The Malc Rooker Column

The Malc Rooker column

FEB 98

March draws near and the end of the traditional English season isn't far away,
February has seen some very unseasonably warm weather here in the UK but the fishing has been very slow on some waters, while others have produced some very big fish, hopefully the last two or three weeks of the season will see the carp on the feed with a vengeance.

Abroad things have been different with a new world record carp from Romania, It`s weight was 81lb from lake Raduta. Another fish reported from Romania was 75lbs plus, is this country going to become the place to be?

Manor Farms Amphibian has been landed at 42lb 12oz by Nash bait boss Gary Bayes, one of the nicest looking fish around. Martin Clarke landed two thirties in a weekend session on a southern lake.

Moving to France a number of big fish have been landed over the winter, a 53 from Les Quis, 48 from cassien, further forties from les Quis, which must be one of the best of the French all provided trips to be on, book early for next year.

I have been asked about some waters so I will try to add some information at time to time, this month it is Orchid Lakes turn from Oxfordshire England.
The lakes came into the ownership of well known angler Marsh Pratley about a year ago and he has quickly made improvements to access and fish stockings. There is even a trailer available to get all of your tackle to your chosen swim and a photograph service where , whatever time of day or night he will come out and photo any fish over thirty pounds for the lucky angler.
There are three lakes on the site, Dorchester Lagoon at nearly 40 acres which has had many small carp added to It`s existing stocks as well as a large amount of other fish, carp have already been landed to nearly 39lbs, but Dorchester Lagoon has been the focus of many anglers looking for the very large carp rumored to swim there.
Orchid Lake is about 18 acres and is well stocked with plenty of small fish as well as a good head of carp. At least 14 different thirties are known at the moment and a best fish (common) of 41 lb 2oz.
The club lake is small at about two acres but has plenty of fish of all kinds including catfish to about thirty pounds, it can be booked for match fishing as well.
If you want to give it a try the prices are on Orchid or the Lagoon 15 for 24 hours while the club lake is 5 a day. You can get more information from Marsh at MPRATLEY@AOL.COM

A few new items of tackle from the Fox trade show that might be of interest to you all, a new bivvy? That must be about fifty to chose from. New swingers are the most interesting items, they work just the same but there is an electrical connection to your alarm which causes the swinger head to light up on a take. Don`t rush out to buy them though unless you have Fox alarms which have two jack plug sockets, they will not work apparently unless you have this set up.

Mistral Baits have some new pellets on sale, unusually they can be used as a quickly dissolving pellet or boiled for a short time to make a boilie pellet. If past baits have been anything to go by plenty more fish will fall to Mistrals baits this coming year.

Moving on with my monthly history lesson. This starts the more modern era where carp were more easily found and a double was caught quite easily?
I spent some of my hard earned money on an even bigger motorbike and started travelling further afield, Bedfordshire waters were my hang out now, Arlesley Lake, and a small water which has gained fame in recent years as Withy Pool under Kevin Maddocks ownership were visited, and this was where I started to hear of more and more waters holding carp. Soon I was having two weeks holiday in Kent at a small club water which did hold big carp.
On my first trip I landed ten doubles, I was soon on the phone and writing letters to all my carp fishing friends telling them of my good luck. Doesn't sound much in these days but it was an enormous catch for me then. I was travelling down every weekend, a 280 mile round trip on a motorbike carrying all my tackle and passing through London on a Friday tea time was murder, but I wanted a twenty so badly.
Baits were changing quickly now, specials were in, paste baits, sausage meat mixed up with a meat stock cube and flour gave me the confidence over part boiled potato.
I learned how to make an electric alarm with a set of points from a car distributor and I owned two matching rods as well as spare ones. A small quickly erected piece of canvas kept some of the rain out, and I was still waiting for a twenty.
It came after nearly a full season on the water, which was split over two seasons though. My fancy electric alarm didn't work but the line streaming out did wake me up, it didn't feel big until it was under my feet in the margins, it could have been me though being a little scared of the size of it. Some one netted it for me and after weighing and unhooking it I posed for the first of many photographs with a twenty. Safely returned I set off for a celebration lap of the pool. As usual after all that time trying a second followed on the very next visit . Both fish were mirrors and only just over that magic twenty pound mark. This was also my last visit here, pastures new were calling, it was also the first time that I noticed a trend with my fishing and waters visited. As soon as I think that I have worked out a way of catching the resident carp I want to move on again where there is a new challenge, and a different carp to catch. I have never been able to work out the angler that fishes one water for years and years and doesn't want to move on to a new challenge.
New waters came and went again, even trips back to the electricity cut at Peterborough which was more for the memories as the hot water no longer flowed out of the power station. Eight or nine years went like this, more twenties and my personal best went up to over 28lbs and a new revolution was on the horizon, paste baits had been worked on and included all sorts of ingredients and flavours, milk shake flavours, cake mix flavours, every one had their secret. baits.
Boiled baits (boilies) were to make a big difference to catches, bream and tench were no longer a problem to our side hooked baits. A size two hook pushed through the side of a fifteen mm boilie with the point as proud as you could get it were the tactics for our more wary quarry now. a new problem now showed up, you couldn't hit the runs, well not easily because you had to strike as hard as you could to strike the hook out of the bait and into the carps mouth..
Most of my time was spent with inventing the perfect indicators, long swing tips seemed to be best but only resulted with a small percentage of fish on the bank, then rumors of a new way of bait presentation came to my ears none of which I believed, it was of course the hair rig, and a new era once more changed carp fishing for me.

As I write this news is coming in of a big winter common from Orchid lakes 39lbs 4oz which is a big common called Arnie. the captor was Pete Holehouse.

As usual feel free to E mail me with any questions or any news worthy items, or even dishing the dirt out on a friend!

The Malc Rooker column

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