I must apologize for the lateness of this April Blog. I had completed it and then discovered my close friend Jan Porter had sadly lost his brave and determined battle against cancer. It totally destroyed me and I held this piece back. I wanted to write about Jan but still I'm finding it hard to find the right words to say.
Strap your guitar on mate, find us some nice quiet water and if you see Brook, tell her I'll be back with you both one day.
So, here is what I wrote before I'd received the devastating news that one of the best had been taken early...
A month that started on the rivers with prototype rods that needed putting through their paces and ended up on the still waters. Both running and still water were rather kind to me yet again.
Rain pushes against the window and the trees sway in the wind whilst I sit here reflecting upon February that has just passed us by. It has been rather a mixed month to say the least and being a leap year, we gained an extra day.
Another month has passed without winter properly taking its grip. My Blog last month hinted upon how many fish I have been catching and these catches have simply continued through February, that is of course when I have actually managed to get out.
I have mostly been targeting the carp on 4 totally different waters depending upon which seemed the best choice in the given weather conditions. Having said that I have also managed to squeeze in a few bonus river trips as well after chub, barbel or grayling, again, depending upon what the conditions looked best for.
Well with 2015 passing us by I can’t help but reflect on what an incredible angling year it had been for me and no doubt largely due to the fact that for the first time since starting Quest Baits I’d not spent most of the year wasting rod hours whilst tweaking and playing around with new baits.
Finally for once I was able to fish the whole season with baits that I had already perfected in previous years, I was so happy with the range that I really couldn’t see the point in bringing another bait out for the sake of it and my catches showed that.
I even made a facebook post at the end of the year of 52 of what I considered to be my best fish of the year to represent each week of the year. I don’t think I could have done that in many other years, not without totally scraping the barrel for mediocre sized fish.
So the year ended and joined this one with big fish from 4 different waters falling to my rods within a three week period and multiple captures from 2 of those. One has a real poor track record of producing many winter fish so I was particularly proud of a catch of fish there. The old Magnum Whites with a handful of Fruity Trifle to add some bright colour to the swim encouraged the fish to drop down and have a bit of a feed as they always do. It still amazes me anglers still stick with baits that are going to be an issue for the carp to digest in colder water which then messes the fishing up for everyone else.
Well, finally after what seems a total age from our side, our new all singing and all dancing website is finally launched. This was originally planned to commemorate and celebrate the first 10 years of Quest Baits although we have now gone past that mark.
There was another reason of course too. With our minds being focussed at all times on our customers on-line security, we had become aware of big advances in the on-line world, so naturally took the plunge in order to make this new site as secure as we possibly could. We had the relevant security certificates before but now our checkout pages are protected by Norton Secured SSL 128 bit Secure Server, powered by Veri Sign and payments are processed securely by Secure Trading Ltd payment processor. What that means to you and me is that your card details you enter are no longer visible to anyone, not even us taking the order. So a total piece of mind that there is no chance of anyone seeing any of your details on a screen or on a shredded piece of paper in a bin before burning - we have no payment details here at all.
I received a email yesterday asking if there was any way of slowing down the dissolve rate of our boilie matching paste baits.
Question from Mark Lee Holbrook:
What amount of bait on average would one need if going France for first time for a week?
I like to keep an eye on where I expect the carp to be between trips to the venues I fish. It really does surprise me how s0 many anglers turn up at the venue and know what the weather was doing on their last trip, where the wind was blowing and everything else, then turn up for their next trip with little idea what the wind has been doing between trips and indeed the weather.
One of the best bits of advice I was given when I started carp fishing was to look for the swim with the most foam in it. The swim with the biggest waves which was taking the main force of the wind. There is always one swim that little bit rougher than the others.
Matt Asks: I just wanted to ask a question about feeling the lead down after a cast. Do you always feel for the bump even if fishing on soft silty type bottom where it will be hard to feel any bumps and should I always recast if I don’t feel anything. Thanks Matt