The Catch

Dave Levy - The Last of the Kings Part 3

Having netted one of the previously uncaught carp in part 2, Dave was hungry for more and returned to the reservoir to see what else he could pull out of the water.
The Last of the Kings continued
A week later I found the carp spawning and I counted 26 carp, I watched them for the whole day as they went about their business, I estimated a good few were 25 to 30 pounds with ten being 30s. At least three of them were around 40lb, the big common was a short angry looking carp but two of the mirrors there that looked like big 30s were almost fully scaled. There was at least five small carp too. I didn’t get back down for a few weeks due to a family holiday but the day after we got back I was back at the five mile and looking, I was starting to get a good idea of where to start looking now and found the big common and a small mirror swimming along one of the long banks, I got a single rod and run until I was 30 yards past them, quickly I flicked a rod out with a bright hook bait on, feeling a lead down on to a concrete slab under water gave a whole new meaning to getting a donk! They were getting closer and as they got to within ten feet of the bright bait they both made a b line for it, I was sat down saying “come on” the spool burst in to life and I didn’t know what fish was on until the mirror came up, after a short scrap I netted it. Again it was as perfect a carp as your ever see and just over 22lb. I returned her quickly from the heat of the day. I didn’t see another carp that day. I did spend a few days fishing baited areas but this never did any takes and I learned that the Reservoir was littered was Crayfish of both species and large mitten crabs. A hook bait would most times last a few hours. It had been a few weeks since the 22 and I had started to see them jumping at about 150 yards out off the same point every morning, I brought the big rods down the next session and at 9am a fish showed in the same place, I cast a stinger to the area the hook bait was tigers as the crays didn’t like these as much. The rod had only been out half hour when the alarm went in to meltdown soon another 20 mirror was in the net, at 24lb it was a strange long looking carp not at all like the other two.
We were now in to the month of October and I was thinking I’ll give it a few weeks before pulling off for the winter. The mornings were getting cold and dark making the concrete slopes quite dangerous. I had to keep the life jacket on now as slipping on that wet moss was a real possibility. I set a spod up at 160 yards it was just over 20ft deep at that range and over the next week I drove down twice just to bait using tiger and crumbed boilie. I got down in the dark a few days after baiting and I sat waiting for day light. I saw the first carp show at 7am and it was maybe 500 yards out, even at that range I could see it was a small one, the next fish show 20 minutes later at around 300 yards, I hoped they would keep coming this way. I had all three rods out at about two at 160 and one as a single hook bait at about 170. I saw another two fish a lot closer to the bait through the morning and both looked big. At 1 in the afternoon I was sat chatting on the phone to a good friend Terry when the line on the middle rod lifted, I said I’ve got to go Terry and put the phone down slipping on my life jacket, I knew something was going to happen, the line began to lift and I didn’t wait lifting the rod I was expecting to bend in to the carp but the rod wrenched over as it took line fast and just kept going, I knew this was no 20! It kited round right and I gained a lot of line back the fight was just crazy and a few times I thought I’m not going to land this but it was now ten yards out and slowly coming up the margin shelf, As she rolled I saw it was one of the big scaly mirrors, I had to sit on my back side and ease myself down to the waters edge where the waves were lapping in on the concrete, it was hairy stuff but I netted the carp first go. I left it in the net and got everything sorted. There was a worker on the reservoir and had seen me playing the carp and came over offering a much needed helping hand. I laid the mat on the shelf and slid the carp up on to it in the net, the guy pulled me back up using the landing net pole and we carried the carp on to the grass. I weighed her at 35lb 12oz. I can’t even begin to tell you how beautiful the carp was with it’d apple slice scales, and yellow brown colours. After the photos I lifted the mat and let her slide away she was a very old carp and she sat for a few minutes before disappearing beneath the waves.
I did a few more day sessions but never saw another carp and the Five mile pit locked away her secrets again for another long winter. Circumstances changed on the big pit and I never retuned again the next year. I never showed many other people the photos or told them the story of the Five mile pit, until now.
This is our third and final part of the Last of the Kings chapter from Dave’s book Fallen Kings. It is available now if you want to read more about his angling adventures https://www.gifts4anglers.co.uk/Fallen-Kings-Dave-Levy.html
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The Catch
3 Jun
Dave Levy - The Last of the Kings Part 3
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