I've been entertaining myself reading some old carp literature, particularly Rod Hutchinson's Carp Now and Then, which is really two books in one. It is where he first makes mention of the "un-explained" occurrences in his angling - those to which I referred in my previous post. Reading through the various chapters I was amazed to see a diagram of back-leading as a deliberate method of keeping the line pinned to the bottom of a fishery (as opposed to a method to eliminate boats and sail-boards catching your lines) - way back in 1988. What I was looking for was some of that old bait stuff; Rod was really a pioneer of much of the bait development during this period of massive change. There is a guest chapter by Tim Paisley - a guy who I never got on with - which is superbly written and researched, yet has absolutely no place within the pages of carp angling book. For anyone to properly offer constructive critique this stuff needed to be published in New Scientist where educated professionals would have been able discuss the merits of Tim's theories - not a bunch of hairy-arse carp anglers! Amino acids? Enzymes, water PH and umpteen other variables, none more so than temperature, a mind-blowing combination of factors with infinite variation. I did tell him this at the time - although I was in the company of the two Mitch's and Cuddles and, therefore very likely in a less than complimentary manner?
There is so much superb information contained within this book; luckily most of it now long forgotten as to be of no interest to the new kids on the block. Why would they use chick peas (at 75p/pack) when they can pay £13.50/kilo for shop brought boilies? Oh yeah, the peas have to be soaked and boiled, possibly flavour and colour would be required, so they (the modern angler) can't be arsed. I use massive amounts of hemp (which I prepare myself) during a season, apart from my predator fishing, it is my first choice attractor for all species. I only rarely use it as a hook bait, purely due to the size of the individual particles. Reading through Rod's thoughts has rekindled my interest in other particle baits, some of which are now banned? Peanuts and Tiger-nuts were always a good bet, but are now frowned upon by the majority of fisheries - yet there's loads of others to explore.
I've copied a diagram of what Rod describes as a "Wind-beater set-up" - almost identical to the one I will be using for my sessions during April. I do, however, have one little addition which is purely a personal preference and throw back to the Stanborough days. I incorporate a line clip, directly above the open spool, so nothing particularly radical.
At Fujifilm SIS we have a phrase "Don't look back, look forward" As a business ethos it works incredibly well. For me, as an individual, the whole point of my life's journey is to use past experiences to influence my decision making, thus I am very happy to look back in order to shape my future!