Catch fish with Mike Ladle.

Catch Fish with
Mike Ladle


Information Page

Freshwater Fishing

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 several 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. As you see I also add the odd piece from my friends and correspondents if I've not been doing much. 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).

Water lilies.

After the successful carp fishing session mentioned on the previous page I couldn't resist another go. I cut two thick slices of bread ('splits' from my local baker - not so good to eat but tough baits) into big cubes of crust, popped them into a poly bag and away I went.

I didn't have long to fish but I'd learned a lot on the previous trip and opted to concentrate just on the lily pads. I baited my strong barbless size 6 hook with a crust and watched for sign of shuddering or twitching lily leaves. As soon as I saw some movement (it never took more than a minute or two) I swung my bait beyond the disturbance and drew it back to one of the gaps between the closely spaced leaves. The crust now lay in the water and the line was draped across the leaves between me and the bait.

Invariably the same thing happened. Within a short time there would be signs of life under the lilies. Occasionally the little rudd would find the bait and give it a few pecks but before they could do much damage there would be a much bigger disturbance and shortly a big pair of lips would appear and suck in the crust. Once or twice I made the mistake of lifting the rod too soon and made no contact but generally the line would tighten and the rod would whang over as a carp was hooked.

Now came the tricky bit. If I had room I would back up keeping the line tight until my fish was hauled out of its refuge into open water. If I managed this the rest was easy and I had time to extract the camera from my bag and take a couple of pictures before netting or unhooking the carp. As I say I missed two or three bites and I lost one good fish which managed to transfer the hook to a lily stem after plunging strongly away (the line didn't break and I got the hook back). The other four carp I 'landed' or unhooked at the bankside. All were estimated to be between eight and fourteen pounds so for an hour's fishing, thirty pence worth of bait and no lost tackle I considered it to be a satisfactory session. I'll try to go again before my holiday.

If you have any comments or questions about fish, methods, tactics or 'what have you!' get in touch with me by sending an E-MAIL to -


This was the first fish taken within five minutes of my first cast.

- another.

I netted this one because I was on a bit of high bank and couldn't reach down to slide the hook out.


The bit of lily pad attached to the line shows how I was fishing.

The last one.

Another decent common.  I think the one I lost was bigger.