Who am I?

My photo
An individual, of no great importance, who is unable to the see the natural world as a place for competition, that was until Covid-19 intervened!. I catch fish, watch birds, derive immense pleasure from simply looking at butterflies, moths, bumble-bees, etc - without the need for rules! I am Dylan and this is my blog - if my opinions offend? Don't bother logging on again - simple!


Sunday, 5 August 2018

Searching for an edge

Benno, Luke and I had a short evening session, out on the marshes, today. None of us caught a fish, although I got turned over at least three times! Small fish - big hooks? We were at a new venue; one which offers much scope for exploration and experiment. What little information we have been able to glean suggests that there is a decent stock of carp, maximum size unknown, but also healthy populations of bream and tench (and some decent pike! - so something to think about later in the year).

Only room for one rod in this tight swim
My desire to use the split canes has ensured that these iconic pieces of angling history were pressed into service and, once again, became central in the conversation with two other anglers we encountered. I think that we all agreed that this particular drain system isn't capable of providing the carp I so desire, but has plenty of scope to offer a challenge worthy of pursuing. Wild carp, of these wilderness sites, are so much more attractive than the boily munching "mud pigs" of the commercials and club waters that provide the sport for so many of today's carp anglers. There does seem to be a common mind-set amongst the anglers fishing these remote drains. It is about unlocking the code, overcoming the obstacles, to finally land a fish that has probably never seen a hook before. This is Marco Polo carp angling - going where no man has been before. Not, for one minute, do I think that I've actually cast into a virgin swim, but feel pretty confident that I'm part of an extraordinarily small number of anglers to have placed a bait in such positions.

Not too much scope for misplaced bait positioning - any surprise I get pissed off when a
Beaver wipes me out?
Location is key, always has been in every angling challenge I've ever been involved with, and this new system is no different. However, as it does hold a decent stock of carp finding them isn't as much of a challenge as locating the better fish. The recent weather has done little to assist our cause, as abundant, thick, rafts of floating algae and weed are present along the entire system. Brilliant for fish to skulk, undetected, under, but a right pain to discover places to present a rig with any confidence. Chods and Ronnie rigs are the way forward, although there might be scope for some surface action given  the right conditions?


  1. Do I recognise that top photo. I swear I even know that tree!. If so, I have seen a few big Carp in there over the years (15lb+) I would say with no problem. I look forward to seeing how your adventure unfolds.

    1. I must have missed you yesterday morning, but I did bump into John Tilbrooke, who was looking for your Pied Fly? I too have seen some reasonable carp on both sides of the railway line. How long before I see a Beaver? Not sure how long I'm going to stick with this section of the drain, but will certainly be back in the winter to have a bash for the pike.

  2. Exciting stuff. I'm with you, Dylan. These lightly trod waters are fascinating- and so much more worthy than the 'circuit' waters, for want of a better phrase. Solitude, amazing wildlife and uncaught fish. What more is there?! I've got three places to check out this coming autumn. My main focus will be perch, but I'd love a carp if the opportunity arose. One of these 'farmland ferals' is worth countless stockies… Good Luck, Gazza

    1. Gazza,
      This population of carp is relatively well known to a section of anglers, the majority of whom have no idea where to start. If they do turn up, they are armed with the same kit that they'd use on Westbere or Gigantica! Launching boilies to the horizon has no place in these environments and quite what they are thinking introducing huge amounts of bait demonstrates a complete lack of watercraft and/or experience away from their comfort zone venues. It's little wonder that they soon admit defeat and head back to whence they came. Centrepins and split canes are the tools for these intimate venues, particles being far more effective in my experience, although a pop-up presented over the top or even a drilled pellet with a buoyant fake corn tipper, can definitely provide a bite on occasions. Lots to think about over the coming few weeks. My first carp will be hard earned. Take care and tight lines - Dyl