There's nothing quite like a successful session on a new syndicate to boost your confidence for the season ahead. Merely catching a carp from a new water is enough to get you in the right mind frame which can increase your chances of success for the season ahead.
Our good friend, Jake Addison, writes about his tactics and approach on his first trip to a new syndicate...
I arrived at 3pm for my first session on a new syndicate to 30 degree weather with a strong south westerly wind pushing into the carpark end, I had checked the weather previously and knew the wind had been pushing this way for a number of days so expected the carp to be holding up here. Not in a rush, I went for a slow lap of the lake checking out each and every swim as the lake was empty. After a 45 minute walk round I saw absolutely nothing to go off and felt like I was off to a bad start. Coming back to the carpark end there is a large jetty area that gives a good vantage point of the side of the lake where the wind was hacking in, so I had a seat and within 5 minutes I saw a small fish show just off a reed bed, for the next 15 minutes I probably saw 10 more shows. That was more than enough for me so I got my kit out the van and made my way to the carpark swim.
I flicked a bare lead over to the spot where I had seen the fish show and after a couple of casts I found a ridiculously clean gravel spot starting a few rod lengths off the reeds. Knowing the place had crayfish and wanting to make as little disturbance as possible I used a hardened hookbait plugged with some cork, wrapped my rods up and got them on the spot. I took a catapult and some 20mm baits round to the margin I was fishing and spread 5 or 6 pouches across the bar.
At around 9pm the inside rod burst into life and after a short battle the first fish was in the net - A dark linear named Hopkins.
I woke up at around 5am listening for any showing fish and the activity had well and truly died off. My right hand rod into deeper water had single bleeps for hours, I assumed it was crays. After reeling in to check the hook bait was untouched so I had a suspicion the carp had been moving up the marginal weed causing these liners. The rod I had the first fish from got brought in and half the bait had been chewed up by crays, confirming my thoughts that the carp had moved on.
Mid day came and the heat was back on so I decided a move was in order. After seeing a couple show off the back of an island I decided to move up to a swim called the original which gave me decent access to the island.
I spent the next few hours getting some bait out there to in-between 20 and 23 wraps on two spots, again fairly shallow clean gravel.
After a couple of hours the middle bobbin tightened up and I assumed it was a resident bream. After winding down onto it I quickly found out it was a very angry mirror, one I suspected to be of a decent size after the battle it put up, weeding me up and then flat rodded me in the margin when I thought it was about done. I had to make a quick decision to get in the water in my socks to save me losing it. After getting a better angle on the fish I was able to persuade it into the net. A fish called shoulders coming in at 31lb 1oz, making that my final fish of a new syndicate.
We know Jake isn't one to get stuck in his ways, and likes to adapt his end game to the situation he's fishing in. On this occasion, Jake presented hard hookers counter balanced with cork attached with an Aptus micro ring swivel, one rig to a Klor size 4 using an Aptus D aligner, an Aptus Ronnie Swivel crimped onto 35lb boom.
The other using an Aptus Pro Wide Gape size 4, Micro Hook Ring Swivel and Aptus Hook Bead fished again in Ronnie format. Both secured onto a quick link using an Aptus anti tangle sleeve.
Here's a photo of one of his successful rigs:
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