The ever-consistent, Luke Church, returns with the 3rd instalment to his web blog series...

Well, here I am writing my 3rd web blog and time is certainly flying by this year. The summer is here now in full force with all of the trees and surroundings grown up which is looking great, the days are long and all of the wildlife and insects seem to be extremely active. It is such an enjoyable time of year no matter what you are doing. Onto the fishing, with the temperatures soaring recently it seemed like almost all of the carp in the country had a go at spawning which is good. However at my Syndicate lake West Stow they just didn’t quite get going whilst it was warm enough although they started showing signs and the lake closed for a week to give them a chance, but since then we had some cooler conditions meaning they still haven’t managed to have a decent go yet. It honestly feels like it has been a very long month between writing these blogs, I have been keeping busy spending plenty of time on the bank and also doing lots of other activities keeping myself occupied.

This year I have entered the BCAC with my good friend Kevin Grout representing Team Carp Talk. After the last couple of years reaching the British final together, but sadly not having any success in them, we came back again this year even more determined to try and become British Champions once again. As usual we had been working hard prepping leading up to the qualifier on Walthamstow, everything was ready and we were really looking forward to the match. We arrived on the Thursday evening to torrential down pour but we couldn’t of cared less, so we got our waterproofs on and started making tracks around the lake looking for signs of fish. We were quite surprised to see a lack of fish showing considering the conditions were bang on for it. The draw took place in the morning and our names got called out 3rd and we managed to get the swim where we had won the qualifier the previous year. The 48 hour match started at midday Friday and was to finish at midday Sunday. Within an hour of the horn sounding for the start of the match Kev had managed to land a pristine hard fighting 27lb Common to set us on our way.

Over the duration of the match it was evident the lake wasn’t fishing very well and without going into what happened to much, we ended up winning the match with 7 fish for 141lbs 3oz’s which was topped by a stunning 29lbs 2oz common coming to Kev’s rods. This result sends us through to the semi final on Brasenose1 at the Linear complex at the end of July meaning I will have two semi finals on back to back weekends, bring it on! Kev and I always love fishing at Linear as the lakes are so prolific and the action can be frantic with the chance of catching a few lumps along the way. We will hope for a repeat of what happened last year where we managed to qualify for the final so fingers crossed, we are very much looking forward to it.

Last month also seen me venturing down to West Stow a fair amount. Knowing that the big 'uns are still up in weight has really kept my motivation and enthusiasm strong. I have done several over night sessions and I have managed to squeeze in a couple of 48 hour sessions.

Leading up to the mini heat wave, I knew the fish still hadn't spawned, I knew they would still be up in weight and the likelihood was they were going to have a go. Everyone at the lake was convinced they would do it at the weekend on the bank holiday with the temperatures expected to be 28'c. I did a few overnighters before hand and I had planned to go for a couple of nights during the weekend of the heat. The overnighters proved to be unsuccessful and the weekend session turned out to be a bit of a disaster. I spent most of my time walking around the lake burning trying to locate the fish. The only place they seemed to be held up was in the no fishing bay which was sewn up so I couldn't get anywhere near them sadly. I decided the conditions were just not right and I went home. A few fish came out but it was fishing rather poorly and it was evident the fish had other things on their mind. Surprisingly over the weekend they still hasn't spawned so I made my way back to the lake on the Monday planning to do the night, it had been raining overnight and it felt a lot fresher. I walked round and located a few fish that were grouped up in the top end. Within 5 minutes of me being there they starting to show signs of spawning, they were looking very frisky. Just my luck, so I pushed my barrow back to the car and went home again, leaving them to get on with their business. That night the lake got closed as a precautionary measure to let the fish have some peace to get on with it. The lake was closed for a week but the fish had completely stopped, they hadn't even got going properly. So the lake reopened seven days later on the Monday and I planned to get straight back down there. I finished work and got down for an overnighter. The conditions were bang on, a low pressure, big southerly winds and lots of rain so I was excited to get back down. I quickly found a few fish showing and that night I managed to land an 18lbs 2oz common, not the biggest but very welcome after struggling for a bite for a few nights. The next day I couldn't resist to get back to the lake for another overnighter, I fished the same spots but sadly nothing materialised. I was hearing that the fish were well on the munch throughout the week so I got back down for the weekend.  

I had baited using my Rangemaster throwing stick when I left on the Wednesday morning with around 3kg of S7 boilies and when I got to the lake on the Friday I was happy to see the peg was free where I had baited so I dropped straight in there with no hesitations after seeing a fish show in the area. Around 3am I received a take off the baited spot and after a spirited fight I had a gorgeous common in the bottom of my net which tipped the scales round to 24lbs 1oz. I soon got the rod back out and tried to get my head down but that was difficult as the fish were crashing loads in my area of the lake. At 5am my other rod on the baited spot absolutely rattled off, I pulled into the rod and this fish was seriously pumped. I played the fish for around 20 minutes and the trusty Edges Medium Curves done the job once again holding on and I finally slipped the net under the feisty 21lbs 8oz mirror. Again I got the rod back out but stayed up to watch the sunrise. There was no more action, I stayed on another night but the fish seemed to have moved down the lake.


That concludes my blog for this month.  I hope you have enjoyed reading my goings on. I have no matches planned until the end of July so in the meantime I will keep persevering down at Stow in search of the lakes biggies.

Until next time, be lucky!