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Stories, photos, tips & advice from recent coaching & pleasure angling sessions and events. Years of experience, knowledge and advice passed down with in-depth tutorials.

April 22, 2009

A session with Smart Carping

Well I used my Christmas present today and yesterday and I think it was the best present ever! last year at my local clubs show I met a very nice man called Ian Gemson doing some carp fishing coaching, and was very impressed and asked my mum to book me a session as a christmas present. Come Christmas I had my session booked! after a very nice, long and informative phone conversation with Ian the date was set and the venue was to be Thorpe lea, now all there was to do was wait. The day finally arrived and as the bedside alarm clock rang out at 5:30am I leapt out of bed with great excitement and huge expectations! the car was packed and me and my dad headed of to the venue, after some mishaps along the way we finally arrived 45 minutes late!

We met Ian in the beach swim numbers 16+17, the best swims on the lake and it was apparent from the first few minutes we were in for a treat, firstly the carp were acting like dolphins and secondly how good Ian was with informing us!

The first job was assess the setting up of our swims, However before I had even got my bivvey out the bag one of Ian’s rod was away resulting in this hard fighting 15lb 3oz mirror
I headed back to my swim and before I had the bivvey out the bag Ian’s other rod was away resulting in a 13lb mirror! there was a trend occurring!!! after all the commotion the guy from a couple of swims up came up to ask Ian what he was doing as they weren’t catching, Ian showed him the rigs and told him exactly what we were doing, then even let him take the next run, betting him it would take less than 5 minutes! 2 minutes later the Delkim was squealing with a fast running carp doing its best to escape Ian's rig, The angle struck to hard on the fast running carp and unfortunately the fish was lost.
We left the rods in now and set up our swims, some very good advice about how it should be done was given out and it was now time to undertake some marker and spod work.
After a very clear and informative demonstration from Ian it was time for us to have a go and both of us cracked it first time thanks to his help! (Some of us more accurate at spodding than others!) we then set up my rods to fish at range, or pub chucking as he called it !. Straight away both rods were off and one was handed to my dad who landed a 12lb 4oz stunner and I landed probably the smallest fish in the lake of about 8lb!. Both fish were suitably held for a brace picture (i don’t have it though!)

About 3 minutes later the rod ripped off again resulting in this 12lber

Before I had the chance to get the rod out I was in again resulting in this 19lb 4oz a new PB for me.

I thought by now it couldn’t get any better, but I was so wrong!

The very next fish was another PB but this time a 23lb 6 oz and my first 20! ! Which after a few photos was slipped safely back:
Then we went through a very descriptive explanation of what, leads, lead systems and leaders to use in what situations, which I found very interesting and helpful, I put my rods back out and so did my dad for the first time! it wasn’t long before he was battling this:

A lovely 15lb 12oz Pb, by 3lb!

it was then time for lunch so we brought the rods in to actually be able to eat, it took a while for the next bite but when it came it was my turn, again , to land this brute of 16lb 12oz:

The afternoon flew bay and dinner time was upon us so the rods weren’t recast, just as the pasta was cooked, my only rod ripped off again, resulting in this long and lean 14lber the rods were again recast and before the second was on the rest the first was away again, resulting in this 13lb 4oz fish:

then the showing started to slow down as the wind died down and the temperature dropped dramatically. it was time for some shut eye so the rods were brought in and checked then whacked as far as possible, but one of the 6 was placed in the margins after Ian explained that the biggest fish in the lake patrol the margins at night.

as soon as the rods were out again the liners started, some of them very vicious, indicating that the fish were in closer. we couldn’t be bothered to bring them in again as we were all very tired from the days events so they were left at about 120-130 yards. no sooner than I had put my head on my pillow that one of Ian’s rods got a savage take. he went on to land a very pretty fish of about 17lb which was slipped back, only for his other rod to go and land a 14lb fish.

Again just as my head hit the pillow, my right hand rod roared off, what followed I can only describe as being very sad to see, I had hooked into a massive ball of weed, line, hooks and probably the worst lead weights! it sickened me that someone had put such a bad rig into such a nice lake, the fish was quickly held for a photo (scary eye !) then slipped back at an estimated weight of 15lb.

The rest of the night passed uneventfully , but straight away in the morning Ian had a 16lber, I soon followed with this 17lber

Only to be followed by Ian taking an 18lber, not to be beaten I followed with a 19lber!!!! Ian then had to go as the session was over, but before he left he made sure the guy in the next swim knew what we were doing when he asked first cast on the new method he landed a 21lber! , but as I slowly packed up my only rod in the water ripped off, straight from the start it felt a good fish, like the carp gods didn’t want me to leave ! it turned out to be this immaculate 22lber!


(I couldn’t be out done! )by now Ian had left so we had no bait to re-cast with , so I was fishing single pieces of fake corn- it didn’t work ! I wasn’t too bothered as in total the 3 of us had landed 19 fish with an average of about 15lb! it was then time to go home and reflect on what a brilliant day it had been and how much I had enjoyed it and all the things I had learnt!

I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending a day with Ian/ Smart Carping (same thing !) as I learnt loads and had a brilliant time at the same time as he is a very clever angler, who wont hold anything back from you, he even let me and my dad use his £270 rods and £150 reels, (I wouldn’t trust us with that kind of kit !) I think that it has definitely changed my angling for the better and now have an approach I am very happy in using and hope to take this to my harder waters and get some success!

Calum Kletta



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