Fox-backed consistent catcher of carp, Stu Morgan, returns for the 5th instalment of his regular website blog...

Time has really been at a premium since my last instalment in my blog series, as like most people with a young family, the summer holidays meant calling in endless favours from family and friends just to covers shifts at work, let alone to get out fishing. Luckily both of my kids don’t mind being in the countryside next to a running river or sat by a lake, watching a float instead of the TV or computer. So with the kids in tow, I have managed a couple of very short stalking / surface sessions over the last few weeks. I know I have said it before but I really do like this style of angling, there is something about getting up close and personal to your chosen quarry that get the old heart racing!One of the more successful trips resulted in a nice brace of mirrors weighing in at 24lb 14oz and 25lb 4oz which were caught from my syndicate venue.

Both of those mirrors fell to freelined mixer tactics which I do favour on most of the waters in my area where bird life can be a problem. Another of my flying visit trips had my eldest doing the camera duties on a couple of lovely upper double commons which really proved that as long as your prepared, then short trips are really worthwhile.One of my proudest moments in the last few weeks has to be when both my children caught personal best carp on the same early morning session to a local lake. Much to their disgusted, we set the alarm for first light before making the 25 minute drive to the water where the tactics were lift style float fishing for the bubbling carp with pellets and boilies. After a slow start, Keira hooked into a strong fish and after a long battle, a lovely new pb of 14lb 12oz was in the net. After the photos were done and the fish returned, it was Ryan’s turn and he was over the moon with his first ever double at 11lb 10oz. We gave it a little longer but the fish had spooked off a bit due to the shallow nature of the lake, so we decided to call it a day and go home for some lunch.

One trip I did have lined up that I was really looking forward to was for a fishing stag weekend to a rarely fished lake in the Cotswolds for my good mate Tom Oliver. As we pulled through the gate we were met with a stunning lake of around 60 acres, surrounded in reeds and iris. The first thing I noticed, other than the strong wind that was pumping across the lake, was the complete lack of any man made swims so it was a case of fitting in as and where we could. We had been told that the stock consisted of around 300 fish, which were mainly doubles with the odd twenty and a possible thirty or two. After we all got sorted in our swims, the compulsory BBQ made an appearance and we feasted on all sorts of cooked meat and sampled a few beers to celebrate the stag.

The BBQ pretty much stayed on the whole weekend and surprisingly we even managed a few fish along the way with the highlight for me being a nice mid double caught at range on the last evening. Even with the strong side wind, the 13ft 3 1/2tc horizons, sailed the pop up rigs out to the intended destination with relative ease. I am not normally a big pop up user, tending to prefer bottom bait presentations but given the distance involved and the strong wind, I felt that they were my best option. I constructed the rig using a size 5 Edges Stiff Rig Straight point hook, 25lb Weedy Green Coretex and the Trans Khaki Rigidity. The next morning it was time to pack down and head back home after a great weekend with around 20 fish caught between us all.

It’s going to be a couple of weeks before I get out again as I will be off to Portugal for Tom’s wedding but as soon as I am back, I am off to France for a week at Marne valley’s Juvigny lake, which I am really looking forward to but I will save that for the next blog instalment. Until next time, I wish you all the very best of luck!