Nick Buckley, Haverholme Lake Day Session
Posted on 23rd May 2018 at 20:54
On Saturday the 19/05 I decided to go fishing on the Sunday as the weather was forecast to be beautiful, the sun beating down on the water and getting the carp on the move. I was expecting one of three things, the first that the fish would be spawning, the second that they would be up in the water and not interested, the third, and the outcome I was hoping for, is that I'd get all the fish feeding in one area and have a session of a lifetime!
I chose to go to Haverholme Lake as I fancied a bit of feature finding and trying to hold the fish on one area. I made my spod mix on the Saturday ready for Sunday. I started off with 6kg of pellet and 2kg of hemp, mixing it continuously until it was a sea of yellow and black, right down to the bottom of the bucket. I then added 30-40 18mm VNX+, another 2kg of hemp and loads of VNX+ activator liquid. I mixed this up, allowing all the liquids to soak though the mix and then added 400(ish) grams of mixed Stickmix, Mussel Insect and VNX+. The reason I added the stickmix 2nd from last was so that the liquid activators and glugs had time to coat all the mix, so when the stickmix was added it stuck to the majority of the mix and didn't sit inbetween the mix dry. The last thing I added was all the salt from the bottom of a bag of VNX+ Traveller boilies as this is full of smells and attractors and at this time of year carp are searching for natural salt deposits to get rid of any parasites they may have.
On Sunday morning I woke at 4am to load the van, making sure I had plenty of water for myself and the dog as I knew it was going to be a hot day. Next I went to collect my father in law to make the 35min journey to Haverholme Park Lake. We arrived at the lake around 5am hoping to be the first there, but we weren't! Three pegs were taken but, with a choice of 26 pegs and fish showing everywhere, it didn't really matter.
We walked round the lake several times, leaving a bucket in good swim with some snags and within easy reach of an island. We then decided against this swim as there was a large double swim with a huge reed bed, overhanging trees, a bank of snags and a key underwater feature that I wanted to find and spread a blanket of spod mix on, before placing both rigs there.
I knew this as my Vader X Spod rod has a 1ft marker above the reel so I'm able to accurately peel off line until I see the tip of the marker float on the water. With the setup I use I add a foot on all my depth due to the lead clip system and length of the float. I wanted to target the top of the slope due to the water temperature and line lay, and I thought this would give me the best opportunity to grab the attention of any passing carp. As stated above I had already clipped my spod up so I knew the bait would land in my chosen area. I left the marker float in situ, filled my spombs and cast 3 full spombs on to the area once I was happy with my accuracy and my points of reference (the back of a bank stick and the third leg on peg 21). I reeled the marker rod in and put it away.I continued to add Bait using the spomb and after around 12 more casts, I was happy I had a good blanket of bait approximately 3/4kg. I laid my spod rod on the road at the back of my swim and walked the spod out until it hit the clip. I then laid my two Vader X fishing rods next to it and walked out the same distance. I then added a foot in line length to each rod, this would bring the Rigs down onto the area as you must allow 1ft to every 3/4ft of water depth. I clipped the two fishing rods up and cast them to the spot, a VNX+ critically balanced bait on the right rod and a Nasty Shrimp neon pink pop up on the other. You can use distance sticks in this situation to achieve the same effect of clipping up your fishing rods, but with so much room to play with and a flat surface, there was no need to use them. I sat back and watched the water, waiting for the carp to come in. They were all over the surface, including a ghost carp I'm desperate to catch. I set my third rod up as a surface rod, using a cruise controller and dog biscuits to try and entice a bite, but nothing, the carp weren't interested. It was hot and the fish were basking, so after an hour the third rod was changed to a Zig and left out in open water. The main Rods were getting multiple bleeps and small runs with nothing connected until I had a screaming run! Picking the rod up I was into a bream, around 2 1/2lb! This was quickly unhooked and released after taking a picture of the hook hold and the fact it had managed to take a 16mm pop up. The hook hold was perfect bottom lip in the middle and the sharpness of the hook was there to see. A Nash size 5 pinpoint claw, a brilliant hook in my opinion.
After having the bream and multiple knocks and bleeps I decided to bulk up my spod mix adding around 60x 18mm VNX+ chops and whole boilies and 30x 18mm Nasty Shrimp. I spombed out the new mix, a lot at first and mostly boilie and then topping the swim up after every serious beep.
The reason for adding the boilies was in case all the bream had polished the spot and left me with my two hook baits alone. But this was to no avail. It was time to call it a day, with the carp not interested and looking like they were on the brink of starting to spawn, chasing each other around on the top and ignoring food, even swimming under the tips of the rods, it was pointless to stay, and I would never fish for spawning fish as catching a fish ready to spawn can cause a lot of health issues and stress to it. The dog was getting hot, despite having loads of water and laying in sludge at the back of the swim, so it was time to call it a day. Get back, unpack the gear and have a cold beer in the garden enjoying the sun with the family before having to go back to work Monday morning..
After unpacking the van I re-tied my rigs and after attaching a running lead system to both rods I was ready to feature find, so grabbed the marker rod and got to work. My marker rod is set up with 45lb spyder yellow braid and a 24ft grease weasel shock leader. I use a long shock leader as I want the lead to have the maximum movement available and I rarely fish a lake of a depth of 20ft. I first attach the lead using a Fox system that I have taken from a Fox Halo Zig adjuster. This way, if there is extremely heavy weed or the lead gets completely stuck, it's easy to pop the float up and retrieve all of the equipment, either using a boat or trying different angles on the bank. The lead itself is a 4oz Korda feature finding lead. I think they're a brilliant lead and all the information is passed from lead to rod clearly using this system. I also use a Korda marker float. I start of by picking an object on the opposite bank, a tree or, in this case, the corner of peg 21, and cast my marker set up towards it, keeping within the confines of my swim. I make multiple casts and retrieves, slowly dragging the lead along the bottom until I find an area of interest. Once I have found an area that feels hard, smooth or of varying depth, I will clip the marker rod up and make multiple casts in the area to find out how big an area it is. Once I'm happy I will leave the marker rod in the area and spod over the top of the float. The first cast will be using an empty spod/spomb and then clipped up so I can hit that spot every time. I found my area, it was around 3 rod lengths to the left of a broken plant pot. The area went from 7ft to 4ft in a distance of around 2ft, so there must have been a steep slope with the shallow area closest to me.
Tagged as: Nick Buckley
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