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TCarper
Posts: 3276
   Old Thread  #1659 29 Jun 2023 at 8.45am  1  Login    Register
In reply to Post #1658
The weed was exactly the same color as the green Big Game. I needed the heavy mono, to absolutely make sure that the last 50m sunk right down into the weed. Big Game is tow rope. Theale lagoon is home to the Burghfield sailing club. Racing boats, power boats, all sorts of massive boats are always out on the water. To fish at what turned out to be nigh on 550m, I had to keep my lline right down in the water. Tips were on the bottom in the margins in five foot. Screwed down as tight as you could imagine with Solar titanium spring bow indicators. Three rods, all three with a 13mm balanced GPB1 hookbaits. These were fished over lashings and lashings of fermented garlic hemp. Up till that point, I had been using 12t rods on the pit. These were now gone. 10ft Tacklebox CFX 3.25lb rods were now the weapons of choice. Perfect for boat work being shorter. I already knew that the carp adored the fermented garlic hemp, it was just a case of now keeping this spot topped up to the maximum with it. No one had ever fished the spot before, it was mine and I knew it. A good feeling. I already knew what was coming if I'm honest, a serine calmness came over me. I blanked the next couple of trips, but with a big cheesy grin, because I knew what was coming. On my fourth trip, as I went out to place my rods, the machine swam past the boat. To see that carp in water was incredible. He was agitated too. He went and sat in the weed around four rod lengths away, but watching me the whole time. He's the king of the pond, and he was guarding 'his' spot. I knew he was dominating that spot. It had been smashed, it was now nearly half the size again. The surrounding weed was trashed, broken stems, weed all laying the wrong way. You could see big carp had been feeding hard and excited. But now there was only one, the king was guarding the spot. He certainly did not like me being there for sure, he was certainly not afraid of the boat either. All three rods were placed, all three lines fanned as they were laid. A very important part of fishing three rods, on one spot, at such extreme range. Those lines must be laid correctly on the return. I was so excited, I had to do everything right. It was all completed perfectly. On my last drop, there was now another mirror lurking too, slightly further away from the spot, but clearly there for the larder. This fish was well over 50lb, a sparsley scaled mirror, I was certain I knew which one. GAME ON. That night was the most exciting of my fishing life. I could barely sleep. At 5am I was awoken to an absolute one toner, a one toner that just kept going and going and going. As I scrambled into my waders and slipped my life jacket on whilst holding the rod in my left hand. I was straight in the boat and out to the spot in an instant on full throttle. Reeling like crazy to take up the slack, whilst keeping a bend in the rod like a lunatic. All steering of the boat is done with the rod. I was close to the island, this fish had gone on an incredible first run. I got somewhere close to above it, and immeaditly felt the grate. My mono was caught around something, but the fish just boiled up over there, and it's a monster. Panic stations. I was still in contact with the fish, but my line was caught around something. In this situation from the boat it's hard work getting the purchase you need. I felt the fish go crazy one last time and all went slack. I reeled up a snapped rig. 30lb flouro which is tow rope, had been broken like cotton. I was using short combi links, with a 30lb boom. The 30lb boom had snapped. A 60lb carp on a short line has a lot of power. Especially a big male. I went back to the bank, praying I had not just lost the machine. Hoping it was the 50+. Imagine that. Quite a crazy thought. Hoping you had just lost a mid 50, because the other one, was actually much bigger. It was catastrophic, but onwards we must go. There are fish now on it. Forget that, it's called fishing, not catching. Losing big fish is all part of the game that has to be dealt with. Especially somewhere like that. They were there though, and I needed to capitalse fully. All rods in, out comes the green 25lb Big Game mono, off come the combi rigs, on go 30lb coated braid multi rigs. Tiny little short ones with big size 4 beaked point hook. I went back out to the spot, to re drop, it was a scene of devastation, a crime scene. They had dug down into the gravel so far. They had turned the small spot, into a runway landing strip. I placed the rods, fanned the lines, and put a load more garlic hemp on the spot. Nothing happened on my last night. Losing a fish is always much worse than catching one, it always ruins the swim normally. I told no one whatsoever what had happened. No one. I put 30kg on the spot when I left, and went home gagging to get back. I knew I was about to catch. I just had to make sure nothing went wrong this time.
TCarper
Posts: 3276
   Old Thread  #1658 29 Jun 2023 at 8.43am  1  Login    Register
In reply to Post #1657
Clearly work was hard that week. I got back down the lake on Sunday evening, and all three rods were put out on the spot. It was the first of July now, summer was in full flow. The motorway bank had calmed down since Deans capture of the machine, no one had fished there apart from me for a month or so. But the sunbathers and swimmers were a nightmare. Covid and lockdowns, had meant the whole world wanted to be outside, in the fresh air, and they did just that. Theale is so public, at times it can become a touch wearing. But these are the things you have to put up with for the prizes. It was clear when I placed the rods that the spot was smashed again. Large holes. I had a new toy this week, an Atropa green marker. My plan was, to place this at the back of my spot, set three foot under the surface. I wanted to leave it there. But it had to be deep enough that the propeller of a speed boat would not smash it to bits. I wrapped the tip in reflective 3m tape, so I could find the marker easily in the dark. An atropa marker swivels at the bottom and will lay over if a carp goes around it. I used half a house brick as the anchor. It took some messing around placing it in the deeper water off the back of the spot in the weed, to hide it from curious boaters in the crystal clear water. But I managed it superbly. Now when the nights started to draw in, I could find my marker in the dark. Important when I needed to wait for the sailing club to leave everyday, before placing my rods. That night I was so full of anticipation. I knew what was coming, just be ready Mark. I watched through my binoculars the following morning, and saw the lakes big common clear the water twice over my spot. It was clearly a common, so golden, but it was massive. One of my rods simply went into meltdown as I watched through the bins. Everything went as smooth as silk. Waders, life jacket, into the boat, out to the spot. As I got above the fish, it towed me around for a while, but I had this smug grin on my face hahahaha you're mine..... Then the hook pulled.

You would not wanted to have been anywhere near me, trust me. I went back into the bank, launched the rod into the bushes, and sat down and sulked. It was like the world had just ended. I might have just lost a 61lb mirror and a mid 50 common. It could not get any worse. I pulled myself back together, and had a rethink. At that range, with the weed and the nature of the pit, the micro barbed Gardner talon tip hooks I was using, the barb was to small. The older versions which I preferred to use on the river Thames, they were coming out. These have a much larger beefier barb which does hinder penetration, but using 6oz leads and spring bow indicators at extreme range, hook pentertration was the last of my worries, I just needed them not to fall out! This was extreme fishing, and it called for extreme tackle. The following morning at 5am I had another one toner. I jumped into the boat, it all went like clockwork. Out there like a shot on speed number 5, she towed me around for a while in the middle of the pond, but ultimately I landed the football common. It was clear which fish it was, it was a foot and a half across the back! Well I had not lost that the day before to the hook pull it seems. I rolled her up in the net, placed her along side the boat facing the right way, and gently made my way back to the bank. Her bulk was truly incredible on the mat. My Le Graviers unhooking mat has one foot sides on it. Laid on her side she absolutely towered above these. She was clearly spawned out, and still weighed 55lb6oz. She must have been close to, if not over 60lb before spawning. I popped her in a sack while I got myself together and it got properly light. I spoke to a couple of friends on the phone, who were all sworn to secrecy. I would not even get anyone down to do photos, she was a new personal best by one pound, but it would be self takes for you my girl. I set up a video camera to record a little film, and took what turned out to be pretty rubbish photos of her. I did not care, there was more to be caught for sure. This time when I replaced the rod, there was big storm brewing. I only had one hour of light to sort my rod after the sailing club left, but wanted it back on the spot. White capped waves were rolling in, and the sky had a look of doom. As I got about a quarter of the way out, I noticed a tiny little frog, who had clearly struggled into my boat to avoid the white capped waves and certain death. As the waves lapped over the front of my boat, getting more and more violent the further out I got, I looked down at my new friend Freddy the frog, and made a pact with him. I'll keep you safe Freddy, please, please keep me safe. I was at a point where it was "shall I go back, or kick on, come on Freddy, lets go for it".
TCarper
Posts: 3276
   Old Thread  #1657 29 Jun 2023 at 8.42am  1  Login    Register
In reply to Post #1656
I bailed water out of the boat with one hand, while grasping onto the tiler with the other. Once I got out there behind the cover of a big island, I had a bit more shelter from the wind. It was still a nightmare placing the rod. I made a pact with Freddy, to never, ever be so stupid, not ever again. And also to get my self inflate lifejacket checked soon. I am good in a boat, I am a great swimmer too, but that became a touch to much for the sake of a carp. Me and Freddy made it back safe, and I made sure he was okay. He was absolutely mullered by that storm.

The following morning I was away again on the replaced rod, this was getting crazy now, four bites in a week was more than I could have ever wished for in my wildest dreams.... But it was happening, so I better wake up fast. This fish really gave me the run around, everything went smoothly, I was out there like a shot. But this carp was on steroids. It towed my boat around for ages, I thought it was never going to give up! But the bigger barbed hooks held firm, and a whole monsterous ball of weed and carp was eventually bundled into the net. Back on the bank, this fish was far better in my eyes than the common. Much smaller at 40 something, but so much more beautiful. I once again done some self takes, a little video, and slipped her back. No one at all was any the wiser.

I fished hard over the next three weeks. But all three trips were null and void. Bait was remaining on the spot too, far more worryingly. All of it. They had done the off for now. Hardly surprising, if there are thirty carp in there now, I had just hooked nearly 15% of them in the last week. That is going to have a big effect on them. It was time to let everyone else know. I was given permission to put them online. I knew what would happen slightly, and it did. 240 kilos was put into the swim next door the weekend the fish appeared online. To claim the swim as such. The weed had now grown up to a point, I was picked up a couple of times by the sailing boats on race night. It was becoming hard to keep my rods in the water. Fishing at extreme range really can take it out of you. I was waiting all day to place my rods just on dark, then often having two of them moved, by boat, or weed bergs, by 10am. Then waiting all day again to repeat the procedure. Tigers started to float in on the wind that were popping up from somewhere on the lake, rotting and stinking. I left the pit, went back to Brazil on a long holiday and had an amazing winter that year. And have never been back ever since. I no longer have a ticket for the pit. My actual fishing time there, was actually incredibly short. Spread over two separate years in 2018 and 2021. I am certain I lost the machine, that very first bite. When the king of the pond decides that the spot is his, like he had done that day. It was very likely to have been him. I never saw him out there again either. Despite many days spent all day watching through binoculars. He would not have let another carp near that spot, maybe one or two others in his little clique, but I would doubt that. I would imagine I lost him that very first bite after seeing him guard the spot. And likely lost the mid 50 I saw as well as the second bite. You can never win them all. I landed three fish from Theale lagoon in pretty quick time, I was very happy with that.

That was written in memory of Paul Forward. Paul had messaged me to say well done after those fish were made public. If you could see your way to making a small donation on the just giving link below, it would be so very much appreciated. Anything you can afford, big or small. MND is a horrible disease, the more money that can be raised, the better. Thank you.
Cam
Posts: 6371
Cam
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   Old Thread  #1656 24 Jun 2023 at 10.35am  1  Login    Register
In reply to Post #1654
Linear Fishery Social Weekend - gofundme page
TCarper
Posts: 3276
   Old Thread  #1654 24 Jun 2023 at 10.16am  1  Login    Register
Thank you all, glad you enjoyed it. I have a week off this week and a little time I donít normally get.

This weekend, there is a charity event in memory of Paul Forward. Itís raising money for motor neurone disease which Paul suffered from. Iím on holiday but would like to do something to help them raise more money. They have already raised over £17k, an incredible amount and Oz Holness should be proud.

If you enjoyed that about the Nursery, go and make a small donation please. Anything. 50p, £5, whatever you can afford.

I will write something this week if you do, about my short time fishing on Theale Lagoon. I will post it on Facebook & on here for free. Just like the Nursery post below. All you need to do is click on the link below and make a very small donation. I did not know Paul really well, but I met him many years ago when I was fishing the Ocean in Kent. He came down to see Simon Bater who was fishing the Road & Island next door. Paul was fishing for the Swirly common at the time, which I had caught previously. So we had a common interest in Milton Pan and got on well. Paul was a builder, he went fishing because he loved it, not to be famous or get get some free boilie stops. He fished a lot of the same Kent pits that I have during my lifetime, just never at the same time.

Paul messaged me to say well done when I caught the big common from Theale. Itís no publicity now, so you are not likely to hear much about it. If you all make a small donation if you are able too, I will write an in depth piece about my short time fishing on the 270+ acre pit in 2020 this week.

I canít do links, if someone could make that a link it would be appreciated.

https://www.gofundme.com/f/mr-fs-linear-fishery-social-weekend?utm_campaign=p_cp+share-sheet&utm_medium=copy_link_all&utm_source=customer


Budder
Posts: 51
Budder
   Old Thread  #1653 24 Jun 2023 at 7.56am    Login    Register
Read it on Faceache, great read! 👏
midlandman
Posts: 3364
midlandman
   Old Thread  #1652 23 Jun 2023 at 11.56pm    Login    Register
In reply to Post #1650
Absolutely brilliant
littleian
Posts: 1443
littleian
   Old Thread  #1651 23 Jun 2023 at 11.51am    Login    Register
In reply to Post #1650
Thoroughly enjoyed that a great read and that fully......oh my days! thanks Mark
TCarper
Posts: 3276
   Old Thread  #1650 23 Jun 2023 at 4.48am  4  Login    Register
I had a bit of time off, and I wrote that in two hours at 3am when I could not sleep after a long flight. Itís not been proof read, thereís likely a few mistakes. But it is free. It details some fishing, on what was, one of the best kept secret lakes in the UK.

If someone with the power could put it into a more readable format that would be amazing. It was hard work copying and pasting that into a few different posts. If I try to stack it now Iíll mess it up. Iím useless 😂
TCarper
Posts: 3276
   Old Thread  #1649 23 Jun 2023 at 4.22am  5  Login    Register
In reply to Post #1648
A small syndicate was formed on the Nursery whilst I was away, and after catching the fully, I was not given a ticket. I was gutted. The fully was never banked again. The single scaled long Thames fish which I saw was never caught again. I hope and pray that both are still there, and the blow up doll. And all of the other very special (and ugly) carp which the lake contained in 2017. But, some very good anglers have fished the lake ever since my time on the pit, and neither the fully or the monster have been seen since. Otters moved onto the pit sometime around 2018. In all likelihood, they have taken them both, and most of the others. I barely get to fish these days, work has become an all encompassing monster. I often look back on 2017 with great joy. When I do get to very rarely go carp fishing these days, it can only be on pits similar to the Nursery. No bitching, no dramas, real fishing, for very few carp. These kind of places are the essence of carp fishing to me personally. Long may there remain just a few places in the UK, like the Nursery that I knew in 2017. 🇬🇧











Blow up doll







The Nursery swim



Evening bait up



11lb6oz male tinca





The Nursery is light blue pit marked with black x





Burghfield 42lb+



Burghfield 42lb+



Burghfield 40lb+



Sam 32lb8oz



26lb+



18lb+

TCarper
Posts: 3276
   Old Thread  #1648 23 Jun 2023 at 4.20am    Login    Register
In reply to Post #1647
Over the next week the pits bream moved onto my area. They stripped quite a bit of weed for me, but ultimately they became a real pain in the backside. I was doing over night trips after work, and being kept up all night by monstrous slabs. I would not be at all surprised if the Nursery also contained a British record bream. I stopped fishing, but carried on baiting. I knew that I would be able to visibly see when the carp eventually got onto the spot. And they very soon did. I arrived one evening for a bait up, the moment I got above the bar I could see everything was different! It had been absolutely smashed to bits. Every strip of weed was now gone. Large glowing areas clearly dug right out by carp. As I scanned the bar gleefully knowing my work was about to pay off, a 40lb+ mirror glided under the boat. This fish was probably the most ugly carp I had ever seen in my life. Although the pit contained some very beautiful Thames carp, it also, like the river itself these days contained some absolute munters. Fish that had been washed into the river from Oxfordshire day tickets, which had survived in the river and ultimately found their way into the Nursery via Sonning. Simmos, but horrible simmos in the main. The one which drifted under my boat that day had been christened 'the blow up doll' due to having and very strangely permenant open disfigured and deformed mouth. Clearly a birth defect, or being caught far to many times as a small carp. Whatever the cause, boy she was ugly. But the carp were there, and now it was time to capitalise. Stiff hinge rigs, with pink S2 crushed cork pop ups, with either a fermented tiger, or fermented peanut on top would be the weapons of choice. These would always be fished spread along the bar as single hook baits.

My first night after the carp arrived, I landed a 21lb common. This first fish was added to the following night by the blow up doll at 42lb+. They were clearly now 'on it'. Every time I went out in the boat to place rigs or bait up I could see the bar was being dug right out. They were digging right down into the gravel in various areas. I would very regularly see the blow up doll, she was so greedy she was always on the spot. One day she had another carp with her. I have been lucky enough to catch and also see some very large UK carp in my time. The carp I watched from the boat that day, was far larger than any carp I had ever seen before or since. It had to be in excess of 70lb. It absolutely dwarfed the blow up doll. Easily by 30lb or more. I nearly fell out of the boat. It was the most impressive sight which I had ever seen whilst angling. A carp that would have shook carp fishing to the very core if it was ever banked. I could not stop thinking about what I had seen all week at work. It really blew me away. I mentioned it to my friend Alan who ran Long lake and had fished the Nursery before me. I described the fish to him as having one large scale on its side. Alan showed my a photo of a carp which he had caught from the pit some years previously. It had long been feared dead, or flooded out, because it had only ever been banked from the Nursery just the once at just over 30lb. Well I had just seen it without any doubts, and it was a British record in waiting. Without question the largest carp swimming in the UK, and completely 'unknown'. Things had just become so much more exciting. On a whole another level of exciting! My following trip saw me bank the fish of my dreams. I have caught so many much larger UK carp. But being a lifelong Thames angler, she simply meant everything to me personally. She was literally carved from oak, and she had no silly name. She was completely unknown to the masses. She had been caught some twenty five years previously from the lock-cut on the Thames at Sonning at 18lb. She weighed 40lb8oz when I was lucky enough to catch her. My friend Ben came to help me do some photographs and a little video. As we slipped her back, I never dreamed she would be the last carp that I would ever catch from the pit. It was June 5th, just eleven days later the river Thames would open and I would be chasing my nemesis again. I caught some absolutely breathtaking carp from the river in 2017, stacks of them, but I never caught my nemesis, who would be dead within six months.
TCarper
Posts: 3276
   Old Thread  #1647 23 Jun 2023 at 4.18am    Login    Register
In reply to Post #1646
My first walk around the pit, revealed very clearly that the much older more shallower area closest to Sonning, was the area anyone fishing the lake previously had mainly concentrated their efforts. Once you got behind the maze of impenetrable gorse bushes, a hidden world was revealed. A hidden world of truly lovely swims completely cut off from the outside worlds knowledge. Clearly lovingly prepared by anglers who had poached the lake previously. The last thing I wanted to do was tread on anyone else's toes. So this area was imeadiatly written off. Little did I know, that I would have the pit to myself pretty much for the next six weeks. I could have fished where I wanted, but I did not want to fish near anyone else, so I went to the opposite side of the lake to where it was obvious anyone fishing was going. At the end of the main path on the opposite side, there was a fence, with access to the back of the Nursery center. It was here that I chose to start fishing up next to this fence. It had a large plateau to my right, with bars running from the more newly dug half of the pit like roadways. The swim that I chose, was right on the meeting point of old and new Nursery. Basically on the outside corner of the L shape. To my right, was the much deeper, heavily weeded newer part of the lake. The weed was the thickest most horrible you could imagine. Full up with zebra mussel at all depths. Directly opposite me at extreme range, was the shallower, much older part of the pit. I would later find out that the pits very small stock of carp, would spend the vast majority of their day times in this shallower area. All of them. They very rarely visited the deeper, more heavily weeded part of the lake. But when they did at night during darkness, they just had to use the road ways right out in front of me in my mind. I knew the first time I went out in the boat and looked, that this would be the area for me to target. The two bars that came off the side of the plateau to my right, both ran for around ten to fifteen yards and broke up directly in front of me. Both bars were completely covered in thick Canadian pond weed. My first task was to clear this weed. An eight foot bamboo cane was placed at the start of the furthest bar, which also ran slightly longer than the closer bar. The cane was placed, so as I could see it from the bank. The photo with the rod leaning on bivvy was just after a carp. If you zoom in you can see my cane. At the time I was living very close to the Nursery, having moved to Sonning for a year. I was working every single day, but I could visit the lake just before dusk and bait it. And that is what I did. My fishing time was kept to the bare minimum really. But I maximized my preparation time. 30kg of particles at a time. Mainly fermented garlic hemp, but also masses and masses of tiger slime and some of Geoff Bowers nut mix, also soaked in tiger slime. During these initial bait ups, I bumped into a tench angler. He had been poaching the pit for a number of years. We quickly struck up a mutual respect. He left me alone, and I left him alone. During our early conversations, I had asked him if he had caught any decent tincas from the pit. He flat out told me there was no big tench in there, that he had never even caught a double. I started to notice bait being eaten, at first not to much, but it was a start. My first night fishing the spot, I banked an 11lb6oz male tench. This is an absolutely montros male tinca. Just ounces off of the largest male tench ever banked in the UK. I chuckled to myself about tincaman, Fair play to him too, I'd do the exact same. If the pit contained male tench of this size, it likely held a British record female. It was my first glimpse of the potential of the pit. The new ground Lafarge had dug, had created an environment where all the fish in the pit could REALLY flourish on that fresh ground and neglect. Any lake is very rich during the first ten years after it is dug. The Nursery fish had come from the Thames via Sonning, into a rich environment, made substantially richer by Lafarges work to extend the pit previously. It was all like the 'perfect storm'. An environment where fish could really flourish on neglect.
TCarper
Posts: 3276
   Old Thread  #1646 23 Jun 2023 at 4.17am    Login    Register
In reply to Post #1645
2017 was a great year for me fishing wise, I had moved out of London, and was going to take full advantage living close to the river. I had already been chasing the former, and now dead river Thames record over two stretches for a good number of years. Me and my friend Sam had enjoyed some incredible pike fishing on the Thames that winter in 2017, culminating in Sam catching the third largest pike ever banked from the Thames at 32lb8oz. With me also banking numerous large 20's. On the last day of the river season I had got it into my head that I needed to christen some new DV 1.25lb Avon rods my friend Gary Peet had given me from the Tackle Box. So I baited a swim on the river for barbel with spiced meat and garlic hemp. That evening on a very flooded and powerful river, after a stupidly long battle where I was completely under gunned with light 1.25lb Avon rods... I landed what I was told at the time was the third largest barbel ever caught from the river Thames, on my first ever Thames trip specifically targeting them. During the start of the closed season of 2017, I had my one and only session on Burghfield, which resulted in three 40+ and two 30+ mirrors in five nights. I had located the carp long before my ticket had started on April 1st at long range, and had put something rather special 'out there' to keep them in the area. It really worked too. I caught a big carp everyday. Not bad for my first and only ever trip. I watched the BBC clear the water three times at long range on my last morning, which will remain with me forever. An incredible sight. I had that first and only wonderful session, slightly ruined by a few members, who clearly did not like what was happening. That's carp fishing.... But little did I know, that this was to lead to me catching the fish of my dreams in the very near future. It was also the very first year of a new five day rule on Burghfield, so I had to leave. The BBC was caught from 'out there' three days later by Scott Lloyd, a great capture at over 60lb. Clearly, that was the end of that though for me. The Nursery was calling. I had previously seen photographs of two, very special ex Thames fully scaled. Both of which had previously been caught by friends from the Nursery pit. These fish interested me massively. Unfortunately, one of them had since blown up spawnbound and died. But I knew that there was another, also that she was one of the most beautiful carp that I had ever laid eyes on. Being a lifelong Thames angler, she was the ultimate prize for me. But I knew of some other very special ex Thames carp in there as well, and I simply could not wait to fish the pit. I knew I could have access for parking, I knew the pit would fit in well with me needing to work constantly. I would just need to keep myself well hidden away from any birdwatchers that would regularly walk the lake, and the out of bounds on the back of RDAA Sonning. I would also need to make my hard earned time fishing really count. I would always wear 'normal' non fishing clothes, and anyone who approached my swim would be cut off long before they got close to seeing any fishing kit. I blagged two bird watchers, and a Lafarge employee during my short time on the pit, none of whom ever saw my rods or my kit. "He who dares Rodney", "he who dares".
TCarper
Posts: 3276
   Old Thread  #1645 23 Jun 2023 at 4.15am    Login    Register
The Nursery pit, Sonning Eye, 2017

The Nursery, is a SSSI, former no fishing venue owned by Lafarge. It lies directly next to Sonning Eye, very close to the river Thames. At one time, half of the Nursery, was actually a part of the montros Sonning Eye gravel pit. The lake itself is an L shape, one original half of the lake being much shallower, than the other much newer and more deeply dug half. The shallower part of the lake, was the bit that was once a part of Sonning itself. A causeway was built across the entrance to a large bay, which formed the original part of the Nursery. For many years, every year during flooding, this causeway would be under water and fish would enter and exit the Nursery at times of flood. In exactly the same way they always have from Sonning itself, which very regularly floods into the river Thames. At a much later date, Lafarge dug out the newer much deeper half of the Nursery. It would be this 'new ground', which would lead some of the fish in the pit to grow to truly incredible sizes. The pit was approximately fifteen acres or so at an uneducated guess. The Nursery gets its name, from the Nursery center which backs onto the lake on the Henley road. At some point, the barren causeway separating the Nursery and Sonning Eye sprouted gorse bushes. As the gorse bushes grew denser, they formed a natural impenetrable barrier, which would eventually stop the fish being able to enter or leave the pit during times of flood. At this point, the pits stock became more permenant. The entire stock of the pit, was made up of former Sonning Eye & river Thames carp. I have never mentioned the name of the pit before, out of respect for the other anglers who fished it. When I fished there in 2017, I, and anyone who fished there before me had to hide in the bushes. It was a strictly no fishing venue which very few knew about in reality. The Nursery pit lies in between Sonning Eye, and CWA Long lake. In 2018, CWA fisheries got the fishing rights for the Nursery pit from Lafarge, and a small five man syndicate was formed on the pit. It's not a secret anymore, so there is no problem naming it now. My fishing on the pit in 2017 was very brief, but ultimately very successful. The very momentous to me personally fully scaled which I went on to catch, has not been banked again ever since unfortunately. Since my time on the pit, otters have had their say. Although no bodies of the specific fish I am about to speak about have ever been found. So never actually confirming 100% that she and the others are gone. Itís looking more and more likely every year that goes past that this is indeed the case and otters had them. The pit contained some absolutely incredible carp, the like of which I have never seen before or since. Monsters, left alone to grow to incredible sizes in a totally unmolested environment. The account below, details my fishing on the pit from Late April 2017, until June 2017 when the river Thames reopened.
Frenzy
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Frenzy
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   Old Thread  #1644 21 Jun 2023 at 6.47am  1  Login    Register
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