt a hit I left it a few seconds to let the fish get the hook in its mouth. It worked and I was soon into what I thought was a small Zander. Much to my surprise it was a nice sized Perch that came angrily to the surface! At 2lb 2oz it was a welcome surprise and I will definitely be targeting them in the future to see if there are any bigger ones in there.
Carp were another species on my Spring target list. Not having vast amounts of time at my disposal I needed a water with a good number of fish with the chance of a good 20 or 30lber. My local club lake fitted that need so it was there I would have a few day sessions. This lake is large and deep so my main method of attack would be zig rig fishing as the fish have so much depth they can be feeding in. Up to 32ft deep in areas and an average of 25ft! Over 3 day sessions I had several Carp per trip. Most of the fish were caught on zigs fished around mid depth of 12-14ft. I did have a few fish on bottom baits but the zigs out fished them five to one! Most fish were mid to upper doubles but the best fish went over 24lb. The action on this lake can be crazy and keeping one rod in the water can be hard sometimes let alone two!
Now I am getting ready for the new River season in the hope of tracking down some of the stunning dark Carp that roam my local River. And while i'm there it would be rude not to do some Rudd fishing too!