Des Tay­lor’s

Di­ary of a Coun­try­man

Angling Times (UK) - - WELCOME -

AMIXED week for me, with plenty of highs and a few lows – but that’s life for ev­ery­one, isn’t it? Here’s how it went…


Drop shot­ting from my boat with Ed­die Tay­lor from South­port. He took to it like a duck to wa­ter. Us­ing lures and walk­ing the worm, he caught 15 perch to nearly 2lb.

Sure, he missed a lot of takes in the morn­ing when he held a drop shot rod for the first time, but that’s the same for ev­ery­one.

Drop shot­ting looks a sim­ple method to mas­ter, but to do it prop­erly you have to get the ba­sics right, in the right or­der. Ed­die has been an an­gler for many years, and we en­joyed telling one an­other our tales from the bank.


A de­liv­ery of freezer baits from Bait Box, which I soon had stored neatly in my large bait freezer.

I have a freezer for carp and coarse fish and an­other for sea and preda­tor fish­ing. It’s im­por­tant to be or­gan­ised, es­pe­cially when you fish so many dif­fer­ent meth­ods which all need sep­a­rate baits.

Some­times I may de­cide to go fish­ing the evening be­fore, af­ter the tackle shops have shut, so I have to be able to put my hands on the bait I want straight away.


A re­ally nice day’s drop shot­ting from my boat with a dozen perch, a small jack pike and even a very small bream caught walk­ing the worm.

To be hon­est, I spent loads of time just boat­ing up and down the river, look­ing at the echo-sounder and dis­cov­er­ing the con­tours of the river.

There are so many moored boats and land­ing stages in this area that it will take all sea­son to fish these marks, let alone those out in the main flow.

Although I have never caught a 4lb perch from the Sev­ern I have come close at 3lb 13oz and I’ve had more than a hun­dred ‘threes’, but I feel con­fi­dent that a big fish is on the cards at any time.


Gear prep for a guide day Mon­day and then down south on Tues­day on a carp lake, fol­lowed by Wed­nes­day on the River Test at Tims­bury Fish­ery and an­other guide day Thurs­day. Life is in the fast lane at the mo­ment!


Took broth­ers Chaz and Tom Reeves carp fish­ing, and they had a ball. Both caught per­sonal bests, both had a laugh and both learned enough to go away and catch a few big ones by them­selves.

Chaz and Tom are good mates as well as broth­ers, and that showed on the bank. I al­ways have a good day out with these guys. Back in the house, I loaded the car for to­mor­row in readi­ness for an early start at 5am.


Picked up my mate Ray Cut­ler at 4.50am for the long drive down to Sus­sex and a meet with Cliff Brown. Cliff is a fly an­gler who also does a bit of coarse fish­ing. He has a pool that con­tains some old English carp, and he’d ‘hired’ me like a gun­slinger to go down and show him how to catch them.

We ar­rived at the pool at 8.15am

af­ter crawl­ing along the M25 for an hour. How peo­ple travel on there ev­ery day I just do not know!

All that was for­got­ten as soon as I set eyes on the pool. It looked like Red­mire – sur­rounded by trees, with weep­ing wil­lows on the op­po­site bank, and to top it all Cliff had hot ba­con and egg sarnies ready for us on ar­rival – top bloke!

I set up with Cliff in one swim while Ray set up fur­ther along the bank, and within five min­utes we had a take on my rods from a mir­ror of about 12lb. Well, I have

caught big­ger carp but I have never caught a bet­ter look­ing carp.

These fish had been in this old lake for many years and were what we call ‘old English’ carp. I en­joy catch­ing mod­ern ‘lumps’, but there’s some­thing spe­cial about the old ones. Be­tween us we caught seven carp and pulled out of an­other. All the fish were ex­actly the same – in pris­tine con­di­tion.

Cliff was a de­light­ful host – it was one of those days that fish­ing re­ally is all about. We left at 4.15pm for the jour­ney to Rom­sey in Hamp­shire that should have taken two hours but be­cause of a crash on the M27 we didn’t ar­rive un­til 8.30pm. To say I was knack­ered would be an un­der­state­ment!

Any­way, we went straight to the lo­cal In­dian and af­ter a nice meal and a cou­ple of beers we knew all would be fine. Wrong! Ray and I ate the same meal, and it tasted great, but in the night both of us had the ‘trots’. Lovely…


In the morn­ing we both felt aw­ful. No won­der, af­ter all those hours on the road, a day’s fish­ing and then be­ing up half the night.

We did start on the Test just af­ter 8am but af­ter half-a-dozen grayling and a few trout each we de­cided to get home early, en­sur­ing there were plenty of toi­lets on the way.

We ex­plained to fish­ery owner Andy what had hap­pened and said we would see him some time over the win­ter. Per­haps we won’t have an In­dian next time!

Pike baits in the freezer. Bring it on!

GREYLAG GOOSE A FA­MIL­IAR sight at this time, a big bird with an or­ange bill and a noisy honk­ing call.

Broth­ers Chaz (here) and Tom Reeves en­joyed a great day’s carp­ing.

LA­DY­BIRD SOME of these lit­tle crea­tures are al­ready in my house, ready to spend the win­ter in­side.

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