LEWIS READ

Carpworld - - EDITORIAL -

The year was 1990 and I was living the dream of lots of fish­ing thanks to the Thatcherite in­fla­tion pol­icy that put most of the build­ing de­vel­op­ers in the south east out of busi­ness over a pe­riod of six months. This in­evitably had the knock on ef­fect on a trainee QS be­ing ‘last in and first out’.

Much to my mum’s dis­gust I spent the whole close sea­son feed­ing the res­i­dents of a small, deep gravel pit in Shep­per­ton a cou­ple of mixes of mid-pro­tein milk/nut mix bait ev­ery day – nor­mally wan­der­ing around un­til I found the bet­ter fish and get­ting them to eat each and ev­ery boilie on the drop as flat­tened boilies were flicked just in front of the fish.

It was a de­li­cious bait and, over the years, I had honed and tweaked the at­trac­tors and dry in­gre­di­ents so it was con­fi­dence in a bag – a com­bi­na­tion of Ge­off Kemp’s Creamy Tof­fee, Nu­tra­baits’ Sweet Ca­jouser, Hutchies’ Cream Ap­petite Stim­u­la­tor pow­der and a dash of Sense Ap­peal meant it worked wher­ever it was ap­plied prop­erly.

My old mate Swin­nie was also vis­it­ing the lake a lot too and he was feed­ing them his bait – a lovely Choccy Malt bird food (not dis­sim­i­lar to Tenchy’s bait) as an un­cooked paste, sim­ply rip­ping small nuggets off the ball – and I soon twigged that this was far less labour in­ten­sive and would still work in terms of get­ting them to be fully con­fi­dent and fo­cused whilst feed­ing on the dreamy nut mix.

The fish were grow­ing day by day and week by week and, in the end all of the fish were pros­per­ing, grow­ing chub­bier on the am­ple free food that seemed to fol­low them about!

Tet’s Pet was the big­gest and greed­i­est of them all, and con­se­quently it stacked on the weight – plump­ing up beau­ti­fully from mid-20s into a good

30 pounder. She was a fish that had mi­grated from a lake a few miles away and was the fo­cus of most an­glers on the lake; but there were other lovely prizes: The Peach, The Beast and the Big Com­mon amongst a to­tal stock of about 30-40 fish. The lit­tle lake re­ally was a hot­bed amongst my peers as the lake of­fered chal­leng­ing an­gling.

I’d al­ready lost it a cou­ple of times and was quite gut­ted but I was ut­terly de­ter­mined to make The Pet mine and kept feed­ing it wher­ever I could find it and set­ting traps nearby. It loved the bait – and it was re­ally one of those won­der­ful sce­nar­ios when the bait was ab­so­lutely on full song. They ab­so­lutely loved it and as long as I kept it go­ing in, it was in­evitable that I would work my way through most of the carp stock.

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