Maggotdrowning - Lindholme Lakes, 30th April 2013

Day 2 and not many hangovers from the Monday night apart from the party boys cabin who apparently were up until 3am... Although they didn’t look too bad after a night of merriment!  Willow lake is generally a square lake with a number of legs going into the centre of the lake, looking at it from an aerial view is is almost like to ‘W’s.  The point on these legs are the sought after pegs.

A big thanks to Keith (Shallowman), who lent me his Tricast Trilogy so I could use his number 5 section to replace the one I broke yesterday... it was a life saver and greatly appreciated.  Thanks Keith!

The Draw
As most anglers who read this blog will know the draw queue is normally a hand diving fest!  I reached into the bag and pulled out Peg 35 which was in the bay at the top of the lake.  It has an aerator straight ahead at around 16 metres which is an obvious target area.

The Set-up
Willows tends to be a lake suited to the pole and as such I set-up the following:
  • 13 metre pole line to the aerator
  • Left hand margin line
  • Right hand margin line
  • Bomb rod, just in case
Bait was meat, corn, dead red maggots, 6mm pellets

The All-In
I kicked off my margin swims, the left hand margin with corn/hemp and the right hand margin with meat/hemp and the 13 metre line with a half pot of dampened 6mm pellets.  Dropping on the 13 metre line with a single grain of sweetcorn on the hook, the float dipped and a small skimmer was bagged.  

Next put in was a different story!  The float dipped as before and a small amount of blue hydroelastic came out... shipping back it was soon obvious that it was a large fish on the line as it headed out towards the middle of the lake.  I got back to the top kit and after 15 minutes of quite a tease battle the fish showed itself.  It was a large Mirror carp, possibly a double, finally I got it in the net and safely in the keepnet, what a great battle.

After an hour I topped up the margin swims.  I had been pinging 6mm pellets over the 13 metre line, but the fish weren’t settling, not wanting to be up in the water or on the deck.  The guys around me were fishing up in the water (UITW) and also were commenting that they didn’t really want to come up...

Continuing on the 13 metre swim I potted in another half cup of damped 6mm pellets while still pinging a few over the line to create the noise to bring the fish in.  Bites were quite odd, it was clear some fish were off the bottom and other were on it as the float was moving around the place.  I hooked an F1 and didn’t recheck my shotting pattern.  The two droppers had moved up to the bulk, so basically just single bulk on the line with no droppers.  Next put in, the float buried and I notice the shotting had changed.  I didn’t reset it and the next bite was quick and announced.  So, the fish were obviously just off bottom and the grain of corn was wafting down to them unhindered by the dropper shot... I kept the rig like this for the rest of the match.

After 3 hours I decided to check the margin lines and hooked small F1’s, barbel and chub from these lines, but they weren’t the same stamp of fish as the 13 metre line.  I kept the margin lines topped up every hour but they never produced the bonus fish you look for in the margins.

The 6 hours past very quickly and my day had been very enjoyable with action throughout.  The all-out was called and I wondered how big the large mirror carp would be?

The Result
54lb 10oz and a section 2nd, pipped by Adam (DumDum) who had 7oz more than me!  The Mirror Carp weighed in at 10lb 7oz, the biggest fish of the festival so far and in-line to win a bottle of whiskey ;-)

I had restored my faith in sweetcorn.  It had produced the bites all day long.  I did try meat on the margin’s but corn was getting more bites.  I had the wind coming into my corner all day and I think that helped bring the fish in.  I had fed almost a full tin of corn, half a tin of meat and also half a bag of 6mm pellets.  Roll on Oasis tomorrow!


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