Darren Burroughs, In Pursuit of the Mirrors
Posted on 30th June 2017 at 15:20
This month I have been very busy with other commitments and my fishing has had to take a bit of a back seat, but I have been getting out on the bank for a couple of quick evening sessions after work. This saw me return to an old stomping ground, a lake which I hadn’t visited recently. It is a smallish lake, being about 5 acres, and is very shallow with a fair head of carp in it. A great place to get a bend in the rods which I definitely needed.
My first session at the lake I went straight into one of my favourite pegs. To the left is a duck feeding platform where you regularly see the bigger fish in the lake slurping down bread and all sorts of food that gets thrown in. Out in front of the peg is a small island at 50 yards range which is where I put both my rods towards. I was fishing a mix of the VNX+ and the Nasty Shrimp. To the right hand side is bed of lilies at close range. It is a great swim because of the amount of features and water you have in front of you.
My main aim of the few evening sessions to come was to catch one of the few bigger heavy scaled mirrors that reside in the pit. It is not as easy as it seems because the lake is dominated by common carp. Once the rods were out it was a little while before the fish started to feed. The temperature start to drop and the lake went like a mill pond as there wasn’t a breath of wind. The only thing that disturbed the peace was a carp hocking out of the water really close to the spot. In what felt like a matter of seconds I was in. It was a blistering take, a complete and utter one toner. After a short fight I managed to slip the net under it. It was one of the lakes many commons being about 4lb.
Then Nathan’s bobbin pulled up tight and tore off as they always do because it’s so shallow in this corner because you are fishing in probably a foot or two of water. The fish chugged round to the right putting a good bend in the rod. It tried to bury itself in the willow tree to the left but Nathan guided it out and into the net. It was one of the bigger common carp in the lake, about 8-9 lb.
I quickly slipped it back and got the rod back out. Shortly after I had managed to tempt another bite after topping up with more VNX+ and Nasty Shrimp. This bite was completely different to the last as the bobbin slowly crept up then the fish realised it was hooked and shot off, tearing across the shallow water. It darted over to the left and tried to cut me off under the trees. I put more pressure on and it came out of the snags and sunk into the folds of the net. I peered in and it was a small linear. Not one of the bigger fish but a corker all the same. That was the end of that session as the light was fading and it was time to pack up and go home.
A couple of days later I was joined down the lake with my mate and fellow Team Angler, Nathan. This session we opted to go on the other side of the lake. We had seen a few fish cruising along the out of bounds bank. This peg gives you access to this area. Nathan was fishing up to the margin using the CalaFruitti and Scoberry boilies. I was fishing in the same peg but I was fishing out to the back of the small island at 50 yards range.
It was a really recognisable fish because it had big fins and a patch of reformed scales. I was getting agitated. It was looking good for a few bites and nothing had happened on my side of the swim. The wind was trickling in to the swim, it was a perfect warm summer’s day. The wind was making it feel a few degrees cooler.
We were sitting back having a chat waiting for the next bite. It came by complete surprise. It was a savage take, the reel was spinning at a rate of knots. The clutch was screaming to the point that it was louder than the alarms. I hit into the fish and after a short battle in the shallow water I had it on the bank. It was a small mirror of about 3lb. It then went really quiet with nothing happening. We recast, topped up with some more bait, sat back and waited for more bites to come. The temperature was dropping and we had 30 mins left and managed to bag another fish each, both being common’s. Mine was about 5lb and Nathan’s was about 6lb.
Three days later I managed to squeeze in another quick session after work. I walked round the lake and saw 40 plus fish milling around in the middle of the lake. This time I used more bait to pull the fish down. I put out half a kilo over both rods and while I was baiting I was away and bagged another small common. Like the last session it went quiet until the sun started to drop down. Then I got a take, the fish was going mental on a long line and then decided to charge straight at me, all the way to the bank. Then it was plunging around in the margin until I slipped the net under it. As soon as that happened the other rod was away. This battle was the complete opposite of the last. I reckon from when it was hooked to it being in the net was under 30 seconds.
That was it from this evening’s quick hit as a great crested grebe moved in catching silver fish to feed to its chicks that were in a nest on the island. For me this is what it is all about, getting away from reality and relaxing. Being in tune with the wildlife and that evening there was an awesome sunset and for me its evenings like this that remind me why I go fishing.
The next Evening I managed to squeeze a couple hours fishing in again after work. Rushing home and grabbing some food and back out the door so I could get down to the lake as quickly as possible.
I walked round to the far side to have a look in the shallow end of the lake because it was so hot and that heat was lasting until the late evening. Unsurprisingly there were loads of fish sunning themselves, all charging around and nudging all of the willow fluff that was floating along the surface. I set up and could not buy a bite as the fish were too happy charging around on the surface.
Only when the sun starts to drop away does the heat subside and this was the best time for a bite. Just like clockwork the inevitable happened - the sun dropped away and then the alarm started howling as a fish was ripping line of the spool. I hit in to the fish and after a short battle got it up onto the mat. It was an awesome scaly mirror, not the biggest fish but it was a cracking fish and one of the scaly mirrors I was after. Unfortunately I carelessly deleted the photo by accident. So no photo of that one - whoops!
Next time I visited the lake I went with Nathan again for a short afternoon session. After struggling to catch in the first swim we chose, we decided to move and put in a fair bit of bait where we saw carp patrolling and this resulted in a double take. We were about to get a nice brace shot in the water until the fish Nathan was holding managed to escape. I couldn’t help but laugh and we were both in stitches.
It was great getting bites in these short sessions and I will definitely be back there in the future to catch some of the bigger fish.
Now it’s time to carry on the pursuit of big carp fishing and the frustration that goes with it. But it is all about putting that puzzle together. Tight lines !!!
Share this post: