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Joe Chappell

Reservoir Diaries, Part 3

A few days after my previous success at Rochford Reservoir, I visited for a few hours after work. The plan was to pack light and to stalk a couple out of the margins. As soon as I got to the lake, I saw feeding carp with their tails up and heads down. I was buzzing so I quickly set up my rod and net and lowered some slow sinking bread onto the carps head. After 20 or so minutes I still hadn’t caught anything and the fish had drifted off. I threw a couple handfuls of pellet in the margins, up and down the bank and sat on my hands until I saw any signs of fish. Once I saw a sign, I would lower some bread onto the spot. After an hour, a fish picked up my bait and I was in. The fight was short lived however has the fish charged into the snags and snapped me clean off. I re-rigged and tried again, managing to hook another fish a while later. Unfortunately, that fish came off too and all I caught that evening was a roach and chub from the small River Roach that runs past the reservoir.

A few days later, me and Jack were back. The plan was to catch fish, simple right? We had a tough morning fishing the Res, arriving at 7am. Jack only managed one carp from the res all morning while I was still blanking. The River Roach kept us occupied, and I managed to catch both my personal best river carp and chub that morning. I didn’t weigh the carp but it was probably around 3lb, and the chub weighed in at 2lb 2oz. Jack also managed to catch a little river carp.

As the day drew on and the clouds began to thin the carp started to move onto the surface. They weren’t there in numbers however after feeding several handfuls of mixer, they started to feed with confidence. Mike, who also bailiffs the lake came down to fish an jumped in with us. (He had more mixers). Within minutes Mike hooked one but after a short run, the fish came off. Not long after, Jack hooked one. After a long battle it was in the net and tipped the scales at 14lb. Next it was my turn, about 20 minutes after Jack caught his I hooked a fish. It was a beautiful mirror, a rarity at the res with around 80% of the fish being commons.

The fishing slowed up in our swim so we decided to move to the shallower end of the lake. It’s fair to say the move payed off with me managing another fish, Jack catching two, and Mike catching one. We all used similar tactics throughout the afternoon. A controller float with a hook length of around 4-6ft. I used a size 10 wide gape hook and mounted a trimmed down cell wafter onto the hair.

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