Register
Monday, 22 September 2008 20:30

Carp fishing with Marc - carp baits

CARP FISHING WITH MARC - By Marc

Seasonal Changes 2006 - Part 2

Thinking About Baits

Welcome to part two in which I’m going to talk about baits & the successes I have had of late.

In the late eighties I never bought used shop made baits. I allways rolled my own & I’m sure many of you will appreciate just how long this takes. Many hours I spent in the garden shed after getting banned from the kitchen mixing, rolling & boiling boilies. Yes pre-made boilies have come along way since then but I just preferred making my own on the basis that I had control of what went into my final bait, colour, flavour levels etc.

Most of my boilies were made from BFM (big fish mix) with various flavours/colours, until I stumbled across the amazing flavour of cranberry. This flavour was & still is today a top fish attractor. I did mess around with maple too but it just didn’t match cranberry.

As you maybe aware BFM is a brownish red colour & with a small amount of red robin a lovely dark red colour was formed. Red, purple & brown are apparently some strongest colours found in the carps colour spectrum - worth remembering!

I wasn’t heavily into particles at this time, a few tiger nuts, sweet corn & hemp were used occasionally and I had massive confidence in my boilies so I stuck with them.

During my brief encounter with marriage I had to sacrifice a bit of my carp fishing, the long hours bait making was one of the first to go & my over night sessions were cut down too. The birth of my daughter Annalise really limited my time on the bank, but as many of you dads will agree is a well worth sacrifice.

This was when I really had to find a pre-made bait that lived up to my expectations!

Friends & magazines really made my decision easier; everyone seemed to be raving on about Mainline baits! So my next trip to the tackle shop saw me leave laden with 10 kilo’s of Assina8 (freezer boilies). They looked good, smelt good & tasted great, yes I eat my boilies. Not regularly honest, but I believe if I like them the carp will too.

I had some really good catches on this bait but something was missing. The carp loved the bait but often got bored & would start feeding in the silt around the boilies? I started asking questions, having thoughts about this to myself. I think it was a match angler friend who suggested loose feeding maggots & cutting down the amount of loose boilies offered. God did this work, the carp went crazy, the water was fizzing with activity & they readily picked up both baits. This is when I stumbled across chopping the boilies & feeding them with the maggots, yep I had cracked it. Bearing in mind this was during the nineties & I did get many a strange look from other anglers as I sat there chopping boilies into a bucket & mixing it all with maggots. Maggots are for Roach, Rudd etc aren’t they?

I skipped the introduction of the Activa8 although some of friends caught very well on them. I stuck with my current bait until Maple8 was released. This boilie was so close to my BFM bait I just had to move on to it.

There comes a time when every angler has to raise his targets & move on to new venues, I had six great seasons on Furnace Wood syndicate & Buckhurst Park Estate lakes, with me moving homes too made finding new waters easier.

This is where I found out about a 10 acre lake, little pressure from anglers & stocked with carp to mid thirties (Lake View). This was also around the time when I heard about a new bait from Mr Hearn, ‘The Source’ & I was lucky enough to get a few kilo’s before they hit the shop shelves. New water & new bait? After a few investigating walk rounds of my new water it was becoming clear that the few anglers who did fish here were getting smashed up the likes of sweet corn, hemp & maggot, this got me thinking about particles more.

So here I am sitting in front of a new piece of water, armed with ‘The Source’, a bucket of halibut pellet & a bucket of particles (sweet corn, maize, hemp, tares, chick peas & a pint of maggots). I was expecting too much on my first visit but after plopping the marker round around the swim I found three likely areas, one in the margins, so many still today forget how productive the margins can be. I love fishing the margins, you can guarantee your presentation is 100% & your baiting up is bang on.

I had very good night, very little sleep, an aching arm & two sacked up carp, I don’t usually sack for fish for more than a few hours but it was so close to day light & wanted to get some good pictures. I asked the first day angler on his arrival to assist me in accurately weighing & photographing the fish. He did look a bit bewildered with my request but agreed. On removing the first sack from the lake my new friend Gary asked how many fish were in the sack, I could only laugh & said “One Bro”, there was no reply until I transferred the carp from the sack to weigh sling then came his reply “Bloody hell, how big is that?” “The small one of the two” was my answer. The scales swung round to 24lb, pictures taken by a very excited photographer & the carp safely returned with the use of my floating mat ( I prefer to return big fish safely with the use of the mat, just in case they flip/wriggle).

The second sack was hoisted from the lake, I knew it was bigger, just how much I was unsure. On seeing the carp my friends comment is unprintable! The scales pulled round to 29lb 10oz, my heart sunk a little I was sure she would go thirty. Photographs taken, carp returned safely & friend asking all sorts of questions.

A year later Gary has become a total all out carp angler & has broken the twenty pound barrier, a very happy moment for both of us.

During the summer of 2005 a friend of mine bought two smallish waters (Hunters Lodge) & I was invited for a session in exchange for some work he wanted done. We only had rumours of twenty pound carp to fish for & we found some of them during the next few months.

I now had three new waters close to my home, not 100% sure of their total carp stock.

The start of 2006 I found myself using particles more & more, I changed boilies again due to ‘The Source’ becoming so popular (Top Bait). I was still catching lots of fish but the edge had gone, so I switched to Richworth’s ‘Multi-plex’. A truly worthy replacement to my last boilie.

My particle mix had now evolved big time with no less than 15 different pulses, seeds, nuts mixed within it. Four different sized, flavoured pellets were also introduced to the final bucket of goodies. It didn’t look very good but it smelt great & tasted even better. The safest way to get this bait into the swim was using a spod even though my bivvy has been covered with splatters & spills from casting out.

I was lucky enough to fish a swim with shallow clear water within the margins. I introduced a few handfuls under an overhanging bush & watched. After a short wait the water fizzed into a cloudy mess, the carp loved this stuff big time.

I added two more ingredients to the mix during the late summer - mashed up sardines & aniseed extract. The extra smell & oil content meant I could now use the mix as a sort of ‘Stik mix’ (oil based baits don’t melt pva bags/mesh).

To this day I’m still catching well on the baits.

Just to be a bit different I have fished some of the particles from my mix on the hair & the results have been amazing, the bigger fish seem to prefer small particle baits placed just off the baited area.

Up to this date I have safely landed fifteen different twenties, one thirty & numerous doubles from three venues.

I am sticking to my particle mix for the coming season but I’m looking into a new boilie for the coming season.

I hope you have enjoyed my latest article & found it useful. If you contact Paul @ Uk Fisherman I’m willing to share my mixes in more detail with you, but I recommend experimenting yourselves. There is nothing better than making your own bait mixes & catching big-time.

All the very best & tight lines as ever

Marc

Submit an Article: UK Fisherman would be delighted to here from you if you would like to comment on any of the fishing articles or if you would like to submit an article of your own.

To do so, please visit the CONTACT page.

Published in Carp Fishing Articles

CARP FISHING WITH MARC - By Marc

Seasonal Changes 2006 - Part 1

With runs drying up, Mr Carp getting harder to find & the winter weather becoming even less inviting, it was time to start thinking, debating, putting a few changes into my coming seasons quest.

I decided upon three areas of my fishing that needed a bit more concentration, modification etc. Terminal Tackle, Location and Bait. I chose these three points as like many other anglers we become lazy, “It worked last time, why change it”, “Everyone else is using this”. It’s so easy to fall into complacency but a few little changes can pay off big time!

I hope from reading this article you can pick up some ideas which may help you put a few extra carp on the bank.

Part One: The End Bits !

Terminal Tackle? Where do I start? We are bombarded by magazines, videos & crammed shelves full of all the latest gadgets & gizmos at the local tackle shop.

Don’t get me wrong I have tried, tied some of these space age rigs & had some great results, but I prefer to keep it simply with a few modifications.

Lets start with hooks, this past year I have switched to using Korda hooks, the wide gape & the long shank X. These hooks are incredibly strong & stay sharp even fishing over gravel, stone etc. The wide gape I have found to be perfect for fishing against weed & snags. They seem to be like a magnet in the carp’s mouth, absolutely brilliant. I have used other brands of hooks with a few problems, opening out on the bend, snapping at the bend etc.

Hook links have become a bit of a fashion accessory to me, manufacturers bring a new one out, I gotta have it !!

I prefer soft hook links, in various lengths, but I’m decreasing them in length.

During a visit to one of my local lakes, I had a quick walk round, visited the four other anglers in situ & got the same response from all of them “Its hard going Marc” not exactly what I wanted to hear!

This got me thinking & after a few searching questions a pattern emerged - they were all using hook links from 6”-9” in length with loads of freebies scattered around.

Rather than just getting my rods & casting to the hot spots I sat there for while, smoked a cigarette, deep in thought. I proceeded to take my rods out of the quiver & cut the long hook links off. I tied one rod with a link around 3” long & mounted a single 14mm boilie. The next rod I tied a link around 2” & mounted one piece of glugged maize & a small piece of yellow foam above it. The third rod I kept to the normal pattern I had been using in the past. All three rods had a small pva bag of chopped offerings attached & cast out to the likely spots.

I was hardly settled into my chair when the maize rod was off, not a monster fish but a carp all the same. I made another pva bag up & cast back out to the same spot (I all ways mark my line whether day or night). I had literally resat back down & poured a coffee out when the maize was off again, two runs in less than thirty minutes of fishing - this time an upper double graced my mat & the attention from the other anglers was growing. The nearest angler kindly did the photographs for me & as I slipped the fish back into the water the single 14mm boilie rod leapt into action, I was in again, another small double laid on the mat.

On returning the fish, the owner of the fishery popped over with two other anglers, all with the same question “What bait you on then mate”? I replied “Two fish on maize, one on boilie” there was a bit of head shaking going on in disbelief from the other anglers as they departed to their swims.

I went on to catch another four carp that day all from the short hook links, not one of the other anglers asked me about my presentation, just about the bait?

As I mentioned earlier I try to keep my hook links simple, eighty percent of the time I use the knotless knot with a small piece of tubing near the bend of the hook & a piece of heat shrink of about ¾”. The heat shrink I like placed opposite the point down the hooks shank & about ½” above the eye with a slight bend towards the point.

I have also been using a micro ring on the hook replacing the tubing - this does increase the weight of the hook towards the point & aids in hooking/turning of the hook when entering the carp’s mouth.

I do use combi-link materials too; however I do prefer to use them when fishing pop-ups.

If I want a stiff rig presentation I use amnesia (fluoro) rather than combi material.

I have had some blinding results from single bait popped up 2” from the lead.

This season all of my rigs incorporate the kwik change links that are available from most fishing tackle suppliers; they simply speed up all the process of swapping rigs & getting fishing again.

Another change I made this season was my lead arrangement, rather than follow all the other anglers with the semi fixed lead I started using running leads, leads with a stop bead 3” up the rig tube & the helicopter rig, all with different sized leads. Yes some rigs do rely on a heavy lead to function properly, but this season saw me use leads only heavy enough to reach the baited area.

My rig tube choice has to be Korda, the sinking version; they make various colours, its always super smooth & supple. Tungsten putty seems to grip to it beautifully too. Above the tubing I will normally place a flying back lead with a stop of about 3ft-4ft on the main line. I find these little weights great for pinning the last few feet of rig down to lake bed.

For the last two seasons I have been loading my reels with the unrivalled X-Line - it sinks like a brick, its fluorocarbon based, casts well & has yet to let me down.

I hope upon reading this you may get some useful tips, ideas to try out yourselves & please remember to keep your rigs safe!!!

By the way I’m not a Korda consultant; I just love & have 100% faith in their tackle.

Next time I’m going to have a natter about the bait changes I made during the season 2006.

Tight lines Marc

Submit an Article: UK Fisherman would be delighted to here from you if you would like to comment on any of the fishing articles or if you would like to submit an article of your own.

To do so, please visit the CONTACT page.

Published in Carp Fishing Articles
Monday, 22 September 2008 19:58

Barbel fishing on the River Severn

WHAT CHANCE A SEVERN MONSTER? - By Stuart Watkins

Source: Barbel Catchers Club

It’s now almost a decade since Howard caught his former British record fish from the lower reaches of the Severn. I recently read an article by Steve Stayner in one of the angling monthlies where he briefly mentions the capture of this memorable fish. He then goes on to talk about the many people who have since tried to catch it, or a different fish of a similar size, from the lower river. In my experience these people that Steve talks about, don’t exist. The river never did see the influx of anglers that many of Britain’s smaller rivers see when a huge fish is caught. In short the Severn’s most popular period was at the very beginning of the barbel boom in the mid to late eighties. In my opinion this will always remain the case, because other rivers produce fish of an equal size, or in many cases bigger, that are in the majority of cases far easier to locate and catch. We often hear the term anyone can catch from the lower Severn, and while this is certainly true, fish of say 12.08 plus are not common, and fish of 14 plus are rare creatures indeed.

Stuart Watkins with a 13-0 from the Lower SevernSo what chances a Severn monster? Obviously location is the key factor here or is it? Most of the better fish I have caught came from swims which only produced the one fish on the day. A lack of smaller fish may indicate the opportunity for a better fish to move in on any feed present. Note I said on the day, because I feel these larger fish could turn up in any swim on any stretch between Worcester’s Diglis weir and Tewkesbury weir. I feel swim type has very little bearing on whether large barbel will or will not feed in them. The most important factor being a lack of run of the mill fish, again on the day. Could it be that these larger specimens perhaps only move around as solitary fish, or at most in groups of two or three fish of a similar size, and may prefer not to compete with other smaller barbel for any food in a given area. Another thing about these larger Severn fish is that they can turn up at any time of the day. Whilst most Severn regulars prefer to fish in the hours of darkness, myself included, my two thirteens from the river both came in daylight, and one of these in mid-July with an air temperature of 27°c under a blazing hot sun in water as low and clear as it gets on the lower river.

So how would I go about catching one of these truly large Severn fish? As I said earlier, I feel swim type is not that important. But having said that I always feel more confident in a swim that has less of a slope on it from the margins out towards the middle of the river, say fourteen foot deep one and a half rod lengths out, to around eighteen to nineteen foot in the middle, as opposed to say only ten foot deep one and a half rod lengths out. In shallower areas of the river, say around Diglis, the same applies, the only thing that changes is the overall depth, which may only be eleven foot in the middle so eight foot of water one and a half rod lengths would be ideal. I would be looking to place my bait around two rod lengths.

One of the most useful pieces of kit that I have used over the last two seasons has been the ‘Smartcast’, Now some people may cringe at the use of this, saying that it is unfair, but believe me if like myself the lower Severn is your usual venue, you will find it invaluable. Since first using it I have discovered that in most areas the river has no shelves apart from the marginal one which may be only a few inches deep when the river is at it’s lowest. It will also find snags and you will get used to spotting these after using the unit for a period of time and getting used to it. One other thing about the ‘Smartcast’ is don’t buy one if you are expecting it to find your fish for you, in reality it’s a pretty crude piece of kit. Believe me, having worked in the marine industry for the past eighteen years, it is only really useful as a guide.

As far as baits and baiting the swim are concerned, boilies would be my first choice in daylight, with a sausage meat concoction, donkey choker size, courtesy of ‘The Cullen Guide To Anti-social Barbel Baits’, Millennium editon, as an after dark option. Feeding the swim would be done using no more than twelve to fifteen boilies, fishing only two rod lengths out makes it easy to place loose feed by hand. I would be looking to feed an area say 20’ x 10’, putting in large amounts of loose feed in my opinion, and especially after dark, only encourages smaller barbel in numbers, or bream, and believe me once they move in forget your barbel. Once you start fishing below Upton they are definitely the river’s most predominant fish, and fish approaching double figures can reasonably be expected.

Once the swim has been fed I don’t wait to put a bait in, I can’t see the point, life’s too short and past experience tells me the biggest fish invariably comes out first, especially if you have had no action in the first half hour. Always a good sign that smaller fish and the dreaded bream are not present. My theory is that if your hook bait is untouched or you have had no rod top indications your loose feed will also be uneaten and intact.

Rigs used are simple and uncomplicated. Hooklengths are braid, either or ‘Silkworm’ or ‘ESP Sinklink’, around sixteen inches long for boilies and around thirty inches for meat. I never fish with bolt rigs in the true sense of the term, although a two to three ounce running lead will, I believe, to some extent have the same effect. I don’t see the need for fancy rigs and any modifications I make are usually to make life easier for me. For example incorporating a Fox Safe-lok with a one inch long piece of rig tube placed over it for security will make it easy to change hooklengths after dark. My views on Fluro-carbon lines are that the disadvantages far outweigh the advantages. So I will not use them, even in a gin clear river. Having said that Fox Illusion seems to be getting some excellent reviews at the moment, so I will see how Martin gets on with it over this winter with a view to using it as a hooklength next season. When fishing the large meat baits everything Martin has talked about in his articles applies. To give an idea of the bait size I use, all the ingredients weigh around 1.3 kilos. This makes around fifteen baits!

So what exactly constitutes a Severn monster? Fifteen plus is probably not an unreasonable target if you fish the river week in week out, three members have all taken fish of this size. One of the most important things to note about most barbel anglers on the lower river is that none of them are from the ‘Catch at all costs’ brigade. I think if you take this misguided approach, you will be in for a very lean time. Personally I go in the hope of catching a personal best, and if I don’t then there is always next weekend. I will probably get some stick for saying this but once you get down below Severn Stoke, don’t forget the chub. They don’t come out very often, but when you do hook one it will probably be well worth catching. In barbel anging terms my biggest ambition is to catch a lower river fifteen. Who knows, one day I may just get lucky and achieve it. Now what about that double figure bream??!!

Many thanks to The Barbel Catchers Club and Stuart Watkins for allowing UK Fisherman to reproduce this article.

Visit their excellent website at: www.barbelcatchersclub.co.uk

Submit an Article: UK Fisherman would be delighted to here from you if you would like to comment on any of the fishing articles or if you would like to submit an article of your own.

To do so, please visit the CONTACT page.

Sunday, 21 September 2008 20:41

Skinz hookbait pellets

SKINZ HOOKBAIT PELLETS

Description:
Skinz hookbait pellets from Sonu Baits are an advanced, skinned, hookable pellet type bait full of powerful fish attractants. The skin is full of soluble feeding triggers that go to work immediately once immersed in water.

The skin has an elastic type property that grips the hook and prevents the bait from falling off during casting or on the strike.

You can use Skinz Hookbait Pellets straight from the bag for a slow sinking bait. This is very effective when fishing on-the-drop for fish feeding off the bottom. Alternatively, they can be soaked for a few minutes. This produces a soft hookbait that can be hooked directly on the hook or hair rigged.

Review:
Spending most of my time fishing at commercial fisheries these days, I have come to rely quite heavily on pellets. I have also grown increasingly frustrated with my search for a soft hooker pellet that stays on the hook when cast even a short distance.

Well my search is at an end! Skinz hook pellets are far and away the best hook pellets I have ever come across. They can be used straight from the packet or can be pre-soaked for only 10 minutes or so to produce a much softer pellet. I did have some difficulty with the unsoaked pellets as it can be quite difficult to penetrate the hard outer shell. For me though, they really come into their own when soaked.

I tried them out at a commercial fishery and found that keeping the bait on the hook even when casting quite long distances is a doddle. These pellets really do grip the hook exceptionally well and the outer skin transforms when wet into a consistency I can only compare to cheese on a pizza....stringy but tough. The bait doesn't fall off the hook every time you strike at a bite so you don't have to re-bait every cast. I actually caught 4 fish using the same pellet which for a soft hookbait pellet is unheard of. All species of fish seem attracted to the Skinz Pellets. I caught carp to 10lb, roach, rudd, bream, crucians and tench in one day with the Skinz Pellets.

Believe the hype - highly recommended !!

Score:

Where to buy:
Skinz Hookbait Pellets are available from a wide range of fishing tackle outlets although UK Fisherman recommends you buy yours from Eccleston Angling Centre. Many thanks to Bun and all at Eccleston Angling Centre for supplying the Skinz Hookbait Pellets for review.

Click Here to Purchase

Submit a Review: UK Fisherman would be delighted to here from you if you would like to comment on any of our reviews. To do so, use the comment box below.

Alternatively if you would to submit a review of your own or submit an item for review at UK Fisherman, please visit the CONTACT page.

Sunday, 21 September 2008 19:53

Frant Lakes, Kent

Frant Lakes, Kent

Located just outside the village of Bells Yew Green near Tunbridge Wells, around 40 minutes drive from the South London area, Frant Lakes offers mixed and specimen fishing on eight lakes set in 200 acres of parkland as well as a fifty swim section of the River Teise. They offer disabled anglers more than 20 dedicated swims with adjacent car spaces.

Reader Review - Jel Holyoake, Kent - May 2007

This may sound silly but what planet do some fishery owners live on??

I recently went to Frant Lakes off the A21 in Kent. I arrived at 2.45pm and wanted to single rod surface fish the 'snags' (speciman lake) until the complex closed, 7pm. I was told by the bailiff that I would have to pay for an entire day, £15. I told the bailiff it was only for a few hours but he insisted that the owners would not let me fish unless I paid the full price. As there were only 3 cars in the car park I could quite clearly see that the complex was empty, but my £7.50 wasn't enough.

Are they so detatched from reality that they can't understand that some people only wish to fish for half a day and that on most waters there is a half day ticket policy.

I went down the road to Elphicks where I was sold a ticket for £6 and had 20 fish. I like Frant Lakes, but I think I'm going to struggle to go back there, a place I have intermittantly fished over the last-at least 15 years when Les Bowman (the present owners father) ran it.

How times change. When Les knew I was coming down by train he used to pick me up from the station and chuck my bike in the back of his little white van with his alsation. They were the times when the complex was struggling for anglers and he was consistantly fighting the council for planning permission. I was also the person whom he asked to tell all my friends that Frant was back on it's feet years ago when they had a big fish kill after witnessing the first 20 out, they thought all the big fish were dead.

Sometimes the little £7.50's are better than the no pounds-no pence at all, and us people who get the odd half day off can fish at a fair price.

Score:


Editor: Definitley a lesson for fishery owners to learn there then ! Don't alienate your regular customers as they will vote with their feet. With so many "rival" fisheries in Kent, perhaps Frant Lakes need to re-consider their pricing policy.


Reader Review - Anne - November 2007

Half day tickets are available at Frant Lakes as my sons and I have used them since we first came to the lakes around June this year.

As we have football in the mornings at the weekends we have only ever used the half day ticket and have paid monies to many people in the ticket office. We have found both Mr Bowman and his wife to be most helpful and polite on this our first season of fishing. Bailifs have also taken the time to offer us advice and tips to make the most of our time at the lakes.

We would highly recommend these beautiful well stocked lakes and hope that the previous review has not put people off.

Score:

Editor: Just goes to show there are always two sides to every coin.


Uk Fisherman would love to hear from any other anglers who have good or bad experiences of Frant Lakes. We would especially like to hear from anyone connected with Frant Lakes who would like to comment on this review.
Paul @ Uk Fisherman

Please note the views expressed on these review pages are not necessarily endorsed by UK Fisherman.

Submit a Review: UK Fisherman would be delighted to here from you if you would like to comment on any of our reviews. To do so, use the comment box below.

Alternatively if you would to submit a review of your own or submit an item for review at UK Fisherman, please visit the CONTACT page.

Sunday, 21 September 2008 19:43

DreamLakes, France

DreamLakes, France

The DreamLake Complex, consisting of six mature, tree-lined lakes offers excellent carp and catfish angling on either an Inclusive Package or Voyage Self-Drive basis. Currently five of the lakes are open, the sixth housing a huge number of stock fish, ensuring future growth and development.

DreamLakes aim to provide anglers with the highest quality French carp fishing holiday. Offering the size and numbers of carp you would never hope to find in any English water, the peace and tranquillity of the beautiful Champagne countryside only serve to enhance the DreamLake Experience. DreamLakes 3, 4 and 5 are able to offer a great experience for anglers who want to do their own pioneering in France. Only four hours drive from Calais, and with the advantage of knowing that there is always someone on hand to give expert help and advice, you have the freedom to enjoy some really impressive ‘all action style’ carp angling.


Reader Review - Luke "crazy carper" Thomas - August 2007

DreamLakes !!! - Lake 3

We arrived in Relyon Car park, Dover, at 9.45pm ready and set to make our long voyage over to Dreamlakes. We were absolutly buzzing by now and couldn't wait to get over there and wet a line. The two 36 seater coaches arrived, briskly picked us up, along with all our gear, and bombed off for the ferry port. The ferry journey over was about an hour and a half and we got ourselves aquainted with everyone we would be spending the week wit ... what a class bunch of guys !

After 5 hours following the ferry journey we arrived at Dreamlakes, met by a bacon roll and tea, coffee etc. How welcome it was ! The sun was just starting to come up and it looked like it was shaping up to be a lovely day. We managed to settle into our swims and get set up, wandered around for a chat and then cast in. Our Bailiff for the week, Garry, informed us that the lake wasn't fishing as well as it should and that the previous week, the swim I was in had blanked. I was a little apprehensive but took the approach "it's about time they were here" and got on with it. I knew alot of bait would be the kiss of death so stuck with tiny bags of pellets with plastic corn as hookbait and within 2 hours I was in to the first fish. It went like stink, taking out 1 of my other lines and nearly snagging me up, until I managed to get its head up and land it. The scales flew round to 23lb 10oz Mirror Carp and a lovely first fish it was.

I then went the next day without so much of a sniff. I was starting to worry a little now and decided that a change of bait was in order, something a little more attractive and smelly than my tutti-fruitti pop-up corn ! This new bait was to be Mainline's Pulse boilies which we had pre-ordered. That night I was to reap the rewards as a 34lb 8oz Mirror Carp and a 31lb 4oz Mirror Carp graced my net. I was over the moon with these as my change of tactics had paid off and what fish to catch !

The following night using these tactics I managed a 34lb 12oz Mirror Carp, the biggest yet, and was happy that what I was doing was right. It was clear now that the majority of the fish were coming out at night and that my efforts should be doubled for the hours of darkness so I could catch consistently.

The next day Bruce, Dean and I were talking about how it would be nice to catch a lovely common as all the fish we had caught were Mirrors. Unfortunatly that night Ii failed to catch at all and morale was lowering a little.

The following night it became clockwork and I recieved a screaming run which resulted in a gorgeous looking 29lb common carp. I was over the moon and breath taken by the fish but had no idea what was to come. An hour later I had another run which I managed to loose, and then at about half past 3 I recieved a slow powerful run. I hooked into it and was adamant it was a small carp or tench. How wrong I was. I got it to about 15 yards out and this thing went nuts. After a series of powerful lunges and runs, along with 20 minutes of struggle I got it in the net... it was big. I secured the net and ran to wake Dean and Bruce up. "I've got a big common mate, bring your weigh sling and scales !"

They finally dragged themselves out of bed and they're reaction when they first saw it was un-printable. We made sure the scales were zeroed first ... weighed it several times ... and then photographed it ... all 47lb 10oz of it !!!!!

I was absolutely smashed, never did Idream I was to catch a fish of that callibur. Phil and Andy (Andy incidently is in the final of the Welsh Carp Masters and is a top bloke !) came round to congradulate and lend a hand. Thanks alot lads !

That was the last fish I caught, Bruce managed 5 fish to 42.08lbs (Common) and Dean managed 3 fish to 34lb 12oz (Cracking Mirror). So overall it was great !

Would like to give a special mention to all the other guys on lakes 3, 4 and 5 it was a great laugh and must do it again next year !

Get yourselves to Dreamlakes, its the place to be !

Luke Thomas
Crazy_carper




Score

Uk Fisherman would love to hear from any other anglers who have Dream Lakes in France. We would especially like to hear from anyone connected with Dream Lakes who would like to comment on this review.
Paul @ UK Fisherman

Please note the views expressed on these review pages are not necessarily endorsed by UK Fisherman.

Submit a Review: UK Fisherman would be delighted to here from you if you would like to comment on any of our reviews. To do so, use the comment box below.

Alternatively if you would to submit a review of your own or submit an item for review at UK Fisherman, please visit the CONTACT page.

Sunday, 21 September 2008 19:37

The Primeval Pike DVD

The Primeval Pike - courtesy of Beckmann Visual Publishing


Description:
This fascinating fish has been around for over 60 million years. The PRIMEVAL PIKE gives us an historical perspective and looks at pike biology and behaviour. Dedicated pike anglers show us their most successful baiting methods and we are treated to the joy of watching them land pike after pike of all sizes.

Highly Acclaimed angler and presenter Andy Nicholson joins forces with the British Museum and fellow expert anglers Ray Baker, Dr Bruno Broughton, Martyn Page, Vic "the rig" Bellars and Max Cottis to raise the profile of this ancient species and to make a compelling case for treating the pike with care and respect.

Chapters:
- History of the Pike - with Awyne Wheeler of the British Museum
- Fly Fishing For Pike - with Ray Baker
- Pike Biology & Behaviour - with Dr Bruno Broughton
- Dead Baiting - with Vic Bellars & Martyn Page
- Lure, Plug & Spinning baiting - with Andy Nicholson
- Mackerel as Bait - with Max Cottis

Running Time: approximately 105 mins

Review:
Right from the start I have to say that this is a cracking DVD full of interesting and useful information about the pike itself, it's history and habits as well as how best to catch one.

Before the DVD even gets to any fishing action we see Andy talking to Awyne Wheeler a pike expert at the British museum who provides loads of fascinating information about the history of this pre-historic fish. Another of the sections I found particularly enlightening was the section dealing with pike biology and behaviour. Bruno Broughton brings his vast experience to play when detailing the pikes feeding and behavioural patterns, vital information for any angler who wished to target this elusive predator.

By now my appetite was wetted for some actual fishing and I wasn't disappointed here either. Great care is taken to detail the methods used by the various participants and the following chapters of the DVD outline fly fishing for pike, dead baiting, lure, plug and spinning and using mackerel as bait for pike. The DVD covers nearly all the methods that can be used for pike fishing and I certainly picked up some really useful tips which will no doubt stand me in good stead this winter.

Throughout the whole DVD it is clear that those taking part are real enthusiats for the art of pike fishing and proper care of the fish they caught was something that was highlighted throughout.

There are some cracking underwater shots of the Pike splattered throughout this DVD and they really bring the whole "pike in their natural habitat" issue to life and make the whole DVD that much more enjoyable.

I would highly recommend this DVD to anyone who wants to find out a bit more about tactics for catching pike and anyone who is interested in the history of the fish we catch in this country. It is a well thought out publication that manages to create a fine balance between the history of the pike and the methods for catching them.

Score:

Where to buy The Primeval Pike:
The Primeval Pike is available to puchase from Beckmann Visual Publishing in either DVD or VHS video format and is priced at £16.99 for the DVD or £17.99 for the VHS.

To order this excellent DVD, visit www.beckmanndirect.com

A big thank you to Kelly Smith and all at Beckmann Visual Publishing for supplying UK Fisherman with this DVD for review.

Submit a Review: UK Fisherman would be delighted to here from you if you would like to comment on any of our reviews. To do so, use the comment box below.

Alternatively if you would to submit a review of your own or submit an item for review at UK Fisherman, please visit the CONTACT page.

Sunday, 21 September 2008 19:30

Fly Fishing in Iceland DVD

Fly Fishing in Iceland - courtesy of Beckmann Visual Publishing


Description:
This ambitious and exciting film about fly fishing in Iceland follows Icelandic local fishermen as they pursue their catch - Arctic Salmon, Sea Trout and Arctic Char.

Fly Fishing In Iceland DVDThis is a unique fishing film allowing you to see the different fishing culture of Iceland first hand. Iceland is beautiful and a fish-rich, enchanting setting for fishermen keen to share with you their expertise and experiences. Though the northern summers are short, the fish are plentiful, offering up many unforgettable fights between man and his quarry.

The producer Eggert Skulason is the editor of the premier Icelandic fishing magazine called "Veidimadurinn" (The Fishermam). He has been fishing in Iceland for over three decades and has all the skills needed to point out the best places to fish and explain the tactics that work. Eggert is also a veteran producer having produced over 40 fishing films.

Five very different rivers are fished in this film, providing great variety. Among them is the River Hofsa, visited by Prince Charles for many years and a small but beautiful river in an isolated fjord that gets invaded by arctic Char every summer. The film contains some stunning unerwater footage including a big Char chasing and eventually catching the fly.

The DVD also includes maps of locations fished in the programme

Running Time: approximately 67 mins

Review:
Right from the start, I should say that I am neither a fly fishermen, neither have I ever been to Iceland. After watching this video though, I am seriously considering doing both!!

This is not fly fishing as most of us probably know it. Rather than well stocked commercial trout fisheries, this is fishing at its best, on wild natural rivers that tumble their way through some dramatic and stunning scenery.

The DVD manages to create just the right balance between technical fishing information about line, flies & techniques, footage of fish being played and caught and just unashamed shots of the wondeful Icelandic scenery. Underwater footage of fish in the natural habitat is almost obligatory in fishing videos these days and Fly Fishing in Iceland is no exception. It brings the whole experiece so much more to life.

I really enjoyed Fly Fishing In Iceland and would highly recommend it. Sitting at home in London on a miserable January afternoon, it has certainly made me want to get on my bike and experience other countries and the fishing they offer. If UK Fisherman doesn't get updated for while cos I've gone travelling, you can blame this film !!

Cheers for now ... Paul@UK Fisherman

Score:

Where to buy Fly Fishing In Iceland:
Fly Fishing in Iceland is available to puchase from Beckmann Visual Publishing in DVD format and is priced at £16.99.

To order this excellent DVD, visit www.beckmanndirect.com

A big thank you to Kelly Smith and all at Beckmann Visual Publishing for supplying UK Fisherman with this DVD for review.

Submit a Review: UK Fisherman would be delighted to here from you if you would like to comment on any of our reviews. To do so, use the comment box below.

Alternatively if you would to submit a review of your own or submit an item for review at UK Fisherman, please visit the CONTACT page.

Sunday, 21 September 2008 19:16

Cottington Lakes, Kent

Based in Deal, Kent, 6 coarse fishing lakes make up the Cottington Lakes complex, offering a variety of angling to all levels - two mixed coarse lakes, two specimen carp lakes and a two match lakes, the latest of which was opened in 2005. Main species include carp, bream, tench, roach, rudd, perch and chub.

UK Fisherman was recently contacted by three anglers, all being familiar with the fishing at Cottington Lakes, but with very differing opinions of the place and the fishing on offer there. Just shows you that no two people ever have the same views on matters - well hey, wouldn't life be dull if we all agreed !!

Camo - Read Review

Carl - Read Review

John - Read Review

Carl - Read Comments and view pictures

Clive - Read Comments ** New Feb 08


Reader Review - Paul (April 2007)

Comments removed at the request of the author


Reader Review - Camo (April 2007)

"I cannot agree with the comments made about this fishery as the review sounds nothing like the place I have fished, the welcome one gets from Laurie who has worked in the Tackle shop for three years is excellent, he is extremely polite and a true gentleman."

"I went to the lakes today unannounced to see for myself first hand and the Lakes looked fantastic and as for the maintenance their has been trouble with blocked sluice gates in the dykes but that has now been rectified."

"I spoke to many anglers who love the place and fish were being caught left right and centre - I saw some beautiful fish and in pristine condition too. Aubrey was cutting the grass which he does on a weekly basis, Duane one of the Honary Bailiffs was removing old wooden platforms and replacing with new Galvanised Metal ones, paths were being laid around the match lakes, reeds were being cut back by Tim and weeds were being sprayed."

"The Lakes in my view have never looked better. There are now eight Lakes on the Complex including a silver fish lake, Pepper lake one of the Carp Lakes is being dug out to approximately seven acres and this all in a day."

Cottington lakes - match lake Cottington lakes - Black Lake
Two views of Cottington Lakes - Pictures courtesy of Camo

"The facilities include toilets and showers which are cleaned on a daily basis, Cafe and Bar where the food is well presented and spotless and the tackle shop which is under new management and is very well stocked and caters for all Match, Pleasure and Carp anglers. Security Cameras safeguard your property and well being, each lake has its own car park so its never too far to your favourite swim. I took countless photos of the Lakes and fish etc, hoping to put pictures to my words so all could see first hand how beautiful this place is and its going to get better. There is a huge Caravan and Camping site which is open all year, with electric hook-ups and water etc."
Camo

Score:


Reader Review - Carl Harris (May 2007)

Last week myself and 7 work colleagues hired the exclusive use of Lake Pepper. We spent 48 hours, in glorious May weather, at the lake. We found the local bailiffs and staff very helpful, and although the fishing was not prolific, everyone caught fish.

Five of us had British PB's, myself having 3 fish over 20lb, biggest 25 1/2lb mirror. All the fish were in pristine condition, and put up very good fights!!!

I would definitely return to Cottington and will recommend it to others.

Score:


Reader Review - John (Sept 2007)

Your reviewer Paul gives a low assessment of his visit to Cottington Lakes. Whilst I do not doubt that he reflects his own experience mine is somewhat different.

I have visited Cottington on three occasions this year with my young son and friends to camp and fish. We have been treated courteously and in a friendly and helpful matter. There was no problem with distractions from other anglers, indeed we engaged in several pleasant conversations with others using the lakes, most of whom were more than happy to volunteer information gained from their experiences. We caught a variety of species as well as larger Tench and Carp.

Score:


Reader Review - Carl (Oct 2007)

On a recent trip to Cottington Lakes which is in Deal, kent, I beat my PB twice in one day on Lake Christine. My PB stood at 16lb but when I struck into a 23.8lb mirror carp I was over the moon and made the trip well worth it.

But then shortly after, I stuck into a 26.8lb mirror carp on my other rod.

Cottington's is a nice and friendly place which has all the amenities that you could need for a short or long stay. The lakes are peaceful and are kept in good condition and the surrounding areas.

As the fish go they all put up a nice fight as I have fished all lakes apart from the match lakes and caught a range of nice fish which are in an all round good condition. I know some people disagree with paying the cost for the specimen lakes but with all fisheries that have specimen lakes they charge more so if you don't like it then go some where else and that's my opinion.

Score:


Reader Review - Clive Cook (Feb. 08)

Re Paul's review. I've fished Cottington Lakes over the past 4 years for carp. I cannot agree with him on the quality of the fishing (my specific is carp): over a 3 day @ night period I bagged 17 carp with my pb 29 3/4lb mirror.

However I can fully substantiate his views on the staff, especially the moron on his quad bike who thinks he's the new Richard Walker of carp tactics and specimens caught. When you question monsieur le moron closer, all his specimen fish have been caught in .......yes you've got it France!!! The first time I fished Christine Lake, mons. le m. LEFT HIS BIVVY UP, barring us from that swim.

One funny instance though: he told to leave us alone in his best estuary vocabulary, promptly revved his quad up, went up the bank at the wrong angle and turned the lot over. Please get a life whoever or whatever he is AND KEEP OUT OF OUR FACES!!

Well all the best to Paul in future. Oh yes by the way, Camo is also biased to Cottington, he's a Kentish fisherman through and through

Score:


Very differing views then of Cottington Lakes although the thumbs up seem to be definitely outweighing the thumbs down - guess you'll just have to make your own mind up and check the place out for yourself. If you do and you would like to send us your views, we would be delighted to hear from you.
Paul @ UK Fisherman

* Please note, the opinions shown on our review pages are not necessarily shared or endorsed by UK Fisherman.

Submit a Review: UK Fisherman would be delighted to here from you if you would like to comment on any of our reviews. To do so, use the comment box below.

Alternatively if you would to submit a review of your own or submit an item for review at UK Fisherman, please visit the CONTACT page.

Sunday, 21 September 2008 16:06

Carple Steamers baits

This is not so much of a review by me but a chance to gaup in awe at some superb carp caught recently using Carple Steamers Baits from the Baitmaster. Words seem unncessary - just feast your eyes on these beauties and then head over to THE BAITMASTER to order your baits direct from them.



Ben May catches over 374lb of carp using Red Crab SteamersRed Crab Steamers have been catching fast and furiously where ever they go, whether it's European or British Waters.

For example Ben May from Carpers.net Forum has recently won the Seniors/Juniors competition, which was held at Etang De La Boissonie (Carp Anglers Dream) in France having hauled in a mighty large bag of Carp weighing 374lb over 48 hours.

Why not get some Red Crab Steamers for yourself.

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE



Kevin Stait with a 20lb+ ghostie cuaght using Carple Bloody Squid SteamersKevin Stait is just one of our many successful anglers baiting up with Carple Bloody Squid Steamers. Here's how Kev's been getting on since changing his bait over to Bloody Squid Steamers.

Kevin braved heavy showers and thunderstorms during his 48 hour sessions to take five fish topped by a 20lb 14oz Ghostie and a 20lb 2oz fully-scaled mirror. Kev caught his fish from both open water and the marginal reed beds where he offered Carple Bloody Squid Steamer Baits...

Why not get some Red Crab Steamers for yourself.

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE


Clint with a 23lb common caught using Carple Red Lobster Seaweed Steamers Carple Red Lobster Seaweed has also seen some great catch reports. Let's see what Clint has to say about his recent session. 18mm Carple Red Lobster & Seaweed Steamers, Carple Green Crab 'n Lobster Stik Mix accounted for these carp. The venue was a local lake.

The day started well Carl with a few fish to just over 10lb but as the morning turned into afternoon the fish came thick and fast. Rig set was a 5oz running lead, hook link 15lb E.S.P sink link, hook Korda Hybrid size 6.

Best fish was a 23lb common followed by 20lb, 20lb 8oz, 19lb,14lb. Total fish caught 12, size and quantity wasn't at all bad for just a days session.

Why not get some Carple Red Lobster Seaweed Steamers for yourself.

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE


Score:

Qaulity fish caught using quality baits. Get yours NOW !!

Click Here to View all the Baitmaster products

Submit a Review: UK Fisherman would be delighted to here from you if you would like to comment on any of our reviews. To do so, use the comment box below.

Alternatively if you would to submit a review of your own or submit an item for review at UK Fisherman, please visit the CONTACT page.

Page 5 of 6

Newsletter

Receive regular updates & newsletters from UK Fisherman ...
captcha 

Recommended

Promote your Business

Advertise at UK Fisherman

FREE and PREMIUM fishery, fishing holidays, fishing club & tackle store listings.

Read more

Website Design

Website design for angling businesses

Let UK Fisherman bring your products/services to a wider angling audience.

Read more

Angling Newsletter

UK angling and fishing news

News, reviews, competition details, tackle sales & more, direct to your inbox.

Sign up now

Angling Forum

UK angling and fishing forum

You're sure to find something to rant on about in our anglers forum. Sign up today!!

Join now

Follow us

Follow us on FacebookFollow us on Twitter
×
UK Fisherman Newsletter

captcha