Lump hunting with Thomas Kyffin

Written By
Thomas Kyffin

Upon joining the fishing in the northwest team I was eager to get out for a spot of carping and to do my first write up. Upon consulting with the better half the date was set and I went about planning the trip ahead. The time soon went and I was soon packing the car with all the gear ready for the next 24 hours. A quick check of the weather before I left revealed north westerly winds, sunny and minus temperatures during the night followed by a cold cloudy morning warming up as the day went on which wasn’t really ideal but didn’t put me off in the slightest. I set off shortly after on the 45-minute trip with the tunes blaring from the stereo in really good spirits wondering what the next 24 hours would bring. After what seemed to be a long journey I eventually arrived at the lake to be greeted by a full car park, thinking the worst I quickly put my boots on and I headed round on my first lap of the lake, chatting to other anglers on my way round. It soon became apparent that 90% of the anglers were soon to be leaving giving me the chance to jump into almost any swim should I see signs of mr carp. A second lap of the lake looking really hard for signs and shows proved uneventful and a third lap was just as uninspiring so I decided to go have a chat to the baliff and see which pegs had produced over the last couple of days. It was quite clear from previous catch reports that the fish had been coming out from the central area of the lake. Using this knowledge, I packed the barrow and headed for peg 13 which commands a lot of water but more importantly was smack bang in the middle of lake. Three of my favourite stiff hinge rigs were tied up.

And before anything else these were cast out in a wide fan towards the central areas of the lake. I really have lost count how many times this has produced me quick bites over the years while others are still putting there bivvys up or sitting chatting and having a brew. I sat back and watched the water for the next hour or so and with still no signs of mr carp giving himself away I set about getting the alarms set up and also the bivvy for the upcoming night. I decided to stick to these rigs for the night that was quickly approaching as I knew a lot of bait would have gone in over the weekend just gone and quite often a single bright hook bait will produce when faced with situations like these on heavily pressured day ticket waters. As the hours went on the night drew in and it was time to retire to the sleeping was at this point when I started having liner after lineron all rods and I knew at that point the carp weren’t far away and that I had made the right choice to stay in the swim I was in. After having a very restless sleep due to liners all night I awoke to a very cold cold that everything around me was white over with frost including the inside of the bivvy door! Not to be put off and in an attempt to catch a carp I quickly tied up some fluorocarbon bottom bait rigs (simple but very effective) as I really couldn’t believe one of the rods hadn’t gone due to the amount of carp activity in the swim.

These were then cast out onto the spots and I decided to put some bait in over the top. Half a kilo of the ever faithful mainline hybrid boilies went in and I settled back once more put the kettle on and watched the water. It didn’t take long to see signs of mr carp over the spots and it was quite clear they were down there grubbing about on the newly applied bait. What seemed like forever just sitting and watching and drinking copious amounts of coffee the middle rod signalled a bleep which grabbed my attention, the next second the bobbin slammed into the rod blank, clutch singing with all its heart and I was in. I hit into the fish and it was quite clear I was attached to one of the hard fighting carp that live in this lake! After an epic battle I soon had the carp in the net sulking. I unhooked the fish quickly while in the net and the rod was put back into position as feeding spells can be short this time of year. A quick phone call to the baliff and he came round to do the photos for me. The fish went 22lb 8oz on the scales and a beautiful mirror was held up for the pictures.

The rest of the day went by uneventful unfortunately but that’s carp fishing for you. I packed up later on that afternoon with a huge smile on my face and headed back home reflecting on my trip.

The winning rig. Simple but very very effective, it comprises of a 3 foot length of kordaleadcore, korda safety tail rubber, korda safety lead clip, 3oz distance lead, 7 inch taska fluorocarbon hooklink and a size 4 barbless esp raptor hook. The date has been set for my next trip out and I’m looking forward to what the surprises it might have instore for me.