Catch fish with Mike Ladle.

Catch Fish with
Mike Ladle


Information Page

For anyone unfamiliar with the site always check the FRESHWATER, SALTWATER and TACK-TICS pages. The Saltwater page now extends back as a record of over four years of (mostly) sea fishing and may be a useful guide as to when to fish. The Freshwater stuff is also up to date now. I keep adding to both. These pages are effectively my diary and the latest will usually be about fishing in the previous day or two. The Tactics pages which are chiefly 'how I do it' plus a bit of science are also updated regularly and (I think) worth a read (the earlier ones are mostly tackle and 'how to do it' stuff so if you are new to fly fishing or spinning these are the ones for you).

22 May 2009.

Reluctant carp.

Following the marked improvement in the weather this week (drier, warmer and less windy) I expected that the carp would have livened up a bit. I bagged up a few cubes of crust and set off with high hopes of catching some nice fish. However, at the first place I tried I could see that the writing was on the wall. I lobbed a crust out so that the line hung over a reed and waited. The silver fish began to knock my bait about. I never mind this 'bait stealing, too much because I think that it usually attracts the attention of any carp. Not today!

I watched and waited for a while then I flicked a couple of free offerings into other likely spots (usually a sign of desperation for me) and waited some more. Apart from the nibbling tiddlers - nothing! I didn't even see a carp nor indeed did I see any movement of reeds or lilies. I shifted round to another spot and the story was the same - absolutely nothing doing.

I changed lakes and this time I could see that there were fish there. In a sunny corner a number of dark shadowy forms were drifting about just under the surface. Again I cast my bread upon the waters. Again zilch! I shifted along to where I could actually see one or two carp. Instead of casting to them I plonked the bait into the edge of the reeds with the line draped over a stem. I threw in a couple of spare crusts - nothing went near them. By now time was marching on and my attention was beginning to wander a bit. It must have wandered even more than I thought because the first thing I noticed was the rod trying to plunge through the bankside brambles and into the lake. I grabbed it and sure enough a carp was hooked. Did it scrap! I could see that it was no monster, perhaps seven or eight pounds, but it tore about like a mad thing and it took me minutes before I could bring it to the net. After taking a couple of pictures I rolled it over the edge of the net and back into the water. Honour was satisfied.

Why had I struggled to get bites? I can only think that it must be something to do with the time of the year. Perhaps the fish are thinking about spawning and are less easily distracted by the sight of a lump of bread. There's always something to think about when you're fishing.


There were quite a few fish in and around these reeds but they were not very keen to feed.

Got one.

My hard battling carp is in the net so I can relax a bit

No great size.

Only a smallish fish but in good nick and nciely coloured.