The days rain was just clearing and the skies began to clear as I rolled the car in to the car park. Round the lake there was not much to show so I set up in the same swim I caught from the week before. Once again I set up with a three boilie rig with a size four hook. I fired out a big bed of trout pellets and boilies around the overhanging trees to the left and right and cast out.

The evening passed pleasantly enough but once the sun set the temperature dropped and a dew soon settled on the top of the oval shelter. By midnight it was more like February than May and the flat calm surface of the lake remained unbroken. As dawn broke though the left hand rod received some action as the line tightened and a few feet of line was taken off the baitrunner. It certainly was not a catfish and sure enough when I struck I connected with the thud thud of a tench. It did not feel like a particularly big tench either and within a minute it was in the net. In the water I had trouble even seeing it, however as my eyes adjusted to the gloom I found it was a thin female tench of perhaps 6lb. I slipped the hook out and let it go without taking it from the water and sat looking out across the lake. A large swirl appeared a few yards up the lake as a catfish took its breakfast. With renewed optimism I stayed another couple of hours before packing up slowly, a little dissapointed.

Later in the week I went along to one of my old lakes for a meeting, I was thinking of getting back in the committee but the meeting brought back dim and distant memories of how complex and complicated running an angling club is. I wandered round the lake slowly, admiring the peace and tranquility, in contrast to the hour preceeding it with the ‘discussions’. The lake is a pretty one which holds fond memories of ten, or maybe nearly twenty years ago now, of perfect golden common carp, of moonlit tranquil nights, of wonderful mild breezy winter nights, most of all of screaming buzzers and superb unspoilt carp fishing. Progress though is relentless and the ‘tidying’ that most clubs feel they have to do to their lakes have made it just a shadow of its former self. To those who only know of recent times of course it is a wonderful place, to me it has lost its soul.

The evening was spent in the pub with an old mate Rick. We have spent some great angling times at the big estate lake I fished last summer and we remembered stories and carp over a few beers, whilst also keeping an eye on Arsenal putting the world to rights, by making sure Man Utd ended the season empty handed. Oh dear, what a shame!

Rick had been to the lake the day before and seen some big fish in the growing weed, his stories sounded too good to miss out on. The next day I went over there and I too found the carp up the far end of the lake, in amongst the blanket weed. The commons were impressive, built like barrels. I had caught two last autumn, a 28lber and one a pound lighter, there were bigger ones in there though.

As I watched, a big mirror came in to view, it was just as big as the biggest common. As I watched I could see it was shorter but as both turned towards me I saw it was wider, if the common was just under 30lb, this mirror was just over. Oh, how I wanted that one in my photo album. I had taken some floaters with me and I flicked a few out. Initially they ignored them, then curiosity seemed to overcome them and the biggest common lifted it’s head and took two in one mouthful. The mirror then joined in and three more smaller fish came over. Before long I had six carp feeding well. I hoped that come June 16th they would be just as keen.

I sat on the grass and watched as the carp contnued their feeding; before they slowly melted away. I wandered around the rest of the lake but did not find any more carp. Up the dam end of the lake the cool wind was making it’s presence felt, summer seemed miles away. I hope the weather warms up soon, those distant hot sunny days seem now just a distant memory.

Have fun!