Blog Posts by Michael Wickens
1 session, 4 personal bests
1 session, 4 personal bests
After my first successful night on a large water (previous
blog (despite the lack of tench)) I was back, hopefully to catch one of the
tench residing in the lake this time, but the carp and bigger bream would be
most welcome too.
Arriving around 3pm on the Friday of the long bank holiday weekend, I bravely set my brolly system up facing into the wind on the dam wall, in hope that the fish would be following it. After a few casts of the marker float I managed to locate a harder patch on the bottom encircled by thick sludgey silt at a range of about 60 yards. This was the spot where I would put a lot of bait out, and ‘sit it out' waiting for the fish to find the bait and come to me. My spod mix was made up of 10mm Plum and Black Pepper boilies, chopped Nutty boilies, chopped custom designed boilies (off of our website), our carpet feed, chilli hemp and an old tench favourite of maggots, fishing an18mm Nutty boilie over the top, ‘butterfly' presented. On the left hand rod I decided to go with a very different approach, fishing a 14mm Nutty boilie, but this time to dense bank side cover, then baiting the area with a good spread of around 40 boilies. Twice daily, I topped up both spots; the left spot with 20 boilies and the mid water spot with 6 spods.
Soon enough I had a fight on my hands, but disaster struck
as the fish did it's all to get into the snags, resulting in a hook pull. Not
the start I had hoped for, but not wanting to knock my confidence I got the rig
back out and topped up the swim with a few more baits. Just 35 minutes later at
11.30pm the same rod ripped off, but this time I was even more determined not
to be beaten. As the fight went on I was puzzled as to what it was, but after a
good fight I banked my first ever Roach/Bream hybrid, beating the club's record
by nearly 2lb! Despite being part Bream, the Roach in the fish seemed to give
it the characteristics to fight well, at 5lb 12oz my first fish of the session
was a good one. Throughout the night the inevitable happened, and I landed four
small bream from the mid water area, so I decided to lay off the particles and
just feed boilies, since the tench didn't seem to be interested in it anyway.
The night also produced a small common of around 9lb.
Come the morning and I banked another personal best, a tench at 5lb 6oz from the mid-water spot, making me very happy, since it was a good start to the 6lber that I am targeting. As the second night grew closer the conditions looked pretty much spot on, and I was very confident of a few more fish throughout the night. With the prediction set, I had a positive take, but again, I had a hook pull as the fish struggled to tangle me up in the protruding scaffolding. Despite now losing two fish to this spot, I put the rod back out in the same spot as they were clearly feeding there, probably due to the cover providing sanctuary for them. At the dead of night of 3.30, I had a screamer of a run.
Jumping from my bed hair in my slumber I hit the left hand
rod, but looked down in a daze wondering why my alarm was still singing away,
soon realising I had hit the wrong rod (I had a good laugh at myself once
my brain was functioning properly). The fish was on and it was kiting right,
peeling line off the spool at a right rate, but by gently tensioning the clutch
and using the full bend of my 2.25lb Daiwa graphite coil rods I managed to turn
the fish, and slowly ease it towards the net. Soon enough I had yet another
personal best on the mat, a common weighing in at 15lb 6oz. I was over the moon
with this fish for several reasons. Firstly the obvious one, it being a
personal best, secondly the fish may have never been caught and was in perfect
condition with not a single mark on it, even the mouth, and thirdly the
spodding of particles at 60 yards had paid off!
As the last day and night went on there was very little
signs of fish, and I received no more interest on either rods, but I went
through the usual routine of baiting the swims, and on the last morning at 10am
as I packed up my gear, the mid water rod produced yet
another personal best, another tench at 5lb 7oz, drawing me every closer to
What a session, one not to forget in a hurry that's for
To end the article I'm going to give you my top 3 tench
1. Tackle up suitably, but sensibly. I went for light carp rods to both allow long distance casting, and to handle any big carp that decided to play ball. 8lb mainline and light braided hook links suit this set-up perfectly.
2. Never underestimate the size of Tench's mouths. They can be just as greedy as carp and love a big hook bait.
Treat fishing for them very similarly to carp, although
tone everything down slightly, such as rigs, line, rods, baiting etc.
Tight lines… Michael Wickens