A Chilly Start To the Spring on a Cambridgeshire Stillwater March 2013

15 Jul 16

Its been extremely cold lately but after a couple of enjoyable rod bending trips to Chestnut Pool I think it was time to fish for something a little more serious. About half hour drive from my home in Cambridgeshire there’s a small stillwater of about 2 acres that contains some very good looking carp and they’re not too small either! I had last fished the lake back in 2009 and on the first trip managed to fluke a nice 30lb mirror from the margins and I’m now informed by a few friends that they have grown a little larger in the years gone by. This would be a great place to have a bash on until my ticket started on the big pit close to my home later on in April.

My first trip in mid February was on a particularly cold day but I already knew roughly where to head with my gear as I’d had a look up a tree a few days previously when the sun was up and spotted half a dozen carp milling around near a reed bed. I’d just arrived at the chosen swim when a common just poked its nose out near the reed bed, happy days I thought! It was obvious where to position a couple of rods against the reeds and didn’t take long to underarm flick a couple of Tutti Fruttis out there.


Not much else happened during the day after that except what looked like the same common poking its nose out several more times around the same area, just to wind me up while I sat there sipping a cup of tea. It was a bloody cold day and right on dusk when I was thinking of packing up the right hand rod let out a few bleeps and the bobbin dropped right back to the floor. Quickly winding down I met some resistance and a little bit of head shaking but the fight was soon over with a nice looking common in the net. At just over 20lb she made a pleasant end to a bitter day and I packed up and went home feeling fairly happy, eager to get back down again soon.

Good Start

The weather over the next couple of weeks didn’t improve much and the next couple of day sessions didn’t produce anything despite the good start I’d had on the first trip. The most activity I noticed was the reeds constantly knocking all day long, so they hadn’t moved far even though baits fished tight to the reeds failed to produce a nibble! On another day session planned at the end of February I headed straight for the reeds again, and once again as I was setting up a nice common boshed out. Happy days again or so I thought! Fishing for the next couple of hours produced nothing even though the reeds were still bashing all over the place!

Becoming a little fed up with the lack of action by about lunch time I decided to wind in and have a little wander around as I was beginning to realise whatever fish were in the reeds weren’t interested in anything I had to offer! A quick climb up a tree down the bottom of the lake and it didn’t take too long to realise I was in totally the wrong spot as a couple of decent mirrors came drifting into a tiny bay in about 2 feet of water. As always when you spot a couple of carp in an area when you spend a little longer looking you start to notice a few more, with there been about 6 or 7 mooching around on this particular occasion. There was a narrow gap about 2 metres wide where the fish were going in and out of this bay and looked a perfect spot to set a trap for them. I rushed back to the reed swim to get my gear, eager to get down the bottom and do some proper fishing now I’d actually found some fish that looked catchable.

Its easy to move swims with this little gear.

Keeping quiet and using tiny 1.5oz leads I managed to position a rod in front of the gap and another just 5 metres further round the bay to the left. A few broken boilies scattered over each rod finished the traps. Now it was just a case of putting the kettle on and waiting for a nibble. It really did look good as I was sitting behind the rods with a cup of tea watching and waiting for something to happen, getting that unmistakable feeling that a bite is coming your way.

My gut feeling was spot on as the right hand rod in front of the gap ripped off  sending me scrambling after it through the mud to connect with an angry mr carp. After a short but exciting battle a pretty mirror rolled over the net cord making the move down the bottom well worth it! Just over 26lb she went, so a couple of quick self takes as it was getting dark were in order, and I was bloody frozen after the pics were done! I had only just flicked the rod back out, sat down for a cuppa and the left rod was away this time but as soon as I picked it up I could tell it was a small one. Really hard fighting, it put up a better scrap than the mirror but only weighed about 12lb! A typical scrappy little common.

Happy Days!

By this time it was practically pitch black and time to pack up, but at least I had something to smile about on the drive home. I would be mega keen to get back down next week and give this spot another bash, and that’s exactly what I did but I’ll save that story for my next blog entry!

Until next time, Be Lucky!


St Ives Tackle