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    Many of the anglers I have met lately seem to avoid fishing in weed, they often prefer to find the clear patches and present a bait. However, I think they’re losing out as weed will generally produce more big fish than any other fishing situation.
    Carp love weed and will  spend most of their time in the green stuff. Weed contains natural food items for carp to eat,. It also provides some shelter and security for  pressured fish. During the day, weed will provide fish with plenty of oxygen, and as a result, carp will often be located in weed. As the weed is a being a big obstacle for anglers to fish, it’s no wander that the carp are less cagey when feeding on baits in the weed beds.
    It may seem tricky to fish in the weed itself, but often a bigger risk produces a better reward! When hook baits are presented in the weed, it is much easier for the end tackle and fluorocarbon line to blend in with the surrounding weed so a fish will find it difficult to assess potential danger, and therefore more likely to take your bait.
    I wouldn’t fish for carp in the weed during the night. Weed doesn’t Give of oxygen in the dark, carp will leave it and look elsewhere  for food. I will always fish away from weed   during the night.
    when fishing thick weed. It’s not as simple as just placing some rig foam around the hook of any old fishing rig. Effective weed rigs can work much better if you find out more information about the actual weed in front of your swim.
    always find out how high, and how thick, the weed is before casting out you do this  by casting in a lead with a  hook tied on the line, and reel in slowly so you get most of the weed down to its roots. then  measure the length of the weed. You want a rig that will allow the hook bait to sit on top of the weed, so the hook link needs to be  longer than the length of the weed . This will stop the  lead pulling the bait down  into the weed and  masking hook as well as hiding the bait from the carp. The thicker the weed, you might have to use pop ups or a solid bag
    when iam fishing in weed i use use a mixture of  particles in a solid bag so it sits on top of the weed so its in view of any carp passing by often use pop-ups for fishing in weed for two reasons. The buoyancy of the bait helps stop the hook point from being masked by the weed , and  causes the bait to enter the mouth alot  easier as the carp sucks it in . and a pop up wont  hidden by  the weed bed where carp will just swim by as they cant see it


    I would tend to use a supple braid not a stiff stiff material when fishing over weed a supple braid will settle nicely on top. The length of the hook link will depend on the type of weed present. If its  Canadian pondweed then I’ll  use smaller hook links that way there’s less chance of the hook catching in weed as the rig falls through the gaps in the weed
    If  your fishing over silkweed i would use a long hook links so your  bait will come to rest on top of the silkweed i would also place a  peace of dissolving  foam on the hook to make it slowly rest on top 
    Always make sure your rig is  a safe and a rig that if  snagged up, or cut off  the carp can  getrig of the end tackle, when you hook a carp in weed you will find that it will attempt to dive into the weed  so it is always a good idea to drop the lead so the fish will come to the top of the weed and away from all the snags and will be easer to get in you never know it might be a pb  ,i hope this gives you an inside into fishing in weed as the warmer weather is nearly hear and the weed in most lakes will begin to get thicker so get them rigs into the green stuff as that's were the carp are happiest
    tight lines


    Carrying on from my last piece where I introduced the 3 key areas I base my angling on:
    Angling effectively and efficiently
    I will now take the opportunity to share my thoughts on watercraft:
    My take on watercraft is thus, the more time you spend on different venues in varying weather conditions having noted where and when you and other anglers have caught fish in certain weather conditions after taking into consideration the work you have done in the “Preparation” stage. You should be in a much better position to make the right decisions more often regarding swim choice and where to place your traps.
    I like catching carp and try to work hard to put myself in the best position possible when I’m angling, my routine is fairly straight forward and again I can surmise it into 3 key area’s:
    Always keep and open mind
    Use your eyes and ears to find the fish 
    Drive and determination
    Again they are in no order of preference and are expanded upon below:
     Prior to a session I will always access a 5-7 day detailed weather forecast and check the predicted surface pressure. These days I am going fishing when I am off work so I will be going regardless. However when I was self employed a few years ago I could move jobs around at times to suit favourable weather and pressure conditions and even went as far as to include the moon phases.

    If it’s a new venue you are starting on then you will get to know other members and will probably exchange text messages etc. This is particularly useful if they are fishing when you aren’t to help build a picture of what’s happening when you are away from the lake. I would never let this info blinker me into any choices I might make in my angling be it bait/swim choice/rigs etc. I would take it on board and make a note of the key elements.  I use the journey to the lake to process the weather and barometric pressure forecast, how the lake has been fishing, which area’s the forecasted weather will affect, how many anglers have been and are present along with which area’s may look favourable.
    Once at the lake I will take my flask and go for a wander around the lake at least once (sometimes for hours) with my Polaroid’s on. Stopping to chat to anglers on my way
    round, taking onboard the available swims and what weather is on the way. It’s a minefield and one that pleasantly batters my head every time I turn up at the lake especially if I have the lake to myself. Other angler’s have turned up in the past and asked if I have decided which swim I want, if I haven’t then Ill let them choose where they want to setup and carry on walking and looking. It has cost me fish in the past but it’s also caught me fish on my own terms.
    Depending on what time you arrive at your chosen venue will also determine if you see any fish crashing, rolling, bubbling and clouding up the bottom? Or are they just chilling in an area enjoying the warmth of the sun or hiding from the current angling pressure? If the latter is the case you may pick up fish stalking or floater fishing but once darkness falls they may move to other areas of the lake to feed. Few lakes these days offer you the freedom to indulge in both due to angling pressure so outside bite times can seem like camping.

    A good example of the above was during my time on wellington country park, initially I would travel down very early morning to arrive at 4am before it got light to hopefully see fish crashing. This approach worked to a certain degree as I could set up on or near fish. During my stays bankside I watch the water intensely from early morning until late at night, at some point I knew there would be numbers of fish feeding as they don’t get big by not feeding and I could use my eyes, ears and drive to find them. I needed to see what was occurring during the night when 99.9% of the anglers were sleeping. I set my alarm for 2am and 3am and found that I could hear numbers of fish in certain area’s crashing and rolling. Over the course of a couple of sessions this became the pattern so I shifted my arrival times to suit. I could commute the 180 mile’s to the lake when the roads were quieter, arrive, load the barrow, leave the barrow in a convenient place and stand, watch and listen in a couple of areas and see or hear where they were. It was tiring fishing but it meant I was on feeding fish and maximising my time when everyone else was asleep, I got into a routine of catching, taking my own pics, sleeping then possibly moving again that night, then repeating the cycle and no one knew what I was up to other than when they woke up in the morning and saw that I was gone. I could catch up on some sleep during the day when the fish had moved into their preferred daytime haunts, when not a lot would get caught. I enjoyed considerable success during my time on the lake fishing less than 80 nights in two seasons and catch over 120 fish from the lake many of which were 30lb plus with a good proportion over the magical 35lb mark along with 6 different forties including a brace of forties. The lake paid me back big time for the extra effort and sleepless nights and forged my approach for future campaigns.

    So to surmise, There are no hard or fast rules as to how weather/air pressure/ moon phases/angling pressure etc affects your venue and its residents, watercraft is an ever changing skill which is all about spending time bankside watching and listening and building a bank of experiences to draw on from swim to swim and venue to venue, as you get to know a venue or move to a new one, you bring or take your experiences with you and apply them in the scenario’s you encounter.
    Next time I will cover the tactics and methods I employ to ensure I am angling effectively and efficiently during my trips bankside.
    Wet sacks
    Ken beech



                           MY MOORLANDS DOUBLE 50 DREAM   
    Me and 8 other lads sat down over a curry and decided a trip to France was needed. With the talking done we decided Moorlands fishery would be our destination. With a few of the lads been to Moorlands a couple of times before, this would be my first visit so was good to get some info off them . We booked well in advanced as we were booking a exclusive booking , with over 19 months to wait till the day we start our journey , it soon come round . 25th August 2018-1st September 2018.
    The owner of Moorlands fisheries let’s anglers arrive on the Friday and bivvy up in the next field so you are fresh for the Saturday morning after the long journey. We took advantage of this and left early hours on the Friday morning ,this is
    where the trip starts , 3 vans ramed with kit and 9 lads buzzing to get there and to get started .
    At around 3pm France time we finally arrived at Moorlands and welcomed by the owner Keith Moors and family members with a nice cold beer, which went down very nicely after our journey. We all had a good walk around lake and seen showing fish ,lots of fizzing in many areas of the lake . Hour or 2 later we started the draw to pick swims . I came out 5th and chose a swim
    called “mistletoe” next to my good mate Dan Mclaven who chose “pampers”. I was happy with my swim choice and started to see fish show in my swim .
    Finally arrived in my swim “mistletoe” by the time I had set up it was almost dark , so the first night I only put 2 rods out and flicked them in the margins against some lily pads with a couple of handfuls of bait over both rods and then settled down for the night after a long day travelling .
    The next morning I woke up excited and couldn’t wait to get in to my waders and get out in to the to search for some spots to concentrate on and hopefully get them feeding over the spots.
    The lake bed is pretty uniform and silty but managed to find some slightly harder spots in the silt which I was really happy with and when feathering the lead down I was getting a nice “donk” as the lead hit the lake bed . Back on the bank I started to prepare my bait a bit more ,tying some pva mesh bags up and get some more rigs tied . I got all 3 rods set up on a running lead system and wafter hook baits on to my chosen rigs . A very simple and easy rig to tie at about 8 inches long.
    I chose to wade out in to the lake to bait my spots with a bait spoon . And also chose to wade
    out each rod and under arm cast them on to the baited areas .
    At the start of the trip we saw fish showing and fizzing in many areas but as we all got set up the fish had moved and was making it obvious that they were holding up In the main bowl at the dam wall end , lots of fizzing and crashing. It wasn’t long until the 2/3 swims facing in to the main bowl “pamper” “1st pontoon” “2nd pontoon “ started to produce really good fish and in numbers 30s 40s 50s and even a 60 which was amazing to see on the bank . A fish called “the half lin” coming in at over 67lb . And it was only Sunday.
    Even though I hadn’t caught yet I was still feeling confident and confident in my rigs and how I was applying my bait and the spots I was fishing on ,it was only Monday so still plenty of time. Dinner bell rings at 6pm every night, so reel in at around 5.45pm and we head up to the gravel bar for a home made meal, beer and a catch up with the other lads .
    Every night after dinner I was in my waders putting more bait back on my spots then wading out each rod 1 at a time so I’m bang on the money each time. Fresh hook baits on ,pva stick , “donk” as the lead hit the lake bed . Perfect!!
    My patience and effort was rewarded I managed to land with the help from my mate Dan next door in “pampers” I watched the fish slide in to my net as I looked in to the net , I seen the shoulders and depth of the fish . Its a big fish. A new PB in the name of “the pretty 1” weighing in at 53lb 12oz.
    A quick phone call to the owner Keith Moors to come and identify the fish and to do the weighing with his scales , sling and of course his camera . Keith does this with fish over 50lb no matter what time of day it is not just to identify but to keep a eye on the growth also.
    After having a few pictures with my new PB I stayed in the water with her while she recovered until she slowly moved off. What a buzz!!!!
    Fresh hook bait on and back in the water to get back on the spot and couple more handfuls of bait and time to put the kettle on , was no way I was getting back to sleep just yet.....still absolutely buzzing .I did manage to get a little bit of sleep but was back up ,with kettle on and watching the water and thinking about my capture . Breakfast time came round , Keith gives the option of breakfast in your swims or walk up to the gravel bar. This morning everyone chose to have breakfast up the gravel so we could have a good chat as well . Throughout Tuesday daytime and night time not a lot happened at all for me and seemed to be still holding up in the main bowl near the dam wall end. As I was still confident of another bite I was still walking my baits out and spooning it in and also under arm flicking my rig on to the spots one rod at a time in hope they would move off from the main bowl and start to feed again on my spots.
    Time to wake Dan up again. This fish felt different as it moving slowly and didn’t feel heavy . Dan grabbed his waders and my landing and heading out in to the lake . The fish was just under the surface and still moving slowly at first we thought it may have been a small cat fish, so was relieved when Dan confirmed it was a carp, as I carried on playing the fish I didn’t think it was a biggie but was a bite and it was a carp. The fish was ready and Dan scooped the fish in to the net . I asked Dan how big as he was looking in the net, is it a 20,30 or 40 hiss answer was “OH
    MY GOD THE SHOULDERS ON IT” it might be another PB, I started to shake.
    I got on the phone to Keith and woke him up again early hours of the morning to confirm the fish , weighing and take photos .
    ANOTHER NEW PB WEIGHING IN AT 53lb 15oz. A known as “Nemo” Beating my PB by 3oz.
    To have catch one 50 on this trip, I was happy but to get two 50s and to beat my pb twice.... wow!!!!

    Time do get back out in to the lake to get bait and rig back on the spot. And try and get some sleep .
    As the week was coming to a end it all went quiet for me and also the lads fishing in to the main bowl with only the odd fish coming out between them three, they had moved off and started showing them selves further on down the lake towards and down southern arm and three of the lads down that end had some results as well biggest being around 45lb. Saturday morning rolled round and it was time to pack up as we had to be out the swims by 9am as breakfast was being served and also it was change over day with a new set of lads coming on the lake . It was time to start the long journey home.

    What a trip ,what a venue and what stunning fish. Keith and family showed us great hospitality and we’re always there if we needed anything or help with something . I will definitely be returning to Moorlands fisheries in search of the even bigger residents that swim in Moorlands.
    Tight lines
    Mike Hearn



    I  was all geared up to do another session on the park lake as it was being so kind to me all the bait was ready all new rigs tied for the lake all i had to do the following morning was load the car, when i had a phone call saying that one of my syndicates was open not my main one but i was still happy that i could get away from the hustle and Bussell of the park lake even though it had fished well and still was with fish coming out over 30 lb, but my hart is always going to be on my syndicates, well that phone call has thrown a spanner in the works fishing on the syndicate is totally different to the park lake so all the bait went back in the freezer and a different mixture of bait was prepared ready for the morning, we that evening i sat there tying up different rigs as on the syndicate it was a different ball game when it comes to presentation the lake bottom is covered in silt, and i mean in some places its up to 4ft deep so i wanted to make sure that my rigs stayed on top and fishing all the time ,i had used solid bags to good effect so i was going to go in with that to start.

    Well i was up nice and early for the long drive to the lake i made i loaded the car and made a brew to take with me and i was of down the motorway, after what felt like eternity i final drove down the dirt track that lead to the gate, once i was at the gate my hart was racing in anticipation of how the session would go as i opened the gate and drove down to the car park i could see no one was there witch was a result, iam sure there will be a few tonight after work ,so i locked the car and took for a walk round the lake, well the lake is just a open expanse of water with reeds all the way round the edge of the lake and big trees around the bank for cover so you can imagine that the fish do love to pratol the margins so as i was walking round looking in all the swims i also kept a eye out in the edge

    for fish ,i climbed a few of the higher trees and could see that there was a good few fish in one corner of the lake witch was at the far end of the lake the lake isn't that big only about 9 acers so it doesn't take to long to walk round.

    Well seeing them fish made my mind up i was going to start in that corner and if nothing happens or the fish do the off ill have to move, well the barrow was loaded with all the gear and of i went to my swim there was no rush as there was still no one around, arriving at my swim witch was named the ghost witch i wasn't to pleased about why couldn't the fish be some were else lol i decided to set my gear up as far back from the edge of the swim as possible so if the fish did come right in close i wouldn't spook them of, once the house was up rods were all ready to go i sat back and made a brew and then i would decided were my baits were going to go as there is no features out in the lake its just flat with silt and the odd weed bed close in , well all three rods were going on solid back and in the bags bi would have a mixture of small dynamite pellets and a small white almond pop up then over the top of that i will be putting a spod mix witch consists of corn, hemp. And pigeon mix that is just to keep them interested in the area , tea had been drunk and it was now time to put the rods out but i decided to take a climb up the tree to see if i could see were they were patrolling in the area.

    Once i was up the tree and looking properly i could see that to my right there was a small weed bed coming of the reads for about 15 yards out and there was a few fish milling around that ,straight out at about 50 yards it looks like there was some fish feeding as the water was all coloured and there was some fish swimming around the cloud so that was two rods sorted the left had rod i was going to put down the left margin as there was a overhanging willow about 20 yards down the bank i took a mental note of were the fish were and climbed back down so i could put the rods out, the left had rod went out spot on first cast just under the tip of the willow the middle rod took two cast witch meant tying on a new solid bag and the right had rod again spot on tight up against the weed bank, I wasn't going to put any spod mix out just yet i would do that later for now i was just going to leave the bags on there own as i don't want to spook them of by smashing the water to a foam.

    Well once everything was sorted i sat back down at the back of my swim tucked away in the trees and made myself some breakfast as i was starving i put some mushrooms in the ridge monkey and them some bacon in the other ridge monkey and made myself a nice sandwich then washed it down with a nice hot brew all while watching the water well it must have been about 10 o'clock in the morning before i saw a fish crash out and it was nearly bang on my middle rod out were i had seen the cloudy area so i was well happy that i hadn't spooked them of with the two casts just as the ripples had stopped one of the members came walking though the trees into my swim, he was here for a couple of days to so we had a quick chat and a cuppa tea and i told him what i had seen and he then took of to have a look round and find a swim ,well i settled down in the chair to watch the water, well it looks like the other member had settled in a swim at the other end of the lake he must have seen some thing down there, while i was watching the water i decided to make up some fresh solid bags but i was going to change the hook bait for tonight i was going to take of the round 12mm round almond pop up and put on a 12mm barrel,.

    As the day due on a few more ppl turned up so hopefully it might move the fish around more if there up the other end, i had only seen that one fish during the day crash out i was hoping that they were still in the areas i decided to climb the trees behind me to have a look well once i was up there the cloudy area from this morning had gone and the water was gin clear so it looked like they had done the of from that area no i was thinking do i keep it there ready for the morning i decided that i would stay with that spot for the night the left hand rod was going to stay in the same area as well but when i looked the the right i saw a few fish milling around and feeding on top of some low lying weed, no what do i do with the right hand rod do i move it on to the weed or leave it just of it ,the fish don't seam to be moving of the weed ,but i no that the fish will be more combatable away from the the weed of a night but i might take the chance and put one on the weed so at least if they move back on it in the morning ill have a bait there i still have two other rods that will be ok for the night i no that the willow tree does bites of a night and so does open water so i was happy with them two for tonight, so i reeled in the rod that was near the weed bed i tied up a new bag and cast it onto the low lying weed were the fish were active during the day i left the other two were they were as i was happy with the spots that they were on.

    The sun was setting and i was sitting out side my shelter cooking tea when i had a couple of bleeps on the rod that was on the weed then a fish launched its self right out the water on my spot, now have i been done of had it just touched the line i didn't want to risk it so i turned my tea of and re done the rod then sat back down to have my tea i just hopped i hadn't spooked the fish of, well as it got dark i sat there watching the water with a cup of tea hoping to see some signs of fish but i didn't see or hear anything well into darkness so i decided to get my head down as i wanted to be up at the crack of dawn but i hoped to be u[p before then, well lets just say i had a good nights sleep not even a bleep ,so i was awake just as it was getting light and was sitting on my chair with a nice steaming hot brew looking for signs ,and i see a few but it was on the other side of the lake near a few others and nothing near me so had i made a mess of things by staying here i don't no the fish were here yesterday so they might turn back up today ill give it till about 3 if they don't come back then ill move before the overnight gang turn up later well i sat there for a few hours and i see nothing on my side but the sun had come over the trees now and was hitting myside of the lake so this should warm up the water over my spots and bring the carp with it.

    After i had some brekkie i decided to climb the tree behind the swim to see if i could see any fish well once i was up there i could see a group of about 10 fish all around the area of the rod that was cast on to the weed i stayed up the tree for about a hour and i could see two fish that were happy to swim over or near my bait so all i needed was for one of them top drop down and i would be in, i climbed back down and sat there just watching the water and tying up a few new rigs ,i redone the rod that was near the willow with a fresh rig but left the other two i would do them later if i stayed here well i was glad i did when about an hour later the rod that was ontop of the low lying weed melted of i dropped the cuppa i was drinking at the time and ran to the rod as i picked up the rod it torr of out into the lake i dropped the middle rod to get the line out of the way and tried to get some control of this power house of a fish after a while i managed to get

    some line back on my reel from the fish but it started to kite towards the willow so i put some strain on it and turned it away from there but there was a lot of weed on my line now that it had picked up on the way in so i had to be careful well a few minutes later i had the fish in the margins and it was using the deep margins to full effect but after a few gulps of air she slipped in the net and she was mine, i was well chuffed as it was one of the scaly ones big scales down its side ,i made sure the fish was safe in the net in the edge and got all my stuff ready for the photos, well on the scales she went 28lb 10oz a few photos and i slipped her back as it was getting really warm now.

    I re done that rod with a new bag and cast it back on top of the weed ready for another if they were still thereafter that fish i decided to stay put i was going to try some thing different on the rod that was near the willow i was going to put a Ronnie rig on with a yellow almond flavour pop up and bait it with mixed sizes of my almond flavoured boilie the rig was cast close to the tree and i used the rings that it made to get the bait spot on then sat down to just chill out and hope that what i have done would get me another bite one of the A team would be nice that evening a few of the members walked round for a chat and to see what was happening as they were down the weekend i told them what i had seen and what the fish were doing and they went of to look round, one of the lads that fish here was coming down for the night and was going to bring a Chinese in so i didn't have to cook witch was a result as i couldn't be bothered well after we had scanned our tea he decided to set up in the next swim witch was about 200 yards down from me witch i though was ok as i needed a camera man lol well i did the same as the night before and got my head down early so i was up first thing well i didn't get that good nights sleep like the night before because at about midnight the rod i had changed to a bottom bait tour of and i was soon on it now this fish was talking line like the other but straight down the margins it was that dark that i couldn't see were it was going all i new was that there was a big willow down there and i had cast close to it so it must be right under it so i thought ive got to stop this fish before it goes any further well i clamped down on it and yes you guessed it the bloody hook pulled i was gutted i reeled the rig back then changed the rig and cast it back out there with some bait round it and

    got back in my bag to sulk well i must have drifted of as when i opened my eyes again it was light and the sun was up shit what was the time it was eight o'clock i had to be away from the lake for 10 so i made a slow pack down all i left was the rods witch i would do last, I climbed the tree to see what was out there and i looked all over the swim and there was nothing to see not last yesterday were there was a big group of fish here o well at least i had one it could have been better but that's fishing i climbed back down packed the rods away as there was nothing there and made my way home but i couldn't wait to get back down so lets see what happens next time i down

    be lucky







    Hi all David Johnstone hear Wednesday saw the first day back for my kids so was only right as soon as they were dropped off I rushed home to grab my gear and get out the door , loaded the car up and decided il go to a small lake called home lake at float fish farm for a bit of fun . Not been there for a year and knowing they had put a few new fish in there a couple of months back you never no what your going to get but apon arrival I found the few good spots that have a few features in front to be taken  so decided to go into the far corner on peg 5 . Now it's a high bank and I hadn't the wind on my back but as soon as I was putting the bank sticks in I see the fish along the margin where there was no wind so quickly set up my rods using the taska core2ero leader that I found very easy to splice and is super strong

    I fished both rods each side of the margin with standard hair rigs one with the new test bait from Lancashire carp baits bb and the other there pnc , straight away my right rod ripped off to what I found after a good fight to be a grass carp then as soon as I put the fish back after a bit of treatment my left rod shot off to a common , but had in total almost 30 fish 5 being grass carp 2 koi and some lovely mirrors , all going to be stunning fish when there bigger I can see why match fisherman and women have fun catching so many was great for a bit of fun but this weekend I'm tackling one of there harder lakes hoping a named fish called kimmy blesses my net and the lake in question is have unfinished business shall we say , tight lines all and regards David Johnstone